SUB2r Biochromatic Noise Cancelling™ Glasses
Humans evolved as hunters. Like all predators, our eyes are positioned forward for pursuit, and even within the eye there are more photoreceptive cells in the center of our vision than on the periphery. Our survival as a species depended upon the ability to quickly spot prey or predators and have lightning quick responses. Is that dinner - or am I?
Humans have been studying vision since the 4th century B.C. when Plato first theorized sight as emission of rays emanating from the eyes. Which was later refuted by Aristotle’s theory of intromission, “In general, it is unreasonable to suppose that seeing occurs by something issuing from the eye.”
The human process for creating vision is mind-blowingly complex, fascinating, and miraculous – which can be summed up by Arthur C. Clarke’s famous quote.
“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”
Almost twenty-five-hundred years after Plato, Andrew Elliot stated in his 2015 research on vision, “color and psychological functioning is at a nascent stage of development...”
There is still a lot we don’t understand. The challenge is to distill centuries of knowledge, some results of which are contradictory, and concentrate on what we do know from repeated studies. It can be said that there is more to how humans see the world than meets the eye.
Response time (RT) is the length of time from when a photon excites photoreceptive cells in the eye, information is sent to the brain which deciphers a shape, applies, color and detects motion, analyzes what is relevant and filters out what is not, determines if and what action is necessary, then sends a command for a physical reaction, like a mouse click.
Humans have, on average, a 200ms – 300ms (0.20 – 0.30 second) conscious response time. Unconscious reaction times, like when you touch something hot, can be as short as 80ms. Research has shown that video gamers’ brains are wired to react and process visual information faster than other people. Esports athletes can drop conscious RT to as short as 100-120ms. Maintaining this RT may determine whether your team wins, or loses at the end of the competition.
Making the analogy between a digital camera and the human eye is difficult. Depending on how it is calculated the equivalent mega pixels ranges as high as high as 576MP each. Being conservative, assume you’ve got two 256MP cameras at 8-bit color depth running at approximately 40fps (thanks to Mr. Edison for figuring that out). With a bit of math that rounds out to approximately 82Gb per second pouring into your brain. A video camera transmits completed frames where every pixel is delivered in nice neat sequential order. The cells in your eyes are like pixels that transmit data when they are ready. The information is constantly changing and morphing organically. The photosensitive cells can get overloaded and fatigued to the point where they stop sending information.
According to Emily Chew, an ophthalmologist at the National Eye Institute in Bethesda, Maryland, one- third of the brain’s processing power is dedicated to vision. And, in our brain’s defense. it has to do a lot of fakin’ it ‘till it makes it.
The language of light
Light is a portion of the electromagnetic spectrum which extends from the low energy long side - radio waves - to the high energy short side – gamma rays. Wavelength is the distance between the peaks of these waves defined in “nm” - nanometers or one billionth of a meter. The higher the number, the fewer waves per meter (longer), and therefore, the less energy. Visible light is a very narrow band in the middle of the spectrum between 400nm blue to 700nm red. In the purest sense, energy has no color. Color is only defined by how the human eye and the brain interpret these wavelengths. When describing the wavelength, the numeric nm designation is used and is oftentimes associated with our perception of color, for example 534nm as Emerald green.
Painting a picture in the mind’s eye: Vision is a highly complex process
We humans take vision for granted. We see the world as if it were a movie playing in our mind. In reality it is a very complicated non-linear process of the neural cortex and the brain interpreting billions of bits of data per second. Our eyes can distinguish over 10 million colors.
There are approximately 128 million light sensitive cells in each eye, 256 million in total. These are divided into 5 types; rods ~ 120 million, 6 to 8 million cones; blue cones (S) 4%, green cones (M) 32%, red cones (L) 64 %, and there are 1.5 million which are ipRGC which are not used in visual processing but are sensitive to light and control things like pupil size and melanopsin suppression.
