Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Karen De Coster Reports On Wearing Google Glass

She writes:
The Detroit Free Press headline reads, “Google Glass Wows at MOCAD.” It was a well-organized event where folks were let into the demo area in small groups to speak with the Google Glass Guides and try out the device for as long as was desired. Afterwards, attendees were ushered over to a lounge area of the museum to indulge in free beverages and appetizers. All participants had photos taken while wearing the device, and we left with a printed copy as well as an emailed digital version of the photo.
I attended with an open mind because I wanted to be educated on the product so that I could either endorse it or condemn it as just another overt device of the culture of narcissism. The demo I experienced began with the Google Guide telling me he was “very excited” to see my reaction to this amazing new device. After thirty minutes of fussing with the Glass and trying out all of the available options, I was absolutely floored over the lack of excitement I experienced in totality. To be truthful, I went in a bit prejudiced, thinking that perhaps this was a device that was going to turn a generation of digital narcissists into unrestrained egomaniacs. On the other hand, I expected the actual product to be somewhat cool, and it wasn’t. It was completely unexciting and uneventful – sorry Google.
The options the Glass offers as an extension to the cell phone are skimpy and barely useful. What surprised me the most was the amount of eye strain the Google Glass causes after just a few minutes of use due to the fact that you have one eye looking upward into a corner to pick out a tiny screen. I can’t imagine being subjected to that kind of strain on a perpetual basis. The Google Guide told me it doesn’t cause eye strain because you shouldn’t be looking at it that long, yet the Glass functions – web, maps, photos and videos, etc. – demand that, yes, you do keep looking at it. It’s a surefire way to a quick headache.
And worse yet, you have to talk out loud to control the interface, making yourself seem like a babbling moron to those who are in your vicinity. Overall, Google Glass is uninspiring. As some folks may not know, I am no luddite. Though I adhere to many classic patterns, traditions, and embrace a whole lotta retro in my life, I am promiscuously digital in all respects. I long ago digitized my photo and music collections, and I have more than one eBook device, two Mac computers, and multiple iPad, iTouch, and iPod devices. I am continually fascinated with the next digital device that does things we couldn’t have imagined just a few years ago. But with Google Glass, the digital return you get as you strain your eye upward is barely passable and the functions are deficient.
I don’t know how this device offers an advantage in comparison to pulling out my Samsung S4 computer with it’s gorgeous 5″ screen that brings the world of information to my fingertips. Marketed as an extension of a cell phone, I’m just not seeing how Google Glass becomes a productive add-on to one’s cell phone at all. More likely, it seems to be an apparatus that appeals to the cyborg culture wherein the individual Glass wearer puts self-absorption just a tad closer to the brain that has now become one with a digital device while removing the Glass wearer from the realities of a human-based world where conversation, eye contact, body language, and human interaction skills matter. 
Read the full article here. 

1 comment:

  1. And she mentioned all the GOOD points.

    [Forgot to mention it makes you look like a complete dick...}