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LeVar Burton On Google Glass

samzenpus posted about 9 months ago | from the what-does-the-Geordi-say dept.

Google 211

An anonymous reader writes "While he acknowledged that technology needs to keep going forward, LeVar Burton didn't seem comfortable with the idea of using Google Glass. '"It disturbed me. I was skeptical... [and] I'm a person that's very open to technology." That's the reaction LeVar Burton, the man best known from Reading Rainbow and Star Trek: The Next Generation, first had when encountering Google Glass backstage at Engadget Expand. Burton, a self-described edutainment pioneer, acknowledges the disruptive power new technologies can have on media and culture — after all, he did help transform television into a worthy educational tool/babysitter with his PBS program. But even with that storied success, and his company's current inroads into digital with an iPad Reading Rainbow application, Burton still had a "knee-jerk" response when confronted with Glass. Although his celebrity status and the resulting paranoia could have something to do with it.'"

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211 comments

LeVar Burton On Google GRASS (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386347)

yo man dat aint me bawng man wtf

READING RAINBOW (0)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | about 9 months ago | (#45386371)

LeVar Burton is GOD!

Pakistan is spying on my cats!

Re:READING RAINBOW (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386453)

Levar Burton is a fucking nigger. He needs lynching.

Re:READING RAINBOW (1)

Pharoah_69 (2866937) | about 9 months ago | (#45387119)

that was totally uncalled for. You can disagree with him as much as you like but name calling such things is erroneous.

Re:READING RAINBOW (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387329)

Shut the fuck up, bitch.

Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + Dog (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386411)

listens? Why not ask Roger Moore? How about the closet guy, the ex-Mr Nocole Kidman? The dude is an actor. And from the last Sci-Fi, Syfi?, movie of the day, not a very good one.

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (3, Informative)

hawguy (1600213) | about 9 months ago | (#45386479)

listens? Why not ask Roger Moore? How about the closet guy, the ex-Mr Nocole Kidman? The dude is an actor. And from the last Sci-Fi, Syfi?, movie of the day, not a very good one.

Because he spent 10 seasons of TNG wearing a more advanced (and less stylish) Google Glass.

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386503)

There is nothing less stylish than Google Glass.

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (3, Funny)

dottrap (1897528) | about 9 months ago | (#45386619)

Brown Zune?

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387041)

Naw, you can usually pass that off as just carrying around a turd in your hand, which is a few steps up in stylishness.

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (1)

binarylarry (1338699) | about 9 months ago | (#45388181)

Are you just saying that because you don't have one or perhaps Microsoft shill?

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (2, Informative)

dottrap (1897528) | about 9 months ago | (#45386595)

Because he spent 10 seasons of TNG wearing a more advanced (and less stylish) Google Glass.

Dude, this is Slashdot. You're going to get crucified for that imprecision.

7 seasons of TNG + 4 movies.
Generally accepted episode count: 178

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (2)

_KiTA_ (241027) | about 9 months ago | (#45387163)

Because he spent 10 seasons of TNG wearing a more advanced (and less stylish) Google Glass.

Dude, this is Slashdot. You're going to get crucified for that imprecision.

7 seasons of TNG + 4 movies.
Generally accepted episode count: 178

Real fans get the precision down to the number of lines of dialogue, percentage of total screentime, or number of minutes (out to two decimal places), you insensitive clod!

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (2)

Hamsterdan (815291) | about 9 months ago | (#45386633)

Damn... I missed 3 seasons

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (2)

0123456 (636235) | about 9 months ago | (#45386667)

Damn... I missed 3 seasons

They were the best 3, too.

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386861)

Because he spent 10 seasons of TNG wearing a more advanced (and less stylish) Google Glass.

Sorry to be pedantic, but the Visor worn by Burton's Next Gen character was not even remotely similar to Google Glass. Google Glass doesn't assist a sight disability, it doesn't help you see. The Visor didn't record anything, and except for an episode where it was compromised by Ferengi or Romulans or something, it didn't transmit anything and had no heads up display. The Visor was basically exactly like a pair of corrective lenses but with overkill, allowing the user to see a bit further in both directions of the visible spectrum, and gave the user wider field of view. Google Glass is effectively a damn good reason for paranoia, in that it has forward facing cameras and is "web aware," along with a heads up display interface.

