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Wearable Computer With Lightweight HUD

ScuttleMonkey posted about 5 years ago | from the bring-back-weable-computing dept.

Hardware Hacking 150

zeazzz writes to mention that the folks over at UMPC have a very cool little writeup and pictorial of a user's latest wearable PC. With the surge in smart phone adoption it seems that enthusiasm for wearable computers has dropped off a bit, which is too bad. I certainly look forward to my augmented reality HUD instead of depending on my iPhone for everything. "Essentially he took the MyVu headset, removed one of the eye pieces, and mounted the other to his glasses to that he could see his surroundings and the UX's screen at the same time. The MyVu is attached to the UX through the A/V output port on the UX's port replicator dongle. With some additional addons he provided his UX with extra battery life via an external battery, and several input methods to communicate with the UX while the rest of the kit resides within the backpack."

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150 comments

Linux is gay (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28843361)

Linux is an OS for fags by fags

Re:Linux is gay (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28843743)

In other words, you think Linux FAH *snap* BU *snap* LOUS *snap* ?

Holding my breath (1)

Algorithmn (1601909) | about 5 years ago | (#28843371)

I'll believe it when I try it... Have seen similar promises before...

Re:Holding my breath (4, Interesting)

JWSmythe (446288) | about 5 years ago | (#28844785)

    I still haven't seen one that truly interests me.

    What I want to find is a setup that hooks up to both a long infrared (thermal imaging) and a short infrared (night vision) cameras, and overlays the images on reality through the glasses.

    Imagine being able to not only see in the dark, but see the heat signatures from things.

    My dad experimented with long infrared with the Army in the 60's and 70's. In some of the books that he had published, he demonstrated interesting things. The equipment was huge and static. He'd set up for a shot, take the picture, and then process it. At best, you were looking at hours to see the result. You could see a residual handprint on the wall, inefficiencies of insulation, etc.

    Imagine seeing a real time feed overlaid over the world. Amazingly useful things would be seeing hotspots in a house, caused by overloaded power circuits or inefficient insulation. You may be able to see where someone had walked before you (temp changes in the footprints), touched items such as door knobs. Fire rescue would be able to see through smoke, take extra precautions on very hot doors, and very likely save more lives. Police could search darkened areas with ease, and avoid hostile suspects jumping out from the shadows. In every day use, you could see long distances ahead when you are driving at night, and even spot when someone you're talking to is lying.

    It could open up a whole new world for us.

    The idea wouldn't be very hard. You should be able to run a pair of fiber optic cables from the edge of a pair of glasses down to the cameras. A very small PC should be able to overlay the images in real time, and then display them through something resembling the glasses shown. I've been watching for cameras that are small enough, and are affordable. I have yet to find the kind of gear that I could afford. :(

    An extra overlay of other data could be useful too, without causing an information overload. The time, ambient temperature, some GPS data (heading, speed, altitude). Things that you'd see on TV are a bit fanciful right now, such as threat detection. Determining a car is on an intercept path and may cause an impact is a bit beyond what a portable PC can do, but a human can determine it quickly by seeing it.

    For fire/rescue and law enforcement, I would see it being amazingly useful to transmit that data back to a central location. Where or what happened? It would all be available.

    I know a lot of people hate cops, but a lot of them are actually doing something very useful for our protection. We simply don't see it all the time, because most of our interaction is with traffic cops who may or may not be right, but they'll write the ticket anyways.

Re:Holding my breath (1)

MrSteve007 (1000823) | about 5 years ago | (#28845223)

Seems like it wouldn't be difficult to tie that to the output of the Fluke Ti25 - that thermal imager already can internally blend standard visual wavelengths to IR. It would be a bit bigger than I'd want, and expensive, but the tech seems to be already out there to do something similar to what you're suggesting. I've found having a thermal imager is very, very useful to have around - I could only imagine how nice it'd be to have a agumented reality HUD with one integrated. Great idea!

Here's a review I recently wrote up about my experiences with the Fluke IR cam: http://geekpi.com/?p=504 [geekpi.com]

Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 5 years ago | (#28843409)

I'd like to have one implanted in the eye like in the Doctorow book, kind of like IOLs are implanted for cataract surgery. I wonder how close we are to developing that?

