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Google Technology Hardware

Coming Soon: Prescription Lenses For Google Glass 195

Posted by timothy
from the hey-five-eyes dept.
When I first tried on an early Google Glass headset, I had to take off my glasses -- that made the Glass display usable, but made the rest of the room a blurry mess. When I asked the engineers and designers about this, I got mostly shrugs in return. But now, writes reader rjmarvin, "Google Glass users sporting the eyewear will soon be able to do so with a prescription for $99. Eyeglass manufacturer Rochester Optical will offer prescription options in differents colors and styles, even allowing Glass users to trick out their eyewear with transitions or tinted lenses. They're currently conducting a survey to gauge consumer interest and preference." I look forward to the day that online glasses sources like Zenni Optical have have even cheaper options for wearable computing integration, but Rochester's projected starting price is lower than I would have guessed.
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Coming Soon: Prescription Lenses For Google Glass

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  • by QilessQi (2044624) on Thursday January 02, 2014 @03:29PM (#45848725)

    As long as Google Glass looks like Locutus-of-Borg cosplay, there will be pushback from people who don't want to be seen with it.

    The display needs to be embedded transparently in the lenses itself, and the other components need to be integrated into a thin, ordinary-looking temple piece.

    • by RedBear (207369) <redbear@redbearn e t . c om> on Thursday January 02, 2014 @04:20PM (#45849409) Homepage

      As long as Google Glass looks like Locutus-of-Borg cosplay, there will be pushback from people who don't want to be seen with it.

      The display needs to be embedded transparently in the lenses itself, and the other components need to be integrated into a thin, ordinary-looking temple piece.

      That will just make it worse.

      If it becomes difficult for people to tell that you're wearing something like Google Glass versus just a regular pair of glasses, this is going to become a very unpleasant world to live in for those of us who require corrective lenses and who don't want to or cannot wear contacts. As the technology improves over time it becomes inevitable that "smart" glasses will become indistinguishable from normal glasses, but long before it becomes literally true the public will start to believe that it's already true. We're going to start having irrational assholes everywhere, even in completely public places, going up to people and demanding they take off their glasses and "stop recording me!". This will of course include some of the biggest assholes of all: law enforcement officers.

      As a wearer of corrective lenses I do not look forward to this brave new world where everyone who wears glasses will be subjected to suspicious glares or even physically accosted for no good reason because no one can tell whether or not you're surreptitiously recording them. As we all know too well, when people aren't sure about something they instinctively default to "Kill it with Fire!".

      Thanks a lot, Google. Like we needed another witch hunt trigger. I guess I better start saving up for Lasik treatments.

      When we finally perfect wireless bionic retinal implants with decent resolution the world is going to go absolutely apeshit with paranoia about being secretly recorded.

      • by Nerdfest (867930)

        You may want to have a rant against the people spreading the FUD rather than the people creating the technology.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by QilessQi (2044624)

        The problem you're describing could be mitigated somewhat if the glasses had forward-facing LEDs which turn on whenever the camera is engaged. Then you could be reasonably sure that most people are not, in fact, videoing you all the time. For the small percent who want to do this anyway, sure they could paint over the LEDs, but then they could just wear a buttonhole camera anyway. You're not going to stop surreptitious recording now that the technology is small enough.

        Here's one other way it can go down,

        • by RedBear (207369) <redbear@redbearn e t . c om> on Thursday January 02, 2014 @07:09PM (#45851329) Homepage

          The problem you're describing could be mitigated somewhat if the glasses had forward-facing LEDs which turn on whenever the camera is engaged. Then you could be reasonably sure that most people are not, in fact, videoing you all the time. For the small percent who want to do this anyway, sure they could paint over the LEDs, but then they could just wear a buttonhole camera anyway. You're not going to stop surreptitious recording now that the technology is small enough.

