US tech giant IBM has patented an eye wear like Google Glass that will have red-eyed night vision capabilities, a media report said. Although not promising a true night vision, the device is described in the patent to improve sight under low light by tricking the brain to focus on high contrast imagery. “IBM’s Google Glass modifications include a sensor and ‘a comparator device’ designed to detect and contrast light intensity. When the light intensity drops below a set level, a pair of projectors — one for each eye — bathe the user’s eyes in red light,” a report in International Business Times (UK) said.
The patent claims the effect is similar to that of dark rooms used in photography or the red-tinted glasses worn by some airline pilots. Dark environment with a red tinge cause the rod cells, which are the photoreceptors in our eye, to send high contrast images to the brain. When the user enters a low-light environment, the projector automatically projects a low-level red light in to each eye of the user.
Shining red light directly into the eyes creates the same response rods as casting red light onto an environment. Which means it tricks the rod cells into sending higher contrast images to the brain. However, the company also issued a health warning. The patent read: “The wearer of current glasses such as Google Glass is subject to the risk of a phenomena referred to as binocular rivalry and phoria — a latent deviation or misalignment of the eyes that appears when both eyes are no longer looking at the same object.”