By Andrew Liszewski
The idea seems pretty far out there, but Chris Mullin has designed a pair of sunglasses that use an LCD display to selectively darken the area in your field of view where there’s a glare, like from oncoming headlights or mankind’s greatest foe, the sun. Wearing them is akin to holding your hand up to block a bright light, except that it all happens automatically, faster than the blink of an eye. And even if you turn your head, or if the source of the glare is moving, the darkened spot on the glasses also moves to ensure the bright light hitting your eyes is darkened to the point where it’s not irritating, or causing serious damage.
The technology seems like something that wouldn’t be feasible until the not-too-distant future, but when you think about the size of digital cameras or modern display technologies, the pieces to this puzzle are already out there. In fact there’s a video of a prototype doing its thing on the Dynamic Eye website, which admittedly looks pretty slick. What’s particularly cool is that you don’t actually end up seeing black blobs while wearing the glasses. Light still passes through the darkened area allowing you to see what’s behind it, and since the glasses are so close to your face your eyes will always be focused beyond the spots, so they’ll look more like darkened smudges when they’re activated.
Now unfortunately the glasses aren’t ready for primetime just yet, and Chris currently has a Kickstarter page set up hoping to raise $20,000 by the middle of January to proceed with development.