Some people wonder whether developers should pre-order the Google Glass for $1,500. My response? Shut up and take my money!
What!? I can only order one if I'm attending Google I/O. ARGH!!!
It's not that I think Google can do no wrong. Oh boy can they ever. What were they thinking when they came up with the Nexus Q, Google's answer to the Apple TV??
You see I think that Google Glass may just be the Next Big Thing in computing. And, not just because Google had guys sky-drive to the Moscone Center with a pair. Well, OK, that did help some. It was, after all, the Best Tech Demo ever.
But, let's set aside all the “Jeez that's cool,” and look at the facts. There's actually nothing new about the idea of computer displays embedded in glasses either in science-fiction or reality. I was test-driving a wearable computer with a glasses display in the mid-90s that ran Windows 95.
What's different though about the Android Linux-powered Google Glass and those earlier systems is that Glass promises so much more than simply a heads-up display (HUD) in your glasses. Google Glass takes HUD and merges it with pervasive computing.
Pervasive computing combines wireless networking, on person computers, and voice recognition and other input/output methods to create a personal computing environment where you are always transparently connected to the online world. We've seen this before in science-fiction.
What we don't see that often though are things like Google Now. While it didn't get that many headlines, Google Now is also a fascinating move forward for Google. With Google Now you get the information you need just when you need it... without needing to do anything.
For example, you step outside, you get a weather report. You start your drive to work, you get the traffic news. Your favorite team scores, you get the news. But, and here's the really interesting part, you get all that without asking for it. Without even setting it up. Google Now looks at your environment, your search history, your location, and uses artificial intelligence algorithms to predict what information you need at any given moment.
Now, put Google Now on Google Glass and watch the world change.
It's not just techies like myself who think that Google is on to something special here. Sarah Rotman Epps, a Forrester analyst, recently wrote, "wearables will move mainstream once they get serious investment from the “big five” platforms — Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and Facebook — and their developer communities. That day is here. And Epps, even before Google I/O opined, "Wearables will heighten the platform wars — and Google may actually win"
Sure, there have been things that have done some of this, but just like Apple's iPod transformed the music player and the iPad turned tablets into a market monster, Google Glass is going to change how we see personal computing.
$1,500 to be there at the start? It's cheap at the price.