Taking time out of your day to make an appointment and see an optometrist isn't always that agreeable, and that's before they blow those little puffs of air onto your eyeballs. But one Chicago-based startup has visions of making eye examinations a lot more accessible. Since 2012, Opternative has been developing an online eye tester that lets users obtain prescriptions for glasses and contacts from the comfort of the home or office. And now with clinical trial success under its belt, it's rolling the service out to the public.
Well, that didn't take long. In less than a year, electrochromic sunglasses have gone from being experimental to an actual product, with Dutch startup Ctrl announcing its tint-on-demand Ctrl One
cycling glasses just this month. Should you prefer multi-use
electronically-tinting sunglasses, however, you might want to get
yourself a pair of Skugga shades.
A Dutch subsidiary of liquid crystal specialist AlphaMicron is turning to Indiegogo to fund the development of Ctrl One, a pair of glasses mostly targeted to cyclists and runners that can change tint from dark to transparent in a fraction of a second, automatically adapting to surrounding lighting conditions.
A few years ago, UK-based Adlens developed self-adjustable glasses designed to let those in the developing world dial in their ideal magnification level – no optometrist required. Now the company is bringing the technology to the developed world as an alternative to bifocals. Instead of looking through a different area of the lenses (and tilting your head forward and back) to switch from near to far objects, the magnification of the AdlensFocuss glasses is adjusted by a small dial on the arm.
Intel, long the driving force of what we'd traditionally consider a computer, has made no secret of its aspirations in the wearable technology space. Its latest move to carve out a foothold across this area comes with the acquisition of Canadian smart eyewear-maker Recon Instruments, which it says will help them develop new and improved head-mounted displays.
I wouldn't normally pay too much attention to such a seemingly minor thing as eyeglass hinges, but Spine Optic's extraordinary 3D video animation caught my imagination. The company's range of frames feature a nifty self-closing hinge inspired by the human backbone that holds the glasses firmly in place on your face and offers extra flexibility to fit different sized heads.
Some hobbyists might already be familiar with micarta, a solid material
made from layers of denim that have been bonded together with resin.
While it's usually carved to create objects such as knife handles, UK
startup Mosevic is using a micarta-like substance to make something else – blue jeany-looking sunglasses.