Eidos: Audio/Visual Sensory Augmentation

eidos

One of our tipsters led us onto a very cool project by a British university team — It’s called Eidos, and it’s a real-time audio and visual augmentation system.

The creators embarked on this design journey after wondering if there was a way they could control and tune their senses. Imagine Superman and his ability to pick out one voice out of thousand — with this technology, it could be possible.

The clunky white goggles shown in the image above is the concept behind the visual augmentation. It’s akin to long-exposure photography, except that it is in real-time and is fluid video. We’re not sure how this could help anyone, but we have to admit it would be pretty cool to play around with. Maybe if Google Glass ever came out someone could write an app for it to mimic this!

The second device can target your hearing to a specific person in a noisy environment, zoning out all the unnecessary distractions. This could be very helpful for people suffering from attention deficit disorders, although we must imagine it would be very strange to get used to. Can you imagine blocking out everything and only looking at a person’s face and listening to their voice?

Unfortunately there is not much information about the actual tech or software behind these devices or if they even in fact work, but the concept was so interesting we just had to share it. Stick around after the break to see a video explanation and demonstration of the proposed technology.

If you’re interested in learning more, we also managed to find this presentation by the team at a university .

[Thanks Christopher!]

24 thoughts on “Eidos: Audio/Visual Sensory Augmentation

  1. That’s probably the wrong approach… if we want to enhance our senses we should actually genetically modify ourselves… I can’t wait that day… :)

    1. Ahhh the wonders of Transhumanism. Whether to go the bio/tech augmentation route. Age old discussion ;)

      What i find interesting is that we humans are programmed in a certain way. When people think super powers they all think about something that is faster, stronger or founded in our way of seeing the world. It could be interesting if we could develop a sense that we didn’t knew existed in the first place.

      Something like… see in 4D. The third dimension is a spacial upgrade from the puny second. All 3D would probably be seen in slices and spacial context would seize to exist. Matter would simply be… there. Position and orientation would be second in importance.

      I’ve just read the first part of a book called Manhattan in Reverse by Peter F. Hamilton (no spoilers). Humans were genetically bread to be faster, stronger, but also older. Humans in that book would live up to two thousand years. The interesting conundrum was that the future was more tangible as it would affect you longer. It all culminates in a project that researches becoming part of space as a non-creature entity as such. More like… something that is just… there (although this is a sidestep from the main story it’s quite interesting.

      Aaaaand that leads me to a short story by Isaac Asimov: http://filer.case.edu/dts8/thelastq.htm

      But until all this happens I’ll be fine with Jetson Hover boots :P

      1. I’m with you on this one, and thanks for the book reference, but the bio side has a long way to go, we can read the genome but still don’t fully understand its language, go for the low hanging fruit first.

        besides, I would love to see everyone running around with daft punk helmets on

    2. Isn’t there a shield for the Arduino that does this already? o.0 And let’s not forget the 5D Ardunio hack. Come on, fellas..

  2. I think, the video part is unusable, because when you move your head, then not just the people will blur, but the whole background too.

    1. Not so much, elementary programing, if everything moves the effect turns off. I’m wondering about a more “useful” effect which would probably not be hard to add, where the software figures the moving items track and then extends it so that you can see where things are going as well as where they’ve been.

  3. OMG OMG I was thinking about such a pair of goggles ever since I saw Judge Dredd 2012. Perhaps these folks got their ideas there?

    For those who haven’t seen the movie:

    In the movie the bad guys took this narcotics called “SloMo”. It “slowed” reality down.

    How cool would this effect be under the influence of alcohol?
    I would give anything to experience this.

      1. Or use the good old strobe lights/or LCD shutters for motions effects? No drugs required. The selective audio part could be beamforming with a phased array of mics.

      2. Lol guys, I don’t do drugs, and don’t need to see “interesting visual and cognitive effects”. Just wanted to see the effect as in the movie replicated, but with a little (LEGAL) alcohol in my blood. Not too much. :)

    1. that’s actually fairly easy to achieve – just do something dumb and dangerous… I once narrowly avoided smashing my car when I was overtaking a bus in a snow storm – the car skidded and it took like 30 seconds to regain control, but it felt to me almost like 5 minutes… cool experience though it was almost like watching tokyo drift but in a 6D theatre and in slowmo

    1. So we’re gonna be able to mimic 1st generation LCD monitor smear/ghosting
      combined with micro$oft mouse pointer trails.

      does it come with a carton Dramamine and maxalt
      or are they planning to sell it to the spooks for use at Gitmo?

  4. That video is extremely dishonest, with lots of AE/CGI stuff that they can not do in reality.
    And as for the seemingly simple trails, the problem is that it’s easy to isolate moving objects with a stationary camera, but when you move a camera on your head the entire picture moves, and the distance things seem to move will be dependent on the distance from the lens, or in other words you’d get massive distortion all over your screen. And yes you can fix that somewhat with motion tracking of the camera but I think they just faked the vimeo video rather than have complex software that tries to deal with all of that.

    But at least in the sound isolation part (which won’t work as shown either in reality) they faked it with the drummer and not the electric guitar :)

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