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Displays Google Input Devices

Google Glass Specs Hit the Web 198

Nerval's Lobster writes "Google has issued the specifications for its spectacles. The search-engine giant's Google Glass, an augmented-reality headset that allows wearers to view information on a tiny screen embedded in one of the lenses, features a camera capable of snapping 5-megapixel photos and 720p video. That aforementioned screen, in the words of Google's just-released specs sheet, "is the equivalent of a 25-inch high definition screen from eight feet away." Google Glass is compatible with any Bluetooth-capable phone. Its MyGlass app, which enables SMS messaging and GPS, requires a companion device running Android 4.0.3 (the "Ice Cream Sandwich" build) or higher. Google claims the battery will provide a "full day of typical use," although the company warned in the specs sheet that certain functions—most notably video recording and Hangouts—could drain the battery faster. Despite those neat features, Google Glass also raises some thorny questions about surveillance culture, and whether people really want whole crowds recording every moment of our collective lives. But those are the sort of conundrums that will only become more clear when Google Glass is actually released sometime later this year."
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Google Glass Specs Hit the Web

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  • by alen ( 225700 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @10:07AM (#43461191)

    i still can't figure out the point in spending $1500 on a pair of glasses when i don't even wear glasses

    • by larry bagina ( 561269 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @10:20AM (#43461331) Journal
      Maybe it's me, but the only use I can think of is (secretly?) recording POV porn.
    • by sl4shd0rk ( 755837 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @11:01AM (#43461891)

      i still can't figure out the point in spending $1500 on a pair

      - stylish accoutrement while riding your Segway
      - Create instant envy while in Starbucks with your iMac
      - Hands-free brutalization while recording cops brutalizing you
      - hilarious Google Glass Fail videos for the rest of us to enjoy

    • i still can't figure out the point in spending $1500 on a pair of glasses when i don't even wear glasses

      And I can't figure out the point in spending $1500 on a pair of glasses when I already wear glasses to, you know, see. Speaking of which, I wonder if they will offer prescription Google Glass or if they expect the bespectacled amongst us to wear contact lenses.

      • Speaking of which, I wonder if they will offer prescription Google Glass or if they expect the bespectacled amongst us to wear contact lenses.

        Yes, there is a prescription lens version coming [google.com].

      • by Dins ( 2538550 )

        Speaking of which, I wonder if they will offer prescription Google Glass or if they expect the bespectacled amongst us to wear contact lenses.

        If you wear glasses, you're nowhere near cool enough to own Google Glass...

    • by prelelat ( 201821 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @12:05PM (#43462741)

      I can think of a crap ton to do with these things.

      Facial recognition comparing people with facebook: Can't remeber a persons name? have glass go through your contacts and match up faces.
      Overlay of items at a grocery store: Setup your grocery list before you leave home, your local store now has everything mapped and your glasses will optimise your route in the store and show you where each item is on the shelf.
      Guided tour: Going on a vacation and want a tour of the town? We have an app for that! visual recognition of landmarks(or gps locations) and you will get videos and audio on historic events and buildings as you walk through the area.
      Education: learning anatomy has never been easier as you look at the subject and glass tells you where each part of the body is.
      Google Hangout/Skype: Take a video call or hangout with your friends while your on the go.(can't see you but hey it's a cool idea especially for conferencing in)
      Record videos: Make home movies while your out
      Play music and video
      Play games that require interaction: kind of like geocaching but with monsters along the way.

      I don't know if you could do all of this with the current version the area is pretty small that you see. That would affect things like overlays. I think there's lots you could get out of it though and many more crazy ideas people could use. Some of it your smart phone can do and maybe do better, others not so much. I like the idea of having facial recognition so that it pops up the name of someone you know when you see them out on the street. That would be cool. my phone already can do facial recognition for security so that doesn't seem impossible. I won't be getting one when it comes out and I may never will but there's a boat load of things you can do with it.

      • These are all great ideas...BUT....

        Wouldn't people become dependent on them? I used to be able to remember dozens of phone numbers, but now my phone does it and I remember maybe half a dozen. Hell, I can hardly remember my own number.

