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'Explorers' to don Google Internet glasses
by Staff Writers
San Francisco (AFP) Feb 20, 2013


Google on Wednesday invited "explorers" with creative vision and $1,500 to spare to be part of a select group of people who get to experiment with glasses synched to the Internet.

A video intended to capture what it feels like to use Google Glass was posted online at google.com/glass/start/ along with information about what the eyewear does and how to be among those putting them to the test.

"We're looking for bold, creative individuals who want to join us and be a part of shaping the future of Glass," said a message at the website.

"We're still in the early stages, and while we can't promise everything will be perfect, we can promise it will be exciting."

Roller coaster rides, ice skating spins, sky diving, trapeze stunts, ballet moves, and ski runs captured from first-person perspectives were among action snippets woven into the Google Glass video.

Google glasses that overlay the Internet on daily lives should hit the market in a little more than a year -- technology the tech giant hopes will someday make fumbling with smartphones obsolete.

Google co-founder Sergey Brin offered the estimated timeline in June after a project update that included sky divers dropping in on a developers conference in San Francisco with a new version of "Glass" wearable computers.

Brin introduced "Explorer" edition glasses that developers were invited to buy for $1,500 to become the first people outside the company to shape the revolutionary eyewear before it gets to market.

The eyewear features built-in camera, microphone and speaker technology and can synch to the Internet using wireless connections.

As with the sky divers, cyclists, and wall-walkers who took part in the Google developers conference stunt, video through the eyes of wearers can be streamed live on Google's social network.

Brin wears a pair of Google glasses much of the time as he and members of his team at the company's X Lab refine the technology.

Google has been speaking with eyeglass frame companies about ideas for a consumer version of the glasses, which he expected would cost "significantly" less than the Explorer prototypes.

Google on Wednesday set out to diversify the group of people experimenting with Glass eyewear "that will literally be changing before their eyes."

US adults interested in the program have until Feb. 27th to express in 50 words or less what they would do if they had Glass eyewear and then post the messages at Twitter or Google+ social networks with hashtag #ifihadglass.

People chosen for the Explorer program will have to pay $1,500 each for Glass eyewear, which they will need to pick up in person at sessions to be held in New York City, Los Angeles, or San Francisco.

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