I mean, I wore glasses from 1958 until 2002 when I got contacts, and since I had surgery in 2006 I don't even need contacts. Glasses suck. Contacts are better, but a multifocal IOL beats even them.

Re:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (2, Interesting)

Flea of Pain (1577213) | about 5 years ago | (#28843617)

And I would like to see someone hack one. LOL. Can you imagine walking down the street and seeing some guy suddenly freak out because his wearable computer started blaring music and showing totse images?

Re:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (1)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | about 5 years ago | (#28844751)

showing totse images

Little kids getting their diapers changed?

Re:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (4, Interesting)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 5 years ago | (#28843723)

I think contact lenses make a lot more sense. Then you could remove them. They'd be a lot easier to upgrade as well. I don't see any reason they couldn't have their circuitry embedded in them off near the edge, and have power beamed in.

Contact lenses might make a lot of sense as targets for a vision system like the one described in Snow Crash. Perhaps if you integrated some MEMS components into them they could contain a scanning mirror set, even, and perform a sort of DLP-esque function.

If I'm getting an eye implant, I want a lot more than a HUD. I expect telescopic vision via electrowetting lenses.

Re:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28843845)

That won't work...try to focus on your contact lens...or more likely, some bit of dirt or smudge on it. You can't; there needs to be a bit of distance between the lens and the thing you're trying to optically perceive.

Re:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (1)

hobbit (5915) | about 5 years ago | (#28844163)

There only needs to be distance because your eye's lens has a minimum focal length. As long as you can arrange for the light to enter the lens *as if* it comes from some distance away, it doesn't actually need to do so. That's easier said than done, mind you.

Re:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (1)

blackraven14250 (902843) | about 5 years ago | (#28844541)

It may cause headaches unless the displayed things seem to be pretty far.

Re:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (1)

RabidMoose (746680) | about 5 years ago | (#28844571)

I see you've been watching Torchwood.

Re:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (1)

Cyberax (705495) | about 5 years ago | (#28844465)

Glasses rule!

They protect eyes and with photochromic lenses you won't need separate sunglasses.

Also, you can get some time to think by taking off glasses and slowly wiping them, when you're asked a question.

Re:Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28845349)

Just remember that in a few years you are going to need contacts or glasses again because you will need bifocals.

So this is like the mobile phone handsets of 1999 (1)

ickleberry (864871) | about 5 years ago | (#28843421)

Except this time you'll look even more stupid wearing it

Re:So this is like the mobile phone handsets of 19 (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 5 years ago | (#28844687)

but nobody can tell you like goatze...

Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (4, Insightful)

timeOday (582209) | about 5 years ago | (#28843443)

With the surge in smart phone adoption it seems that enthusiasm for wearable computers has dropped off a bit, which is too bad.

OK, the bluetooth headset seems to be winning out over the HUD as the main UI device. Other than that, how is a smartphone not a wearable computer?

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

Freetardo Jones (1574733) | about 5 years ago | (#28843471)

Because I don't wear my phone?

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (2, Funny)

Smivs (1197859) | about 5 years ago | (#28843759)

Because I don't wear my phone?

This guy does! [zdnet.com]

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | about 5 years ago | (#28843839)

He's not wearing this computer either - it's in the backpack, according to TFA.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (4, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 5 years ago | (#28843511)

Smartphones are not really wearable computers for two reasons. First, they don't really count because, in general, you have to hold them during use, rather than actually wearing them. Second, they are not "wearable computers" in the sense that people with pacemakers or cochlear implants aren't "cyborgs": That is, they actually are; but they aren't what people imagine when they say so, so we don't really consider them to be.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | about 5 years ago | (#28843861)

He has a computer in his backpack and wears a headset. Compare with someone with a phone in their pocket, and wearing a bluetooth headset. I don't think even of them count as wearable computers. Yes, he's wearing a headset, and people talk about wearing bluetooth headsets with their phones too.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | about 5 years ago | (#28843893)

You just made a pacemakers sound cool. Too bad I have a good heart. Maybe I could get a pacemaker put in in Mexico so I could be a Cyborg?

