Hacking how we see - Ben Senior
35c3 - Science - 12/30/2018
We mostly see with the mind, and the mind is flexible. For the four hundred million people with amblyopia (lazy eye), their brain encountered an installation error when linking both eyes as babies. As a "Plan B", their brain switched one eye off.
I'll talk a bit about how the visual system works, and how our open-source virtual reality software (backed by social impact lab Leipzig and the prototypefund.de) can hack through that suppression and provide a chance to "re-install" full sight with two eyes.
By providing an open set of tools for creating comparable experiments, our goal is not just to provide a tool, and a set of tools for building more tools, but to provide the basis for one of the world's largest open-science experiments.
Nobody claims to have predictive scientific models of how the visual system works in its entirety, and that means there is still so much more to discover. In the case of Lazy Eye, some aspects of the visual system are de-activated and/or dormant. What we can do is to comparatively explore which techniques and approaches have which effects on opening visual perceptions, and thereby drive our understanding of the system forward on a theoretical and practical level.
If you'd like to know more, check out www.eyeskills.org and come along to this talk. :-)