Could Google Glasses be sustainable?

Posted on April 5, 2012


The potential for a real Sustainable Lens suddenly got very real. Google’s Project Glass getting real (well, real as in concept video). AR has been around for a long time, what’s exciting is the consumer focussed seamless integration. From a development perspective the tools move into the realm of App development rather than that of the arcane.

Now the technology is *sorted*, we can turn our focus to the real question – what do we want to see? In Google’s Glassses video the interactions superimpose everyday onto everyday life: we see a clock that turns into a diary; a notification that the subway is closed; and a map to get to the store. There is potential for collaboration – the coffee truck location is crowd sourced – and his friend’s location is shared.

What would it take for the Glasses to make sustainability part of the augmented everyday? Could Google Glasses have a sustainability mode? Last year we won the CITRENZ award for our paper exploring this very question.

In an earlier paper we described some initial requirements for a Sustainable Lens:

  • See opportunities for sustainable practice skills
  • Recognition of unseen elements
  • Identify un/sustainabilityness of actions – that is recognise if something is unsustainable, or distinguish degrees of sustainability
  • Present options and ways of framing alternatives

But there’s a whole lot of questions yet to answer. Better get busy…