Sergey Brin envisions Google's Internet glasses hitting the market this
year with an eye toward freeing people from unsocial habits engendered
by "emasculating" smartphones.
Brin spoke of inspiration behind Google
Glass eyewear during a brief appearance Wednesday on stage at a TED
Conference known for an inspiring mix of influential big thinkers and
"ideas worth spreading.
He playfully demonstrated his point on
stage by ignoring a theater audience to stare down at his smartphone,
saying he was intent on a message from a Nigerian prince need of $10
"I like to pay attention because that is how we
originally funded the company," the Google co-founder quipped about a
"Seriously, in addition to potentially socially
isolating yourself when you are out and about using your phone, I feel
it is kind of emasculating," he continued.
Brin described Glass as
the first form factor to deliver on a vision he had from Google's
inception that one day search queries would be outmoded and information
from the Internet would come to people when they need it.
Glass frees the eyes as well as the hands when it comes to connecting to the Internet on the go, according to Brin.
is why we put the display up high, out of the line of sight," Brin
said, wearing the Glass eyewear he is rarely seen without.
wore a ball cap, the display would be on the brim and not where you are
looking," he continued. "And sound goes through bones in the cranium,
which is a little freaky at first, but you get used to it."
wearers can speak commands to the eyewear, and built-in camera
technology allows pictures or video to be captured from first-person
perspectives while people take part in what is happening.
I realized I also have a nervous tic," Brin said. "The cell phone is a
nervous habit. If I smoked, I'd probably smoke instead."
observed that smartphones sometimes become props used by people as
distractions or to appear busy, saying that Glass strips away excuses
not to be sociable or to not be honest about simply wanting to take a
"It really opened by eyes to how much of my life I spent
secluded away in email, social posts or what-not," Brin said. "There is
nothing bad about that, but with this thing I don't have to be checking
them all the time."
Brin said Glass eyewear will be available
later this year at prices lower than the $1,500 charged to software
developers and early adopters during a restricted test phase.
was the last day for "explorers" with creative vision and $1,500 to
spare to vie to be part of a select group of people who get to
experiment with Glass.
A video intended to capture what it feels like to use Glass was online.
has been speaking with eyeglass frame companies about ideas for a
consumer version of the glasses, which he expected would cost
"significantly" less than the Explorer prototypes.
interested in the program had to say what they would do if they had
Glass eyewear and then post the messages at Twitter or Google+ social
networks with hashtag #ifihadglass.
People chosen for the Explorer
program will need to pick up in person at sessions to be held in New
York, Los Angeles, or San Francisco.