Re: Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45388157)

> Sorry to be pedantic, but the Visor worn by Burton's Next Gen character was not even remotely similar to Google Glass.

Though this doesn't take away from the fact that "hey that celeb's character wore an eye visor thing on a tv show, let's get his opinion on people wearing eye visor things in real life."

As if his experience would translate or something.

Re:Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (1)

Dr Max (1696200) | about 9 months ago | (#45386911)

Google glass has pretty terrible style. Infact i would prefer to wear the star trek ones than google's wire frame piece of shit. The design team should be sacked or put on youtube comment censorship duty. The ergonomics, the look, and the screen all crap.

Re: Kunta Kinta Speaks His Thougts and the World + (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387103)

because he spent many years being paid very well to wear a spray painted banana clip on his face and pretend that it was some sort of device similar to what google glass actually is

FTFY

Google Glarses? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386431)

Fsck off, Google, you NSA collaborator

OK let's get something straight here - (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386465)

... Burton still had a "knee-jerk" response when confronted with Glass. Although his celebrity status and the resulting paranoia could have something to do with it.'"

When you have employers looking at Facebook and college admissions people looking at Tweets [nytimes.com] , um yeah, the average guy needs to be paranoid. You better be paranoid!

And it's not just self published stuff. How many of you have had friends and family post pictures of YOU without asking?

*raises hand*

It happened to a friend of mine. She wasn't drinking. The waitress was asking us to pass drinks down the table. her friend just happened to snap a photo when she had a drink in each hand - and then she posted the photo on FB.

And with editiing?

Good grief, I can video anyone and with some creative editing, make them look horrible.

And when you are say, trying to get a job, the person who's looking you up isn't going to contact you and ask what the story is! Fuck no! They are going to draw their own conclusions.

People will take any little bit of information about someone and turn it into a complete profile about someone.

It happens here all the time - people draw conclusions about others just from a single post.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386655)

her friend just happened to snap a photo when she had a drink in each hand - and then she posted the photo on FB.

Some friend.

Re: OK let's get something straight here - (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387141)

It could have been worse. She could have posted a photoshopped version with male genitals in each hand.

In comparison to the sociopathic person that I completely fabricated to create a straw man argument this woman is indeed a good friend.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386789)

maybe if asshats stopped doing business with places that use social media as an indicator of how they'd be as a worker/student, we'd not be in this mess. all you complacent fucks are to blame.
when they marginalized the random pot smoker, i didn't care because my drugs of choice were legal.
when they marginalized people based on their social media pages...

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (4, Insightful)

Bogtha (906264) | about 9 months ago | (#45386803)

There's lots of problems with Facebook, but let's not pretend you're completely helpless about other people's photos of you.

If you're tagged in a photo, you can exercise your privacy controls over it. If you aren't tagged in the photo, a prospective employer isn't going to see it when they look at your profile.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386891)

If you aren't tagged in the photo, a prospective employer isn't going to see it when they look at your profile.

And when they start looking at your friends?

Yeah, that's right they'll see you even you aren't tagged. They do look at your "friends". Also, all the privacy settings on FB are horseshit - just ask the advertisers.

Anyway, that's all beside the point - the point is with all these images and other recordings being blasted all over the place, your privacy is being violated and people always come to the worst conclusions.

Geeze! You got all pedentic and missed the point.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (2, Informative)

Rude Turnip (49495) | about 9 months ago | (#45386945)

"If you're tagged in a photo, you can exercise your privacy controls over it."

I take exception to this. Why should I ever have to interact with Facebook in the first place? It is entirely possible to tag someone's name into a photo that does not have a Facebook account.

My heart is warmed by the fact that kids are now moving away from Facebook and going back to private messaging like iMessage, Whatsapp, etc., to get away from compromising situations.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (3, Informative)

crossmr (957846) | about 9 months ago | (#45387465)

But if you tag someone in a photo who doesn't have a profile, it won't matter. It doesn't link to anything.

It's a shame you're on a tech site but so ignorant of the technology that you're speaking out against. The way HR sees photos of your on facebook is because they find your profile and you have privacy set to public, and photos of you that friends tagged, which you approved are also sitting there publicly on your wall.

