back to article Google sneaks out new clip-on tech goggles for saddo Glassholes

Google has reportedly been developing a revision of its infamous Glass product for use in the workplace. The Wall Street Journal cited sources familiar in reporting that the new version of Glass will be a clip-on system designed for specialized tasks. Google execs have previously said that the Chocolate Factory was looking to …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hah

    Sounds like this will be another of Googles roaring successes...

    Not

    Wonder if this version will be as successful at getting their customers punched in the face as their prior version?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Hah

      If it still has an open channel to Google so they can spy on anything the user sees I hope the answer is yes. The last accelerometer reading will be a sharp acceleration towards the face followed by some peaks as either glasses or worse breaks on impact.

  2. Winkypop Silver badge
    Coat

    Google Glass. A failure!

    They couldn't see that coming?

  3. Chairo

    Lots of professional use cases

    There are enough cases, where having hands free data projected in your field of vision is useful.

    Most of them might be niche applications, but there should be quite a lot of money in it.

    Google's mistake with the explorer program was that they tried to do an "Apple" and create a fashion item for the middle class. Given the general creepiness of our elites, they might have done better to sell it for a significantly higher price.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Lots of professional use cases

      Lots of professional use cases

      There are enough cases, where having hands free data projected in your field of vision is useful.

      Sure, but those use cases tend to aggressively conflict with the risk to privacy, confidentiality and secrecy that the involvement of Google entails. It is entirely possible to create a head/bodycam concept that does NOT export every erg of data to a company whose main activity is spying on the population. Of course, now Google has patents in the area it'll be harder, putting a break on innovation in pretty much the same way as Microsoft did in its days.

    2. Bc1609

      Re: Lots of professional use cases

      And non-professional. I really, really wish they'd just made the headset without a camera attached; all the stuff I wanted it for - watching films while washing up, heads-up-navigation, notifications etc. etc. would have worked perfectly without the camera - but for the sake of being able to take low-quality photographs and other social media bollocks they put a camera in and scared everyone to death about privacy and face-recognition, and now it's going to be years before the idea can be properly resurrected.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Prediction: Unless there's some sort of slide-open/flip-open camera lens cover this will fail too. Unless people around can see that you're not filming, it won't be safe to wear in public.

    I'd dearly love a decent HUD (not routed through Google, of course) and can think of a number of ways it'd be useful.

    1. John Robson Silver badge

      @moiety - it won't be safe to wear in public.

      But this is designed as a workplace tool, so it doesn't really matter.

      What was wrong with the red LED indication which camera was live?

      Have people forgotten that every buttonhole might be a concealed camera?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Red LEDs can be disabled easily. The problem with Glass wasn't so much that it was a camera but a camera directly connected to Google. Taking photographs/video is a relatively small part of people's problems with it: "What's going to happen to it afterwards? How is it going to be used?"...is the more significant part of what people are worried about, I believe.

        A camera wouldn't even be necessary on my theoretical MoietyVision shades; but -as you say- cameras can be almost anywhere. People would be happier around an obvious camera disabled by an even more obvious physical cover than they would be around a device where no camera is visible but might be tucked in there somewhere.

        1. Ruairi Newman 1

          "The problem with Glass wasn't so much that it was a camera but a camera directly connected to Google."

          The problem with Glass was hyperbole. Most people on the street just don't know or care enough to be particularly bothered about whether some tool has a camera. The wonderful tech media however made a big fuss about how having a low-res camera built into a pair of glasses was SO MUCH WORSE, OMFG?!?! than having a medium to high-res camera in pretty much every decent smartphone sold in the last 10 years.

          This is like the furore that resulted from Facebook Messenger being upgraded and requiring new permissions, some of which were deemed to be invasive by the same champions of hyperbole. The online crusaders screaming about how it was such a travesty and shouldn't be allowed then all went off to use their WhatsApp instead, an app owned by Facebook with exactly the same permissions and access requirements as the new Facebook Messenger, with the added bonus that your identity is tied to your mobile phone number.

          Artificially created and managed panics are largely to blame for the failure of Google Glass to date.

          1. Naselus

            "Artificially created and managed panics are largely to blame for the failure of Google Glass to date."