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (2, Insightful)

mustafap (452510) | about 5 years ago | (#28843965)

>You just made a pacemakers sound cool. Too bad I have a good heart. Maybe I could get a pacemaker put in in Mexico so I could be a Cyborg?

If you work in IT, don't worry, just be patient. You'll be needing one in 10 - 20 years time.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28844195)

Don't forget to overclock your pacemaker. Great for that competitive edge in FPS games.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

Qubit (100461) | about 5 years ago | (#28844553)

in the sense that people with pacemakers or cochlear implants aren't "cyborgs"

One of my friends has a pacemaker and I totally think that she's a cyborg. She doesn't deny it -- sometimes she even gets this look in her eye, you know, one of those "one day we're going to rise up and kill all of you meat-only people" looks.

It's hard to draw the line between basic humans and cyborgs, but I'd say that, at the very least, if you are reliant on some kind of electronic tech bound to or inside your body to survive (she'd die if she didn't have the pacemaker), then you're a cyborg.

On the down side, she isn't allowed to play with hard drive magnets. And she told me that she didn't think it was a good idea to try to overclock her pacemaker.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28843621)

Here's a question - why? How many people die crashing trains while texting, surfing ringtones while merging, getting hit by busses jamming to an ipod?
Do we really need another interface for distraction? This sounds like the kind of thing you would have with you ALL THE TIME... and that's dangerous.

"I got a pop up and fell into an open manhole."

"I was mapquesting and didn't see the la brea tar pits on the map, it's called something else"

"I got a bsod and plowed my el camino into an analog cop car. bogus!"

Please, when you design distracting new toys... think of the stupid, stupid children, and their parents, also stupid. This is going to get people killed.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | about 5 years ago | (#28843647)

I appreciate your point, but would like to clarify something - it's not just "stupid children" and "stupid parents" that get into accidents because of distracting new toys. I'm fairly certain that "very smart" people also get distracted.

Unless you simply want to say that everyone that allows themselves to be distracted by "new toys" while driving is stupid. I could go along with that. It's more of a conscious decision sort of stupidity than a ignorance or intellectual issue. Very, very smart and intellectual people can be extremely stupid.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (2, Insightful)

PitaBred (632671) | about 5 years ago | (#28844225)

Stupidity is a mindset, not something that can be measured with an IQ test ;)

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | about 5 years ago | (#28844635)

    So, what you're trying to say is, even smart people do stupid things.

    "Why were you looking at your phone, instead of paying attention to your driving?"

    The smart thing is to pay attention to driving, which would make opposite (stupid) thing to not be paying attention.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (3, Insightful)

jollyreaper (513215) | about 5 years ago | (#28843881)

OK, the bluetooth headset seems to be winning out over the HUD as the main UI device. Other than that, how is a smartphone not a wearable computer?

Wearable computers are supposed to make you look like a clumsy ass when using them. Smart phones typically don't unless you use a bluetooth headset.

Honestly, I think the conceit is a holdover of older technology where you ended up looking borgified with all the hardware you had strapped to your body. You used to have to wear heavy-duty batteries strapped to your waist, a funky keyboard strapped to your arm, doofy goggles, and the computer itself was on your back. Heady stuff for people who were used to computers having to be plugged into walls but this was even before laptops became practical, when luggables were still the latest and hottest shit.

The iPhone is pretty much representing the ideal of the Tricorder or the PADD from Star Trek. Pretty screen, touch interface, wireless everything, sound and video, cool stuff! The only way it could get any better is if you didn't even need to hold anything in your hands (or pay out the ass for the data plan). That'd be an ear piece that tucks away invisibly in your ear like a hearing aid, bone induction microphone imbedded inside the earpiece, and a display that either sits on contact lenses in your eyes or would be built into your glasses and either projects information onto the glass or shoots it onto your retina with low-powered lasers. Where would the computer be? Maybe still clipped to your hip like an iphone feeding data via wireless, or maybe it'll be small enough to be built into the hearing aid or contact lenses.