“...Vision occurs neither in the eyes nor in the brain, but emerges from the collaboration of the eyes and the rest of the brain...”( https://www.powderhorneyecare.com/vision-a-collaboration-of-eyes-and- brain/)
The eyes “don’t see”. They are simply the source of nerve impulses sent to the brain for processing. This information is directed to many specialized areas of the brain for parallel processing. The process of constructing an image is broken down into stages. This process is happening continuously as new information is constantly being updated. Since this would be difficult to illustrate, we will describe the construction of an image in a linear fashion.
The first thing our brain does is identify shapes and boundaries of what we see. The brain then adds color and three dimensional characteristics based on levels of contrast and shading within the colors. It then defines known objects and their place in space as determined by angular position of the eyes known as disparity or by perception, larger objects are perceived as being closer than smaller objects. And, finally the brain detects motion. The rods are better at detecting motion than cones, but they are much slower to react than cones and transmit no color or detail information.
The eyes and color
Rods (rhodopsin) are most sensitive to wavelengths around 498nm; the cones – blue (S) at 420nm, green (M) at 534nm, and red (L) at 564nm. The ipRGC (melanopsin) cells are most sensitive to light at 488nm. It is important to note that these are the center points and that sensitivity extends on either side and in many cases overlap. For example, red cones are triggered by some green and even some blue wavelengths.
Making color is not a simple task. Some color deciphering processes take more effort than others. Humans are trichromatic, we only see red, green, blue (cones) and degrees of light intensity (rods). Which is why monitors and digital cameras use RGB (red, green, blue color format) to approximate the human eye. We can decipher these primary colors relatively quickly. For other colors, those falling in between red and green, the yellows (570nm to 590nm) require additional cycles. At times, deciphering those colors may require to brain to remember what color the object was the last time you saw it.
In digital imaging this process would be called de-mosaicing or de-bayering where red, green, and blue pixel digital (numeric) values are weighted to calculate a color. Our brains do something similar. This is an oversimplified illustration of how the trichromatic process works.
We actually use a hybrid process which includes something called opponent color processing. This theory suggests that the way humans perceive colors is controlled by three opposing systems. We need four unique colors to characterize perception of color: blue, yellow, red, and green. There are no cones in the human eye that are tuned to detect yellow. Yellows are a mixture of relatively equal amounts of red and green and the absence of blue. The brain must first decipher yellow before implementing the opponent process. According to this theory, there are three opposing channels in our vision. They are:
blue versus yellow
red versus green
black versus white
We perceive a hue based on up to two colors at a time, but we can only detect one of the opposing colors at a time. The opponent process proposes that one member of the color pair suppresses the other color. For example, we do see yellowish-greens and reddish-yellows, but we never see reddish- green or yellowish-blue color hues.
Test: stare at a green circle for 20-30 seconds. The green cones will get oversaturated and fatigue – which means they stop sending signals. Now look at a blank white space – you will see a red or magenta circle. Why? Because White - green is red + blue = magenta.
Many animals have natural yellow blocking filters and some, like the puffer fish, have adapted yellow filters which adjust to how much light there is. Humans are not that fortunate, colors in the yellow range require more effort for the brain to process.
Therefore, in trichromatic, opponent or a hybrid theory, yellow is the problem color.
We define the yellow range of the visible spectrum as Biochromatic NoiseTM, those colors which require more effort for the brain to process. All of this is just for coloring an image which comes after we figure out the shapes, and before motion, and three-dimensional aspects of what we are looking at.
Contrast is the degree to which colors have the same density. If you had red and green spots which were the same density and made them grey instead of colored, they would appear to be the same. Increasing the contrast or difference between the colors the eye detects will improve the speed of recognition and reaction times.
How we react to colors – the power of RED
Red has been associated with power and the need for action. Research has shown that when humans see red, their reactions become both faster and more forceful. A business person with a red tie or scarf is considered to be a person of power. There is a reason Enso Ferrari picked Rosso Corsa (racing red) as the only color his cars were painted. A red stop sign, stop light, or a blinking red panel light is an instinctive call to action. Flashing red lights behind you are never a good thing, and there is a reason most fire trucks are painted red.
