Last Friday, Erin posted a link to an article in the Washington Post about Google’s Project Glass, which is experimenting with augmented reality glasses that will be able to display chats, maps, and more. Google is currently seeking feedback from consumers while designing the appearance of the glasses, and there would likely be a version that would fit over a person’s existing glasses. Reports disagree about when the glasses will be available for public data; some sources say they could launch as early as the end of 2012, while others say that such a launch is “extremely unlikely.” As someone who already wears glasses and loves new gadgets, I quickly began to wonder what Project Glass could be useful for other than taking pictures and always displaying text and images right in front of me. And because one of the focuses of this class has been about how technology has changed the educational experience, I began to wonder if Project Glass has an application in the classroom.
The Washington Post article described just a few possible uses for the glasses. In the short term, they would likely complement existing technology in cell phones and laptop or tablet computers, but down the road, they have the potential to replace technology that we use every day. In the classroom, they could provide new opportunities for instructors to communicate with students. Instead of displaying information on projector screens or smartboards, instructors could transmit data directly to their students’ glasses where it could be viewed and saved for later reference. Instructors who are just now beginning to allow students to participate in poll and discussion questions and other activities using smartphones and computers could further customize the way their students get involved in class. While Project Glass is still only a concept, it is easy to imagine how it could change the way we use technology in the classroom and in our everyday lives.