Good Thinking

Real life ad-blockers: IRL Glasses black out computer and TV screens

Real life ad-blockers: IRL Gla...
Most LCD and LED televisions will be blacked out but not all computers
Most LCD and LED televisions will be blacked out but not all computers
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The sunglasses function as effective UV-blockers also
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The sunglasses function as effective UV-blockers also
The style was inspired by the glasses in the film They Live
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The style was inspired by the glasses in the film They Live
The dimensions of the glasses
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The dimensions of the glasses
They are big glasses with a definitive 1980s vibe
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They are big glasses with a definitive 1980s vibe
Most LCD and LED televisions will be blacked out but not all computers
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Most LCD and LED televisions will be blacked out but not all computers
Currently on Kickstarter for $49
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Currently on Kickstarter for $49
The IRL Glasses black out the screens of most LED and LCD televisions and some LCD/LED computer screens. 
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The IRL Glasses black out the screens of most LED and LCD televisions and some LCD/LED computer screens. 
View gallery - 7 images

In a world bombarded by screens constantly blasting ads and visual noise, a team of artists and designers wondered if glasses could be created that can black out all those invasive messages. After a year of research and prototyping, the IRL Glasses are now launching on Kickstarter.

In 1988, "Rowdy" Roddy Piper hit the cinema screens in the cult classic They Live. The film became best known for its scenes featuring a magical pair of sunglasses that revealed subliminal messages hidden in the advertising all around us. This iconic concept was one of the main inspirations behind the IRL Glasses, even informing the final frame design.

"It's really the perfect analogy because in 1988, billboards and outdoor ads were the main sources of mental pollution and manipulation," says Ivan Cash, one of the creators of the IRL Glasses in an interview with Motherboard. "Fast-forward 30 years, it's screens telling us to obey, conform, and consume. It was only a matter of time before someone started blocking them."

They are big glasses with a definitive 1980s vibe
They are big glasses with a definitive 1980s vibe

The technology behind the glasses is remarkably simple. Based on the idea of horizontal polarized optics, the glasses reveal that by flattening and rotating a polarized lens it can essentially block out all the light coming out of an LCD or LED screen, ultimately turning the screen black and making it seem switched off. The polarization used on the glasses is said to still effectively function as it would on a normal pair of UV-blocking sunglasses.

This first iteration of the IRL Glasses are classified as a "beta" version by the makers. They stress the glasses should work with "most" LCD or LED televisions, and "some" LCD or LED computers. OLED or AMOLED smartphones are not blocked by the glasses, nor are most digital billboards which are also generally OLED technology.

The IRL Glasses black out the screens of most LED and LCD televisions and some LCD/LED computer screens. 
The IRL Glasses black out the screens of most LED and LCD televisions and some LCD/LED computer screens. 

The makers of the glasses are upfront about the initial limitations of this design, but they also note a dedication to expand the technology in the future. "We hope the success of this campaign attracts private investors, allowing us to raise capital and pursue R&D to work with industry-leading talent to develop an advanced pair of IRL Glasses that block all screens, including OLED and smartphones," the makers note.

The IRL Glasses are currently available for preorder on Kickstarter for US$49. The estimated shipping date is April 2019, and considering the reasonably simple nature of the product it isn't too difficult to imagine this goal being reached. However, as with all crowdfunding, buyer beware.

Take a look at the glasses in action in the video below.

Source: Kickstarter

IRL Glasses - Glasses that Block Screens

View gallery - 7 images
6 comments
owlbeyou
Good concept, but not being able to use on smart phones may limit its appeal.
f8lee
Goofy, but cute - no doubt will mostly be used as a conversation starter at parties.
MerlinGuy
Additionally, if you are wearing these glasses you will be able to see the emperor's new clothes. Win-win.
EH
Not quite as good as the ones in the movie "They Live", but it's a start.
Rustin Lee Haase
This would be wonderful at the gym. I'm frequently annoyed when on the elliptical and enjoying the serenity of listening to music and then someone turns on "Ellen" or some other crap on the TV that is so conspicuously mounted in direct view. This product would be great!! The glasses would help keep me cool by keeping me from seeing so many disturbing images. (Just like Zaphod Beeblebrox's sun-glasses)
PAV
If these glasses would double as variable sunglasses (clear indoors, shaded outdoors), then I'd jump on them.