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Google's Project Glass: A concept Navin R. Johnson could love

April 04, 2012|By Amy Hubbard
  • Steve Martin wears the Opti-Grab in "The Jerk." Project Glass is a cool concept, but it's still far from a done deal.
Steve Martin wears the Opti-Grab in "The Jerk." Project Glass… (Universal Studios )

Google's Project Glass -- the newly unveiled concept headgear that would superimpose graphics on your view of the world -- immediately made me think of Steve Martin's glasses in "The Jerk." The ones that made him cross-eyed.

With the new augmented-reality headgear, cool graphics pop up on a small screen a few inches from your right eye. Would those of us 40 and older have problems refocusing? Honestly, just thinking about it makes my head hurt.

But it's early yet. Perhaps the middle-aged can request built-in progressive lenses -- the virtual suggestion box, after all, is open. On Wednesday, Google launched its Google+ page for Project Glass: "We want to start a conversation and learn from your valuable input."

According to CNN, the product is far from finished, and Google only went public in order to gather feedback.

A video on theGoogle+page shows how it might work. As The Times reported in February, the glasses may include a built-in camera to record what the wearer is looking at and then use that feed to find relevant information about what is being observed, which is displayed on the glasses' lens.

Among the technology that could be incorporated: motion-sensing capability, 3G or 4G wireless connections, GPS location services and Google Goggles' augmented-reality software. Goggles uses photos to conduct Web searches to find art, landmarks, books, etc.

On Wednesday, media types and others commenting on Twitter about Project Glass were throwing around futuristic terms: "HUD," "sci-fi," "right out of Terminator."

The glasses are from the secretive Google X team, which is taking on the more out-there tech projects (i.e. the self-driving car) and, as team members think big, they're probably hoping for a big financial return.  Reportedly, Google wanted the glasses on sale by the end of the year at $250 to $600.

Tech lovers might call that a bargain, if it doesn't give you a headache.

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 Join Amy Hubbard on Google+.

Google's Project Glass: A concept Navin R. Johnson could love

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