Eyecam is a new technology tool that will make people wonder what tech could really accomplish in 2021 and beyond. The designers made it look and act like a real human eye.
The device was created by Marc Teyssier of Saarland University Human-Computer Interaction Lab. It consists of a skin layer, a robotic muscle-skeletal system, and an eyeball.
It makes use of six servo-motors optimally positioned to reproduce the different eye muscles in order to enable human-like motion. A small camera is positioned inside the pupil, and that gives chance for a high-resolution image of 720p60 footage. It is connected to a Raspberry Pi Zero.
The device is always blinking and the eyelids drastically adapted to movements of the eyeball, while the skin layer is etched on a hard shell. Before being cast in silicone, this skin layer could have been manually sculptured over the shell.
The designer did more to make it look like real human eyes. He implants human hair into silicone for eyebrows and eyelashes. It was easy to do, as Marc made sure he used the technology available in the open-source.
The open-source is a repository that anyone could use. It contained all the information anyone could use to reproduce the device from the 3D printed hardware parts to the control software.
The software contains three main parts, firmware that is used to control the 6 servo motors moving the eyeball, eyelids, and eyebrows. It runs on an Arduino Leonardo Pro Micro. Next is the Raspberry Pi as a camera. Then the unity control interface meant for visually controlling the motors and running the computer vision processing.
Eyecam is under MIT license.