If Google Glass' creators are to be believed, the high-tech headset is the shimmering gold key that will unlock a bright, frictionless future where every man, woman, and child is unconsciously tethered to the internet. And while early glimpses of the plastic monocle of the 1 percent are plenty exciting, Glass has some serious obstacles to overcome if it hopes to go "mainstream," says Marcus Wohlsen at Wired. Just like the unfilled potential of the Segway, Bluetooth headset, and pocket protector before it, Google's omnipresent face computer may just be "too dorky to live." Wohlsen writes:
Before its release, some of the smartest people in tech predicted that the Segway would change the world. And even when the world joined in a collective "Huh?" when the much-hyped secret Ginger project was revealed to be a gyro-balanced scooter, the idea still kind of made sense. If we were all riding around on Segways now, cities would probably be better places to live compared to the car-infested streets we still endure.
But that transformation hasn't happened. And it won't. Why? Because Segways are lame. They're too rational. They fail to acknowledge all the irrational reasons people love their cars.
Similarly, Google Glass fails to acknowledge that walking around with a camera mounted on the side of your face at all times makes you look dorky. Think of the Bluetooth headset: It's a really sensible way to use your phone without having to take it out of your pocket — so sensible that there's really no reason not to keep that headset in your ear most of the time.
But you don't, do you? [Wired]
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why the West should let Russia have eastern Ukraine
- The amazing resurrection of Mitt Romney
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- The dangers of our passionless American life
- Why you should stop believing in evolution
- The essential techniques that every home cook should know
- 7 grammar rules you really should pay attention to
- 4 strategies for organizing your money, based on your personality
- Even critics of the euro didn't see this coming
- How America's broken immigration system is failing the military
Subscribe to the Week