Why you should be an Avatar

By Blanca Torii

People are shallow. I mean literally.

Our day to day is governed by what we see, hear, taste, touch, smell. We live more or less by our five senses.

Yet there is one sense in particular that seems to dominate all others: sight.

Two weeks ago the world’s first bionic eye was released on the market.

Today also marks the 66th anniversary of the introduction of the Polaroid camera, one that takes, develops and prints a picture in one quick motion.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the bionic eye Argus II last week. This approval means that over 20 more years of research, trials and millions of dollars will be put into action. Just because it was approved does not mean the process is over.

This prosthesis can treat a certain kind of blindness known as retinitis pigmentosa. This genetic disease affects about 100,000 people in the U.S., says Popular Science magazine.

The disease kills cells in the retina, the tissue layer at the back of the eye, that processes light. The rest of the visual system remains intact.

Through surgery, the Argus II uses electrodes to send an electric signal toward the back of retina.

A small video camera is attached to eyeglasses and a visual processor is placed around the waist of the wearer.

Information from the video camera is sent to the visual processor and then back to the glasses, where it’s sent to the electrodes.

Although the Argus II can’t completely restore sight, it allows people to move around independently. Makes a big difference that many people do not realize. In most cases, people take the sight of sense for granted.

With the green light from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Argus II will soon be available in clinical centers across the country.
In the realm of dialect in particular, the language of sight carries different meanings.

People are constantly using it in different contexts other than the obvious.

“Did you see that?” or “I’ve been seeing someone for a while now,” or “Oh, I see how it is.”

And a more recent one, “[Name] I see you.”

Now this last one, I’ve only recently learned what it means.

Thanks to UrbanDictionary.com, I now know that one says “I see you,” “to a person when they’re dressed all fresh and tight,” or “when a person does something remarkable, noteworthy, or just downright weird.”

And I admit, I’m addicted to Instagram. Well it erases boredom when needed.

I’ve had it for about two months, since I’ve upgraded to the iPhone just before winter break began. So it’s something that’s fairly new to me.

That could be a factor in my fascination with it. But look, it’s a program designed for sight. And obviously this is not the only site designed for sight.

Every application on the iPhone, every video game in an arcade or on a new game system is always designed for sight.

The motif of eyes and seeing is noticeable.

What is funny about this is the efforts people put into being seen. Whether it is clothing, funny actions, or accessories, people are always trying to be seen.

What makes these action so confusing is if most people desire to see and be seen, then why is invisibility often a superpower?