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Does Google Glass have a serious potential?

May 14th, 2013 by Graham Attwell

The whole debate over Google Glass is a bit of a puzzle. There is certainly plenty of coverage of the initial limited public trails. The tech press is generally in raptures, perhaps because they have at last an innovative new toy to play with (or at least to dream of playing with).

The popular press has run a series of rather contrived stories about how Glass can give you headahes, is dangerous for drivers, is a threat to privacy and how users are showing no respect to others etc. etc. Oh, and someone comes up with an unsupported (and probably non working) plug in that takes a photo when you wink and gets aches of coverage.

What there seems to be no discussion of is the potential for serious applications for Glass. We are looking hard at the possibilities of wearable computers for vocational education and training. We haven’t got our hands on a prototype from Google (we aren’t rich or famous enough). But there are other manufacturers who have already released production versions of glasses with similar if more limited functionality and we hope to be trying these out at Bau ABC, a construction industry training centre in North Germany. I am especially interested in the potential for informal learning.

And there are a whole series of research groups looking at the potential of Glass like products in the medical field.

It would be nice to think that Google would be working with such research. But instead its policy of releasing a number to “Glass Explorers” who pay 1500 dollars each for the privilege looks more like a publicity stunt than any serious attempt at research.


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