Vision for all

Inventor’s 2020 vision: to help 1bn of the world’s poorest see better:

Silver has devised a pair of glasses which rely on the principle that the fatter a lens the more powerful it becomes. Inside the device’s tough plastic lenses are two clear circular sacs filled with fluid, each of which is connected to a small syringe attached to either arm of the spectacles.

The wearer adjusts a dial on the syringe to add or reduce amount of fluid in the membrane, thus changing the power of the lens. When the wearer is happy with the strength of each lens the membrane is sealed by twisting a small screw, and the syringes removed. The principle is so simple, the team has discovered, that with very little guidance people are perfectly capable of creating glasses to their own prescription.

Such an amazing idea. With self-adjustable glasses cheap enough, and with the right distribution networks, sight could be restored to massive numbers of poor people in the world.

LifeStraw for water purification

l-s-family.jpgMeant for use in developing countries or in areas with few sources of clean water, the LifeStraw seems to be a promising product:

  • Arrow Filters a minimum of 15,000 litres of water – provides safe drinking water for a family for more
    than 2 years (calculated approximately on a family’s consumption of 20 litres water/day).
  • Arrow Has a high flow rate.
  • Arrow Removes minimum 99.9999% of all bacteria.
  • Arrow Removes minimum 99.99% of all viruses.
  • Arrow Removes minimum 99.9% of all parasites.
  • Arrow No electrical power or batteries required.
  • Arrow No spare parts required for the lifetime of the product.
  • Arrow No running water required.
  • Arrow Easy-to-clean pre-filter as well as purifier cartridge.

ls-f-user-c1-3.jpgSounds pretty ideal, and not as impractical as peddling for clean water. The design is simple and straightforward, with good water coming from the blue spout, and the remaining non-potable water coming from the red spout. It would be really great to see these offered for little to no money for those who really need it.