March 17, 2014

Beyond the 3D Bubble

Having lived in Boulder, Princeton, and Beaverton, I know what it means when people say "you're in the bubble.” The real world lies just beyond. The same goes for people working in the arena of 3D: they tend to live in a secure bubble of like-minded enthusiasts. I am reminded of a cartoon that appears in the presentations of Shun‐nan Yang (PhD), a respected researcher with the Vision Performance Institute, College of Optometry (Pacific University):

The sad truth about this cartoon is that ordinary life is built upon binocular or 3D vision, hence the cringing nature of this insider’s joke.

A recent discussion hosted on LinkedIn’s bemoaned the notion that “It's still hip to hate 3D.” Apparently, the battle 3D currently faces is against "talking heads trying to influence the general public to adopt their [anti-3D] viewpoint.” “The masses love electrolytes, are considering gluten-free diets, and hate 3D,” they complain. Yet, we rarely make headway in this argument. “The public image needs to shift [to a] more positive [view],” they argue. “We just need to lobby for it like any other pop culture agenda, and not just to tech blogs and LinkedIn groups, but to the people who aren't buying tickets.” 

This article is about one way that we, as 3D enthusiasts, can start taking a positive message out beyond the boundaries of our obvious “3D bubble.” While attending the COVD Annual Meeting, (the College of Optometrists in Vision Development is the certifying body for doctors in the optometric specialty called Behavioral/ Developmental/ Rehabilitative Optometry), I met two authors that deal with 3D outside the bubble: in seeing, learning, and living. Each has published a unique book that would make a great gift for your child’s teacher, a parent, or a local school principal. Each book subtly conveys the importance of a child’s vision (which is 3D, of course!) in seeing, learning, and living. It’s a soft and inviting way to move beyond the 3D bubble and foster a message that will stick.

Red Flags for Primary Teachers, by Katie Johnson.
I first met Katie at the COVD Annual Meeting, when I noticed her impressive and unique poster session. Katie Johnson demonstrated through a variety of visuals how classroom teachers can identify vision problems that will affect learning as early as in the primary grades.

See it. Say it. Do it!: The Parent’s and Teacher’s Action Guide to Creating Successful Students and Confident Kids by Lynn Hellerstein.
A few moments later, I met Dr. Hellerstein and fanned through her book, which also comes well recommended.

Again, either of these resources would make for great end-of-the-school-year gifts for local educators. Or just give them a ticket to a 3D movie. 

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