Monday, February 23, 2015

Removing Glass

Things change rapidly and so has the world of Google Glass.  On January 19th they officially closed the Glass program.

I don't know how to feel about this.  I understand it's a program that was designed to crowd-source development of the product but do I need to feel let down that it's over.  Now I'm stuck with an out-dated no longer supported piece of tech.

I actually feel kind of inspired.  It's the first time I've taken part in something like this and I feel, in a small way, as though I've been part of the development team.  More importantly, I feel like I took a chance and gambled that I was going to be on the cutting edge and there would be value in what I had to say about the technology; especially in how it affects or can affect education.

Now that it's been passed along to another division of Google, or maybe it's a whole different company (maybe they read Passing Glass and were inspired), will there be a future for it or will Google move on to their other wearables (like the 360)?

Here's the next phase for NPSD Glass:  Tech in school.  Not just another laptop or chromebook or another something-we-already-have-and-now-is-faster tool, but cutting edge tech that has the ability to help learning.

I admit, I was drawn in with the cool factor, romanced by the potential and dumped by corporate but I'm not giving up.  I'm evolving to evaluate other types of technology and seeking the opportunity to weed out the bad and promote the good.

I started with TIES in Minneapolis when we presented our findings with Glass and it evolved into a presentation about technology in general, specifically wearable tech.

Thursday, February 19, 2015


Here I am back again and haven't worn my Google Glasses in quite a while.  I'm probably going to have to start again soon since Ann, Josh and I are presenting our results at the CESA Google Summit in Green Bay on March 20th.  I'm disappointed still that the support for the program is gone; especially disappointed that I haven't gotten my "reward" book from Google yet.  A hardcover book of images from Glass explorers.

I'm still looking, though, at wearable tech as a good possibility for education.  Google Glass was a good start, but still too consumer-oriented for it to be effective in education.  I was researching a little today and came across a couple of things that look promising.

First, is HoloLens from Microsoft.

This looks promising and could definitely have a place in education.  It's a different avenue than Google Glass.  I see this as having the potential to provide unique, immersive experiences for students in tech ed and science (and who knows what else).  I'm following them on Twitter and planning on finding out about a pilot/developer program that will allow us to try them out here and compare the results to Glass.  We'll see where it goes.

The other promising development is Oculus.  This is more the gaming side of things, but could have the potential to apply to school.  As I delve further into the world of online and blended learning, I can't help but think this experience would go far in providing virtual labs and experiences for students to complete work outside the four brick walls.  The developer kit is $350 so I don't know if it's worth the gamble to try for one and then see where it goes.  I'll be sold on it if there's enough VR support programs that would allow it to enhance learning.