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First Bionic Eye Gets FDA Blessing 42

Posted by samzenpus
from the all-the-better-to-see-you-with dept.
coondoggie writes "The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved what it says is the first bionic eye, or retinal prosthesis, that can partially restore the sight of blind individuals after surgical implantation. The Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System includes a small video camera, transmitter mounted on a pair of eyeglasses, video processing unit (VPU) and an implanted artificial retina. The VPU transforms images from the video camera into electronic data that is wirelessly transmitted to the retinal prosthesis."
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First Bionic Eye Gets FDA Blessing

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 15, 2013 @04:18AM (#42907533)

    Seeing as how some McDonalds employees physically assaulted Professor Steve Mann in an attempt to rip off his prosthetically-mounted digital eye glass, I take it they may also feel threatened by bionic eyes and may ban or even attempt to remove them. Sound far-fetched? Read what McDonalds did to Dr. Mann [blogspot.jp], and decide for yourself.

  • Re:Brain Interface (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ldobehardcore (1738858) <steven,dubois&gmail,com> on Friday February 15, 2013 @05:41AM (#42907889)

    I saw a University of Washington (I get the TV channels) lecture on a study of natural vision coding

    They basically hooked a monkey's optic nerve into a ton of monitoring electrodes, then showed the monkey a set of images while recording. They then programmed a Neural network to replicate the exact same output as the monkey with the same input, and hooked it into blind monkeys testing against the calibration we use today in humans.

    The standard calibration method is the squares test. They send a pulse to each electrode and have the subject point at the relative location on an easel where they see a flash from the activation. So for a 64 electrode system, the subject sees 64 flashes. They're then tested on shapes and sizes of objects (object recognition)

    The blind monkeys were trained this method using the standard equipment and coding, (testing for grapes and dice). But when they split them into two groups, the monkeys with the neural net coding did much better after a couple of weeks after they got their coding replaced with the neuralnet input from a human.

    I don't think there was a stellar control in the study, but the results are intriguing, and I think it merits further research. Perhaps with MRI mapping of how the optic nerve connects to the visual processing area, and how it changes during blindness.

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