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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Popular Mechanics: App improves eyesight of Cal-Riverside Baseball Team

When a major league baseball pitcher throws a 95-mph fastball, only about 400 milliseconds—the duration of a blink—pass before the ball rockets over the plate. And a batter gets less than half that time to decide whether to swing, and where. Baseball players, then, could reap huge benefits from being able to probe a baseball farther from their eyes. And that inspired Aaron Seitz, a neuroscientist at the University of California, Riverside, who has created a new, publicly available app that conditions users to see farther on or off the baseball diamond.

Cabbage Posted: February 18, 2014 at 10:21 PM | 8 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: science

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   1. John Northey Posted: February 19, 2014 at 08:49 AM (#4658885)
If I was a pro athlete you bet I'd be digging into this quickly. If real, great. If not, just a bit of time wasted. Lands under the old 'couldn't hurt' area. 30 25 minute periods is under half an hour a day for a month...if you are a minor leaguer it would be something to do on those loooong bus rides.
   2. Hang down your head, Tom Foley Posted: February 19, 2014 at 09:39 AM (#4658909)
This is just what we need to get into the Peggy Series.
   3. zonk Posted: February 19, 2014 at 10:48 AM (#4658941)
My high school coach had what he proudly called "the only baseball eye-training program in the state" -- it was a little kit with a variety of eye training exercises... Some of the exercises were silly/pointless, but I do think some of them were pretty valuable and actually aligned with stuff like this -- training your eye to focus on a distant point then rapidly readjust to something nearer (basically a long thread with a spring-action bead, you'd focus on the far point attached to the wall, then pull a little trigger and the bead would fly towards your hand holding the other end).

There were about a dozen little things like this, but they were all pretty much predicated on the same principles -- rapidly adjusting your eye focus.
   4. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: February 19, 2014 at 03:14 PM (#4659179)
As a guy with terrible eyesight, this intrigues me.
   5. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: February 19, 2014 at 03:39 PM (#4659206)
Now if they can just come up with a cure for hairy palms I can completely disregard all of my mother's warnings!
   6. Shooty is obsessed with the latest hoodie Posted: February 19, 2014 at 03:45 PM (#4659211)
Now if they can just come up with a cure for hairy palms I can completely disregard all of my mother's warnings!

Don't worry about your hairy palms, it's a small price to pay for a lifetime of joy...

As a glasses wearer, if I were to do this and it were to work, would wearing my glasses screw things up? Would I have to get my sight tested every month or so to update my prescription. I'm really intrigued by this.
   7. Shredder Posted: February 20, 2014 at 12:53 AM (#4659473)
Oh my ####### lord. We are not "Cal" Riverside. We are the UC Riverside Highlanders. We are not a sub-campus of Berkeley, who quite frankly is UC Berkeley, as much as they want to call themselves Cal. Eff this headline writer. Also, as bad ass as Aaron Seitz is, he's no relation.
   8. bigglou115 Posted: February 20, 2014 at 01:32 AM (#4659479)
As a glasses wearer, if I were to do this and it were to work, would wearing my glasses screw things up? Would I have to get my sight tested every month or so to update my prescription. I'm really intrigued by this.

Well, this thing doesn't really change the shape of your eye, or cure stigmatism, so I doubt its effects will be nearly as profound as whatever effects cause you to wear glasses. Just perusing the article it looks more like its designed to condition the muscles that dictate were and for how long your eyes can focus, so I'd be just really surprised if it changed a prescription at all.

Eyes suck btw. Its kind of like knees and testicles, the combination of importance and vulnerability is enough to make you doubt evolution (not meant to be taken literally). I recently went to my optometrist, and he told me my eyes were too bad for surgery. So right now if I could go back and have humans evolve echolocation instead of eyes I'm pretty sure I would.

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