Sensory augmentation equipment – Eidos
We have been very focused on enhancing our surroundings with technology through devices and channels we are used to such as the internet, handheld devices including tables and more so recently software developments such as augmented reality. What is new is considering how we might be able to look at enhancing our basic senses through technology to improve our reality.
Eidos have developed two main prototypes which look at approaching the nature of how we see and how we hear in a very different way indeed.
The first covers the wearer’s ears, mouth and nose and uses a directional microphone to give the wearer the ability to hear an isolated sound in a noisy environment. For example, you could target a person in a crowd and clearly hear his words without the surrounding noise. Another application may be the developments of this technology for the ageing, assisting those with diminishing hearing have a better quality of life.
The other prototype is worn over one’s eyes. A camera captures video and sends it to a computer, which can apply a set of effects to it in real-time and send it back to the wearer. One can, for example, use it to see movement patterns, similar to the effects of long-exposure photography.
The team behind project Eidos, Tim Bouckley, Mi Eun Kim, Millie Clive-Smith and Yuta Sugawara, see many possible applications of this technology. For example, one could use the visual mask it to analyse movement and technique in sports. In another example, concert-goers could use the hearing mask to focus on a certain performer at a concert.
“We are used to controlling the world around us to find the settings that suit us best. But while technology advances to aid this, our physical bodies remain the same. What if we had the same control over our senses? If we could adjust them in real time, what experiences would this make possible?”
With wearable technology being at the cutting edge of how we engage with the evolving digital space with the likes Google Glass, for example, could developments such as these being ventured into by the Eidos team be the start of a significant step towards improvement of our senses?