Deconstructing the Glass Deconstruction

February 6, 2015

You know about Google Glass. The glasshole thing.

I read “Broken Glass” or “Why Glass Broke.” You may be able to locate this deconstruction of Google Glass at this link. If you have to pay or the  link is dead, don’t complain to me, gentle reader. Cast your aspersions elsewhere.


Google sunGlass. Handy.

The write up appears in the Style section of the New York Times. I assume that the subject (Glass) is not appear to be a business story. The write up contains 12 “I” statements. These refer to the author’s “being there,” but not in the Jerzy Kosinski sense. There are anecdotes about the happenstance of Google X Labs. Well, the company creating Glass is Google. There is an intriguing fact: The super secret headquarters of Google X Labs is or was 1489 Charleston Avenue which does not appear in my instance of Google Earth. Perhaps the address is “Charleston Road”?

The write up provides an insight into Google’s technology management processes; for example:

At the time [2011], unknown to anyone outside X, an impassioned split was forming between X engineers about the most basic functions of Google Glass. One faction argued that it should be worn all day, like a “fashionable device,” while others thought it should be worn only for specific utilitarian functions. Still, nearly everyone at X was in agreement that the current prototype was just that: a prototype, with major kinks to be worked out. There was one notable dissenter. Mr. Brin knew Google Glass wasn’t a finished product and that it needed work, but he wanted that to take place in public, not in a top-secret lab. Mr. Brin argued that X should release Glass to consumers and use their feedback to iterate and improve the design.

I want to credit the New York Times’ Style editor for including information about the alleged Brin Rosenberg interaction. A factoid or two may have slipped to the cutting room floor. Anyone know anything about an alleged suicide attempt?

Glass is, of course, not dead. For style lovers, Glass will live on in the history of head mounted computers with an ever so brief battery life. But, as a fashion forward person said, “This was the first time that people talked about wearable technology.”

Did you know that, Jaron Lanier?

Stephen E Arnold, February 5, 2015


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