BBC is carrying an interesting story today about some initial successes in trials of a bionic eye — see “Bionic eye gives blind man sight.”

Moorfields Eye Hospital in the UK is carrying out trials of the technology with three patients suffering from retinitis pigmentosa, an inherited disease that causes retinal degeneration. Eighteen patients around the world are participating in trials.

The bionic eye is able to send “meaningful visual stimuli” to the brains of patients, according to a retinal surgeon.

As an example of what it can do, one patient quoted in the BBC article says the device allows him to sort light from dark laundry.

Here’s a video that gives an idea how the technology works.

AB — 4 March 2009

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