        Would you really want them? A lot of life is the minor adventures. Even at the grocery store wandering around and trying interesting new things you see is a small adventure. I've had plenty of adventure seeing the non-landmark areas of towns and cities in the world. Getti

        • by geekoid ( 135745 )

          " I used to be able to remember dozens of phone numbers, but now my phone does it and I remember maybe half a dozen. Hell, I can hardly remember my own number."
          does that matter? And why?
          And why do you relate you diminished ability to remember numbers on cell phones and not say, age?

          I would rather have my own little adventures, then one dictated by others. Do you think you are making your own choices when you go shopping?

          Great, you like to look at a window and stare at the something for hours on end.. Fine.

          • Do you think you are making your own choices when you go shopping?

            No, the corporations are guiding my moves with their brainwashing waves. Persuading others and making something look appealing are clearly brainwashing! 100%!

        • I would imagine that not having to remember all those phone numbers frees up the brain to memorize other things.
        • You could become dependent on the technology but that doesn't have to be a bad thing. Long before people had phones with contacts, people kept books that had numbers and addresses in them some quite intelligent contributing members of society. There is a chance that technology could make you more isolated but glass I see has less of a chance than most others of doing that. Most of the features I see glass excelling at are when your out and walking around. How great would it be if you had an account with

          • OH! Another great one would be virtual board games, you both can see the board through your glasses while your at the mall sitting in the food court you move your virtual chess pieces.

            Maybe I should become an app developer for glass.

      • by Cinder6 ( 894572 )

        I would think it's against a store's interests to map out their products like you describe. If you have to search for them even a little bit, then you may see some other product that you also want to buy that you didn't think about before. I believe that's the reason Costco reorganizes so often.

        With that said, it's a cool idea, but I still question the utility of it and other items on your list. Everything listed is doable on a phone, which you will presumably already have, and at a much lower cost. If Goog

      • by ceoyoyo ( 59147 )

        1. Facial recognition - maybe. I would be surprised if that worked well enough for general in-the-wild use.
        2. Overlay - nope, sorry, the screen is just a little thing outside your main field of view
        3. Guided tour - yeah, I guess you could do a low res guided tour. Or use your smart phone for a high resolution one you can share
        4. Education - nope, can't do overlays
        5. Hangout/Skype - or you could use your smart phone and they COULD see you!
        6. Record videos - yup, probably what it gets used for most. Of co

      • I'm a bit late to the party, but I wanted to give a virtual (no mod points today) vote up. Sometimes /. makes me sad when unimaginative people can't figure out what new and exciting things upcoming technology will enable us to do. One addendum to your list. I was stuck in Israel a few weeks ago and almost missed my ride out because I can't read Hebrew and there wasn't an English translation on the subway, I remember thinking how much I would have given for a pair of Google Glasses with an instant transla
      • 1) Facial recognition: if you have friends on Facebook whose faces you don't remember, you might want to consider trimming your friends list a bit.
        2) Overlay of items at grocery store: Better would be to transmit my list ahead of time, and have my groceries delivered to me, or waiting for me when I pull up after work. Don't trust that the produce will be any good? A quick shopping trip on your own shouldn't take long - hit the local farmer's market & butcher for the stuff that's likely to spoil.

    • I *think* the idea is, pre-plan a route on your android device, then transfer/connect to the google glass, and wear that. Now you don't need to check your phone every time you face a corner, the route will be hovering over you all the time.

      No more random wandering, checking map, wander some more...Leaves your hands free to drive, cycle, carry stuff etc. You could give it to pizza deliverers, bike messengers and post carriers, and pre-plan their route for the day, and even update it from base station.

      ( Wheth

  • by nimbius ( 983462 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @10:07AM (#43461197) Homepage
    frustrated by the fact that I as do many geeks already wear glasses.
    • If google doesn't have plans to sell lens-fittable versions to optometrists' offices, they're missing out on some easy cash. Unlike you, I've had better than 20/20 vision my whole life, but I can't help but imagine my eyesight will go downhill as I age, and I'd still want smart glasses then.

