We’ve all played video games where the protagonist has some kind of virtual heads-up display that shows relevant data such as mini-maps, available ammunition, heading, waypoints, and more. The U.S. military has struggled with various future soldier concepts that would incorporate this, making little baby steps each time toward the end game. It seems we may be one step closer, as a new proposal from an Italian design firm envisions digitally printing bionic eyeballs that could not only help the blind, but produce enhanced vision for the rest of us.

Our eyes are such elegant, complex, specialized organs that their existence seems almost hard to believe–Darwin himself called their evolution “absurd.” But that doesn’t mean they’re perfect; eyes sometimes don’t focus correctly, they break down over time, and they can be extremely painful if infected, irritated, or exposed to light that’s too bright. Italian design firm MHOX has an ambitious idea: to improve human eyes by making synthetic replacements.

“Developments in bioprinting and biohacking let us imagine that in the near future it would be possible to easily print organic, functional body parts, allowing the human to replace defected districts or enhance standard performance,” lead designer Filippo Nassetti told Dezeen.

Read the rest at Popular Science.

Featured image courtesy of Deus Ex: Human Revolution