Thursday, October 8, 2009

Must Be Like French-Kissing A Duracell

Chuck this in the "cool advances in biotechnology" folder for sure!

A device, called the BrainPort, allows blind people to detect light waves by the transmission of electrical signals to the tongue. A digital camera is mounted in a pair of shades, which captures light and sends it to a portable handheld device for processing. The info is then converted into an electrical signal and sent via wire to a device placed on the tongue, called a "lollipop." Users take up to two weeks to train themselves to detect different electrical impulses representing various shades and intensities of light. After acclimating themselves, some are able to "see" enough to detect objects like doors and buttons, and even read certain signs.

This is probably the coolest thing I've ever read! You can find out more by clicking on this link to the article in this month's issue of Scientific American.

Isn't it amazing what the brain can do?

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