          Here's one other way it can go down, though:

          The next generation of teenagers becomes the first wide adopters of the technology. You can guess the marketing strategies: have pop idols be seen with them, have the next generation's Hannah Montana wearing them. They're fun, kids! Record good times with your friends! Record that important history class for a friend who's sick! Record a POV of your mad skateboarding skills and upload instantly to {hot social media platform du jour}.

          In short, produce a generation that is used to filming and being filmed 24/7/365. The same way we've produced a generation that's used to being online all the time. It's possible, right? Especially if the parents are resisting it, the kids'll be wild for it.

          This kind of thing always sounds great on paper, until this new adventurous and uninhibited UNDERAGE generation ends up "accidentally" recording and sharing videos of themselves in the nude, showering, taking a dump, and having sexy time with themselves and others in their age group. Until society at large, and especially law enforcement, learns to accept and avoid overreacting to underage nudity and erotic activities that any fool already knows underage people in every generation engage in almost without exception, the advent of truly ubiquitous 24/7/365 recording of human life is going to be an absolute disaster for millions of individuals in coming decades. It's going to set off a whole new epic level of moral panic.

          Many young people who had the temerity to turn 18 while in possession of old nude camera phone images of themselves or their girlfriend/boyfriend taken while someone was still underage have already started to get into serious legal trouble, so don't even pretend this isn't going to be a huge issue once everyone starts walking around with a permanently attached and active video camera on their almost-invisible stereo bluetooth headset. Yeah, we'll see lots of cool POV skateboarding tricks and crazy base jumping and stuff like that, but we'll also see a whole bunch of things that tens of millions of really uptight adults are absolutely not ready to see being broadcast to the public on the FaceBooks of the near future.

          Mark my words. Universal recording is something that's really going to knock society on its ear, and it will take quite a long time before things settle down. Probably two or three generations at least.

          • by QilessQi (2044624)

            Yep, I fully agree. But the genie is out of the bottle. If tech companies can stir up a huge demand, and if the technology becomes ubiquitous, it seems a likely future.

            There once was a time when store owners would toss you out if they caught you taking pictures of their displays -- especially if they thought you were spying for a competitor. But now, just try to run a business like that where you have to chase after everyone who holds up a phone in the vicinity of your shop. It's over. The Surreptitiou

        • It DOES have a forward facing red LED that comes on if you record something.

          The media hate-frenzy has just latched onto "ZOMG THEY COULD BE RECORDING YOU AT ANY TIME!!!!!!!11!!1one"

      • Lasik is worth every penny (assuming your prescription allows for it). i don't know why people would want to pay google glass at all, when they could could be completed glasses free for less money.

      • by swillden (191260)

        Your dystopian future is [deluxecctv.com] already [proofpronto.com] here [surveillance-video.com].

      • by guises (2423402)

        We're going to start having irrational assholes everywhere, even in completely public places, going up to people and demanding they take off their glasses and "stop recording me!". This will of course include some of the biggest assholes of all: law enforcement officers.

        It seems to me that there's a significant call for a wearable display without an integrated camera. Losing the camera would make the glasses less funny lookin', would upset other people a lot less, and given that most of the functionality seems to be notifications and mapping, which don't have anything to do with the camera, there doesn't seem to be much loss.

        I, at least, have no desire for Google Glass, but would quite like some otherwise normal glasses that could give me notifications.

  • So it will be even more expensive to replace when a FUD punches me in the face!
    • at least you'll see it coming...

    • by Lumpy (12016)

      Easier than pie because the police report will cover the assult. The hard part is getting your pistol back from the police after you shot the FUD that attacked you.

      I know that any loser that tries to punch me will get about 4 rounds center mass, "I was afraid for my life officer, he just came at me."

    • by nbauman (624611)

      You'll get a great Youtube video, "Goon punching me in face." Maybe a lot of them.

      It'll be a meme, with all the other Youtube videos of people with Google glasses getting punched in the face.

      "Here's one from when we went to France."

