I think that something akin to the Google Glass, but without the camera and price tag, would be the way to go. That way you can take it off easily when you don't want the distraction. I think the occulus goggles are too immersive and will be used only in constrained settings and then only when you want the fully immersive virtual reality. For augmented reality, you will want to view the real world somehow.
My thinking is that the glasses superimpose the digital over the real world, and will include a kind of gesture recognition system to allow you to interact with the digital image, such as clicking buttons and such. So now instead of talking to someone unseen, you will be waving your hands at something unseen, making you look no less crazy, though.
The problem I see with embedded systems or even contact lenses is in getting power to the device sufficient to activate all those LEDs.
@Rich: I think the occulus goggles are too immersive and will be used only in constrained settings and then only when you want the fully immersive virtual reality.
In the case of the Oculus Rift-type presentation, you could have camera's on the front presenting you with a photo-realistic copy of the world around you -- and then superimpose the augmented text and graphics and whatnot.
I've not tried one, but I'm guessing that the problem with things like Google Glass is that it occupies only a small portion of your visual area -- and you have to specially look at it to see the info it's presenting.
Yes, you could make the goggles add a camera view to the digital info, but that seems like an expensive way to be see things in most circumstances. Although full immersive would be handy in some situations such as you describe, I don't think it will be the default condition.
As to the need to deliberately look to see the digital info I don't see that as a problem. In fact, I think it would be preferable. Otherwise the digital info keeps intruding even if you don't want to look at it.
As someone who is pretty bad at remembering people's names, i would enjoy my glasses being able to tell me (using facial recognition) what someone's name is. As a professor, this was a real challenge. Even more so when you run into the student out of context, like at the deli.
On the other hand, as a former professor, this has me worried:
"I can imagine a time when contact lenses have the capability to project high-resolution textual and graphical imagery directly onto their owners' retinas. At some stage, it wouldn't surprise me if it became possible to have such equipment embedded in the eye itself."
What are the implications here for cheating on exams?
@Janine: Where will people like you and me with such a depth of knowledge get the respect we deserve...
I don't know about you, but I'll be sitting in the corner of a bar and -- for the price of a beer many beers -- I will regale the gathered throng with tales of daring do BEFORE everyone had augmented reality :-)
Wikipedia and other Internet resources are great if you know what you're looking for and you know what it's called. If you don't have enough general esoteric (sometimes a euphemism for "trivial") knowledge, you don't know things even exist and then the Internet is useless. For example, if you'd never heard of Le Pétomane, you'd probably never think to look him up.
@betajet: Wikipedia and other Internet resources are great if you know what you're looking for and you know what it's called.
There's a smartphone app where you can let it listen to a fragment of a tune and it will return all of the details associated with the piece -- without your first knowing what it was called.
I bet in the future uyou cioudl have a voice interface and try to vaguely describe something and for the servers in the cloud to say something like "Ah, you are looking for information on something the ancients used to call a book!"
Max wrote: I bet in the future you could have a voice interface and try to vaguely describe something and for the servers in the cloud...
Sounds like my octagenarian Dad when he asks me to identify a movie with "that actor who... you know... the one who was also in that movie about... " and I answer something like "You mean le jour se lève?" and he says "yes! that one" and I say "oh, you mean Jean Gabin".
Actually, I ran a test today and was suprised to see that Google is finally able to find some items that I had been using as test cases for many years. I'll need to come up with some even more obscure ones :-)
One of them you'll find most amusing: Bob Rowsem's Epistle to Bonypart, a semi-literate letter of defiance from a British seaman to Napoleon regarding the latter's foolish idea of crossing the Channel to attack Blighty. An excerpt:
Come, I'll give ye a toaft: Here's hard breezes and foul weather to ye, my boy, in your paffage: Here's May you be fea-fick! we'll foon make ye fick of the fea...
Perhaps the tests influenced the google search algorithm? A problem with tests of this these types of self organizing systems. Now if we could only find some tests that introduced some self-disorganizing...
Dr FPGA wrote: Perhaps the tests influenced the google search algorithm?
In the case of Bob Rowsem, I think it's just that it was a long time before the original materials got scanned with OCR so they've only recently become searchable. Bob Rowsem is printed material from now-obscure publications circa 1800 or copyrighted books about the Era of Napoleon.
Max wrote: I love those Visual Dictionaries -- they are wonderful for trying to find the name of something like "that bit of wood that stickes up at the front of an old wooden sailing ship".
A friend of mine had an uncle in Scotland who owned a hardware store. His favorite sport was tormenting American tourists by refusing to understand what they wanted unless they used the proper (and sometimes archaic) British terminology. For example, if someone wanted a screwdriver, he would look perplexed and ask them to explain what a screwdriver is. Now, when you try to explain what an ordinary object is you feel like an idiot, and he did everything to enhance that feeling. He would bring over any number of unrelated screws and chisels and everything that could possibly relate to the victim's attempts at explanation. Finally he'd tire of the game and say: "Ohhhhh... you want a turnscrew!"
Always having information available might imply that we have to change the way we do exams. Maybe they would have to look more like open book exam, where the problem is not to remember things, but to quickly figure out what you need and how to apply it to a problem.
I think there were similar concerns when the calculator showed up, but there are still math exams. In fact, many of these rely on students bringing their calculators.
During my brief stint as an instructor, I gave open book exams where the students typically had to look up something in a table that was in the book then apply it to the probelm at hand. After the first exam where a number of students had decided that "open book" meant that they didn't have to study, I explicitly pointed out to them before the next exam that "open book" ment that they had to read the book to find out where things were and know what applied to which question. I also pointed out that the exam would have the same type of questions that they had already answered on their homework.
@Duane: "I just want wireless into my brain so the information can be directly inserted into my thought process."
I totally agree. There are a lot advantages but also inconveniences around this...
One of the positive changes would be the change in education: no more memorizing data that will already be in your brain -- or you'll be able to download just by thinking in it. The main point would be being creative in order to mix and process all the available data.
As a negative one... I can appreciate the shadow of "Big Brother" around -- this would be a candy for the NSA, Google and so on ;-)
Fry: Well sure, but not in our dreams. Only on TV and radio, and in magazines, and movies, and at ball games... and on buses and milk cartons and t-shirts, and bananas and written on the sky. But not in dreams, no siree.
@Garcia: As a negative one... I can appreciate the shadow of "Big Brother" around -- this would be a candy for the NSA, Google and so on ;-)
I agree -- imagine getting a virus that allowed companies to keep on hitting you with adverts tha tare projected directly onto your retina (or into your brian) and your not being able to turn them off...
@ Max projected directly onto your retina (or into your brian) and your not being able to turn them off...
R.A. Heinlein described in a early 60's novel (Podkayne of Mars) very loud annoying holographic commercials forced onto taxi-cab customers. At least they could bribe the driver into reducing the level.