Saturday, October 5, 2013

My review of Google Glass

At the Google Top Contributor Summit in San Jose California we were given a demonstration of Google Glass.  Now if you don't know what the Top Contributor Summit is you can read about it via the posts on Google Plus or via twitter at #TCSummit2013  As for me I am still waiting to clear stuff with Google as I want to share as much as I can but I need to clear some stuff past Non Disclosure Agreements.  Last time in 2011 this took a few weeks.

Anyway, the people from Google Glass tweeted at me expressing interest in my thoughts on their product, so this gives me the green light to share with you all.

At the TC Summit Sarah Price gave the introduction and explained how the Google Glass was developed. This part of the lecture is probably covered by NDA so I won't share it unless someone from Glass authorizes me.  They can contact me via twitter.  I can say that it has a titanium frame but is flexible enough that Sarah Price was able to take and bend it without damaging it.  

We were then given a demonstration by two engineers.  I wrote their names down but I will keep them private unless I get authorization to release them.  Sadly they were unable at first to sync up the Google Glass to the view screens.  

FYI to the right of the picture you see some cubicles.  These were translators who were translating the conference in 16 different languages.  To prevent 16 languages from being distracting to each other, these cubicles were soundproof.  The people from other countries listened in via headsets.  

Well needless to say, they got Google Glass to sync up with the video screens.  Nobody took a picture of it, which is fine as I don't think we were supposed to be taking pictures anyway.  However here is everyone talking after the presentation.

Here is my initial reaction.  The two men with the technical issues were engineers for the Glass Team.  Once they got the Glass to interface with the overhead screens they still had problems.  However, the problems were with using Google Glass.  The 4th guy on the right of the picture above, gave a talk about how Glass can improve worker efficiency.  However, if two engineers who helped design the product had trouble using the device, then they still have a long way to go before Glass does things such as replace the computer workstation or smart phone.  

The smart phone is fast and reliable.  Computer work stations also have large screens that are visable and full of detail.  Wearing the Google Glass was very comfortable, but I was expecting the screen to be a bit larger on my eye ball.  It was very small and I had to look up to view it.  Essentially the issue would be for me to train my eyes to interact with Google Glass.

Later that day, at the dinner party members of the Google Glass team took the time to give each of us a chance to try out Google Glass.  Below is me doing a video of that.  Because I no longer have a YouTube channel, click here to find out why, it is on someone else's channel.  

For some reason I was expecting Google Glass to work like this.

Needless to say, even though this blog post is somewhat critical of Google Glass, we must remember it is a NEW technology.  I hope the Glass team takes my review in the constructive way it was intended and continues to work on a better product.  After all it was just a few years ago that a major cell phone carrier used "Can You Hear Me Now?" as their slogan.  Now we find it unusual when we can't get a good signal.  

In the next few years I expect Google Glass to not only become cheaper, but also far more efficient and who knows maybe one day it will replace the computer workstation or smart phone.

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