Now you can check your degree of shortsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism without moving to an optician, that too from the comfort of your own smartphone.

Ankit Mohan, Manuel Menezes de Oliveira Neto, Vitor Pamplona and Ramesh Raskar

(L to R) Ankit Mohan, Manuel Menezes de Oliveira Neto, Vitor Pamplona and Ramesh Raskar

A team of researchers led by Indian-born Ramesh Raskar at MIT Media Lab has developed a new gadget called NETRA (Near-Eye Tool for Refractive Assessment) which will connect with any smartphone and determine professional quality eye prescription. The gadget will determine shortsightedness (Myopia), farsightedness (Hypermetropia) or astigmatism. The gadget can suggest if you need spectacles or not. It can also figure out power of the glasses in need.

Ramesh Raskar is an associate professor of Media Arts and Sciences at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology). He is leading the Camera Culture Group at MIT Media Lab. He is also the co-director of Center for Future Storytelling at MIT.

NETRA : Near-Eye Tool for Refractive Assessment

NETRA : Near-Eye Tool for Refractive Assessment

The invented gadget is a software and device that can be clipped to a smartphone. The procedure to use the device is very simple and fetches result within two minutes. The device NETRA is clipped to the smartphone and the person to be tested is made to look into the attached small lens. He has to keep on pressing arrow keys until parallel green and red lines overlap with each other. The process is to be repeated eight times for each eye with different orientation of lines. The perfectly visioned people will see a single line, while those with problematic vision will see multiple or distorted lines.

In his interview to Hindustan Times, Ramesh Raskar said :

Ramesh Raskar
We have conducted scientific trials and hope to market the instrument in India in the next few months. Eyecare is a low priority area in India. Eyeglasses can help almost 300 million people.
Publisher: Hindustan Times

Watch this CNN optometry report on Ramesh Raskar’s new invention to see this extremely cheap device which is far more accurate than usual optician’s diagnosis.