    • by Greyfox ( 87712 )
      Getting lasik back in '04 was the best 4 grand I ever spent. I could have spent less on it, but my eyesight isn't something I'm particularly keen on farming out to the lowest bidder. Not like "Bob's Discount Lasix, buy one eye get one free!"

      If the cost is a concern you could always go for Lasik@Home [lasikathome.com]. They come highly recommended! Just don't blink!

      • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

        Not all defects can be fixed that way.
        Does lasik still have the halos around lights issue it had last I looked at it?

      • Getting lasik back in '04 was the best 4 grand I ever spent.

        From the FAQ [google.com]:

        If you’ve had Lasik surgery, ask your doctor about risks of eye impact damage before using Glass.

        Sucks to be you!

  • It's bad enough that our governments and corporations are spying on us.

    Now we're voluntarily spying on each other.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @10:13AM (#43461257)

    Read the UI guidelines [google.com]. The display resolution is 640x360.

  • by schivvers ( 823289 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @10:14AM (#43461261)
    What does their app do to my phone battery life? Who doesn't wear glasses in the rain (it can't get wet?) Why/what does this actually bring in utility to my life? I think this will actually be adopted by a few, but not mainstreamed in the immediate future. (Think Segway)
    • by geekoid ( 135745 )

      just like personal computers, cellphone's, smart phones and tablets.

    • by EvilSS ( 557649 )
      Just carry around a few more spare batteries. The beauty of changeable batteries is you can change them. A necessity with most Android devices anyway.
    • Who doesn't wear glasses in the rain

      I don't.

    • I was asking the same thing about smartphones and then tablets. I was obviously wrong, they have advantages over a computer or a dumb phone that make more of a difference than I gave them credit for. The segway, on the other hand, doesn't do anything that your legs don't already do. All it does is waste money and make you look like an idiot.

      A hands free smartphone that you don't have to look at sounds like it could at least be marginally more useful, so that I would risk looking like an idiot to use
  • by serviscope_minor ( 664417 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @10:15AM (#43461277) Journal

    A common idea for autmented reality is to put some kind of tracking on the glasses so that the annotations can be overlaid on the world.

    Go find a 25" screen and stand 8 feet away from it. Hold out yout hands at arms length and form a box just surrounding the screen. The FoV is tiny. Imagine viewing the world through such a little portal. Finding anything wull involve a lot of manual scanning with your head. Not fun.

    The thing is with AR is that the augmented reality, the more interesting autmentations will be overlaid in this manner.

    Also, AR is really a bit of a solution in search of some problems at the moment. About the most compelling thing seems to be advertising, but it's a mechanism which requiers users to buy and use a system which is basically only good for ads.

    • by gsgriffin ( 1195771 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @10:55AM (#43461807)
      The funny part is that they the 25" display they say is equivalent to "high-definition". What a stroke of marketing brilliance. At that size and distance, you could be running QVGA, and it will look like high-definition for most of us.

      Of course, if they told us it would look like a 13" VGA CRT display at 4 feet away, most would laugh. Good twist on the stats, Google!
      • by nametaken ( 610866 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @11:46AM (#43462515)

        To be fair, it's obviously not even close to the augmented reality demos we're all used to, so it doesn't have to be much more.

        I mean, how amazing does the display have to be to show a small little box that says, "Your friend is calling."

        If it were supposed to change my movie watching world, or overlay amazon prices on everything in the pantry as you look up and down, it'd have to be doing retina projection or cover your whole face. Nobody was going to bring that to market for $1500.

        So yeah, it's to augmented reality what the VirtualBoy was to virtual reality.

        • Oh, I still think this is a great step and going to lead to much more in the future. This is very cool, and I would like one (though I will wait for a few iterations and reductions in price before jumping in). Google should realize that the average person that is going to buy on of these is a geek that knows better. The point being, don't call it a HD 25" display just to lure the unsuspecting customer that buys anything called HD. I would hope or expect most geeks to set their expectations properly, but
        • I'm pretty sure that somebody could write a program that recognizes the barcodes of things in your pantry and then displays whatever you want about them.