They don't find them via your friends profiles. They find them because of the connection to your profile.
So if you aren't on facebook, there is no profile for them to connect to, and they won't be showing up in any searches.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#45387975)

The way HR sees photos of your on facebook is because they find your profile and you have privacy set to public, and photos of you that friends tagged, which you approved are also sitting there publicly on your wall.

They don't find them via your friends profiles. They find them because of the connection to your profile.

Your friends' profiles are connected to your profile. Who's ignorant now?

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386987)

Question, which I'm posing here because I don't have a FB account and don't want to visit FB to find the answer -

If I don't have a FB account, can somebody still tag me in a photo they post? If they can, and if I want to untag it, do I have to get a FB account to do so? Or is there a mechanism for non-FB people to assert some privacy controls? Tnx.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387479)

I haven't seen it in a while, but at least you used to be able to tag a photo with an arbitrary string (i.e. a name of someone without a Facebook account), but there's no way to search on such tags.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387021)

There's lots of problems with Facebook, but let's not pretend you're completely helpless about other people's photos of you.

If you're tagged in a photo, you can exercise your privacy controls over it. If you aren't tagged in the photo, a prospective employer isn't going to see it when they look at your profile.

It is if I don't have a FB account (I don't), or when Facebook is offering to tag the photos for you now. Even google your name and Google helpfully finds your photo on other peoples websites? Between the NSA, Google, and every website tracking me I'm under no illusion that there is any privacy left. I'm not sure why I bother posting anonymously when /. happily sells your posting habits.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (3, Insightful)

wickerprints (1094741) | about 9 months ago | (#45386883)

Not all technology is great, and questioning what constitutes an appropriate use of technology is not necessarily a bad thing, nor is it fair to characterize such people as having "knee-jerk" reactions. Who is the summarizer to assume or claim that Mr. Burton hasn't been thoughtful about his reservations, or to imply that he is being paranoid because he's a celebrity? That is, quite frankly, insulting and corrosive.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (1)

Ardyvee (2447206) | about 9 months ago | (#45387223)

If I were an employer, beyond criminal record, I don't think I should care what my employees did or do or will do in their free time. It doesn't make much sense to me to try to use that information when hiring. Not even because "culture", because that should be something you see during what should be your interview.

Of course this doesn't apply to sensitive positions where the person may have access to sensitive information, but whoever is doing that will probably employ more sophisticate methods to profiling. I hope.

I'd like to hear what the reasons are for those that agree with using social networks and information found on the internet when hiring. I might be wrong or missing something.

Re:OK let's get something straight here - (1)

tftp (111690) | about 9 months ago | (#45387667)

I'd like to hear what the reasons are for those that agree with using social networks and information found on the internet when hiring. I might be wrong or missing something.

You would be perfectly correct if a human can wear one mind at work, and then wear another mind after work.

But humans are not robots, and it doesn't work this way. If you possess a characteristic away from work, you will have some of it at work, or close enough to work that it matters. HR will decide on their own if those characteristics are a concern or not. If you are engaged in risky entertainment, for example, you are a risk to the company at least because you can be injured or killed - and who will be doing your work then? There are several things that , combined, form the "company culture" - and if you do not fit that culture, too bad. For example, a company who employs primarily religious people (I worked for one, briefly) will not want to hire a militant atheist. There is simply no reason to take chances when so many people are out of work. Exceptions may be made only for employees who are special in what they do.

Right... (2)

Goody (23843) | about 9 months ago | (#45386475)

Because everyone who opposes some technology is having a "knee-jerk" reaction. Perhaps some people think that having a computer screen in front of one eye all day is a bit pathetic?

Re:Right... (1)

AlphaWolf_HK (692722) | about 9 months ago | (#45386639)

What's pathetic about it? Stephen Hawking has one in front of both eyes all day. Some blind people consider themselves lucky to have one implanted directly in front of both retinas.

Re:Right... (1)

Goody (23843) | about 9 months ago | (#45387059)

The guy is paralyzed and can only move his eyes. He uses a device in front of his eyes to communicate because that's the only way he can communicate. It's not like he's surfing Google+ or masturbating to smartphone reviews with his device. If you're not paralyzed and have other ways to interface with the world, yes, it's pathetic.

Re:Right... (2)

AlphaWolf_HK (692722) | about 9 months ago | (#45387649)

From what I can determine, in all cases it is used to augment your ability to communicate and/or navigate. Why is wanting either of these pathetic in *any* circumstance?

