Attribute Dependency in Bifocal Glasses

Bifocal users must no longer battle their strange, new lenses, thanks to the technology of Mitsui Chemicals of Japan. This spring, Mitsui launched their TouchFocus line, one touch e-focus glasses that make both near and far viewing possible.

TouchFocus glasses are a perfect example of the Attribute Dependency technique at work. Attribute Dependency is one of the five innovation methods of Systematic Inventive Thinking (SIT). It works by creating (or breaking) a dependency between two attributes of a product or its environment. As for TouchFocus, one touch of the sensor on the side of the frames activates liquid crystals in the lower half of the lenses, allowing the wearer to see objects close to them. Then, touching the sensor again returns the lens to a regular view.

Mitsui Chemicals states:

At first glance, TouchFocus™ appears to be simply a pair of stylish glasses, but hidden inside the frame is an electric circuit. With a touch to a sensor installed in the temple, the liquid crystal lenses are activated which allow the eyewear to change focus from distance to close instantaneously.

It’s true that anyone can learn to create by utilizing the SIT methods. If you would like to get the most out of the Attribute Dependency Technique, follow these steps:

  1. List internal/external variables.
  2. Pair variables (using a 2 x 2 matrix)
  • Internal/internal
  • Internal/external
  1. Create (or break) a dependency between the variables.
  2. Visualize the resulting virtual product.
  3. Identify potential user needs.
  4. Modify the product to improve it.

For a brief video that displays the TouchFocus, visit BBC News.