Well, call me a cynic but I wasn’t convinced having tech strapped onto my glasses would be worth the ergonomic nightmare and invasion of layers interfering with my reality.
Tonight’s social media club Auckland on augmented reality featured some great insights on the possibilities of social media listening tools from Oracle (don’t mention the Americas cup).
We also saw cats, soccer and some great app based experiences and extensions of brand touch points from @imersia. They’re doing some great work with brands to create third world come augmented experiences for many brands. A great tie or invitation for multichannel brand experiences.
There’s a definite hurdle with all AR apps that having good data plans can help – as you’ve got to download the app to start the interaction – and have a WiFi or 4G connection to get the full experience (forgive the employer plug). But once downloaded there’s some amazing interactions available. I almost wonder who can (or will) seal a deal with an OS provider to pre install or at least create some API for AR interactions.
Mark Billinghurst from @HITlabNZ presented an interesting history. That of social media and then the progression – from cameras strapped to foreheads – right through to the current beta Google Glass trials. A great case of who you know vs. what you know and being in the right place at the right time. All without fear of looking crazy with cyborg like appendages.
As the project has progressed, many of the worlds leading tech experts have been invited to GoogleHQ to sample the experience. We were lucky enough to have a live demo and hands on with the samples Mark brought back.
Here’s Sergey Brin giving background and his intro to glass.
The software and Google suite experience through glass was impressive, even if the current tech specs of 5MP pics and 720P video are perhaps low or an iteration off smartphone hero stats. A relatively simple voice activation or swipe to choose menu items or launch apps was easy and intuitive. Even the simplest of activities like heads up walking directions, email or meeting alerts and geofenced annotations reminding you to get milk – looked great.
Whilst many will harp on about privacy issues I can already see a security use for google glass and the police making special requests. Could you imagine, like a donor list, subscribing to have your glass switched on in emergencies to record video. Say for example you’re in line of sight and within a geolocation of a crime your glass can be switched on to anonymously record crimes. Jury time could reach an all time low. Policemen could also wear them on auto record for quality purposes.
Even better, if you could stream constantly, you use image recognition to replace the Internet of things. Google glass could see you’re out of milk and prompt you at 5pm when you pass the store heading home, and suggest an alternative route if traffics heavy. Or even suggest a walk in the sun with the kids if you had too much pizza over lunch.
Perhaps it’s Orwellian and slightly scary, but with the right explicit personal control I’m IN. Just think of the collective knowledge potential for humankind! The fastest way to tie your shoelaces is spreading so slow!