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Compound Eye Sunglasses

Active LCD sunglasses that dim bright reflections.
  [vote for,

Each 'lens' would be a spherical section of honeycombed tubes facing perpendicular to the surface of the lens. Picture a piece cut out of a collander that has far too many holes, each of which has a very straight piece of macaroni stuck inside it. Now picture it much smaller.

These tubes would collimate the light so that light coming from the left would only pass through the holes on the left and so on. There'd be a fair bit of overlap to let enough light through to see, to stop things going completely dark when your glasses shift on your nose, and because when you look around, the front of your eye moves.

Now, in each of the holes you put a small LCD shutter that is capable of blocking some, most or all of the light, and between the holes you put tiny optical sensors. The glasses can now react to the scene front of you. Driving in to the sun? A dark blob obscures the offending orb. Skiing? The lower half dims the reflections off the snow and the clouds while keeping trees and other skiers highly visible.

Nose and ear strengthening surgery recommended for early models.

st3f, Aug 18 2003

LCD Sunvisor http://www.halfbake...idea/LCD_20Sunvisor
Ah, that's what I was talking about. Thanks bris. [Worldgineer, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 17 2004]

As worn by Phil Manzanera http://www.heartsti...ing.com/picture.htm
(11th pic down) [angel, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Without Collimation http://www.st3f.com...ery/hb20030818a.gif
no macaroni. [st3f, Oct 05 2004, last modified Jul 05 2015]

With Collimation http://www.st3f.com...ery/hb20030818b.gif
with macaroni of arbitary length and thickness. [st3f, Oct 05 2004, last modified Jul 05 2015]

Cutaway of Sunglasses http://www.st3f.com...ery/hb20030819a.gif
If bristolz doesn't understand one of my ideas, I'm probably not describing it well enough. In the diagram, each shutter would be controlled (and powered?) by the sensor next to it. [st3f, Oct 05 2004, last modified Jul 05 2015]

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       Voided Pixel Shades.   

       How would they "know" where the light source is?  Is that the reason you say the lens is spherical?
bristolz, Aug 18 2003

       Spherical (with the centre of the eyeball used as the centre of the sphere) so that as the eyeball rotates the holes stay parallel to the axis of the eye.   

       Each hole would have its own sensor (with a lens over the front) so that the light landing on the sensor would come from the direction in which the hole is facing.   

       //Voided Pixel Shades// Is that a reference to something, or just a cooler name?
st3f, Aug 18 2003

       Nah, is just the way the idea struck me: like voided pixels in a display. I have a need to compact things into phrases like that.   

       And, now I think I understand how it detects the directionality. Not sure why I didn't at first.   

       Do you think that, instead, you could have lenses that have a shutter array (LCD, maybe) but which are driven from a small, spherically shaped CCD with the spherical surface mapped to the lens surface to control the shutters for localized darkening?
bristolz, Aug 18 2003

       I really want to vote for this because it addresses a problem that really needs solving. But I can't. I just don't see a need for the pixelization and it just doesn't sound like it'll work. I'd consider something a bit further from your eye, such as a windshield with LCD built in to block sun, a camera to watch for the sun, and a camera to watch for the location of your eye. But as described, I think you'll have focus issues.
Worldgineer, Aug 18 2003

       I think that there is an idea like that somewhere here, [World].
bristolz, Aug 18 2003

       bris: //driven from a small, spherically shaped CCD// Is that just a case of moving the LCD shutter further back so that you can incorporate the whole thing into one array? Actually, once you have the concept, there is no reason why the assemby has to be spherical, so long as the holes through which you see radiate out from the centre of the eye. You could even make it flat making an LCD array much cheaper.   

       World: Going back to the macaroni anology, things get dark unless you look from the right spot. If you fitted this to a car windshield, you'd have to get your driving position exactly right, not move your head much, and compromise the effectiveness of the system to allow for vision with both eyes. Your passengers, having no alignment with the holes, would see the screen as black.
//I really want to vote for this...// Don't let me stop you.
st3f, Aug 18 2003

       //get your driving position exactly right// that's what the inside camera's for
//having no alignment with the holes// I was speaking of more traditional LCD

       Anyway, let's focus on your idea (pun intended). Why pixelate your view? Wouldn't it work just as well to have the LCD on a continuous lens? Only the dark spot would be pixelated, which is far preferable to everything being pixelated unless you can get really fine lenses.
Worldgineer, Aug 18 2003

       Veering back off for a moment . . . I'm not sure I follow. What I was thinking about is that if you had a sphere whose surface was studded with a sufficient number of photoreceptors it could be used to detect from what direction a glaring light source is, or sources are, originating. Since we know what a sphere's exact shape is, it should be easy to map the light detection, and direction, data from some point on the sphere's surface to the corresponding array of shutters in the eyeglass lenses, assuming the individual shutters were x,y addressable. The sphere, which could probably be quite tiny, could be mounted on the bridge of the glasses, between the two lenses.
bristolz, Aug 18 2003

       Ah, no. There is more to the idea than shadow puppetry. If you go back to the macaroni and collander model, the purpose of the macaroni is to collimate the light. This gives you a more precise control over the areas you want to darken. It also removes some of the light, which is fine, provide that you don't make the macaroni too thin or long.   

       The collimation of the light would be unnecessary if the eye were a pinhole camera. It is because the pupil has an area that you need to collimate the light. Does that help?   

       I'll draw a picture. [puts ray diagrams up. ray does not object.] They're a bit busy but hopefully they'll help.
st3f, Aug 18 2003

       Nice diagrams but I fear I just haven't the wherewithal to get it.  I'm sure it's clever, though.
bristolz, Aug 18 2003

       (_!_) It's the difference between looking through a hole in a fence (without collimation) and looking through a paper towel tube (with collimation).   

       In the first example light coming through the hole bounces around willy-nilly. Shuttering the hole would have an effect over a large area.   

       In the second example, the light is channeled and more or less parallel to the direction of vision. Shuttering the tube will have a very specific effect over a (relatively) small area.
phoenix, Aug 18 2003

       [added another pic]
st3f, Aug 19 2003

       Compound Eye for the straight guy?
wombat, Aug 19 2003

       I think I understand. Thanks for all of the remedial materials.
bristolz, Aug 19 2003


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