Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Spotlight on Technology: Testing Children's Vision

Here at SpotON3D/WorldWorks, we believe that it is important to keep abreast of new technological developments, even if we cannot immediately see ways that they might be applied to Web Worlds. We pride ourselves in thinking outside the box, and appreciate seeing others who are willing to take their dreams to the next level.

In a series of technology spotlights, we will be taking a look at some exciting breakthroughs that are happening around us. Today’s focus is on a comprehensive new vision treatment developed by researchers at the University of Tennessee Space Institute in Tullahoma.. one that is inexpensive, easy to administer, and shows promise in helping to identify vision problems in young people at an early age, before those problems can become irreversible.

According to their report, 85% of children’s learning is related to vision in one way or another. However, 80% of all children in the US have not had their vision tested before kindergarten, and the ones who have are generally given tests that can only detect a couple of different disorders.

The newly developed testing device is called the Dynamic Ocular Evaluation System (DOES), and was invented by Ying-Ling Ann Chen, a research assistant professor in physics, assisted by research associate Lei Shi and physics professor Jim Lewis. It is reportedly very kid-friendly and easy to learn.

With this system, the child just sits and watches a short cartoon or plays a computer game while looking through a binocular-type device mounted in front of the screen. As they do this, an infra-red light checks the child for a wide variety of vision disorders, ranging from neural disorders to lazy eye. The plan is to continue adding tests to the device that can help identify mental disorders such as ADHD, PTSD, autism, and dyslexia. Data gathered is recorded and can be sent to specialists if required.

For the full story on this amazing device, see http://www.gizmag.com/does-vision-testing-for-children/21170/.

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