There can be many types of Super-Vision. From X-ray to shooting Lazørbeems, telescopic to super blind.
Even knife eyes.
Fucking NORM visual acuity is commonly referred to as 20/20 vision, the metric equivalent of which is 6/6 vision. At 20 feet or 6 metres, a human eye with nominal performance is able to separate lines that are one arc minute apart (equivalent to lines that are spaced 1.75 mm apart). A vision of 20/40 is considered half as good as nominal performance. A vision of 20/10 is considered twice as good as nominal performance. 20/5 is SUPER-EFFECTIVE. Some birds of prey, such as hawks, are believed to have an acuity of around 20/2.
Even within the normal visual range there is much diversity, including those with long-distance vision, those with short-distance vision, nominally good at both, or shitty at both.
Vision is often tested with clunky machinery by almost-doctors with a variety of tests to check for basic NORM abilities, such as:
Ability to count fingers at a given distance, ability to distinguish a hand if it is moving or not in front of the patient's face, ability to perceive any light, ability to see any light to total blindness.
Blindness is a lack of vision, though the body often makes up for this with an enhancement to the other senses with Super Hearing, Super Tasting, Super Smell, or even Echolocation. Super-Touching is just plain creepy.
Color blindness, or color vision deficiency, is the inability or decreased ability to see color, or perceive color differences, under normal lighting conditions. Color blindness affects a significant percentage of the population. Many people don't even realize they are color blind until they are older. And why would they? Think about it.
Color blindness comes in many varieties, most notably Monochromacy, or total color blindness, Protanopia, or deficiency of red retinal cones, Deuteranopia, or deficiency of green retinal cones, and the much rarer Tritanopia, or deficiency of blue retinal cones. There is also the dreaded 'Sepia vision' where evetrything looks old timey.
Contrary to popular belief, most cats and dogs are not color blind, but are partial color blind.Conversely, any of these retinal cones can be super-powered, and allow the viewer a greater range of color vision, such as more greens. Tetrachromacy is the higher evolutionary form of color vision, and allows birds, dinosaurs, some insects and a few lucky humans to see with four different types of cone cells in the eye. This allows vision into the ultra-violet spectrum, which is invisible to most. Theoretically possible would be vision in the infra-red, microwave, radiowave, gamma rays and x-rays.
Dogs, cats, and many other animals, for example, have better night vision, which humans require dumb goggles to see that makes everything green. This is because, unlike cones, contrast and night vision are handled by nice, hard rods. Once again contrary to popular belief, no animal can see in pitch darkness, as there must be even a tiny amount of light entering the eye.
An exception would be The Predator, who uses thermal vision. Which means you are fucked.
Studies show that some animals have either different rods and cones, or additional ones that allow for vision up into the ultraviolet (UV) range, or down into the infrared. Some birds and fish have five cones, butterflies and other pollinating insects may have over six, and the fearsome Mantis Shrimp may have as many as 12-16, making the colors it can differentiate unimagineable and ridonkulous to your feeble human mind.
Some humans experience double vision, but this is usually the result of head trauma, drugs , psychosis, hypnotism, or as a visual gag because the person is actually viewing twins, clones, dopplegangers or time travelers.
The science of super-vision all boils down to cones — special neurons, located in your retinas, that convert incoming light into the electrical signals that feed your brain information pertaining to color. Your typical retina houses millions of cones, but in humans those cones usually fall into just three categories. Each category of cone, on its own, is capable of detecting around 100 different hues; but pair it with either of the remaining two classes of cones and their powers complement one another. Just like that, the number of perceivable colors jumps from just 100 to 10,000 (1002). Combine the signals from all three kinds of cones and that number leaps to onemillion colors(1003).
Mutations in the genes that code for cones are responsible for color blindness in males. The fact that many of these genes reside on the X chromosome makes color blindness much more common among males than females, but it also gives rise to another possibility: a small percentage of women may actually posses four color cones.
Over at Discover Magazine, Veronique Greenwood tells the story of Newcastle University neuroscientist Gabriele Jordan, and her search for women in possession of this rare trait — one that could, in theory, allow them to experience the world in colors the rest of us can't even imagine:
[These women] might experience a range of colors invisible to the rest. It's possible these so-called tetrachromats see a hundred million colors , with each familiar hue fracturing into a hundred more subtle shades for which there are no names, no paint swatches. And because perceiving color is a personal experience, they would have no way of knowing they see far beyond what we consider the limits of human vision.
As you might expect, the fact that the women Jordan is looking for have no way of knowing their perception of the world is, in effect, super-human has made finding them incredibly difficult. And it gets even more complicated:
Jay Neitz, a vision researcher at the University of Washington, thinks that potential tetrachromats may need practice to awaken their abilities. "Most of the things that we see as colored are manufactured by people who are trying to make colors that work for trichromats," he says. "It could be that our whole world is tuned to the world of the trichromat." He also suspects the natural world may not have enough variation in color for the brain to learn to use a fourth cone.
There are ways to artificially improve or augment your vision, though it may not ever get to the "super" status as mutant or scientific accident bestowing powers. Still, they may be considered self-made Awesomes, if at all.
Modern technology and medicine has afforded humans many routes to bettering their vision, including but not limited to;
- wearing fucking glasses and contacts (note that some things on this list do not bestow extra powers, but merely correct eyesight in those with some deficiency)
- laser surgery
- psychedelic drugs
- 3-D glasses (to view things in an entirely new dimension), though this may sacrifice color vision for a red/blue binary
- augmented reality glasses (layering additional levels of vision over normal vision)
- Sam Fisher-style goggles (allowing for night vision, infra-red, ultraviolet spectrum, etc)
- time goggles or inter-dimensional goggles
- this video
- cybernetic implants (this may cause one to fail a Voight-Kampff test)
- ruby-quartz crystal lenses (if you have lazer vision and need to keep it in check)
- magnifying glasses, microscopes, telescopes and seeing-eye dogs