This week at SXSW, Google again took some time to demonstrate and explain some functions of Google Glass. This is the latest public appearance and demonstration of the increasingly-high-profile technology – Google is guiding its transition from closely-guarded high tech secret to mainstream consumer product as it prepares to launch the device later this year.
Glass will display information in a unified card view, known as Timeline Cards. These cards allow the user to drag information down, and display it in your peripheral vision as seen in their recently released video. Google developer advocate Timothy Jordan showed this off by pulling data from the New York times, adding that Glass can pull data from websites hourly, and gestures such as looking up can then show you photos and headlines or you can have the story read to you.
Evernote is suporting Glass as well, offering the ability to share pictures to Skitch using swipe gestures on the trackpad built into the side of the unit. Jordan also envisaged a scenario where photos could be shared to Skitch and then later edited on a tablet before sharing.
Path also gets a look in with Glass, offering the ability to show different photos from your friends and allowing you to add emoticons to the pictures to share your feelings on it.
The Four Principles of Glass
The APIs for Glass, once released, should give developers a fair bit of freedom. However, Glass does have some guidelines including four principles: “design for glass”, “don’t get in the way”, “keep it timely” and “avoid the unexpected”. Hopefully adherence to these guidelines will keep a consistent look and feel across any Glass applications.
Lastly, Google also offered assurances that spectacle-wearing folks won’t miss out on the fun, advising that “The Glass design is modular, so you will be able to add frames and lenses that match your prescription”. They also shared a picture of Glass project member Greg Priest-Dorman wearing Glass with his prescription glasses.
… unfortunately, the design to fit prescription glasses won’t be ready for the Explorer edition of Glass that will be released later this year.
Google Glass is rapidly evolving into a product intended to appeal to a wide range of consumers. With the slow announcements and small parts of the product interface coming out slowly, Google has been getting large amounts of feedback on it for nothing, and in the end this can only build a better product. Google is breaking new ground as it ventures into the wearable computing arena. Hopefully when Glass is finally released we’ll see a fully realised product, rather than some of the ‘beta’ releases for which Google has become known.
What are your thoughts on Google Glass as a product? Let us known in the comments!