          Also it would be super bitchin' for overseas travel when combined with that real time text translating program whose name I forget.
      • To be fair, it is a reflex display, focused such that the image it produces appears to be eight feet away. It's not like that was just some arbitrary distance.
        • Yep. Get it. My point is simply this...put a 25" VGA monitor 8' away from you and a 25" HD monitor 8' away and tell me if you can see the difference in resolution. My comment is on the Google marketing strategy of calling it HD, like you could really see that from 8'...even if it truly is that resolution or not.
          • A 25" VGA monitor would likely be some hulking 100lb beast from SGI capable of 2048x1536, considerably better than some "HD" 1080p display, but that's besides the point. Industry recommended viewing angle for a television is 30, or 56 arcseconds per pixel on a 1920 pixel wide display. 20:20 vision is stated as roughly 60 arcseconds of resolution, although that is expecting a uniformly colored display, rather than one with individual RGB subpixels, as well as a display considerably higher resolution than t

    • by DrXym ( 126579 )
      A more likely application of AR will be to overlay a pair of exposed breasts on every woman in your field of vision.
    • There's tons of applications for it. Imagine being at a party and being able to use facial recognition to note people's names so you can remember them twenty minutes later. Techies will be able to emulate highly developed social skills!

    • by jfengel ( 409917 )

      The summary is confusingly written. That "25 inch screen at 8 feet" refers to the camera, which isn't particularly high resolution for a camera, but it's also not all that relevant to augmented reality.

      The field of view is 100%: it covers your whole eye. The relevant resolution isn't that of the camera, but that of the screen, which is a cell-phone-level 640x360. So they can overlay everything, but they won't be able to say all that much with the overlay.

      Still... it's enough to label stuff (assuming that th

      • by ceoyoyo ( 59147 )

        No, it's not.

        The 25 inch screen at 8 feet is the screen. It's 640x360, and someone calculated the field of view is 10 degrees or so, in the corner of your eye. It's NOT full field of view. You can't do augmented reality with it. It's good for showing text notifications and maybe a little bit of low res video or pictures. Google's concept video even showed that. Where do people keep getting the idea it's full FOV?

        The camera itself can apparently do 720p. It IS HD. So you can record your creepy videos

    • by ceoyoyo ( 59147 )

      Now take that rectangle you're making with your fingers and move it up and right until it's at the edge of your field of vision when you're looking straight ahead. There's no way you're doing AR with that.

  • Good one! (Score:5, Funny)

    by John Napkintosh ( 140126 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @10:29AM (#43461423) Homepage

    Specs! I get it!

  • by ath0mic ( 519762 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @10:30AM (#43461431)
    ...I'm told it's better than chocolate.
  • If I could completely change out the software on this to make it report to me instead of Google it might be useful...still a bit dorky to wear in public though. I'm sure the next hardware model could be made to look like regular glasses.

  • weren't douchy enough...

  • I want a Google Glass type device, only without a camera. I don't want to record everything around me & put it on the intertubes.

    I want the exact opposite - I want the Internet available to me all the time. Maybe with a voice interface, maybe with a remote input device. (Mouse/trackpoint/other I keep in my pocket?)

    That's where the real creative engineering will come in. A socially acceptable, non-creepy, input device. Teeth clacking? Facial muscle movement? Low volume sub-vocal/humming?

  • If it were actually an overlay and not just a tiny little screen you have to divert your attention away from shit to use. I could have got a tiny little wearable screen back in the '90's. Two decades of technological progress and their kit is barely more advanced than some a grad student threw together in the pre-windows era! Until Google's doing TerminatorVision(tm), I'm not interested!
  • by BetterSense ( 1398915 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @11:02AM (#43461907)
    All welcome the real-world gargoyle. Bluetooth headsets weren't enough...