What's the ultimate UI goal? Terminator vision. Integrated lowlight vision, thermal vision, object tagging like a fighter plane's HUD, etc. The early concepts were mocked up for military maintenance crews, you could watch a video showing you what you're supposed to do as you do it.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (2, Insightful)

thedonger (1317951) | about 5 years ago | (#28844005)

Yes, what you said, and, for the love of Christ, a way to "talk" without having a one-sided conversation with the freaking air. I hate that. Fifteen years ago you would have been sent to the loony bin for talking to voices in your head. Now, we assume one half of a bluetooth-enabled conversation. Seriously, how many completely, balls-out fucking crazy people are walking the streets who we assume are on the phone?

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

hobbit (5915) | about 5 years ago | (#28844247)

What's the ultimate UI goal? Terminator vision.

Which was pretty inexplicable in the context of the Terminator. The visual processing system derived information about the environment, then integrated it as text into the signal from which it was derived such that it had to be processed a second time to be acted upon?

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

wall0159 (881759) | about 5 years ago | (#28843967)

Exactly. A video interface just isn't (in general) a sensible UI when you are walking around and interacting with the world. I think an audio user interface is what is needed -- but there's little consumer interest at the moment.

Re:Smartphones aren't wearable computers? (1)

vertinox (846076) | about 5 years ago | (#28844501)

Exactly. A video interface just isn't (in general) a sensible UI when you are walking around and interacting with the world. I think an audio user interface is what is needed -- but there's little consumer interest at the moment.

There seems to be a lot of interest in this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cH6r2tIaRXU [youtube.com]

Now if they could make it so you could wear bluetooth glasses that you can see through that don't make you look like a dork plenty of people would buy it.

You can read more about augmented reality on the iphone here:

http://www.tuaw.com/2009/07/25/augmented-reality-apps-on-hold-until-3-1/ [tuaw.com]

Inertia (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about 5 years ago | (#28843451)

Wonder how far your body will end if you are wearing one of those computers on the street and get hit by this slashdot effect.

Re:Inertia (1)

funwithBSD (245349) | about 5 years ago | (#28843701)

"Apply the Confetti Rule."

Resolution (3, Informative)

chill (34294) | about 5 years ago | (#28843479)

640x480

While this may be fine for watching video without getting neck strain from being hunched over, it makes computing life a pain.

Until one of these things can give me a full 1024x768 or better display, it'll always be a niche toy for computing.

Re:Resolution (1)

hesiod (111176) | about 5 years ago | (#28843515)

You echoed my own thoughts exactly.

Re:Resolution (1)

Freetardo Jones (1574733) | about 5 years ago | (#28843597)

Until one of these things can give me a full 1024x768 or better display

Only XGA? What is this? 1990?

Re:Resolution (2, Informative)

chill (34294) | about 5 years ago | (#28843873)

No, reality.

I've spent a lot of time as an admin for some fairly large companies. One thing I noticed is that a lot of people who aren't into CAD, programming or graphics design, don't like resolutions above 1024x768. I've lost count of the times I've set shiny new LCD monitors to their spec res like 1280x1024 only to have people change the res back down. The fonts are too small. If you change the font sizes, programs start to look weird, so they change the res.

Hell, look at the number of web page templates that are hard set for 1024x768. Lots of white space on the margins.

If you're a web admin, set up a test and check your logs. Record the screen and window res of people hitting your pages and you'll be shocked to see the bulk are usually 1024x768.

It is sad, but it is the way it is.

Re:Resolution (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | about 5 years ago | (#28843921)

Why is it sad?

People are slugs (1)

itomato (91092) | about 5 years ago | (#28844361)

Because people are content with the status quo, same as always, and just as sad.

Re:People are slugs (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | about 5 years ago | (#28844709)

But if the status qou provides a better service, it does not seem sad anymore. Higher rez = small text = harder to read. Why is not wanting harder to read text sad?

Re:People are slugs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28845539)

Higher rez = same size text with more pixels = easier to read. I wouldn't say it's sad, but choosing harder to read text is a bit silly.

I've been using 120 DPI (rather than the default 96) on Windows since 1993 and I've never had trouble with applications misbehaving.

