As walking-while-web-surfing and driving-while-texting leads to more crowded emergency rooms around the modern world, dozens of technology companies are racing to harness the kind of hands-free augmented reality we've craved since "The Terminator." Today, Google provided the first glimpse of their effort, called Project Glass.
Instead of peering into smart phone screens to learn or communicate, the Internet giant imagines a future where people wear hipster bifocal frames (with or without prescription glass) containing a built in camera, speaker, microphone and tiny monitor. According to the conceptual video accompanying the design photos, you might be able to check the weather forecast by simply gazing at the sky, get directions by following a virtual path or see the floating face of a friend the moment they ring your cell.
While Zeal Optics is already selling ski goggles with similar capabilities, Google admits that this is an "early stage project, not the promise of a product at this point."
"We're sharing this information now because we want to start a conversation and learn from your valuable input," Google said in its release. "So we took a few design photos to show what this technology could look like and created a video to demonstrate what it might enable you to do."
Project Glass is the latest evidence of Google(x), a top-secret California laboratory where the company has a select group of engineers working on everything from alternative energy sources to space elevators. Last week they unveiled video of a blind man taking a spin in their driverless car.