Innovation & Technology: Google’s Project Glass

Yesterday Google announced its long speculated Project Glass, the company’s initial foray into wearable computing or augmented reality glasses, currently being tested on Google employees.

Releasing a video entitled One Day via their Google+ networking page, the technology giants have depicted a ‘day in the life’ style scenario for a typical glasses wearer who wanders around New York city communicating with his friends.  Device features include Google Maps with embedded GPS, a camera, diary appointment reminders and weather information, live video conferencing, text messaging, and the ability to hear music and audio without a headphone, in ear function, actions triggered by the user and the situations they find themselves in.

Although much Internet discussion has been unfavorable towards the glasses, suggesting that the allure of a continuous digital connection could further remove wearers from the physicality of real-world communication and interaction, Google has already reported some feedback that claims the headwear actually frees them up from present, handheld technologies as several technological functions are amalgamated into one device.

The Augmented Reality prototype sits comfortably over a pair of regular glasses at present, with further unobtrusive variations and shapes currently being tested.  Babak Pavinz, who has more recently worked with Microsoft in creating a smart contact lens that receives radio signals and can transmit information to the brain by optical nerves, is now working with Google on Project Glass.

We explore a near future of augmented reality and super-humans who travel between digital and physical spaces in our Catalyst Issue 01/2014 report Future Archeology, now available for subscribers to the site.  Watch Google’s One Day concept video here. – Samantha Fox

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