Silver Chips Online

Google on your face

By Hannah Lynn, Online Managing Editor
April 30, 2012
When Google announced plans to manufacture a pair of glasses with their technology in it, the idea seemed like an invention in a sci-fi movie. When they came out with a video previewing what the glasses will eventually be able to do, the public was fascinated. Then when a Google engineer appeared on "Charlie Rose" wearing the glasses, explaining them and taking a picture of Rose as he spoke, the futuristic plan became a reality.

It looks like headgear but who knows, maybe it'll be seen on all the runways. Courtesy of Google
It looks like headgear but who knows, maybe it'll be seen on all the runways.
The idea of Google Glasses is to have a computer screen on your glasses that connects to the Internet and can take photos, share them with your Google+ account, make phone calls, share video of your location, etc. It can even do things like share a photo with a simple nod of the head.

Maybe it’s just me, but it all sounds like something that would be awesome to play with for 10 minutes, with the excitement eventually wearing off. It’s hard to imagine wearing a pair of glasses, a pair that essentially looks like the headgear nerds always wear in movies, and walking around saying little commands to your headset (… that’s how they show it in the video).

The video itself is at times laughable. The guy wearing the glasses says commands like "Remind me to buy concert ticket" or "Tell me how to get to the bookstore" which are understandable, but the most unbelievable part is when the guy walks into a bookstore, asks his glasses how to get to a certain section, and a map of the bookstore pops up on the screen.

How dependent are we becoming on technology that we need to be fed directions for the inside of a store? Some parts do seem pretty cool: like when the guy video-chats his girlfriend in front of a sunset that he’s looking out on, but all that doesn’t seem worth it when you have to walk around all day with space gear on your head. Just to make it clear, I don’t even understand how anyone who wears real glasses could use Google’s invention, unless they wish to be called six-eyes. (Maybe that’s why they never showed the glasses in the video. Good call, Google).

But in the end, it’s not the look of the glasses that makes them so ridiculous, it’s the idea that this would become a widely used piece of technology like an iPod or a cell phone. Having the Internet connected to your face 24/7, being able to take a picture with your eyes, it all sounds intriguing - but also eerie. If this is where technology is going, at what point in time are we just going to have a computer chip in our brains? That way, we could just think something and the computer would do it (…alright so that could be useful for "As seen on TV" commercials, but still).

Maybe these glasses will never be available to the mass public, maybe they will have some success but never really take off, or maybe they’ll sell out faster than the latest iPad. Regardless, this is the direction that new technology is heading and it’s easy to get swept up in the amazing tasks it can do, but it’s also easy to forget about its future impact.

However, if the idea of computerized glasses isn’t appealing, fear not. Google is in the works of making a driverless car! Maybe in 10 years we’ll all be laughing about the time when Google was a mere search engine.

http://silverchips.mbhs.edu/story/11579