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Secret Retinal Implant Camera

Make your blind spot do something useful for once
  [vote for,

In the back of your eyes is a photosensitive surface known as the retina. The center of your retina is not photosensitive, however, since it is actually the outer end of your optic nerve -- this is why everyone has a "blind spot" in the center of their vision. (your brain filters around the blind spot so that you don't really notice it)

My idea is to place a very very miniaturized CCD camera-on-a-chip directly over the blind spot. Because the camera would be directly in the center of your eye, it would always be pointed directly at whatever you are looking at. On the other hand, because it would only cover an area of the retina that is "blind" anyway, it would not interfere with normal vision. Of course, it would have to be quite small, and installed very carefully, so as not to accidentally damage the eye or the optic nerve.

Once installed, this camera would be useful any time you want to take pictures without anyone knowing that you are doing so. James Bond would probably order two. Anyone who is worried about getting mugged could use it to take surreptitious photos of their assailants. Real estate agents and secret service spooks would also find it useful.

Ways of getting the images out of the camera (wireless RF? Infrared?) and ways of triggering the capture of an image (blink twice? tap secret tooth button?) are all open to discussion.

Note that such cameras are already being developed for blind people -- the difference is that this camera would be used by normally sighted people as well, and must not interfere with normal vision.

Jeremi, Apr 10 2002

Blind spot and other thigs about eyes. http://faculty.wash...udler/chvision.html
From the University of Washington. [st3f, Apr 10 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

The Continuous Katherine Mortenhoe http://www-2.cs.cmu...review/conmort.html
Half-baked, in sci-fi at least, many years ago. [8th of 7, Oct 04 2004]

In the oven right now... http://www.popsci.c...967,1063898,00.html
[zen_tom, Jul 04 2005]


       Maybe you could also utilize the earlobes, tonsils and appendix to produce a well rounded media product.
FarmerJohn, Apr 10 2002

       I'm not sure I like the idea of a radio transmitter in my head. Nor the idea of IR beams flying out of my eyeballs. How about a FlashRAM slot in the forehead or something like that?
phoenix, Apr 10 2002

       Hell, if you could do this, I'd like to hook up that CCD to my visual cortex so I can 'see' through it in real time.   

       That blind spot is a curse for those of us who are naked eye amateur astronomers (very amateur). One cannot look directly at a star and get any useful detail - you have to look off to one side just slightly.
waugsqueke, Apr 10 2002

       What is wrong with shooting IR beam out of your eye? As a matter fact, make it more powerful and cut steel with them. You are half way to Superman or SuperWoman. (How come they haven't changed it to SuperPerson?)
bing, Apr 10 2002

       Cute idea. I feel the need to get all pedantic, though.   

       The blind spot is not in the centre of the retina - it is off to one side and you hardly notice it.   

       The night vision problem is because the colour receptors (which work badly in low light conditions) are concentrated at the centre of the retina whereas the low-light receptors (which are almost monochromatic) are more concentrated around the edge.   

       Your peripheral vision is therefore better at night than your central vision. You can demonstrate this by finding a dim star at night that you can see when you look at a neighbouring star but which disappears when you look directly at it.   

       The blind spot can be found as per the link.
st3f, Apr 10 2002

       //thighs about eyes//   

       Yeah. I do appreciate the sights of thighs, all I can google with mine own eyes. But you've spelt "thighs" incorrectly there, saint threef.
neelandan, Apr 11 2002

       I have it on good authority that in early mammals, the blind spot was where our long-ago ancestors' camera implants were implanted. One in each eye permitted both binocular vision and a form of error correction peculiar to the alien technology employed.   

       Now that the aliens have moved on (a small population still resides near the Camden Lock in London, England) mammals are no longer being implanted, but the blind spot remains, as a vestigial reminder of our heritage.
FloridaManatee, Mar 06 2003

       <obligatory "I thought it said..."> ...rectal.
angel, Mar 06 2003

       > [Angel's] comment.   

       Could make for some interesting viewing.   

       "Momma, lookkit dis! I found your ring, momma"
FloridaManatee, Mar 06 2003

       Do you see what I see?
RayfordSteele, Mar 06 2003


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