Tomorrow I will be on a flight from New Orleans to New York City in order to pick up my Glass. I can’t wait to get hands on with this next generation of computing, despite the privacy issues involved.
As I prepare for my appointment in Chelsea I’m forced to assess my gear and how I wish to utilize the tech. I’m not a coder, so app creation is beyond me. I am, however, a media creator, and that’s the aspect that fascinates me the most. I will also be part of a much smaller subset of Glass Explorers who will be suffering the limitations imposed by tethering it to an iOS device.
While most people are planning to pair their Glass with an Android device I plan on sticking with my current gear, which is all Apple these days. This means that I will not get the advantages of the Glass app until Apple quits pouting and gives it the thumbs up in their store. What I will be doing it chaining it off of an iPad. I am hoping that this will give me more functionality when I am covering live events such as the New Orleans Comic Con this coming December.
Using the iPad, I will have a larger screen and more sophisticated editing tools on hand than a phone could offer. I’ve also heard from current users that using it to record interviews and such, a primary part of what I intend to use it for, is not so great. The wearer’s voice tends to be much louder than the interview subject’s. Using the iPad, I can record a separate audio track that can be integrated into the video later.
It helps that I use Google products constantly. My hardware may be Apple, but Google+ is my social network of choice. I use Google Docs (now Drive) for a lot of my game design work. Having a solid foundation with Google should help minimize the downsides.
When I picked up my iPad I did not get one with a built-in data connection, only Wi-Fi. This means I can take advantage of improvements in mobile hotspots as they hit the market. For the foreseeable future, I will be using a Verizon hotspot to connect both the iPad and Glass to the Internet. As an alternate option, I will pair it with my iPhone over Bluetooth.
Plans and Projects
While many of the people in the Glass Explorer program are developers, I am not. Rather than creating apps, or Glassware as it is called, I will be focusing on how it can be useful for the media creator or citizen journalist. I also intend to do a bit of a sociological study.
One thing I will be taking detailed notes on is the public reaction. How many people will overcome their shyness to ask a stranger about his headgear? How many times will I be met in public with a “don’t film me” type of statement? What places will deny me entry unless I take the Glass off? Since public acceptance is important in order for it to be adopted, these reactions are important.
Another related project will be a series of videos of people trying on Glass for the first time. I already have the first 10 or 15 lined up, ranging from local chefs and musicians here in New Orleans to 14-year-old kids. All of this is inspired by my wonderful mother-in-law, the folklore professor.
Glass and Journalism
PBS Media Shift had a great episode last week in which they gathered names like Anna Marie Cox and Robert Scoble to discuss the potential impact on journalism. It’s 37 minutes of excellent content if you would like to take an in-depth look on the subject.
George “Loki” Williams is the community and brand manager for award wining game company Savage Mojo, Ltd. and the owner of SocialGumbo, LLC, an online consultancy specializing in Web content and online communications. Loki has produced content for clients including the Open Society Institute, National Association of Broadcasters, Kobold Press, and Kaiser Permanente. His work has been seen or written about in The New York Times, The BBC, Air America, The Gambit Weekly, and NOLA.com, among others.