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By 3 May 2012 | Categories: feature articles

 

Although still in the concept phase, Google's recently announced Project Glass brings Minority Report interaction one step closer to reality. Are you ready for an augmented world?

Project Glass, Google's augmented-reality glasses, envisions a future in which information is overlaid over real-world objects, as you look at them. Peering out the window brings up an overlay of the weather report, for example, or saying a friend's name who you are due to meet could bring up a map or directions to the meeting spot in question.

Calling with a glance

The 'glasses', which more closely resemble the frames of glasses without lenses, are also envisioned being capable of everything from calling friends with a glance, scanning concert posters and instantly booking the necessary tickets, to taking photos of one's surroundings and then sharing them on social networks.

These features are not unfamiliar - many of them are currently connected to smartphone functionality. However, integrating features currently reserved for smartphones into wearable technology could prove to be as disruptive (positively speaking) to personal technology as tablets have been to the PC industry. And that, as proven by the popularity Apple's iPad, is the holy grail at present.

Technology and fashion fusion

Indeed, the argument can be made that the trend towards thinner and lighter smartphones that has dominated over the past several years has been an attempt to make technology less obtrusive - and more wearable.

Google is not the only company in the preliminary stages of exploring wearable technology, even if it is less ambitious than Project Glass. For example, already a jogging suit has been developed which has an MP3 player embedded into it and is ingenuously powered by kinetic energy (bit.ly/Hwx1Zj). And then there is esteemed videogame company, Valve Software, who are apparently in the research and development stage of creating wearable computing hardware which would overlay real world input with some kind of gaming experience.

To the point

These developments, as significant as they are, point not only to technology becoming something we wear, but to a future that brings new meaning to the phrase "you ain't seen nothing yet" and a technology industry that has more than a few surprises up its sleeve. Watch the video here: bit.ly/glassgoogle.

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