Taking a Mental Snapshot (Literally)

As updates continue to emerge about the elusive Google Glass, the wearable next-generation of technology, questions are developing about the future of mobile devices and its implications for society.


Throughout the past months, the revolutionary new device has remained a mystery until its recent delivery to a select group of developers that have pre-ordered their devices at the price of $1,500.

The original response has been mixed– while many believe that this device will allow Google to enter the next phase of the computing and mobile technology industry holding the lead, others are still skeptical of the device’s capabilities and its imminent success.

Due to the early stages of development, Google has taken an unprecedented turn, and like Apple, has placed serious restrictions on developers with regard to app development.  According to a New York Times blog post, developer Frank Carey of New Paltz, NY, believes that the controls in place give Google “a lot of control over the experience”, and he expresses his hopes that Google makes Glass “as open as possible so that we [developers] can really test the limits of what this type of device would look like.”

As of right now, developers are limited in their abilities to design and collect information from users through their apps.  As Sarah Rotman Epps, an analyst at Forrester that studies public attitudes towards wearable computing mentions,

“What we find is the more intimate the device, the more intrusive consumers perceive advertising is.”

In my opinion, Google has made an intelligent decision in restricting the parameters by which developers can manipulate the device in these early stages of the project.  By ensuring that consumers are not bombarded by ads, and can slowly become accustomed to wearable computing devices becoming mainstream, Google has a greater possibility of garnering a successful product launch that can easily be the next generation of mobile technology.

Although not much information is available at this time, Google Glass will display information in such a way that the user will see it displayed about eight feet in front of their line of sight, and the size of the display will be approximately that of a twenty-five inch monitor.

Another interesting feature about Google Glass is that apps will no longer be downloaded and live within the device, but will rather depend on cloud technology.  If Google Glass is successful, this could give Google the upper hand in the cloud computing industry, a growing virtual environment where firms like Apple will have to continue to innovate in order to maintain their market advantage in the mobile device industry.

While much is still to be seen, Google Glass is a reminder to consumers that innovation continues, and we are but clueless of the scope and radical change that upcoming technological advances can and will have on our society.  Without a doubt, Google Glass is set to be a precursor to the next generation of developments– hopefully they will partner with Ray-Ban to make a polarized Wayfarer version.



11 thoughts on “Taking a Mental Snapshot (Literally)

  1. This article is great, I have heard so much hearsay about Google Glass in the last few weeks but I never really knew exactly what it entailed until reading this. After watching Sergey Brin’s TED Talk, the idea behind Google Glass has been inspiring to learn about. I love the emphasis on this product bringing people’s eyes up from looking down at a phone constantly. It seems that looking around nowadays, especially just walking through campus, all you see is people staring down at their phones and not paying any attention to the world around them. I like how Google Glass seems like it is a tech product that is being taken more personally, and as Brin says, they are trying to steer the world away from becoming this impersonal society where everyone is staring at a phone all day and not appreciating life. It also seems somewhat refreshing to me that this product is coming from Google, rather than Apple who has led the way in innovated tech for so long now that, frankly, I’m kind of getting sick of them. It will be interesting to keep up with what happens in the future for Google Glass. Good job on your blog!!

  2. I also really enjoyed reading this article. Google Glass is fascinating to me, as I’m sure it is to many others at this stage. Before reading this article I didn’t realize what the view would be like using Google Glass. It’s interesting that the content will appear to be 8 feet away and I wonder if it will be difficult to get used to such a different type of display. As Katie said, this may help keep people aware of their surroundings instead of focusing only on their cell phone. I agree with Google’s decision to keep the application developers fairly restricted at this point because it is such new technology. Even though in Apple’s case I advocated for relenting on the restrictions and allowing third party developers to have increased access, I only believe this because the technology has been around for a while now and is progressing ahead of Apple currently. With a new technology like Google Glass, it should be worked on without changes coming from other developers too quickly. Finally, I am happy to see that Google has entered into a new market and is making major innovations on its own. I, too, am getting tired of waiting for Apple to come out with their next big product and encourage other companies looking to compete.