Re:Resolution (1)

chill (34294) | about 5 years ago | (#28844745)

Because all the resolution and associated benefits go to waste because there is no graceful way for the fonts to be bigger, but not fsck-up the interface. Or, if there is, it takes so much effort most people won't do it.

Re:Resolution (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | about 5 years ago | (#28843883)

Get off my lawn! I remember when 640x480 was a luxury...

For mobile devices, I don't see it's bad, unless you plan on lugging a massive screen around with you? It's only a pain because so many stupid websites/applications/operating systems assume you're running at least 1024x768, and they've yet to catch up with the wide availability of Internet phones and netbooks.

Re:Resolution (1)

ODiV (51631) | about 5 years ago | (#28843899)

The iPhone resolution is half that, and it's doing fairly well, last time I checked.

I think you need to redefine what you think of when you see the word "computer".

Re:Resolution (1, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#28844667)

Realize that you're dealing with a display that is inches from your eye instead of half a foot to a foot. 640x480 on less than 3" is heaps more resolution than what you get with a current 22" 4000something by 3000something monitor.

Re:Resolution (1)

chill (34294) | about 5 years ago | (#28844791)

Mmmmm...not really. 640x480 still amounts to a small amount of real estate. It works on a 5" diagonal display, but I'm not sure how well it'll translate to the 45" display image of an HMD.

Still, there is a lot of potential. It wasn't until recently that we had a decent COMPUTING platform with a screen that size. The iPhone and other smart phones/PDAs have introduced something that could be very interesting. Prior to their arrival nothing was really that size except for video. Now...

It just means *designing* a display for that size as opposed to assuming everyone has a 17"+ huge display with almost infinite real estate.

Re:Resolution (1)

Hatta (162192) | about 5 years ago | (#28845055)

All you really need is 80x24.

Re:Resolution (1)

Stu1706 (1392693) | about 5 years ago | (#28845587)

This is a good enough resolution to watch porn on. I would call it iPorn, but I am sure I would get sued.

Neat (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28843509)

Now we just have to combine the wearable computer with the bug/mammal powering system so you can walk down the street snatching up stray cats or pigeons and throw them in your portable vat of acid so you never have to plug in.

No demand (0, Flamebait)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about 5 years ago | (#28843521)

This is just pointless narcissism. There's no demand for this sort of thing currently. Instead of furiously wanking while trying to stand out from the crowd by wearing highly visible equipment, these guys should be finding a niche where mobile computing makes sense. It's about as relevant as top-secret super plans for that great treehouse hideout I'm going to build. Sure, it's fun to talk about, but is it stuff that matters?

Re:No demand (2, Funny)

Flea of Pain (1577213) | about 5 years ago | (#28843589)

As far as demand goes...I demand to own one of these...I mean really, the concept is just awesome, I can level up characters in all my favourite games while driving to work! Heck, I could play GTA while driving to work (as long as I don't mix up which eye is the game). What could possibly go wrong?

Re:No demand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28843787)

What are you ranting about? You're just plain wrong... with an attitude like that how does one get anything done?

Re:No demand (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about 5 years ago | (#28843835)

No, it's called "a difference of opinion." It's absolutely flabbergasting how intolerant people are of diverse opinions these days. How about, "I disagree with you, and here's why" instead of mere assertions followed by insulting invective?

Re:No demand (1)

Onymous Coward (97719) | about 5 years ago | (#28843995)

... instead of mere assertions followed by insulting invective?

Yeah, like "This is just pointless narcissism ... furiously wanking ..."

Re:No demand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28844107)

I appreciate a difference of opinion and i apologize for being vague. How can one judge the 'demand' for an object that hasn't been invented? Think about the sheer volume of items you use everyday that never had a 'demand' before invented.

While i agree inventing with service in mind is crucial; innovation and creativity can both be adversely affected by 'purpose'! Not all items require marketability to make a positive impact on quality of life. :)

Re:No demand (1)

charlieo88 (658362) | about 5 years ago | (#28844339)

Quick, somebody mod this +5 unintentionally ironic for schooling some one for being insulting when replying to his insulting comment.

Re:No demand (2, Funny)

MaskedSlacker (911878) | about 5 years ago | (#28844533)

Where's the +1 Hilarious Hypocrisy mod when you need it?