Re:Right... (4, Interesting)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 9 months ago | (#45386657)

One can be opposed to the "Google" part without being against the "Glass" concept - although I do somewhat lean in the direction you mention anyway (I've got a smartphone and don't really see the added value here).

I would not be opposed, in theory, to something like Google Glass that was completely under my control. But I've come to realize that using free services from companies like Google and Facebook means I also have to give away something I'd prefer they not have - more or less unfettered access to much of my personal data. And, perhaps more importantly, I've learned that even if I choose not to use those services, they're slurping up my information without my consent (via shadow profiles) if any of my acquaintances are using their services.

Re:Right... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387111)

Bingo. ("Jackpot" if you're an American).

Google Glass is a great idea, both for the user and Google, who are (IMHO) one of the least evil of the big companies. It's nothing compared to what an open, *nix powered, root access on-request, standardised hardware version of GG would be. Maybe with a little 3D printer file included just because, you know, it's going to happen anyway.

The big question is whether Google will have enough of a head start to make any money before it's ubiquitous, easy to replicate technology. I've got loads of things I want to do with a Glass, like record a kitesurfing session, GPS log my position, course and speed, and broadcast it to the interwebs simultaneously,..it's cool technology, but I won't be using it until I'm in complete control of it as I am with my desktop.

I'm waiting for "Google Ass" (0, Troll)

JoeyRox (2711699) | about 9 months ago | (#45386491)

The rumored device that lets men and women find available, eager sexual partners for one-night stands.

Re:I'm waiting for "Google Ass" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386545)

The device exists and is called "Craigslist," the latest technological incarnation of the "phone book" and "things scrawled on restroom walls".

Re:I'm waiting for "Google Ass" (5, Funny)

AlphaWolf_HK (692722) | about 9 months ago | (#45386673)

Google will probably be at the end of discrimination lawsuits then. The standard for women is having two legs (though sometimes more than two is acceptable) and the standard for men is a car, a full head of hair, a full set of teeth, a job, a single person house, willing to pay for dinner (a coffee date is not acceptable) and willing to accommodate even the worst of character flaws.

Re:I'm waiting for "Google Ass" (1)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45386873)

Women and the poor. Some "alpha wolf".

Re:I'm waiting for "Google Ass" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386961)

What do you expect from an avid defender of Capitalism? Reveling in misogyny seems pretty much par for the course for the insecure self-entitled champions of wealth's privilege.

Uhmmmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387107)

I hate to be the one to have to tell you this, but... if she has more than two legs, that's not a she.

And no amount of scrubbing will remove the memories of 'her' touch.

Re:I'm waiting for "Google Ass" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387139)

Actually, the average woman has slightly fewer than two legs, most men own around half a car, and the humans with a full set of teeth are a freakishly small minority at the far end of a bell curve who should be ostracised and treated a such.

Re:I'm waiting for "Google Ass" (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | about 9 months ago | (#45386599)

g+

Re:I'm waiting for "Google Ass" (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#45387981)

There's already one that lets gay men who want to fuck find one another. The reason there isn't one that lets you find women is that if women want to find guys who want to fuck them, they don't need a device.

Everyone thought cell phones were stupid too. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386513)

And now you almost cannot function without one. Give it a decade, with kids who are middle schoolers now growing up knowing about things like glass and the same thing will happen.

Re:Everyone thought cell phones were stupid too. (1)

Trepidity (597) | about 9 months ago | (#45386597)

Are there really people who almost cannot function in the absence of a cell phone?

Re:Everyone thought cell phones were stupid too. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386977)

Yes. They're usually called "teenage girls" or, in some cases, just "teenagers".

But don't worry. They're working on an app for that...

Re:Everyone thought cell phones were stupid too. (3, Informative)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about 9 months ago | (#45386603)

I don't recall everyone thinking cell phones were stupid. When did that happen? I remember a lot of people saying "That's cool. I wish I were rich so I could have one too." I recall a small segment of the population saying that they didn't need one. I don't recall anyone saying they were stupid.

Re: Everyone thought cell phones were stupid too. (1)

ranton (36917) | about 9 months ago | (#45387279)

He should have said smart phone, not cell phone. Many people, myself included, thought that smart phones would be too expensive and not useful enough. From what I remember, that was the opinion of the vast majority of even technically savvy people.

