Google Glass is coming. Sure, the early adopters will be viewed as weirdos and the idea of a tiny head-mounted camera raises all kinds of creepy privacy questions, but Glass is cool.
Google’s first iteration may or may not be a slam dunk, but wearable computing is unquestionably the next big thing, and heads-up displays are going to be a part of our future, once everybody gets over the dorky stigma.
To get the ideas flowing (and promote its upcoming product launch), Google asked its users to propose use cases for Glass and hashtag them #ifihadglass. The campaign, which wrapped up last week, yielded some snarky — and, of course, some truly dumb — responses, but there are plenty of smart suggestions, each of which lets us envision the type of techno-utopian sci-fi future Sergey Brin dreams about every night.
Yes, it will be awkward the first time one of your friends shows up to the bar wearing a computer on their face. That’s not what Glass is for, at least not initially. In general, people seem to be most excited about what Glass will mean for education, medicine, communicating, gaming and getting around.
1. Enhancing Surgery With Augmented Reality
A number of the #ifihadglass contest respondents talked about how the technology could be use by surgeons as virtual assistants in the operating room. Timothy Lee, a surgical resident at New York University, proposes using Glass to record operations for teaching purposes, enable remote assistance via livestream and show the surgeon vitals, CT scan and other pertinent medical information.
By tapping into real-time data, reference material and input from live surgeons across the globe, devices like Glass could reduce the number of errors made during surgery. Here’s hoping the voice recognition is spot on.