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Saturday, July 17, 2010

Speedy Geek : 5 Facts About Your Eyes

  This entry begins like so many others, because of a strange tweet. So no big into here, just a list of cool facts about human (yes that includes hippies) eyes.

# 1 : There Is A Reason For Ecru

  Most of us are irritated with the number of colours in a crayon box or in a paint catalogue. And the NAMES drive us nutty. Can the human eye tell the difference between the 30 kinds of pink at a fabric shop for real?
  The answer is YES. While other creatures' eyes sport amazing features like telescopic lenses, humans have the advantage when it comes to colour perception. The average human eye can distinguish differences amongst 10 million colours and shades.

# 2 : Our Brain Makes Up For Structural Flaws

  For such intelligent creatures, the human brain is only able to process so many images across a tiny part of the eye at a time, and this number is fewer than many others. We also have a poor field of vision. We are pretty crappy when it comes to ability. But all is not lost when it comes to human eyesight. The part of our brain responsible for eye movement sends speedy messages that our strong muscles obey- our eyes physically move just quickly enough for us to have not been rendered extinct.

# 3 : We Still Have Terrible Eyesight

  While vision problems such as cataracts visually impair elders of many species, humans have many reasons why we have more damaged eyes per beast. First, humans can exist with disabilities. Our highly social nature and brains capable of incredible adaptation equal an increased ability to survive with sight disorders. In the wild, animals with poor vision are less likely to survive to adulthood and not as competent at finding mates.
  Humans have such genetic diversity that such factors seldom come into play.

 The major problems that cause 1/3 of humans to be myopic and 1/4 of humans to be hyperopic have something to do with our parents, but not as much as other creatures.

  To begin with, we do REALLY dumb shit. Humans have invented some of the reasons for total blindness and eye injury. We have manufactured not only machines that can poke your eye out, but many environmental factors that can ruin sight. We have thin eyelids and everything from tar dust to allergens can mess with the eyeballs over time resulting in a progressive erosion or overproduction of essential fats and/or physical damage that may even be at a microscopic level. If that isn't bad enough, we also live far longer than our predecessors. The human eye does not age gracefully and as more than a normal amount of us live to be over 40, more of us will need assistance. Oh well, humans invented glasses and Lasik.

# 4 : Eye Colour Does Matter

  at least to some degree. Eye colour is an inherited trait, but several genes influence it. The same genes that influence a blue or green eye colour are related to various other things like freckles, hair, and skin tone.
  The blue eye colour itself  is a genetic mutation that occurred so narrowly that you can guarantee that you are distantly related to another individual with the same eyes, even if back a few hundred generations.

  On a serious note, those with lighter irises are at a far higher risk of many age-related forms of blindness as well as eye cancer, so protect those baby blues. Brown-eyed folks aren't out of trouble though, and can develop cataracts from prolonged sun exposure. Put a hat on, folks.

# 5 : You CAN Sunburn Your Eyes

  This applies to all folks regardless of pigmentation. While sunburns of light-pigmented eyes can result in macular degeneration and cancer, ALL eyes can burn. Ultraviolet light can play the same tricks on your eyes as your skin, but in most people it is a progressive thing.

  Immediate sunburn or photokeratitis can occur, commonly from reflected light so snomobilers and those who engage in outdoor arena sports should be careful. While the condition is painful and last only a few days, persistently sunburning your eyeballs can scar your eyes and cause everything from poor response to cataracts. If you sunburn only your cornea, you probably won't even feel it. but your wounded corneas can become scratched by common pollutants and cause damage that can last from a few days to a lifetime. If this is your first time, don't panic- just don't keep scorching your sockets.

  While we don't have the 360 degree sight of insects or telescopic vision of snakes, our eyes are a fundamental part of who we are. Protect your eyes lest you pray that some other sense can compensate for your giggly, uncoordinated ass. I've found out so many things about eyes that you should be shocked if there isn't a second installment.

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