Re:Everyone thought cell phones were stupid too. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387327)

"I don't recall everyone thinking cell phones were stupid"

I do. One guy I know wanted to buy a used car with a cell phone in it (it was in 1988 or 1989). He thought it was cool, we all laugh at him (and in the end he didn't buy the it).

In the mid 90s, it was not a small segment of the population who was saying they didn't need a cell phone, it was the majority, at least in North America.

Nowadays, there are still a lot of persons who think smartphones are useless and the majority think the only real use of a smartphone is having access to email.

Google Glass will not be a success, it is too big, not powerful enough and the battery is good only for a few hours, but I would be really surprised if 30 years from now technology like Google Glass don't become as mainstream as smartphone now.

Re:Everyone thought cell phones were stupid too. (2)

Joining Yet Again (2992179) | about 9 months ago | (#45386879)

Everyone thought Segways were stupid.

And they still do.

Where are they now?

Re: Everyone thought cell phones were stupid too. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387523)

Segway is still around and do pretty well for a company selling a niche product. a cell phone is not a niche, unfortunately.

Set phasers to love me! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386521)

I told Pierce a thousand times, I never wanted to meet Levar in person. I JUST WANTED A PICTURE. YOU CANâ(TM)T DISAPPOINT A PICTURE.

What's with this very biased article? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386533)

They portray Burton as somebody who just "doesn't get it". Clearly the author is putting in a pro-Glass/Google spin.

Re:What's with this very biased article? (1)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about 9 months ago | (#45386611)

Did they change the link to the article? Because the one I read didn't portray him that way at all.

Marketed wrong (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386543)

Google Glass is marketed in the wrong way. Just like Segway they're trying to hype it for use by everybody all the time and justifiably it's backfiring on them. They should market it quietly to niche applications, e.g. HUD-like instructions and videos for DIY jobs, easy-to-use trail maps / plant identification for hikers, or self-service tours for tourists. These are useful applications that don't impact society on a grand scale, and later on the public can decide if they want to adapt it to more widespread use, at their own pace.

Re:Marketed wrong (2)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 9 months ago | (#45386669)

Except your plan does not jibe with their business model.

Re:Marketed wrong (1)

atomicxblue (1077017) | about 9 months ago | (#45386683)

I agree. My feeling is that the main reason for the "knee-jerk" reaction is that Google already knows quite a bit about us and there is no information how they are going to use the information gathered from Glass, beyond scanning everything for targeted ad placement. Very scary!

Here's a scenario illustrating the power of Glass (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386627)

Your part of a group corralled in the "free speech zone" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_speech_zone) associated with some politician's public appearance. The nice police officers encircling the corral wear Google Glass ... or the militarized equivalent ... and record nice, close-up mugshots of the occupants of said corral.

If your actions or mere presence at such a civil disobedience event have offended someone important, and maybe then you would like to hide, here's what happens:

The mug shots are sifted against a facial recognition software utility, using as a corpus all the posts of Facebook, various state motor vehicle departments, and all the "electronic records" your medical providers have been gathering, including ... mugshots validated to be actually you.

Then they have a collection of possible identity matches. They then get DNA fingerprints for those potential matches from the healthcare provider data base, and with that scan against all other law-enforcement- and health-care-collected DNA data to find all your relatives. A team then canvasses those people likely to be closest to you to find out where you are. Then at around 4:02 a.m your door is kicked in.

Re:Here's a scenario illustrating the power of Gla (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386727)

Nice fear-mongering....

FTFY:

[quote]
"You're part of a group corralled in the "free speech zone" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_speech_zone) associated with some politician's public appearance. The nice police officers encircling the corral have camera-phones ... or the militarized equivalent ... and record nice, close-up mugshots of the occupants of said corral.

If your actions or mere presence at such a civil disobedience event have offended someone important, and maybe then you would like to hide, here's what happens:

The mug shots are sifted against a facial recognition software utility, using as a corpus all the posts of Facebook, various state motor vehicle departments, and all the "electronic records" your medical providers have been gathering, including ... mugshots validated to be actually you.

