Google develops ARGs for Pirates

Google Glass

“Arrrgh! Shiver me timbers! Mizen the topsail! Be that land I see through my metal eye?!”

Okay so Google’s new Augmented Reality Glasses aren’t just for one-eyed pirates, heck even a two eyed pirate can find a use for these ‘La Forge’ inspired techno goggles.

Yesterday Google was showing off a working prototype of their Augmented Reality Glasses which have been a two year labour of love running under the code name: ‘Project Glass‘.


Until yesterday we had little info on this Google[x] project, and there was speculation that the end project might come out as a digital contact lens instead of the pair of black and white frames we are seeing demonstrated this week.

At the moment however even the frames are in the ‘styling’ phase of prototyping, looking a bit like a slice of an iPhone, with a very tiny camera hole, hooked up to a thumbnail sized display.

We also know that they have touch controls on the top of the glasses, one of which is for capturing an image of whatever is in-front of you. My guess is that the first ‘mod’ for these will be a flip down shield that ‘alarmists’ can use to guarantee nobody is spying on them.

Shut up and take my money

As if pictures weren’t enough to get our hands reaching for our wallets, there was also a ‘concept’ video demonstrating the Android based UI that the glasses will use to interact with the user.

After watching the video I have to wonder how they would display something in the middle of your visual perspective using a tiny little screen?

This resulted in me spending about 35 seconds bending a paper clip into the rough shape of the screen. I plopped this mock-up onto my glasses and took a look at what area the ‘display’ would have.

The current display would actually have quite a bit of space to display info, but there’s no way I can ‘see’ that it would be able to display something in the middle of your view?

Virtual retinal displays, even the most advanced laser based units, still haven’t found their way into ‘production’, even within military channels like DARPA where such a technology should be very tempting to adopt.

So for now I’m in the camp of nay-sayers who feel that the tech needs a bit more work before it can deliver what’s in the promotional video, and even then there’s certainly some kinks to work out of the system for obvious safety reasons.

Pity though, some of the style pics look so cool..
Borg version of Google Glasses

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