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Google Glass gets extreme demo at I/O keynote

updated 04:15 pm EDT, Wed June 27, 2012

I/O attendees get chance to pre-order

As a part of the Google I/O keynote, Google demonstrated some of the possibilities of its Google Glass wearable computing project. Project Glass is still nowhere close to a consumer release, but the technology shown was intended to impress, with live-streaming user perspectives.

Google co-founder Sergey Brin came on stage wearing a pair of Glass spectacles. Behind him a screen displayed a Google Hangout with several video streams; the streams were in fact live feeds from a group of skydivers wearing Glass devices. The crew leapt from a plane, and landed on the Google I/O event building before handing off a package to a group of cyclists. The cyclists then delivered the package to two more assistants, who rappelled down the side of the building and gave the package to two more cyclists. Those people, finally, delivered the package to Brin on stage. Participants in each step were outfitted with Glass devices, feeding video to the Hangout.

Before moving into the specifications of the hardware, Google also showed off the prototype being used by people playing tennis, running, and jumping into ball-pits.

Google representatives said that the device integrates a powerful CPU along with a good deal of RAM. Project Glass also contains an accelerometer, gyroscope, wireless radio, microphone, camera, speaker, and a touch-sensitive surface for input.

The presenters on stage articulated two visions for the device. The first was to enable users to capture moments and transmit their experiences without having to reach for a camera, as has already been seen in leaked images and videos.

The second goal was to have people relying on the device to access and interact with information, likely in the manner previously shown off in the first promotional video released in April. Examples of this sort of use were not shown in the onstage presentation.

Google I/O attendees will have the chance to be some of the first outside Google to handle the technology. Conference-goers will be able to pre-order Glass developer models starting today, priced at $1,500 each, with delivery sometime early next year. The company wants third-party developers to influence the design process, which likely means that the versions shown off to date will undergo significant changes before a final, consumer-ready product is available.

by MacNN Staff



  1. The Vicar

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Sounds great!

    I've always wanted to hand a live feed of everything I see, plus control over a video feed I can't remove, to a big, unethical corporation which makes its money through advertising and data mining. What could possibly go wrong?

  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    as my clever-as-fck cousin said

    $1500 to wear something that would probably get you beaten up if you wore it in public.

  1. Zanziboy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    With the possible exception of divers and astronau could this technology ever be useful to anyone?

    People can't even walk safely while talking on the phone, let alone having their perception and attention diminished with information overlaid on glasses. Not to mention that plain glasses exhibit perceptive issues caused by glare and reflection by their very nature. One can only imagine the number of road accidents, pedestrian deaths, and sporting accidents caused by such a stupid invention.

    Furthermore, I would not want to be using this product while riding a 10-speed bike through Manhattan. Nor would I desire to be a passenger of a vehicle while the driver has these on. If Google come out with it, the blame will be quite literally on their heads.

  1. chas_m



    Exactly ONE bit of this is clever

    The idea of being able to incorporate a decent-resolution* camera for stills and video into a pair of glasses that could be activated through a gesture is a nifty idea. That bit, when you can really get a good camera in there, is an idea worth pursuing.

    I could even go along with the notion of glasses that can overlay, for example, translations of signage.

    But naturally, Google goes too far (as always) and really envisions these glasses as do-it-all distract-o-matics whose real purpose (as in everything they do) is to datamine your life and sell that info to advertisers.

    So points for cleverness but overall a FAIL imo, even as it undoubtedly improves over the next few years.

  1. bleee

    Joined: Dec 1969




  1. macgurunc

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Just because you can

    do something, does not mean you should. This is an example of a solution looking for a problem.

  1. Grendelmon

    Joined: Dec 1969



    So only Apple can innovate, right? If anyone else makes a phone, tablet or laptop, they're "copying" Apple. But if Google produces an innovate technological product, it's just plain stupid and doesn't make sense. Okay, I get it now.

  1. brainiac

    Joined: Dec 1969


    A lot of reactionary comments

    It is a new technology. There are good uses and there are bad uses. A lot of people thought cars were stupid because horses were good enough and were more practical for the "roads" at the time. Many people though television was an impractical fad. The idea is an interesting one but it needs time to determine the proper implementation and form factor. How about thinking about it in terms of unbiased pros and cons rather than just saying that different is bad?

    Yes, another distraction while driving is bad, but, in the future being able to watch your kids recital and video tape it without being forced to watch the whole thing through a 3.5 inch screen would be kind of nice.

  1. facebook_Alan

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Jul 2012


    Don't knock it just yet

    I would not be walking, cycling or driving with this on my face but I could see uses such as; Industrial, atechnician could get real time views as to how to fix a problem )e.g up on a tower). Medical, this could have uses in remote surgery or an emergency that required real time updates (e.g. an expedition too far from a hospital). Travel, flip it down on to your face for directions or if you are in the L'ouvre, you could get updates on a statue or painting in your view. I loved the demo as it showed what it was capable of but we should look beyond that demo as this could be very useful in many aspects of our lives.

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