"Second to the contact lenses that monitor for diabetes, Google's parent company Alphabet has filed a patent which takes their development to another level. The patent specifically covers a method for "injecting a fluid into a lens capsule of an eye, wherein a natural lens of the eye has been removed from the lens capsule." It's powered by "radio frequency energy" received by a small antenna inside. The gadget even has its own data storage. Forbes reports, it is designed to "improve vision."
Samsung is also one of the most recent companies to receive a patent for smart contact lenses. Their lenses are for "experimenting with new methods of delivering augmented reality interfaces and data."
Like any survival-centered human, I let technology pull me along to nirvana.
Why, I now have an iPhone 6. Though I confess that when I took one look at Google Glass, I was reluctant to take two looks at Google Glass.
I'm not sure, though, that I would ever allow electronics to be -- how may I put this? -- inserted inside me. Permanently, that is.
Yet this is what one Swedish woman has done to make her obviously difficult life less onerous. As Sweden's the Local reports, 25-year-old Emilott Lantz from Umeå has a vast existential problem. She really doesn't like carrying keys around.
So she found a completely forward-thinking solution: she had a rice grain-sized microchip inserted in her hand last week.
Some people's instincts will undoubtedly tell them that only those with a brain the size of a rice grain would do such a thing.
But Lantz, who works for IT consultancy firm Codemill, believes such people may have limited imaginations. She told the Local: "I don't feel as though this is the future. This is the present. To me, it's weird that we haven't seen this sooner."
In one sense, she is right. If there are people prepared to walk around in cyborgian glasses or talk to their watches, at least a microchip shows discretion.
And she's not the only one to let this particular tech get under her skin. She attended the Sime tech conference in Stockholm, where participants were offered the procedure for free. Around 50 members of a Swedish biohackers group called BioNyfiken had the same procedure done in the past month, according to the Local report.
The handchip technology works in a very simple manner: you place your hand against a scanner and you're either admitted or your hand begins to glow, then it burns until it falls off. (That sanction was my own futuristic fantasy.)
Lantz seems to feel a frisson at the idea that she will be able to walk through her office door without having to remember keys or a passcode. She told the Local: "I'm super stoked to have had this done. I can't wait for the property agent to get back to me about letting me into the system so that I can use my chip instead of my keys to get into the office."
I suspect she's quite a character.
“From the privacy perspective, we are of course pleased to see Google drop this product,” Marc Rotenberg, president of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, wrote in an email. “And it is a very big deal when Google backs down, particularly after its big push.”
He continued: “But it is also speaks to a larger issue in tech design about privacy. Eyeglass-mounted web display and phone for those who wanted it? Not really a problem. Surveillance and recording of those around the user? Yeah, that’s a problem.”
"The technology titan is putting brakes on an "explorer" program that let people interested in dabbling with Glass buy eyewear for $1,500 apiece.
"Glass was in its infancy, and you took those very first steps and taught us how to walk," the team said of its "explorer" clients in a post on the Google+ social network.
"Well, we still have some work to do, but now we're ready to put on our big kid shoes and learn how to run."
The last day to buy Glass as part of the Explorer program will be Monday and Google did not indicate when a general consumer version of the eyewear might debut.
"Google Glass hasn't truly been released as a product yet -- it's been in long-term beta for over two years," said Forrester analyst J.P. Gownder.
"This organizational move will help to clarify the go to market strategy for both consumer and for enterprise customers."
The Glass test, or beta, program was later expanded to Britain.
During the Explorer testing phase, developers are creating apps for Google Glass, which can range from getting weather reports to sharing videos to playing games.
Glass connects to the Internet using Wi-Fi hot spots or, more typically, by being wirelessly tethered to mobile phones. Pictures or video may be shared through the Google+ social network.
- Outgrown the lab -
"As we look to the road ahead, we realize that we've outgrown the lab and so we're officially graduating from Google X to be our own team," the Glass post said.
"We're thrilled to be moving even more from concept to reality."
Instead of being part of the Google X lab working on innovations such as self-driving cars, the Glass team will become a separate unit answering to Tony Fadell, co-founder of Nest.
Google bought the smart thermostat maker early last year in a multi-billion-dollar deal and brought the former Apple executive on board in the process.
Google has announced alliances with the frame giant behind Ray-Ban and other high-end brands to create and sell Glass eyewear in the United States.
A partnership with Luxottica was portrayed as Google's "biggest step yet into the emerging smart eyewear market."
Luxottica brands include Oakley, Alain Mikli, Ray-Ban and Vogue-Eyewear.
The first smart glasses by Luxottica for Google Glass will go on sale this year, the Italian eyewear group has forecast.
Google has been working to burnish the image of Glass, which has triggered concerns about privacy since the devices are capable of capturing pictures and video.
Forrester data shows that while 43 percent of consumers are interested in Glass, even more have worries about privacy problems caused by the eyewear.
"Google needs to construct a consumer image for the product, and deal with privacy concerns if they want it to be mass market," Gownder said.
Stop the Cyborgs commented on this piece by Morrison as follows:
stopthecyborgsJun 7, 2013
"The issue is not "wearable tech", "implantable tech" or even full on artificial bodies. Prosthetics like prosthetic limbs, cochlear implants, pacemakers and enhancements like bottlenose which deliver extra senses are just an extension of human use of tools and medicine. It could be argued that humans have always been cyborgs in some sense.
Unfortunately the current trajectory of development is: Überveillance and locked down systems tied into corporate controlled servers in the cloud. This means that the coming flood of devices will not be enhancements which you control or even stand alone systems which you can trust to do their job (even though you don't know what code they contain) but rather systems which report data to insurers, health care providers, employers, security services and which can be remotely controlled. The issue is therefore to what degree are you allow systems which make up your body to be externally controlled and therefore the degree to which you are prepared to give up fundamental freedom and agency in exchange for performance or connectivity.
So here are some future possibilities:
(1) Your life logging memories stored in the cloud are turned over by the 3rd party host in response to a legal request.
(2) Your employer asks you to have an implant or use a wearable device. You feel that you will not be promoted and they may find a reason to sack you if you refuse. The implant monitors your movements away from work.
(3) Your implant monitors compliance with your medical regime. Because you did not obey the doctors instructions to the letter you are classified as 'bad' and denied future medication or insurance coverage.
(4) Your extra special bionic eyes are remotely disabled turning you blind because you were at an anti government demonstration.
(5) Your legs are remotely disabled crippling you because of a payment dispute with the vendor."
"...What do you get when you mix Google Glass and EEG? That’s the question that the people at Ottawa-based Personal Neuro are on their way to answering. Given the buzz around how Google Glass can be used in healthcare, and our longstanding interest in brain-computer interface, we took the opportunity to speak with Personal Neuro’s CEO, Steve Denison, about his company and what they’re building."
Read more here by Hayley Tsukayama
"It's a Wednesday night, and I'm turning heads on the sidewalk. People are slowing halfway down the block as I approach. They're whispering about me as I walk through the room. Strangers are watching me, sometimes even stopping me on the street.
Why? Because I'm wearing Google Glass. And I hate it.
I shouldn't feel this way. I like new technology -- I've been a tech reporter at The Washington Post for more than three years. And I admire the vision of technology that Google promises Glass can offer: a device that lets you keep track of e-mails, texts and other messages in a seamless way -- all through a screen that's perched just over your right eye."
"...An explorer run program, #glasswelcomed and #glassnightout, give an aspiring photographer Google Glass. Music: Queen of California - John Mayer Lover's Carvings - Bibio"