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First Bionic Eye Gets FDA Blessing 42

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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  • Re:Brain Interface (Score:4, Insightful)

    by SuricouRaven ( 1897204 ) on Friday February 15, 2013 @05:47AM (#42907939)

    Figure out the coding and feeding directly into the primary visual cortex is feasible. Tricky part is making an implant that can continue to function for many years without needing replacement.

  • by SuricouRaven ( 1897204 ) on Friday February 15, 2013 @07:59AM (#42908531)

    Actually, the series did address that (or it might have been in one of the novels, ask a real trekkie). In the TNG timeframe, medical tech would have been easily up to the task of growing replacement biological eyes and reconnecting them. Geordie could have had that done any time he wished. He took the visor out of choice, because it provided him with vision in some ways superior to natural which he considered made him a better engineer. Most usefully, it could image in the thermal infra-red, allowing him to see at a glance patterns of heat dissipation that others would need hand-held instrumentation to observe, and because he saw these every time he looked at any component he gained a far greater understanding of what 'normal' looked like and how to spot slight deviations from it - allowing him to recognise a near-failure component that any normally-sighted engineer wouldn't notice until it failed completly.

"If you lived today as if it were your last, you'd buy up a box of rockets and fire them all off, wouldn't you?" -- Garrison Keillor