Then they have a collection of possible identity matches. They then get DNA fingerprints for those potential matches from the healthcare provider data base, and with that scan against all other law-enforcement- and health-care-collected DNA data to find all your relatives. A team then canvasses those people likely to be closest to you to find out where you are. Then at around 4:02 a.m your door is kicked in."[/quote]

Wow, it's almost like:
-Google Glass is totally irrelevant to the doomsday scenerio you describ
-that anything with a ccd matches your scenerio
-the databases you list are the real problem
&
-That if Google Glass makes this a reality we're fucked anyway because the only difference between it & a smartphone is Google Glass is hands-free.

Soothing Images (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386635)

Once they projected an image of a rainbow onto the glasses, he seemed calm.

"Celebrity?" (3, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | about 9 months ago | (#45386641)

Never heard of this guy.

There are bad, overhyped ideas that are well executed and actually work. The Segway, for example.

A few historical examples:

  • The S. S. United States. Fastest transatlantic ocean liner ever built. 3 days, 10 hours from New York to England. Worked great. Still afloat and being restored as a museum ship. Built too late - by 1952, airliners were already crossing the Atlantic.
  • Home control. Tried over and over since the 1950s, first with 24VDC relay systems, then X10 ("X10! X10! X10!...") in the 1980s, and now being re-hyped again. Works fine. Solves a non-problem.
  • Maglev trains. Work fine. Go fast. Track costs too much.
  • Supersonic airliners. The Concorde worked well for decades. Supersonic booms over land were unacceptable, which limited routes. Supersonic fuel consumption is 3x subsonic. Just not economic.
  • Short takeoff and landing (STOL) aircraft. Not quite a flying car, but workable aircraft with very low stall speeds and very short runway requirements have been built for decades. Just taxi out of your driveway and take off on the street, right? No.

Google's head-mounted things may be in this category.

Re:"Celebrity?" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386693)

You've never heard of Geordi La Forge from Star Trek? Did you hack into someone's account to get that UID, or does your brain just block out the existence of black people?

Re:"Celebrity?" (2)

guttentag (313541) | about 9 months ago | (#45386875)

You've never heard of Geordi La Forge from Star Trek?

He just didn't recognize Geordi without his Visual Instrument and Sensory Organ Replacement [memory-alpha.org] . Happens all the time, and Burton likes it that way. If everyone wore Google Glass he'd be recognized everywhere he goes, like poor Patrick Stewart. He couldn't ring the bell at the NYSE [marketwatch.com] the other day for Twitter without people yelling, "Look, it's Captain Picard! Make it so! Come on, say it!" The guy dressed up as Nerval's Lobster [twitter.com] for Halloween, but people still recognized him. Burton has plenty of reason to value his visual anonymity.

Re:"Celebrity?" (2)

femtobyte (710429) | about 9 months ago | (#45386775)

Google Glass has an additional disadvantage over perhaps offering little of use to the user (beyond existing tech): it is disliked by people around the user. Flying on the Concorde or taking a maglev train probably doesn't make you a persona-non-grata jerk that people don't want around. Being a patsy for the advertising/surveillance industry often does.

Re:"Celebrity?" (4, Informative)

SeaFox (739806) | about 9 months ago | (#45386833)

Never heard of this guy.

He actually is a celebrity, known amongst geeks for his character on Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Asking his opinion on Google Glass is completely intentional, as his character on the series was a blind man who viewed the word through a device that sat at eye-level on his head [link to pics] [google.com] and interfaced directly with the visual cortex. The device allowed him to see the world in an unnatural but heightened way far outside the normal visible light-spectrum, closer to electromagnetic spectrum (someone will reply to this and give exact spectrum/wavelengths I'm sure).

So some marketoid is trying to draw a parallel between the character's visor and Google Glass.

Re:"Celebrity?" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387955)

1 Hz - 1 PHz.

Re:"Celebrity?" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387201)

Google's head-mounted things ...

That's it right there. That was no "knee-jerk" reaction, it was a normal reaction to having people staring at you and recording you at the same time. Fuck that.

Re:"Celebrity?" (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387293)

What are you fucking 15? Or a eurofag?

Re:"Celebrity?" (1)

oogoliegoogolie (635356) | about 9 months ago | (#45387519)

Strange that you never heard of Levar Burton. Maybe you would prefer the opinions of current headline making celebs such as Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, or Kanye West?

