Google Glass is coming, but will the world see through—and embrace—it’s quirkiness? Early explorers, and the people they come in contact with, are already forming opinions. But whether they love it or hate it may be beside the point if Glass isn’t seen as aesthetically admissible by the mainstream. Most imaginations probably envision Sheldon and friends more than Rachel and Friends as the types most likely to sport Glass (in public). But by resting Glass on the ears and noses of the non-nerdy in it’s marketing, Google has done it’s best to make the screen-on-a-frame look as socially acceptable as possible. Advertisers, however, cannot be trusted without verification because they have an agenda.
Glass is functional—it was designed to be useful. But will the fashion, not merely the utility, make or break wearable technologies like Google Glass? To make a product that will be worn worldwide, Google and other companies must possess a more complete understanding of how IT relates to a person’s ID. In the battle of apps versus appearance, which matters more?
I’ve asked a sizable group of technology entrepreneurs and executives for their opinion on the matter and their answers might surprise you. Since dorky seemed to be the prevailing conclusion among this group, lets start there.
The Dorky Point of View
Google itself defines dorky as a dull stupid fatuous (silly and pointless) person. In contrast, Google defines the word cool as fashionably attractive or impressive. With that in mind, are people outfitted in Google Glass oblivious, lacking judgement and common sense—or are they hip and in style?
As a startup founder and co-creator of the FlameStower, Andrew Byrnes admits that the line between cool and dorky is permanently blurred. That said, he thinks, “Google Glass is amazing tech… but its insanely dorky! Each time I see someone wearing Glass, it looks like they’re staring at a computer monitor—lazy eye, dropped jaw—even picking their nose because they’re distracted.” That certainly seems to qualify as oblivious.
Alex Neskin, CTO and founder of Petcube, describes Glass-wearers as just plain awkward: “All the face-touching, nodding and loud conversations with Glass add plenty of awkwardness points to the device.”
“Glass is definitely a little dorky, but I think it has a future,” adds Hursh Agrawal, co-founder of Branch and Potluck. Agrawal appears to question whether the benefits of Glass are enough to drive mainstream adoption at this point: “I’m ...