Dec, 06 2012

We all know that people are born either right handed or left handed, with some lucky individuals earning the title of ambidextrous, but did you know that right and left eye dominance varies from person to person, as well? As is the case with handedness, nature tends to favor the right, but a good one-third of the population is left eye dominant. But don’t just assume your visual preference will match that of your hands, as right-handed individuals are not always born leaning on the same half of their visual field.

So you might be wondering where I’m going with all of this talk of ocular dominance. Well, consider a recent patent filing by Google. While many have been going about their lives completely ignorant of which eye takes the lead, Google has been developing a mirrored version of Project Glass for folks that favor vision on the left. The current build is designed for those that have stronger vision in their right eye, and it isn’t clear if any production-level left-oriented prototypes exist (or if they will be available when the limited run of Project Glass launches for those that registered at Google I/O).

OK, so now how do we know which eye we favor? Here’s a quick and simple test to determine your ocular dominance (Edgar provides a demonstration at the end of the above video):

  1. Extend your arms in front of you and form a diamond between the forefingers and thumbs of both hands.
  2. Frame a distant object in the space between your hands and focus your vision on it.
  3. Slowly draw your hands back toward you eyes.
  4. The opening created by your hands should move toward your dominant eye.

And that’s about as easy as it gets to determine which side your vision naturally favors. We can’t say for sure without proper hands-on time, but it seems choosing the right style of Glass frames could definitely have an effect on the overall experience. Google obviously deemed having both options available as important, and it makes sense. If you are going to even partially obscure the vision of one eye with a floating user interface, better to put the extra burden on the stronger of the two.

So informal poll: raise your hand if your the results of your dominant eye test weren’t what you expected. Or just let us know in the comments below!

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