Woman Wants Webcam Fitted Into Prosthetic Eye

By Stephanie Rogers
Contributing Writer, [GAS]

A San Francisco woman hopes to be the first person with a real-life bionic eye. Tanya Vlach lost her eye in a 2005 car crash, and the self-described trans-disciplinary artist thinks a webcam would be a lot more useful than the plastic prosthetic she’s currently wearing.

In an announcement on her blog, One-Eyed, entitled ‘CALL FOR ENGINEERS’, Vlach wrote,

I am attempting to recreate my eye with the help of a miniature camera implant in my prosthetic / artificial eye. The intraocular installation of an eye-cam will substitute for the field of vision of my left eye that I lost in 2005 from a car accident. While my prosthetic is an excellent aesthetic replacement, I am interested in capitalizing on the current advancement of technology to enhance the abilities of my prosthesis for an augmented reality.

She goes on to include the dimensions of the shell she’s currently wearing, saying she has an ocularist who’s already on board and just needs an engineer to create the part. She says the installation would likely involve putting the camera in the molding while it hardens, or drilling after the fact. She wants the webcam-eye to include a built-in mini SD slot, a mini A/V out, a Firewire/USB drive and a remote trigger (obviously, she doesn’t want to have to stick her finger in her eye socket to hit ‘record’.)

Vlach told FOX News,

“There have been all sorts of cyborgs in science fiction for a long time, and I’m sort of a sci-fi geek,” Vlach tells the New York Daily News in a story published Monday. “With the advancement of technology, I thought, ‘Why not?'”

With the technological advances that have been made in medicine lately, with cameras that can travel through delicate areas of the body, I don’t see why she couldn’t get the bionic eye of her dreams. Engineers have already begun responding to her request, so we might see Vlach get her webcam prosthesis sooner rather than later.

3 Responses to Woman Wants Webcam Fitted Into Prosthetic Eye

  1. I like the idea of this. My first thought would be rather than having a USB interface, and/or and SD Card slot that the camera should use some wireless interface to connect, maybe bluetooth or wifi…

    I get there are problems, like powering it (thermal power leeching of body heat?)

    This could be a precursor to really hooking this kind of cam into the human brain to replace missing/damaged eyes.

  2. Well, she's gonna have to take it out anyway, so she'll probably charge it then. You don't leave fake eyes in all the time anyway, or so I'm told.

    Actually, one of those sd cards with wifi built in would be perfect, she can just get NEAR a wifi network, and have it upload to flickr…that would be cool

  3. It's been over two years since this post. Any updates available? Technology has advanced; this should be more likely to work now.

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