Re:"Celebrity?" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387781)

Never heard of this guy.

For someone who is an obvious virgin neckbeard (having clicked your Homepage link) you somehow missed sci-fi in the 90s all together?

STOL aircraft are the hottest selling aircraft (1)

cybrthng (22291) | about 9 months ago | (#45388111)

STOL aircraft are the hottest selling GA aircraft there is right now, the "CUB" variants from super cubs to pipper cubs to the dozen other builders / models are selling like hotcakes and doing great in both certified and sport aircraft models and the Zenith STOL's are being built by the thousands.

They were never designed to take off on the street like out of ones neighborhood, but people with a few hundred feet of grass can certainly do it. They're used for hunting trips, bush pilots, search and rescue, leisure flying and much much more.

Also, STOL aircraft are some of the most economical to operate - often designed around automotive (mogas) and now with diesel (jet-a).

ooooh, ooooh, I get it! (3, Insightful)

Gordo_1 (256312) | about 9 months ago | (#45386709)

LeVar Burton played Geordie LaForge on Star Treak -- a character who could not see except by virtue of a digital visor he wore. Now the actor in real life tries something that's also sorta similar -- if you wave your hands, squint your eyes and gesture knowingly. What are the odds! The parallels must have been mindblowing! Life imitating art! The jokes must now write themselves! Queue the Benny Hill music...

Re:ooooh, ooooh, I get it! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386895)

No, the Visor was't even remotely similar to Google Glass, but distinctly different in purpose and functional capacity -- it had no camera nor heads up display, unlike Google Glass, its purpose was to help the user see, giving a wider field of view and increasing the visible spectrum to include microwaves, xrays, infrared and ultraviolet. Google Glass has no purpose.

Re:ooooh, ooooh, I get it! (2)

mrchaotica (681592) | about 9 months ago | (#45387655)

The VISOR... had no camera

Yeah it did (or at least, it could act that way)... it even got hacked so that enemies could view the footage in something like three different episodes.

Re:ooooh, ooooh, I get it! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387165)

Shhh!! Didn't you notice how the fine summary desperately tip-toed around the issue without ever directly referencing it?! There's a spell afoot here I tell you, please don't break it, I want to see who explodes first...

Re:ooooh, ooooh, I get it! (1)

srichard25 (221590) | about 9 months ago | (#45387679)

I don't understand why some people put so much value in the opinions of those who get paid to pretend to be someone else. This is especially annoying around election time.

knee jerk? (2)

period3 (94751) | about 9 months ago | (#45386721)

Burton still had a "knee-jerk" response when confronted with Glass

He was asked what he thought of Glass, and he gave his opinion. Sorry, how is that a "knee-jerk" reaction? Would it have been so if he had responded positively?

Here's my reasoned, non knee-jerk response: Google can fuck off, and -- within the bounds imposed by professionalism and etiquitte -- so can eveyrone else wearing these infringements to my privacy. (In what I consider the moral sense, as opposed to the legal sense)

Re:knee jerk? (1)

fluffy99 (870997) | about 9 months ago | (#45387053)

Burton still had a "knee-jerk" response when confronted with Glass

He was asked what he thought of Glass, and he gave his opinion. Sorry, how is that a "knee-jerk" reaction? Would it have been so if he had responded positively?

Here's my reasoned, non knee-jerk response: Google can fuck off, and -- within the bounds imposed by professionalism and etiquitte -- so can eveyrone else wearing these infringements to my privacy. (In what I consider the moral sense, as opposed to the legal sense)

For anyone who didn't read the article (most of you huys I suspect), the knee-jerk reaction he refers to was to wonder and ask, "Am I being recorded?" This is going to be a reaction, just the same as wondering about someone holding up their cellphone while talking to you.

Slashdot edges ever closer to irrelevance ... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386763)

This kind of article belongs in People Magazine, or maybe on
Burton's own web page, but not here.

Slashdot used to be informative and worth visiting. It appears the
"editors" are determined to keep that stage of /. firmly
in the past.

Well, he IS a nigger (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386809)

maybe he'd be happier with Google Whip or Google Ankle Chains?

Re:Well, he IS a great actor (1)

Pharoah_69 (2866937) | about 9 months ago | (#45387145)

I think you mean, Google Roots, since that was the movie he starred in.

