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29 March 2015

How to cure colour-blindness

Call me an old cynic, but I couldn't believe my eyes (pun intended) when I saw the following video earlier this week. A paint company has apparently manufactured some glasses that help the colour-blind to see the world differently. Is it a cure to the affliction that has been with me since birth? There's only one way to find out...

This video brought a tear to my eye (pun intended). A big thanks to +Kryptyk Physh for bringing it to my attention.

I personally am very sceptical of what this video is showing, but despite my misgivings over the glasses themselves and the sickly "pull-at-your-heartstrings" sentimentality of the directing, I applaud Valspar for raising awareness of colour-blindness. Well done Valspar!

I write this post with that same aim. Colour-blindness affects 8% of males and 0.4% of females. There is no known cure. Please give generously.

I resolved to make myself some glasses to test Valspar's theory.

If you would like to read a little more about my battle with colour-blindness then you can do so in this post I wrote in 2011. In this article you'll find a lot more information about this debilitating condition. Please give generously.

Step 1

I needed some material to make the frames for the glasses. Here you can see that I'm repurposing the end of an old cardboard box.

Step 2

I knew instinctively that I'd need some sort of holes to look through and how about somewhere to put my nose?

You can also see me trying to figure out how I'm going to hold the frames on my head.

Step 3

The frames are important, but nowhere near as important as the lenses. Valspar give no hints as to the the lens technology that they're using in their solution. I was going to have to guess with mine.

Here, you might see a old plastic fruit box. I on the other hand see an excellent light-diffusing polymer. This would be the basis of my lenses.

Step 4

Colour is the problem, so it makes sense that colour should be the solution.

Here I've made two sets of lenses by bonding ethylene glycol monobutyl ether to polyvinyl chloride (with just a dash of alcohol to act as a solvent). It was quite easy to do... I took a Sharpie and drew on the plastic.

Step 5


Step 6

Time to try these babies out!  

Can you see what I see?

I'm erring on the side of caution here when I say that my results are inconclusive and that much, much more testing is required before we go getting ourselves excited about having found a cure.

In the meantime... please give generously.

(A big thanks to +Shaun Hopkins for the testing gif) 

I'm going to leave you with Hologram Earth's new single "Circadian". These guys just go from strength to strength! Luuk van der Velden has turned his hand to directing and does a brilliant job. Is there no end to these boys' talents?

You can download the song from Bandcamp now. There is an album in the works. I just hope I live long enough to hear it ;-)

Before I leave you , I want to point out that singer Michiel Meurs is colour-blind.


Please give generously

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