Re:No demand (1)

Phurge (1112105) | about 5 years ago | (#28844889)

or -5 Pwned

Re:No demand (4, Insightful)

paeanblack (191171) | about 5 years ago | (#28844117)

Instead of furiously wanking while trying to stand out from the crowd by wearing highly visible equipment, these guys should be finding a niche where mobile computing makes sense.

-Anybody working in a factory or a warehouse, where nobody cares how you look.
-Field service techs that need access to a ton of reference data.
-Anybody that climbs up a telephone pole or down a manhole.
-Anybody who needs use of both hands and access to information simultaneously to better do their jobs.

It's not exactly a "niche" market. Designing a wearable eyescreen that doesn't suck will be worth a ton of money.

Re:No demand (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about 5 years ago | (#28844883)

It'll certainly start off as a niche. That's good, niches are usually quite profitable. Your first three cases, I'd say an eyepiece would be too expensive for the work they do. The fourth, however, is spot on and figuring out where that case makes sense is the key to the future of wearable computers.

What's NOT the future of wearable computers is some dorks putting on an eyepiece in a bid to make everyone look at them. Narcissism is bad, mmmkay?

Re:No demand (1)

vertinox (846076) | about 5 years ago | (#28844349)

This is just pointless narcissism. There's no demand for this sort of thing currently.

I dunno. I could really use a wearable hud for my iPhone.

Sometimes I always feel rather awkward having people read my conversations especially taken out of context.

Transparent screen, augmented reality (1)

nine-times (778537) | about 5 years ago | (#28843545)

It seems to me like the real killer app for a HUD is when you can have augmented reality [youtube.com] built into your normal glasses. It would normally require a transparent screen, though, or a virtually transparent screen (by mounting a camera on the HUD which shows you what is in the field of vision being blocked by the display.

Of course, there's some danger there, too. No doubt some dumbass would use that sort of thing while driving, only to have the "augmented reality" block his vision of real reality, thereby causing an accident.

Re:Transparent screen, augmented reality (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28843775)

Of course if it's anything like Dennou Coil (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dennou_Coil) we'll have kids shooting code at each other to mess with each other's files in a free for all fight.

And bugs in the code will look like ghostly black monsters.

Still, pranking people will be a hell of a lot more fun when you can confuse them by altering their AR. Sure they can just take off their...viewscreens? But once it's incredibly mainstream, people will forget all about that option.

Re:Transparent screen, augmented reality (1)

zero0ne (1309517) | about 5 years ago | (#28844321)

Or you know, it could make driving that much safer.

When you have a computer powerful enough to push out real time augmented reality, why not have it start monitoring your surroundings as well?

Instead of hitting the little kid with the bouncy ball as he walks across the street to get it, your HUD could immediately identify the kid and warn you in advance.

How about watching a sports game? Feel like finding out what your favorite players stats are? say the voice command (or hand gesture), and now there is a floating, semi transparent window above your player with all his real time stats. He just ran 40 yards for a TD? as he's running this window follows him as well as keeps his total yards counter ticking as he does it.

I just hope this tech matures within my lifetime.

 

Re:Transparent screen, augmented reality (1)

zero0ne (1309517) | about 5 years ago | (#28844413)

I meant to add:

Imagine how much more effective a program like adblock plus would be!

no more Huge faces on the side of the bus driving by, instead it's a nice view of the beach; hell the image could actually be a video coming from a live feed.

It's a decent hack, but the HUD is problematic (3, Insightful)

MartinSchou (1360093) | about 5 years ago | (#28843549)

At least for what I have in mind for a personal project. I haven't been able to find a decent optical see-through HMD that is affordable for regular people.

Liteye [liteye.com] makes a system for the military, but this seems like a rather limited system.

I wouldn't mind seeing an OLED system in this form factor [3m.com] . They're quite sturdy, allowing you to mount decent loads onto it, the bridge and resting pads are quite big making them rather comfortable even with a big load on them. The stems are wide allowing big mounting points for stuff like camera(s) and wires. Connect it to something like an nVidia Tegra [youtube.com] and you'd have an optical see through display, head mounted cameras and a small computer that can handle augmented reality with apparent ease.

