More from IEEE

More from IEEE Magazine.

"Our window into the digital universe has long been a glowing screen perched on a desk. It's called a computer monitor, and as you stare at it, light is focused into a dime-sized image on the retina in the back of your eyeball. The retina converts the light into signals that percolate into your brain via the optic nerve.

Here's a better way: paint the images themselves directly onto your retina, and eliminate that bulky, power-hungry monitor altogether. To paint the images, use tiny semiconductor lasers or special light-emitting diodes, one each for the three primary colors (red, yellow, and blue), and scan their light onto the retina, mixing the colors to produce the entire palette of human vision. Short of tapping into the optic nerve, there is no more efficient way to get an image into your brain."