Google Glasses for the Masses?

Our neighbor Chris Hallquist asks us, “How long before Google Glass (and imitators) are as ubiquitous as smartphones?”

Speaking personally, I find the Google Glass to be just too plebeian. I have high hopes for a competing product:

Image by Lunchbreath

Here’s a question I haven’t heard answered: what about those of us who already wear prescription lenses? Will they work with the set-up, or would I have to switch to contacts?

  • http://zadl.org/ Captain ZADL

    I’m kind of torn by the idea of Google Glass. On the one hand it seems a pretty cool technology that I’d like to use, but on the other hand it seems kind of alienating and offensive to shut other people out 100% of the time with something that’s literally in your face. It’d be like a teenager who never looks up from their phone and is constantly texting. If you’ve ever experienced that, you know how rage inducing it can be.

    Anyway, I do wear prescription glasses, and my understanding is that you’d get a clip on version that attaches to your current frames. I’m not sure how well that would work though. In any event, I’ll take a look at them later, once the price becomes more normal and see how they play out in real life.

    Personally, I might just wait until someone comes along with a replacement for my eyes.

    • Artor

      I think it would be great in some situations, less so in others. I can see it’s use in education, with a customized data feed from the instructor, or your own written notes overlayed on what you’re studying. Or travelling in a new city; having a searchable map and translations in real-time would be more than a little useful. But in a social situation, or out on a hike? No thanks. I think a monocle is a good idea too, but not everyone has the eyesockets to wear one.

      • JohnMWhite

        I agree, it seems useful in rather select situations, but even then I don’t see the huge advantage it might have over just glancing down at a smartphone or iPad. Real-time translations that help you maintain eye contact are probably the only feature I can really see that makes the whole glasses concept truly better than a tablet. I have a feeling I’m missing something. It’s cool, and a technology that could have very handy applications for certain specialist fields (I’m thinking diagram overlays for electricians, geographical data for soldiers, etc.) as people work, but the excitement seems to be for the average person in the street being able to read email and walk at the same time. I don’t see how that’s such a bold leap.

        • Artor

          Ooh- I hadn’t thought of that- having technical overlays for electricians & engineers. Doctors could have MRI data overlaid on patients so they could practically see through their skin and visualize organs, bones, tissue damage, etc.
          But yeah, walking & reading newsfeeds at the same time is not only a trivial advantage, but probably dangerously disadvantageous.

  • The Vicar

    To hell with “when will this be ubiquitous?” — I want to know “when will it become legal to reach over, rip off someone’s Google Glass, and destroy it?” Or, better yet, “when will it be considered a valid response to Google Glass to bash them immediately with a baseball bat, regardless of whether they’re on someone’s head or not?” (The latter would provide an evolutionary pressure against stupidity, thus providing a double benefit.) Those things are a huge privacy invasion in every way; it’s already been demonstrated that they are a boon to illicit picture-taking without permission — which is to say: they are a tool perfectly suited to creeps and perverts. (To say nothing of a couple of stories I’ve seen suggesting that Google is leeching data off them and making it public, which would be entirely in-character for them and is thus plausible.) I have yet to hear any description of the product which makes them sound like they provide a service which is actually necessary. Instead, it comes across as yet another techie toy from the world’s most intrusive company.

    • JohnMWhite

      Here’s hoping that wanton destruction of personal property and smashing sporting equipment against human skulls remains illegal, even if one is a stuck-up technophobe or a member of the NYPD.

  • Kengi

    The problem with the monocle version is the only way you look less stupid is if you have a mustache. Better stop shaving now!

    Google has confirmed there will be a model that will use prescription lenses (not your existing glasses).

    http://www.engadget.com/2013/03/12/google-glass-prescription-compatible/

    Edit to add link.

  • Greg G.

    It’s more alien technology. First they gave us the transistor, then Velcro, then the internet. Now it’s Google Glass. Next it will be Samsung Contact Lens. Eventually we’ll get Borg Cranial Implants. Resistance is futile. The Borg are more patient and more subtle than you have been led to believe. You will be glassimilated.

  • ZenDruid

    I’m not going to allow anyone wearing the stupid thing into my house.


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