Ga. Tech Professor Linked to Google Glass

Dr. Thad Starner
Credit John Lorinc / WABE
Audio version of this story here.

We’re not living like the Jetsons, but we’ve come a long way from the Flintstones.

And the latest leap in technology comes in part from a link between Google Glass and Georgia.

In 2010, Dr. Thad Starner, a computer professor at Georgia Tech, sent an email to Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.

He wanted to touch base about his research on wearable computers.

“And much to my surprise, Sergey answered and said ‘Hey why don’t you come out to Google and show us what you got.’  It turned out that Larry and Sergey had, a month before, decided to kick off Project Glass,” says Starner.

An audio version of this story.

Glass is a voice-activated wearable computer that is attached to a pair of eyeglass frames.

Shortly after that fateful email, Starner became the Technical Lead/Manager of the project.

“We started making this living laboratory where people were making and wearing computers in part of their daily lives to figure out what was the most compelling things to do with these devices.”

Google says it takes an average of 23 seconds to get information from items like smart phones.  Glass shatters that down to 2 seconds. 

“When you start having a device where you can get to it so quickly, you tend to use it more as an extension of yourself, much like you use eyeglasses or clothing or a bicycle when you’re riding.  You just kind of use it as part of yourself as a natural extension of you,” says Starner.

Google is hosting a public unveiling of Glass at the Foundry at Puritan Mill this weekend.