The first thing I noticed about Patrick Sutherland was his smile. It radiated outward from his lips, softened his jaw, then meandered up to highlight his eyes. They shone as bright as the Glass punctuating his right brow line. That Glass was jauntily embedded in a splash of tangerine echoed in complementary tones permeating his belt and shoelaces. The orange family is warmth, sharing, and self confidence wrapped in echoes of late summer. Not the color choice of an introvert I idly thought. His hand warmly wrapped around mine as he drew me further into the room where Glass was on display. Patrick’s happily confident voice compelled me forward to stare in awe at the lineup of color choices. Shale, Cotton, Charcoal, Tangerine, and Sky formed an improbable rainbow of hues. “Select your color and let’s begin this journey to Glass” Patrick encouraged me as I whispered of wanting a nice conservative corporate look, Shale to blend in or perhaps Cotton to form a neutral contrast.
I reverently picked up the Shale and placed it on my face. It settled there and faded discretely into the background functioning as a mere foil for the twinkle of the prism. Nice was the most optimistic adjective I could apply to it. My hand hovered over the Cotton briefly then I swallowed and reached for the Sky. It leaped onto the bridge of my nose and stared back at me with a commanding glint. The blue of deep clear water, zenith shade riding the bell curve between green and purple, distilled essence of color, Sky absorbed and completed me. Claimed by the Glass I turned to Patrick and accepted the union. I was a Sky blue female and conservative Shale sighed and agreed as it was put away for another.
We went to another station and a pristine parcel of Sky Glass and its accouterments was brought to me. Patrick took my phone and married it to the Glass then started me down the path of Glass commands. The light was iffy and the first few glimpses of Glass’s screen were a bit difficult to see. As the sun set further the brilliance of the background settled down and Glass opened to me. It floats above the right eye and a slight tilt up brings it into view to respond to requests and open the world of possibilities to a wondering mind. Patrick smiled and said I was made for Glass.
The appointment flowed from demonstration to practice to unexpected delight. A friend called during it and Glass answered my phone. The sensation of feeling my friend speak through bone conduction was heady, the freedom of my hands an unexpected delight. I tend to punctuate conversation with gestures and Glass saved my phone from being waved and caught up short to be held to an ear with reluctantly silent hands. Glass does not tether us to technology, it frees us from it. Glass provides what we need to know, communicates when desired, and silently waits in between.
Glass illustrates an attribute of Google that I cherish. Many facets of modern life snare us unwittingly. We grow dependent on them and can be subsumed by that, controlled rather than controlling. Google creates wonders that harness the technology and hands us the reins. We ride the internet courtesy of their search engine, share communications through Gmail, G+, and Hang Outs. Glass is one more step down the path to independence. Rather than being dehumanized by the fetters of technology, Glass frees the humanity in us and points us at the stars.
The Google Glass team members I met at my Glassing exude a firm belief in a future where freedom becomes a reality through Glass. They wear Glass but it frames rather than contains them. Patrick did not say “Here is Glass, use it this way.” He said “Here is Glass, create your future and let it be a partner.”
Project Glass has set us loose to create, form bonds, and most of all explore using Glass. Some of our fellow Explorers will develop software that extends the interactions between Glass and daily living. Others will augment the lives of people challenged by life. Teachers will delve into the minds of students and pour knowledge through Glass. My own journey will be focused on the interaction possibilities between the spirit, will, and dreams of myself and my furred companions. Glass will punctuate, illustrate, and aid my queries. Glass can free my hands to soothe away fear as I communicate with my vet over a critical need. Sky blue rather than blue sky dreams because of the catalyst of Glass.
The future beckons and I will put on my Glass and step forward with a smile that can be seen for miles. I am Glassed.