The eyewear would pop information onto a screen near the wearer's… (AFP Photo / Google )
Google has asked for feedback about its concept-stage augmented-reality specs Project Glass. And the company is getting it. Much of it is admiring; some of it is definitely not.
Henry Blodget of Business Times tweeted of the headgear: "Ridiculous toy that shows Google is rapidly becoming Microsoft."
"Has anyone asked Google whether the Project Glass video post-production simply missed a deadline of April 1?" (David Chartier).
The Glass eyewear would project info graphics in pop-ups on a small screen a few inches from the wearer's right eye. The gear might incorporate motion-sensing capability, GPS location services, 3G or 4G wireless connections and Google Goggles' augmented-reality software.
Or it might not.
It's all apparently very much up in the air -- the unveiling of the project Wednesday made it clear that this was an effort to find out what people thought and what they wanted.
Writer Joe Stracci had some pithy comments on his blog. Google says it's seeking "your valuable input": This translates, says Stracci, to: "We're deathly afraid of creating yet another product that winds up failing."
Google says it wants technology "to be there when you need it and get out of your way when you don’t." Stracci says: "I fail to see how wearing this technology on your face means it’s out of the way."
There were plenty of sunnier comments, however, on Twitter ...
"Wow. Google's Project Glass looks incredible" (Ted Lee); "Awesome, in a freaky way" (Sultan Al Qassemi).
... and on the Google+ page where the project was introduced to the public.
"I must get this as soon as possible. I'm going to try to not freak out for the rest of the day at how cool this is" (Ben Smith).
"Please register my interest in this. Perhaps a shipping product for this holiday season?" (Jason Mull).
Commenters were looking for details. But Google is in information-gathering mode at the moment. A spokesman contacted by The Times did not want to be quoted on the record but said there would be more information on the Google+ page as the project developed.
In other words: Stay tuned.
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