I talked some last week about future casting. Over the weekend, Saturday Night Live took a shot at the newest (some say, creepiest) tech to hit the streets, Google Glass. Quite a funny clip, embedded below. For any cutting edge technology we will definitely see some pokes at fun, and maybe this type of wearable technology is too early for mainstream users, but will it be a harbinger of things to come?
Another example of fun poked at a technology that was really interesting and eventually became part of our everyday use, think handwriting recognition and the Newton. Doonesbury did the fun-poking (August, 27, 1993 Strip), but handwriting recognition never caught on as we all dumped the stylus in favor of our fingers. Microsoft’s Surface is trying to bring it back and we will see if they do.
With all the fun being poked at Google Glass, I think some out there are missing the point. Computing is getting closer to our eyeballs. And in fact, may end up in our eyeballs. I don’t know what societal mores will do with this type of ubiquitous concurrent computer access. We all make fun today when we are out with friends and we all pull out our phones to answer the question of how many movies Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey have appeared in (the answer is two). We know what people are doing, though. It might be rude to some, but we have that cue that something else is going on. What happens when you don’t have that cue? What about the first time you saw someone walking down the street talking to the air and didn’t notice the bluetooth headset? Or you were with someone who picked up a phone call without you noticing? I’m still a little creeped out by that.
While folks like Robert Scoble definitely think this will be transformative, I am not so sure. He quickly dismisses the “freaks some people out,” but I think this is not so easily dismissed. I personally think that the watch wearable tech will be more quickly adopted (the price point alone is definitely something to look at). Looking at the crystal ball of wearable though does lead us to the day when our realities and existences are augmented by this technology.
I just don’t know how society will make the switch and how we will handle interactions with each other in such a society. Technology moves fast, law moves slower and individual mores may move slower. We all have parents and grandparents that are still on feature-phones and think the Internet is Yahoo. Are we looking at a future where there will be a divide between the augmented and the non-augmented? Very science fiction, and quite frankly, a little scary.
Next Time on the SoLoMoLegal Blog
Tomorrow I will bring a close to the Social Media Promotions series with Part 3 when we talk about Promotions rules.