      • You'll get a great Youtube video, "Goon punching me in face." Maybe a lot of them.

        It'll be a meme, with all the other Youtube videos of people with Google glasses getting punched in the face.

        "Here's one from when we went to France."

        And makes for an easy police report. This is why dashcams are so popular. This could be a logical extension of it.

  • Cue the neanderthal luddites threatening to beat people up.

    • by Krishnoid (984597) on Thursday January 02, 2014 @03:32PM (#45848755) Journal
      Well, they wouldn't be so mean as to hit a guy with glasses.
    • Cue the neanderthal luddites threatening to beat people up.

      Not being keen on the idea of someone recording your movements at all times is not what I would consider a Luddite-ish value. Just seems reasonable to me.

      I'll grant that threatening to cause people harm because they're doing something you don't like, but isn't explicitly prohibited, is a rather prehistoric attitude to have.

      • Thinking that someone passing you on the street wearing one of these devices is the same as "recording your movements at all times" is.
        • Thinking that someone passing you on the street wearing one of these devices is the same as "recording your movements at all times" is.

          So, if you see someone walking around with one of those gigantic 1980's VHS camcorders on their shoulder, looking through the eyepiece, you don't think assuming "hey, that guy must be recording something" is a reasonable thought to have?

          What self-blinded ignoramus goes through life assuming every camera pointed at him is turned off by default?

          • by Forbo (3035827)
            So every person with a cameraphone has it recording at all times? What person goes through life assuming that every camera in existence is recording their every move?

            Hint: It's called paranoid schizophrenia, and it's no fun.
            • So every person with a cameraphone has it recording at all times?

              When they're holding it in that certain way that screams, "I AM RECORDING SOMETHING RIGHT NOW," yes.

              When it's in their pocket, or they're obviously on a call? Don't be obtuse.

              What person goes through life assuming that every camera that's pointing at themis recording their every move

              Celebrities and other values of person who put value on their privacy.

              Hint: It's called paranoid schizophrenia, and it's no fun.

              Don't use that term. You obviously don't know what it means, and just insulted every person who either suffers from the affliction or at least knows what that term means.

              • by Forbo (3035827)
                Thank you for assuming that I haven't ever suffered from paranoid schizophrenia. If anything, you've just insulted the very group you were trying to "defend". When you believe that every person in a crowded room is watching you and can read your thoughts, then you can talk to me about the suffering. When you're afraid to turn on the radio because the advertisements are specially crafted secret codes trying to tell you the secrets behind reality, then maybe you'll understand what I've suffered from. When I
                • OK, so it appears you do know what schizophrenia is, but can't distinguish it from good ol' fashioned, regular paranoia.

                  Take your meds. And maybe a nap, you sound like you could use a nap.

            • by MightyYar (622222)

              Exactly. If someone wanted to surreptitiously record your every move, they could do a very simple Google search for hidden or spy cameras and come up with hundreds of products. They would probably not use a device that emits a glow in front of their eye when recording, makes them look like a sci-fi character, activates when they tap themselves on the temple, and requires voice commands.

            • by bloodhawk (813939)
              If they are holding it up with the camera pointed at me and looking at the screen then damn right I assume they are taking photos or recording.
        • by msobkow (48369)

          The problem is if someone pulls out a cell phone or camera to take a picture, you can see them doing so.

          There are no such visual cues with glassholes.

          • You do realize that 'glassholes' are the absolute tip of the wearable iceberg, right? I could wear 10 cameras on my person and you would never know they were there unless i pointed them out to you.
        • by msobkow (48369)

          And, yes, if I see someone wearing them, I'm going to assume they're turned on and active.

          What would be the point otherwise?

      • Its luddite behavior because we have been under constant video surveillance for decades. If they REALLY had objection to it, they wouldn't go to places that have CCTV.
        • Its luddite behavior because we have been under constant video surveillance for decades.