I think I see the problem here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45386871)

Back in the late 90s and early 00s, Slashdot was a good collector of information around the internet that you might not see otherwise. But this mode is getting very tired, as evidenced by the extremely lameness of the Engadget article. This is not really new information about Google or Glass, and I really don't care what a celebrity thinks about anything. When you look at sites like arstechnica with their original material, it makes you realize that just deep linking to other sources of information is not enough.

Slashdot, you need to change. Rapidly.

Google Glass = No Service, No Admittance (1)

pubwvj (1045960) | about 9 months ago | (#45386979)

I predict that there will be a lot of businesses, restaurants, theaters and people who "Just Say No" to Google Glass. They will block people using Google Glass from being in their establishments and on their property. They will refuse to interact with people who may be putting them under constant surveillance and distraction.

Re:Google Glass = No Service, No Admittance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45387821)

They will refuse to interact with people who may be putting them under constant surveillance and distraction.

Will they refuse to interact with any business that uses security cameras? That will make it very difficult to remain in business as any sensible warehouse, manufacturer, or supplier will use security cameras.

Leaving a voice message used to bother many (1)

xtronics (259660) | about 9 months ago | (#45386993)

I think it will become accepted - there may need to be some etiquette established with it's use - not that that has happened with smart-phones.

Just imagine - if you do something stupid - someone might tape it and keep it in your face for ever - the Internet never forgets. ,.,.

What would you say to someone taping you with their Google-glass and you found it uncomfortable?

What do we say to our kids when we try to talk to them, but the TXTing keeps interrupting?

In the end we are still social creatures, wired to react to irrepressible facial and voice expressions. Even over the phone, I can sometimes tell if someone is lying to me by bits of stress in their voice (but harder with CODEX distortion and latency).

I suppose taping peoples conversations will either make people more honest or more angry.. but definitely less forthcoming - thus an anti-social effect.

The problem with Google Glass (4, Insightful)

NynexNinja (379583) | about 9 months ago | (#45387015)

The problem with Google Glass is not the hardware itself, it is the privacy implications of using the device, which sends everything to an untrusted third party. It would be different if they offered the option of never communicating with their network, but they don't offer that as an option. So, essentially anyone who has an agreement with google (NSA, FBI, other governments, other companies, etc) will get copies of your location, pictures coming off the camera, video, microphone data, etc. Those issues alone are the reasons why I would never actually use one. Until Google is serious about separating the umbilical cord from devices like this from talking to their servers, it remains a serious problem about ever using it for anything long term. It's bad enough you might be already using an Android or iPhone device which does almost the same thing, minus the video and audio stream.

A style suggestion for Google (1)

TheloniousToady (3343045) | about 9 months ago | (#45387069)

LeVar Burton isn't comfortable with the idea of using Google Glass? Maybe Google should make it look more like that engine air filter [wikipedia.org] he used to wear on Star Trek [wikipedia.org] .

That's his opinion of something else (1)

Mr. Freeman (933986) | about 9 months ago | (#45387693)

It's not Google Glass that he doesn't like. After all, the guy wore what was basically (a prop version of) Google Glass on camera when he worked on TNG. If he had concerns about the technology it then something tells me they would have addressed it in one of the episodes.

His problem is with the ability to communicate across long distances quickly. He doesn't like the idea that anyone could take a picture *and then send it everywhere* in the blink of an eye. An interesting concern, but let's make sure that we're addressing the proper problem first.

Problem Solved. (1)

Cammi (1956130) | about 9 months ago | (#45387917)

The best solution if you someone came up to you with Google Glass on, is to beat the #^%#$ out of them, Problem Solved.

Re:Problem Solved. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45388005)

So you say commit a crime against someone because they are exercising a personal freedom? You realize we have laws in this country designed specifically to execute sociopaths like yourself right? Luckily for you (and unfortunately for the rest of us) they do require you to kill once or twice before we'll be able to exercise those laws but given your attitude if you really do back it up with the behavior you claim you will exhibit then it's only a matter of time before that needle enters your vein

This is important. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45388183)

Because Lavar Burton is the world's leading expert on Google Glass technology?

Nope.

He's just a nice guy and an actor, so no expert opinion is available form him on the technology. Most Slashdot denizens would be better qualified to opine than Burton.

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