    Following quotes from Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson:

    Gargoyles represent the embarrassing side of the Central Intelligence Corporation. Instead of using laptops, they wear their computers on their bodies, broken up into separate modules that hang on the waist, on the back, on the headset. They serve as human surveillance devices, recording everything that happens around them. Nothing looks stupider; these getups are the modern-day equivalent of the slide-rule scabbard or the calculator pouch on the belt, marking the user as belonging to a class that is at once above and far below human society. They are a boon to Hiro because they embody the worst stereotype of the CIC stringer. They draw all the attention. The payoff for this self-imposed ostracism is that you can be in the Metaverse all the time, and gather intelligence all the time. ...

    Gargoyles are no fun to talk to. They never finish a sentence. They are adrift
    in a laser-drawn world, scanning retinas in all directions, doing background
    checks on everyone within a thousand yards, seeing everything in visual light,
    infrared, millimeter. wave radar, and ultrasound all at once. You think
    they're talking to you, but they're actually poring over the credit record of
    some stranger on the other side of the room, or identifying the make and model
    of airplanes flying overhead. For all he knows, Lagos is standing there
    measuring the length of Hiro's cock through his trousers while they pretend to
    make conversation. ...

    "Where the hell are you, Hiro?"
    "Walking down a street in L.A."
    "How can you be goggled in if you're walking down a street?" Then the terrible
    reality sinks in: "Oh, my God, you didn't turn into a gargoyle, did you?"
    "Well," Hiro says. He is hesitant, embarrassed, like it hadn't occurred to him
    yet that this was what he was doing. "It's not exactly like being a gargoyle.
    Remember when you gave me shit about spending all my money on computer stuff?"
    "I decided I wasn't spending enough. So I got a beltpack machine. Smallest
    ever made, I'm walking down the street with this thing strapped to my belly.
    It's really cool."
    "You're a gargoyle."
    "Yeah, but it's not like having all this clunky shit strapped all over your
    body. . .'
    "You're a gargoyle. ..."
  • by gQuigs ( 913879 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @11:40AM (#43462431) Homepage

    Is Glass indestructible?
    Can I use Glass while operating a jackhammer?
    Is it OK to go scuba diving with Glass?

    https://support.google.com/glass/answer/3064131?hl=en&ref_topic=3063354 [google.com]

  • by SternisheFan ( 2529412 ) on Tuesday April 16, 2013 @12:53PM (#43463373)
    So, at the rate that tech is expanding, what would be the time frame for google glass technology to be permanently implanted in our brain via a wireless computer chip. Full time interaction with the internet, with of course full time tracking/monitoring all we see, access, and think. We'll all be walking versions of "My Favorite Martian", sans the 'visible' antenna. Less than 100 years away? 20 years away? The future looks both extremely cool and very frightening to me at the same time.
    • So, at the rate that tech is expanding, what would be the time frame for google glass technology to be permanently implanted in our brain via a wireless computer chip. Full time interaction with the internet, with of course full time tracking/monitoring all we see, access, and think. We'll all be walking versions of "My Favorite Martian", sans the 'visible' antenna. Less than 100 years away? 20 years away? The future looks both extremely cool and very frightening to me at the same time.

      Don't forget overlaying adverts onto everything you see... If its anywhere near as accurate as Facebook's advertising, looking at your wife will automatically show you singles ads...

  • I know I am not the only one wondering when the borg thumbnail for google glass will be created. For God sake, I've had to stare at an assimilated Bill Gates thumbnail for years. Just saying...
  • The very-long-term future of mobile human/computer interaction is ultimately some kind of implant that can feed your visual system directly, since people want more and more information but a 30" screen won't fit into a phone.

    But along the road to that science-fiction future we're going to go through a lot of external projection devices like Google Glass, since they can give you (eventually) that big display without the big form-factor.

    The problem with Glass is that it comes from Google who are pushing its s

  • Freedom of privacy in public was never a freedom to begin with.

    Freedom to store your own experiences into memory has always been a natural freedom that only death or brain damage could take away from you. Now this natural freedom is being augmented with technology.

    Strategy1: Don't do things you want kept secret in public. This is not anything new. You will just have a higher chance of getting noticed if you are doing something particularly interesting than in the past.

    Strategy2: Develop thicker skin to t

Mediocrity finds safety in standardization. -- Frederick Crane