Monday, August 23, 2010

This Sounds Pretty Cool


NEC Corp. has developed eyeglass equipment that interprets foreign languages into mother tongues and projects the translation onto a person's retina.

This device makes it possible to speak with a foreigner naturally in one's mother tongue without an interpreter.

If the accuracy of translation continues to improve, it is expected to be used in various fields and situations, such as international conferences and business negotiations with foreign companies.

The equipment comprises of a miniature script-projector and microphone attached to the glasses, and a tiny computer that can be attached to the waist of the user. When two people with different mother tongues speak to each other, the projector displays the conversation in both languages.

NEC's application of such technology to project images by casting light directly onto the retina is a world first. The retina transforms the optical information into a nerve signal, which is sent to the center of the brain via optic nerves.

Sources say that the device can be used for hours without eye strain as it is not necessary to focus on the script display. Because the script appears on the peripherals of a person's vision, it enables people to look at each other while they speak.

Possible future applications include car navigation systems and video games. It also would enable police to distinguish whether license plates that come into sight are stolen by using a small camera attached to the glasses.
Source: Yomiuri News, 2009-09-25

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