            I suspect 'making the user look like a twat' was the bigger problem, tbh. We're culturally conditioned to think glasses aren't cool. They are artistic shorthand for nerd. Every Ugly Duckling movie hinges on the assumption that a breathtakingly beautiful actress can convincingly pretend to be a hideous troll simply by putting some slightly thick-frames glasses on. If you want to produce a fashionable piece of wearable tech that 'aspirational' middle-class people will buy, then glasses are not the model to build on. Sunglasses yes, clear glasses no.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              or

              the price tag of over $1500 USD for the "privilege" of beta testing something that didn't even have real app use might have scared people. Not everyone is a single young Google exec making six figures and living at home rent free which seemed to be the primary market of those waling around with them.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            The wonderful tech media however made a big fuss about how having a low-res camera built into a pair of glasses was SO MUCH WORSE, OMFG?!?! than having a medium to high-res camera in pretty much every decent smartphone sold in the last 10 years.

            There is a considerable difference between a phone that requires a deliberate act of taking out, pointing at something and instruct to take a picture which can get stored and used in a controlled way and an always-on device that is constantly aimed at what the wearer is looking at, hooked up to a provider whose main business is the acquisition of every scrap of personal data it can lay its hands on, and who in its terms & conditions gives itself rights to all the data you run through their services into perpetuity (the fact that that is TL:DR for you doesn't give you the right to expose my life to that deficiency in knowledge).

            Pointing that out is far from "artificial", that is real. As you mentioned smartphones, it's worth reminding you that that too is already seen as a massive risk to privacy, so this technology IS worse, by quite some distance. Now, before you start singing that other excuse tune as well, it's not because I have anything to hide, it's because I have things to protect, like kids, company IP, clients and my life.

            If you feel it's OK to walk around with such a device, fine, that's your choice, but it's my choice to deny you access to my life and protect the privacy of my family. Just like anyone having the bad taste to wear crocs of Hawaiian shirts is not coming across my threshold, for reasons of good taste.

            You can only refer to the media comments as hype if you lack the most basic understanding of how hard it is already to protect your life. I hope you will discover just how precious privacy has become before you experience the side effects of not having any, and before you signed away all your rights to a personal life.

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "Most people on the street just don't know or care enough to be particularly bothered about whether some tool has a camera. "

            Can't agree with you there. Most people on the street are toting a camera. Probably a majority have used said camera to upload something to Facebook or similar. And people are becoming increasingly aware of how escaping data can bite them in the arse.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              "Most people on the street just don't know or care enough to be particularly bothered about whether some tool has a camera. "

              Yes, that is the killer argument to do something stupid: others do it too. If lots of other people start crossing the road without looking, will you just joint that trend in order to "fit in"? Good, that gives at least Darwin a chance to sort things out..

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        But this is designed as a workplace tool, so it doesn't really matter.

        That is a matter of interpretation: it either is a workplace tool, or it is, like Google Glass, for the workplace tool :)

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          then not legal in many workplaces

          only "glasshole" I personally know is a teacher and bought one to try to view his notes and browse for answers to questions kids asked that he didn't know the answer for.

          the camera was unacceptable as it could potentially catch cheating kids, or record kids at all. Administration said NO to the devices.

          if they actually claimed to be building something "for the workplace" they would have known that a camera was a big no-no

  5. TeeCee Gold badge
    Coat

    Oh that's just great Google!

    The nerd reputation for IT workers is bad enough already, without you forcing glasses into the mandatory part of the dress code.

    Any chance of getting the functionality into a tie pin?

    1. hplasm
      Thumb Up

      Re: Oh that's just great Google!

      "Any chance of getting the functionality into a tie pin?"

      Or clipped to a ring, or cufflinks... http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0069125/

  6. Captain Scarlet Silver badge

    Oh

    I can see uses for it such in a warehouse/production instead of looking at the display of handheld piece of equipment, put the display on the glasses. But then again no-one likes change (Very expensive wrist mounted computers with Finger scanners gather dust whilst the traditional handheld scanner computer are always in demand).

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Do society a favor

    place a large electrically conductive antenna on these glasses so when there is a lightning storm, we can eliminate the socially challenged one by one - in a flash so to speak.

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