The top 5 questions people ask about Google Glass

At a conference in San Francisco, they had a professional headshot station. I couldn't resist getting this shot made so I could appear to be a professional #Glasshole.

At a conference in San Francisco, they had a professional headshot station. I couldn’t resist getting this shot made so I could appear to be a professional #Glasshole.

Wearing Glass definitely makes a statement. And the general public is still divided on whether that’s a good or bad thing. Walking around with a 15GB face computer/mobile video camera above your right eye attracts a lot of attention and questions. But I’ve found they boil down to five main ones.

1. “What is that?”

I wear Glass every day, and rarely can anyone identify it by name. A teenager in Kroger and a RadioShack clerk are the only two people who asked right off the bat if I was wearing Google Glass. Everyone else wants to know what it is or asks if it’s “that Google thingy.” Once I confirm it is Glass, most people have heard of it and get excited because they’ve never seen one before. If I’m not holding up anyone in line, I’ll let them try it on or open the MyGlass app on my phone so they can see what I’m seeing. That’s the fun part.

2. “Do you work for Google?” 

Now that anyone with $1,500 bucks can become an Explorer, I hear this less often. But when I first started wearing Glass in public, everyone who engaged me asked if I was a Google employee. I wish. Although I suspect they had to purchase their own set just like everyone else. Now they just ask if I’m “in tech.”

3. “Are you filming me right now?”

To be honest, Glass only has 45 minutes of continuous battery life and you’re not that interesting. No offense, but I’m pretty self-involved and want to use Glass to record my thoughts and facilitate what I’m working on. 

Not that I’m not beaming data to Google constantly. But it’s my own personal data, not yours. I don’t think I was fully aware of this until I was emailing Glass support from a cab last week. Their response: Please don’t use Glass while you’re in a car. That freaked me out.

What should freak you out are all the cameras recording what you’re doing in public that you can’t see. Those are on 24 hours a day. And sending data to government databases.

4. “How does it work?”

It tethers to the hotspot on your phone or a local Wi-Fi connection so it can communicate with and back up your data to the cloud. The actions it performs are tied to apps you activate from within the MyGlass app that lives on your smartphone.

5. “What does it do?”

The short answer is: A hell of a lot more than it did a year ago. 

The long answer is: It depends on what you want it to do. Are you a fitness buff? You can download workout apps. You can use Glass to learn French, Spanish or Chinese. It can tell you about cool nearby attractions or events. You can have it read you the latest stories from Mashable or CNN. You can check stocks, take and share pictures on social networks, record vocal notes in Evernote, create shopping lists, upload videos directly to YouTube, view postcards left in space by other Explorers, join Hangouts, answer phone calls, post to Tumblr, get directions and much, much more.

The sad answer is: Most people still only use Google Glass to take pictures and videos. That’s why I wear my set every day. I’m curious about how wearable technology can make life and work easier. Those thoughts, app reviews and other observations are what I’ll share with you here.

So now you’ve gotten answers to questions other people ask. What questions do you have? Leave them in the comments below.