          No, smashing cameras would be 'luddite behavior.' Smashing faces because of technological apprehension, while stupid IMO, doesn't exactly fit that definition.

          If they REALLY had objection to it, they wouldn't go to places that have CCTV.

          That statement is equally legitimate to "if you have done nothing wrong, you have nothing to hide."

          In that, it's not legitimate at all. Every major intersection in my city, for example, has CCTV cameras attached. So to "not go places that have CCTV" would mean to not go places, and that's just stupidly unreasonable.

        • by s.petry (762400)

          Going to the bank is the same as walking out your frond door? Sure, there are places we expect to see CCTV and accept those locations as a trade off for giving banks the ability to catch robbers. This is not the same as being tracked by your mobile phone, NSA having access to turn on your web-cams, and people volunteering _your_ location and information because they think a gadget is "cool".

          The scope of the majority of surveillance has been hidden from view, so claiming "everyone's okay with something" th

    • by s.petry (762400)
      Neanderthal luddite? hardly needed here, anyone with half a brain will give you intellectual reasons not to use this technology and why it's harmful for society. Of course you won't listen, because you know.. we never ever have proven conspiracies and governments can never be dangerous.
    • Dont forget folks looking for any excuse to bring up the NSA.

  • Can I do it until I need Google Glasses?
  • Outside of some sort of Tron: Uprising style AR view of things for mechanics and the like, why would a person wear these in their normal day?

  • $99 real price but your Insurance billed $200-$900 for them

    • $99 price for someone what doesn't really need glasses, just the blanks for my glasses cost more than that (I'm a -13).

      • $99 price for someone what doesn't really need glasses, just the blanks for my glasses cost more than that (I'm a -13).

        I've almost always paid for glasses out of pocket. Only 2 or 3 times have I had optical insurance paying. And while $99 sounds about right for the blanks, the grinding that comes afterwards is pretty creative. Plus it's either tint or do the whole thing over for sunglasses.

        Still, it's the frames that are the real ripoff.

        • by MightyYar (622222)

          You guys need to check out Zenni. My wife is in coke-bottle territory, but we still pay nowhere near $100 for glasses. I'm only a -3 or so... my glasses are $7.

  • by msobkow (48369)

    Now with blind glassholes! :P

  • I guess maybe I'm the odd duck here, but I just don't see what's so appealing about paying Google to become one of their pet, Snow Crash style gargoyles.

    • Absolutely, I expect to be their pet free of charge. ;-)

      I find the non-glass versions of their products exceptionally helpful and useful. Glass would mean I don't have to carry a second gadget (I wear prescr. lenses). Right now, google can sift through my email at will, see where I'm going and what I'm doing (calendar), and know who I'm contacting (voice). Verizon knows the rest - they're my telephone provider and have access to all of the calls - home and mobile - and any texts I make. They even know where

  • by cDarwin (161053) on Thursday January 02, 2014 @04:18PM (#45849365) Homepage

    Will not fix a myopic product.

  • "When I asked the engineers and designers about this, I got mostly shrugs in return."

    So not a single person on the design and engineering team wears glasses, and it simply never occurred to them that there would need to be a prescription version?

  • If/when I ever need glasses, I'll certainly get the "loaded" ones like Google's or whatever the technology will be by then.

    I am one of those people, who always lose things (gloves, umbrellas), so I like to carry as little as possible. Heck, I even sacrifice some privacy and carry only the employer-provided smart-phone — because I loath having to carry one more device. And I read e-books on it too — so as not to carry a separate item.

  • I got Google Glass for Christmas and what I've read doesn't really align with reality.

    While I suppose you could roll the video recorder nonstop, the glasses get warm and wear the battery out pretty fast. Glassholes as walking surveillance cameras is not reality. There are lots of clandestine cameras out there already and that's not what Glass is about. You can take a picture by winking, but that's pretty obvious, and also potentially unnerving.

    I need reading glasses so prescription lenses will be a big

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