A Surgical Implant for Seeing Colors Through Sound

A colour-blind European artist who has gained fame as a cyborg who sees colours through sound is planning to have an operation that will fuse his listening device to his skull.

Neil Harbisson, 29, was born with a rare condition called achromatopsia, which limits his colour perception to black and white. In 2004, working with friends, he began to wear a series of devices that translated colour into sound. While he initially used earphones, over the last eight years the devices have become increasingly incorporated into his body, to the point that his British passport photo now includes his device, which he calls an eyeborg. Currently Mr Harbisson wears the eyeborg — a single, antenna-like device that arcs from the nape of his neck over to the front of his forehead — continuously, even when he showers. A single sensor, which sits at the end of the antenna, turns colours directly in front of Mr Harbisson into sounds based on a correlation of frequencies of the wavelengths.

Mr Harbisson’s current eyeborg is pressed against the base of his head with extremely high pressure, which allows the sounds to reverberate along his skull to his eardrums. But his new eyeborg, to be implanted in September, will be connected to his body through three screws in his head — two to support the antenna and electronic chip, and a third for the sound to be passed into his skull, which will vibrate with the sound. He expects it will take about two months for the bone to heal around the implant — via redwolf.newsvine.com

Share this Story
Load More Related Articles
Load More By Red Wolf
Load More In Technology

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Photos from Flickr