Your eyes can guide a camera in your glasses

giugno 7, 2010 Technology No Commenti

For now, it is only a prototype. But in the future, we might all have a microcamera embedded in our glasses, to record whatever we see and use it in a thousand different ways: to tape work meetings, to make a video out of the most important moments of our day, or to post movies of our everyday life on the Internet, with a real “point of view” flavor.

End in order to meet the needs of the “lifelogging” phenomenon, that is, of sharing one’s life on the Internet, Sony is running tests on a prototype of eye camera, that is, a simple pair of glasses, which on top of one of the lenses have a miniature video camera, equipped with an infrared LED pointed at the user’s eye.

The infrared light (which can not be seen by the human eye and will not disturb its user) is pointed towards the eyeball, to follow its black part and measure the eye movement, then moving the micro camera in the direction where the eyes are looking, thus recording whatever the glasses’ wearer is seeing or looking at in that moment.

Of course, for now this camera is only in its early stages as a prototype, which would not be very comfortable as it is in the photos, but for the future, they are of course working to make everything smaller in order to mount the camera directly into the frame of your glasses, and on top of that, to add a few features.

For example, the miniature camera might be equipped with a text recognition software, in order to copy the text you are reading (a function that could be very useful for university or college students as well as for spies on the lookout for compromising evidence), or with a GPS location device which would be able to record the exact geographical coordinates of what you are seeing, and these coordinated might be used in covert operations as well as by lifeloggers eager to share their current exact position at any time.

A laser gun to bring down enemy unmanned aircraft

giugno 7, 2010 Technology No Commenti

As explained recently, usage of UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) by the US Army is so widespread in war zones, that their total mission hours have just reached the one million threshold. Naturally though, the fact that pilotless aircraft do not bear any risk for ground personnel does not keep them safe from being, in turn, exposed to the danger of being brought down, in spite of the fact that their small size and their electric power makes them difficult to identify and strike.

On the other hand, the US Army is certainly not the only one that uses UAVs, and to defend themselves from possible enemy attacks or reconnaissance missions carried out via drones, the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) has developed a laser gun, specifically designed to identify and hit this kind of aerial vehicles, especially in scenarios of war at sea.

The gun, called LaWS (Laser Weapon System) shoots a laser beam, controlled by a guidance and location system; so far, during a series of test runs, the laser gun has brought down a total of seven remotely controlled aircraft. In the future, thanks to the integration of even more powerful and accurate laser beams, US Navy researchers hope that they can extend the system’s operating range, and power it up so that it can strike a diverse range of flying targets.

Thanks to these laser systems, it will be possible not only to bring down enemy drones, but most of all, to do it in a much more soet-efficient way when compared to the usage of conventional weapons mounted on rockets. Furthermore, the laser defense system could, in a future that we hope will never come true, be mounted on commercial airliners, as an active defense against potential terrorist threats and attacks with rockets or missiles.

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