NPR : News

Google Glasses: Frightening Or Fantastic?

The buzz is building about the news that, as The New York Times has reported, there soon may be "Google glasses" that can "stream information to the wearer's eyeballs in real time."

Yes, by the end of the year Google may be selling spectacles that come with a small screen that in theory will allow users to get information about nearby locations, the weather, friends who might be close by and other things. They're reportedly going to cost between $250 and $600.

Sounds cool, right?

Well, PCWorld's Damon Brown calls the glasses a "prescription for disaster." He's worried about how what might happen if someone tries to drive while wearing them, and about how much more information they'll be transmitting to Google about where you are, what you do and what you see.

The Atlantic's Rebecca J. Rosen raises the issue of how those of us who aren't wearing such glasses will be able to rest easy that we're not being recorded by those who are.

Still, since so many of us carry around devices that already let us connect to the Web from almost anywhere, is having something that brings the information right to your eyes that much different?

Or, is it just one more step toward a Terminator-type world?

Here's a question:

(Note: As we say, that's a question. It's not a scientific survey of public opinion.)
Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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