  3. Great blog post! I am extremely curious about how Google Glass will work. Something that I thought about after I watched the Ted Talk was how Google Glass could change (and actually solve) the texting-while-driving problem. Someone who is waiting for important news would not actually have to be looking down while driving but rather just have it pop in front of his eyes. I think this product has an infinite potential. It is definitely not something I would have expected from Google. But I believe they have asserted. Maybe this will actually prove that the watch innovation being made by Apple and Samsung is a possible mistake.

  4. I really liked this blog post. Especially the ted talk video, because instead of talking about the complex technology behind google glass, it spoke to more of the social impact the project is attempting to have on society. People make fun of and have somewhat accepted the way people always pay attention to their phones. As Katie said, you see it all of the time, people at dinner together, both on their phones, in line to get coffee, etc. It is very interesting to me that part of the motivation behind google glass is to try and change that. The technology of the smartphone enhanced the impersonal attitude of society and now, more advanced technology is trying to right that consequence. It will be interesting to see how people decide to respond to this change in behavior as it mentioned in the video how checking phones and apps has become something of a nervous habit for most people. This blog approached the subject of the google glass in a very different light.

  5. Google Glass looks awesome. I, as some of the other commentators mentioned, was unaware of what Google Glass is going to be able to do. I think you did a great job of explaining the uses, especially with the inclusion of the Ted Talks video. I think that this innovation has the chance to change the world. Just as the iPhone revolutionized connectivity, perhaps Glass will take it one step further. It is certainly better adjusted for everyday life, as it allows people to execute tasks without having their attention completely drawn away from their surroundings.
    I am still curious to find out how the product will work, and I hope that I get a chance to use it in the near future. I do, however, have one concern. It seems like Glass is primarily voice activated. This presents a problem because it is often awkward to use voice activation. Even walking down a street, I would feel strange talking to myself, even if everyone else was doing it.

  6. Great post! I am very interested to see what ends up happing with this product as it seems revolutionary. I thought it was an extremely smart decision for Google to rely on cloud technology in order to ensure their success in the cloud computing industry. Perhaps this innovation will take Google to the next level. I am also interested to see how advertising is incorporated into this device so it is not too intrusive for consumers.

  7. Excellent post. Like everyone else I am very interested to see the capabilities of Google Glass. It also makes me think of what avenues this will open up going forward. Technology is progressing to the point that it is increasingly becoming an extension of ourselves. Will products such as Google Glass eventually make cell phones obsolete? Will we eventually have contact lenses that harness this technology without being so conspicuous? Although these ideas are far down the road, Google Glass represents the rapidly changing way we live our lives.

  8. Awesome post. Before reading your post, I was really confused about what Google Glass really does. But after reading and watching the Ted Talk, I have a much better understanding. Google Glass looks really cool and is probably the most innovative technology, available for the public, we have ever seen. However, after watching the “Sight” video in class today, I am a little skeptical. I think the argument, mentioned in the Ted Talk, of not having to look down at your cell phone to interact is a little far-fetched. Like in “Sight”, I think people will actually be more distracted by all the apps and such available right in their line of vision. I am definitely curious to see where google is going with this and how they are planning to pull off the use of apps. Even though I am a skeptical, I believe Google Glass is a huge step for technology and what is to come.

  9. This is a great post for those of us who do not know much about Google Glass. You did a great job explaining not only it’s development and features but also the reactions to the product as well as its path for the future. The point I found to be most interesting was the degree of control google maintained over the device. At first I agreed with the developers that Google should make it more accessible to as many developers as possible in order to access the products full potential. However, after reading the points made about ads potentially ruining the experience I was swayed to believe that Google has made the right decision in not allowing too many app developers to access the product. Overall, this was a great blog post that covered many key points to the development of Google Glass and also the products future.

  10. This was an awesome post and was very informative about the Google Glass. Before I read this article I didn’t really know much about the Google Glass, and now I am excited to see how it changes society. The cloud technology is a very smart idea for Google to use and will help to make this technology even better. I am excited to see this technology, but the video on sight that we watched in class on Thursday was very weird and kind of scary. I feel like at a certain point too much technology can be a bad thing, explained by the double edged sword of technology that we have been discussing in class.

  11. Nice post! I, like many others, have heard about Google Glass but never fully understood the creative process behind it. Your blog does a nice job shedding some light on that. In the future, some more connection back to class material would serve to bolster your blog. Nonetheless, thanks for sharing!

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