Intrinsically Photosensitive Retinal Ganglion Cells – ipRGCs and Circadian rhythms
Circadian rhythm is our natural cycle that follows a daily sequence. It is approximately 24 hours in length and enables our bodies to predict and adapt to changes in the environment. There are clear brain wave activity patterns, hormone production, cell regeneration, and other biological activities linked to this daily cycle.
When you think about light in the context of circadian rhythm, it makes sense. Light in the 480nm range is naturally more prominent during the mid-day when the body needs to be awake and alert – and transitions to amber in the evening when the body needs to get ready to sleep. When Melanopsin cells are exposed to light around 480nm, they suppress the production of Melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep and other functions. That same wavelength is present in monitors. This is why staring at a tablet, PC, or TV in the evening tricks the brain into believing it is mid-day and it still has hours left before it needs to go into sleep mode. Blocking that range of light is good if you want to fall asleep. Alternatively, research indicates that subjects exposed to light in the 480nm range had faster responses and remained alter longer when compared to those in amber light conditions.
Shades of white are defined by degrees Kelvin or K – higher the number the more blue/white the tone.
Melanopsin receptors (ipRGCs, intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells) control the degree of contraction or dilation of the pupil. The pupil is similar to an aperture on a camera which controls the amount of light which enters the eye – larger for more light / evening-night and smaller for less light / bright sunlit situations. And just like a camera aperture, the smaller the aperture, the longer the focal length (DOF – depth of field) and the sharper the image appears.
A study published in BMJ Open Sport and Exercise Medicine examined the impact of eSport on the health of players. “The greatest impact was on eye health as 52% of players reported eye fatigue...”
There are many factors which can slow the response time and contribute to fatigue. One major factor is Biochromatic NoiseTM, how much extraneous visual information the brain has to process which consumes energy. And, certain wavelengths of light have a negative performance impact on our physiology.
How can we optimize the visual process, reduce fatigue and extend peak performance?
1. Filter out Biochromatic NoiseTM, the colors that fall between red and green on the visible light spectrum (yellow) are the most difficult for the brain to process.
2. Accentuate those colors the brain is hardwired to react faster to.
3. Increase the contrast between colors making it easier for the brain to identify motion, shapes, and color.
4. Allow as much of the wavelength that ipRGCs are sensitive to, maximizing the body’s natural suppression of melatonin resulting in increased alertness and shorter reaction times.
5. Allow as much of the wavelength that ipRGCs are sensitive to, optimizing pupil constriction for sharper focus and longer depth of field.
To achieve this, SUB2r has engineered two different formulations. Why two? What is optimal for a competition may not be suitable for situations where relaxing or falling asleep soon after using them is desired.
Competition BNC Formula (Magenta)
This formulation takes an aggressive approach. It is designed for intense activities where the user has sufficient time after their use for the body to return to its normal circadian rhythms.
1. Aggressively reduces Biochromatic NoiseTM
2. Maximizes the natural suppression of Melatonin
3. Accentuates colors the brain reacts faster to
4. Enhances Contrast
5. Maximizes natural alertness
6. Improves focus
7. Reduces fatigue
8. Block 99.98% of harmful UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C rays
Practice BNC Formula (Amber)
This formulation takes a slightly relaxed approach while still reducing Biochromatic NoiseTM. They are designed for practice sessions or long duration work.
1. Preserves circadian rhythms
2. Reduces Biochromatic NoiseTM
3. Accentuates colors the brain reacts faster to
4. Enhances Contrast
5. Maintains alertness
6. Aids in focus
7. Reduces fatigue
8. Block 99.98% of harmful UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C rays
Based on our research we believe that these glasses will reduce player fatigue and extend the length of time they can perform at their peak while contributing to overall eye health.
It is important to remember we are humans, not machines or clones. Like finger prints, every eye is unique in the number and combination of photoreceptive cells. Vision is both an inherent and learned process. No two people see the same color exactly alike. No one formulation is perfect for everyone. Results will vary.
For more information or questions on our technology and applications, please contact email@example.com
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