But I suspect I'd be better off hoping to see Megan Fox splayed across my bed.

Re:It's a decent hack, but the HUD is problematic (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | about 5 years ago | (#28844083)

Well, my friend... I have planned such a device for a loong time now. Technically, it's completely possible.
Give me an investor, and I'll sell you such a thing in some years.

Until now, their excuses mostly are the circular reasoning fallacy, that nobody would use or buy it because there are no applications or anything for it. (And there are no applications, because no device for it exists, of course.) So it's "too risky", with "no chance" to make a profit from it.
Stupid, stupid, stupid!
But imagine such stupid people thinking that they can tell you what to do because they pay for it, and suddenly the alternative doesn't look so bad anymore. :/

Re:It's a decent hack, but the HUD is problematic (2, Informative)

MartinSchou (1360093) | about 5 years ago | (#28844333)

Of course it's feasible.

Samsung presented a transparent OLED display [youtube.com] at CES 2009, another example from 2008 [youtube.com] . Sony presented a flexible OLED display [youtube.com] in 2007, making a display following the glasses curvature easily doable.

And I picked the nVidia Tegra as the computer, as that's already been proven to be plenty capable of doing AR and HD playback.

You don't even need to mount batteries in the glasses. You can run power and data cables inside a tether for the glasses, similar to the thingie for the iPod with cables for the head phones. All you need then is input and bluetooth works well enough for mice. You could use a virtual keyboard, but I suspect that's suck horribly.

Re:It's a decent hack, but the HUD is problematic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28844573)

The solution to the keyboard is a chording keyboard. In particular, one that is not held or strapped to your hand, but rather you put on rings with accelerometers, so you only need a surface to tap against (your own leg will do). It still needs wires running over your arm, but it's not too annoying.

Re:It's a decent hack, but the HUD is problematic (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28845461)

The display isn't the problem. It's the optics. You can't just put a display right next to your eye without a collimator to place it at a distant focus, or it will just be a blur and will create major eye strain.

Re:It's a decent hack, but the HUD is problematic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28844137)

megan fox isn't even all that hot

you fail

Re:It's a decent hack, but the HUD is problematic (1)

crabboy.com (771982) | about 5 years ago | (#28844569)

But I suspect I'd be better off hoping to see Megan Fox splayed across my bed.

That depends on how good her security is and how dedicated you are...

KIDDING!!!

Gargoyle? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28843577)

'bout time. ::records EVERYTHING::

I was just thinking about this - buy! buy! sell! (1)

Locutus (9039) | about 5 years ago | (#28843601)

there used to be a commercial on the boob tube in the 90s where a guy was in the middle of some courtyard and he was jumping up and down yelling buy! buy! sell! into his headset with an eyepiece screen and a small computer on his belt. I was just reading some news on Motorola doing Android phones and it made me wonder why we are not seeing devices like what that commercial showed. When an ARM chip and do 720P HD video in just a few watts, one would think that driving a tiny transparent display screen and doing some voice recognition would be within reason for a belt hung system. I don't know if the Snapdragon chips have DSP capabilities but the TI Omap processors have had DSP in them for years. IIRC, voice recognition fits the task of a DSP design quite well.

Now how much are those little LCD display screens?

LoB

Re:I was just thinking about this - buy! buy! sell (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#28844753)

I was reminded of that same commercial. I think I saw it maybe 2 or 3 times, never to hear of it again. Either it was a real load of vaporware or it contained one of the best HMDs I've ever seen, tacked/glued to glasses, along the bottom edge, with the rim doubling as the cable canal. One of the gags of the commercial was that you simply did not see that the person was wearing a wearable, thus seemingly yelling "buy!" and "sell!" until you saw that he is watching a ticker on the bottom of his glasses.

How complicated could it be to develop a display like this?

Re:I was just thinking about this - buy! buy! sell (1)

TW Burger (646637) | about 5 years ago | (#28845457)

There have been several in eye (it's not a HUD, that's a projected screen) displays available through the years. They all sucked and disappeared. The military targeting versions seem to be pretty good though.

