Imagine seeing the color red for the first time. That's what EnChroma glasses are giving color blind people around the world. The specially designed glasses help people with red-green color blindness to differentiate many shades and hues that were previously not discernible to them. Many videos of people trying on the glasses have gone viral, which is unsurprising given how emotional the experience is for most wearers. The clips are also making people wonder how the glasses could possibly work.
Fortunately, EnChroma released a video explaining the tech behind their specs:
Twitter users were feeling pretty emotional after watching the video:
The science behind them is also fascinating! Humans perceive color when our brain processes the amount of light going into the red, green, and yellow cones in our eyes. Red-green color blindness (the most common variety) occurs when the red and green cones overlap a little bit too much, confusing the brain. To help people see more color, the EnChroma glasses actually filter out some of the color, specifically the wavelengths of light where the red and green cones overlap. With that "barrier," the brain is able to separate the red and green cones and, suddenly, the colors become visible.
All the colour blind people I've met say they can see yellow. I guess red/blue blindness is the most common. This video demonstrates it really well. Great invention. Well done to the creators.— The Space Monkey (@TheSpaceMonke10) March 13, 2018
It's incredibly clever technology, but that doesn't stop the glasses from looking good:
After watching the clips, Twitter users seem to have something in their eyes:
The ability to see color can make a huge difference to people who were born without it: