What's the Latest Development?
Students at London's Royal College of Art have created two devices, a mask and goggles, that when worn enable users to isolate and amplify sounds and sights respectively. The Eidos mask captures sound through a directional microphone and runs it through software that picks out the desired audio. It then plays the audio to the wearer through earphones as well as a mouthpiece that sends the sound to the inner ear. The Eidos goggles use software to process a specific video target and redisplay an enhanced version to the wearer.
What's the Big Idea?
At its most basic, the Eidos devices could prove beneficial for those whose sight and/or sound have begun to fade with age. However, the design team has come up with a number of entertaining applications. For example, when worn at a band concert, the mask could allow its wearer to listen to one musician, such as the drummer. When worn at a dance performance, the goggles could add computer-generated special effects, such as smoke, to one or more performers. Neither device is unobtrusive -- "[t]he mask is reminiscent of something you’d find a Mortal Kombat character wearing" -- but the technology they incorporate is promising.