Then the terrible reality sinks in... (2, Funny)

WoRLoKKeD (1142351) | about 5 years ago | (#28843661)

"Oh, my God, you didn't turn into a gargoyle, did you?"

Re:Then the terrible reality sinks in... (1)

NigelTheFrog (1292406) | about 5 years ago | (#28843797)

thank you obligatory snow crash reference man, you beat me to it.

Re:Then the terrible reality sinks in... (1)

WoRLoKKeD (1142351) | about 5 years ago | (#28843927)

Just doin' what I can to save others effort.

Re:Then the terrible reality sinks in... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28844185)

What's amazing is that we didn't get a
"His nerd power level is over 9000!"

What a huge leap in male contraception devices! (4, Funny)

Phizzle (1109923) | about 5 years ago | (#28843691)

Condoms got NOTHING on this when it comes to preventing reproduction!

Re:What a huge leap in male contraception devices! (1)

TW Burger (646637) | about 5 years ago | (#28845417)

He he, good one. I wish I thought of that.

Still waiting for my bicycle HUD. (2, Insightful)

MarkvW (1037596) | about 5 years ago | (#28843709)

When my bicycle HUD displays rear-views and navigational data I'll be all set.

/. effect has struck again (1)

meist3r (1061628) | about 5 years ago | (#28843869)

And the "OMG gargoyle" comments probably didn't help either ...

Been done (2, Informative)

skrimp (790524) | about 5 years ago | (#28843889)

Xybernaut did this back in the 90s with a monocle hud, voice recognition, and a wearable cpu. It was underpowered, but saw some demand in the manufacturing and maintenance fields. I always thought it was a good idea and hoped it would go mainstream. Sony even threatened to make a 'ComputeMan' with the tech. I would have to agree that there's not enough demand and or it's too geeky.

Hrmm. (1)

Anachragnome (1008495) | about 5 years ago | (#28843905)

I wonder. (Sometimes too much.)

Has anyone ever been accused/found guilty of using an article post on /. as a means to perpetrate a DDoS attack on a website?

A website being "Slashdotted" may not always be a good thing...especially if you were not wanting/expecting the sudden influx of viewers.

Just curious...

Re:Hrmm. (2, Funny)

religious freak (1005821) | about 5 years ago | (#28844429)

Yeah, we got this dude good. Looks like the server didn't just slow to a crawl, it's been pushed completely offline. Instead of an endless wait, I'm getting an instant connection refused message.

Re:Hrmm. (1)

Anachragnome (1008495) | about 5 years ago | (#28844843)

Same here.

That is precisely why I asked. Seems an efficient way to do it. Post ONE article (real, or NOT) and let Slashdot do the rest.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not comparing Slashdot readers to Zombie Machines, but it is certainly an amusing thought.

In related news, Slashdot launches a (1)

Phizzle (1109923) | about 5 years ago | (#28844009)

Distributed Denial-Of-Service attack on a bandwidth strapped MyVu enthusiast website

You're doing it wrong! (1)

Shads (4567) | about 5 years ago | (#28844023)

The iPhone or a smart phone of some sort is just the beginning of a wearable pc, it's a component in the mess. Bluetooth and other wireless technologies need to further develop and better batteries. No component except the central unit should be bigger than a bluetooth headset. Until they get that far its never going to catch on.

We have the technology. We have the capability to build the world's first reasonable wearable computer.

Self Induced Cataracts (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | about 5 years ago | (#28844299)

The thought of signs and arrows on my glasses or beamed directly into my retina doesn't sound like an improvement to me. It sounds more like purposefully giving myself a cataracts. Augmenting the way I see the world by improving my mind would be a much better thing.

Wearable computers aren't anything new (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28844453)

I used to wear my Virtual Boy... I have cancer now.

Needs some work (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28844737)

It really should have power sensing capabilities...

"Vegeta, what does the scouter say about his power level?"
"It's over NINE THOUSAAAAAAAND!"

I don't get it (1)

roc97007 (608802) | about 5 years ago | (#28845825)

I don't get it. All those modules and wires and heads-up display and stuff, so I can see the Windows desktop wherever I go? This is a good thing how?

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