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Nuance’s Powerful Dragon Voice Recognition for Mac Delivers Increased Accuracy and More Features than Ever Before; Create Content, Dictate Text, and Command and Control Favorite Features and Apps Just by Speaking

BURLINGTON, Mass., Sep 05, 2012 — Nuance Communications, Inc. today announced Dragon(R) Dictate for Mac 3, the most powerful, accurate and personalized voice recognition software for the Mac available on the market today. With increased accuracy and significant feature updates, Dragon Dictate lets people quickly and easily create and edit content, and command and control their favorite Mac applications by voice – anytime, anywhere.

Dragon Dictate harnesses the power of the renowned Dragon NaturallySpeaking voice recognition technology to let Mac users simply speak to see their words instantly captured in real time on their screen. Dragon Dictate for Mac 3 is the most robust version of Dictate yet, with a 15 percent increase in accuracy, new Smart Format Rules and new correction capabilities for a personalized experience, wideband Bluetooth support, the ability to transcribe recorded audio files from a single speaker, and much more.

“Dragon Dictate delivers an incredibly powerful voice experience for the Mac community, with the ability to not only speak text for documents, emails and more, but also command and control the Mac applications and features people use the most,” said Peter Mahoney, Chief Marketing Officer for Nuance and Senior Vice President, General Manager, Dragon. “We’ve been incredibly focused on bringing new features and increased accuracy to this latest version of Dragon Dictate so Mac users can experience the accuracy, speed and productivity that results from speaking instead of typing.”

Dragon Dictate for Mac 3 is Now:

Faster, More Accurate and Easier Right from the Start

Dragon Dictate for Mac 3 delivers a 15 percent improvement to out-of-the-box accuracy when compared to Version 2.5, making it faster and easier for people to freely speak their words and let ideas flow right onto the screen. Simply put, Mac users can get more done in less time, letting creativity and productivity take charge.

More Personal than Ever – Dragon Dictate Gets You

Dragon Dictate now further adapts to the way people speak with Smart Format Rules, which customize and personalize every user’s Dragon Dictate experience. Dragon Dictate now detects formatting changes such as abbreviations, numbers and more, so dictated text appears the way you prefer – every time. With its revamped correction process, Dragon Dictate now allows you to use speech to correct individual words or phrases through a single, easy to understand window that lets you select alternate word choices, or spell and train new words. Additionally, Dragon Dictate includes a richer list of alternative word choices, so when making a correction, it’s more likely that the word or phrase intended will be presented as an option. When a correction is made, Dragon remembers and learns your preferences, making it more accurate each time. And with the Vocabulary Editor, you have the ability to set alternative written forms of words or phrases (e.g. grey vs. gray)

Control in More Applications

Dragon Dictate for Mac 3 gives you control in more applications, so that you can use your voice to get more done. First, Dragon Dictate delivers an Express Editor so that you can dictate into a text field for which it does not have Full Text Control. After you finish dictating, you can transfer the text from the Express Editor to the desired application quickly and easily by voice. In addition to general support for Mac OS X Mountain Lion, Dragon Dictate for Mac 3 offers built-in commands for the new Notes and Reminders applications in this latest OS release.

The Perfect Dictation Assistant, Transcribing Recorded Audio Files in a Snap

Dragon Dictate lets you transcribe recorded audio files so you can capture your thoughts while they’re still fresh in your mind using a digital voice recorder, or your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. Simply establish a user profile for a digital voice recorder, and Dragon Dictate quickly and easily transcribes the recorded audio files. Dragon Dictate for Mac supports .wav, .m4a, .m4v, .mp4, .aif, and .aiff audio file formats, as well as any recorded notes using the free Dragon Recorder app for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch (4th gen).

Hands- and Wire-Free with Enhanced Wideband Bluetooth Support

Available Anytime, Anywhere

Dragon Dictate gives you power to dictate text at any length whenever and wherever you like to get more done faster, and without a network connection.

A full list of all the new features and capabilities in Dragon Dictate can be found here.

Availability

Dragon Dictate for Mac 3 is available for pre-order immediately starting at $199.99. Registered owners of Macspeech Dictate or Dragon Dictate can purchase an upgrade for $149.99 through Nuance’s website, as well as its global network of reseller partners, software retailers and professional sales organizations. Dragon Dictate for Mac 3 will be available to purchase as a download beginning on September 13, 2012. All other orders will begin shipping the week of September 24, 2012. Additional information about features, editions, pricing and volume licensing programs can be found here or call (800) 443-7077.

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The King Behind Machu Picchu Built His Legacy In Stone

A statue of Pachacuti. Pexels; Illustration by Katie Belloff

Popular Science’s new series, The Builders, takes you behind the construction tape to reveal the individuals responsible for history’s greatest architectural works.

Glance at an Incan brick, and you’ll notice there’s very little that’s conventionally bricklike about it. There are no right angles, no proper corners. And it’s not a rectangle at all, but a trapezoid: one side wider and squatter than the other. Look at another. Then another. Then another. No two are exactly the same, each a polygonal version of the unique rock it started as.

Carefully stacked together like a 15th-century game of Tetris, these seemingly haphazard blocks have withstood 500 years of disasters, both natural and human. The signature style of the pre-Columbian empire, these stones marked the Inca expansion some 2,500 miles down the backbone of South America. The sprawl took just a few decades, propelled by the strength of a man named Pachacuti, the ninth Sapa Inca (the indigenous Quechua term for “king”). His most impressive building project was Machu Picchu, a 200-building, mountain-hugging summer resort for the ruler and his extended family. But this wonder of the world is just one place where Pachacuti carefully recorded his legacy—and building concepts that continue to help us create more-resilient cities—stone by stone.

Born in 1438 as Cusi Yupanqui, Pachacuti didn’t plan his rise to power. When the Chankas, an enemy ethnic group invaded, his father, then king, and his brother, the future ruler, retreated. Cusi Yupanqui had to defend the Inca’s fertile Peruvian valley alone. The puma-shaped crown city of Cusco occupied a sacred spot in between two forking rivers, and the Chankas wanted to call the prestigious place their own.

As the Chankas made their way toward the gold-plated Temple of the Sun, part fortress and part temple, Cusi Yupanqui led his men into a battle so ferocious that the stones beneath the warriors’ feet rose up to fight alongside them—or so the story goes. In the aftermath, the victorious Inca rechristened their leader Pachacuti, or “Earth Shaker.” After his brother’s eventual murder and his father’s death, Pachacuti ascended the throne as the sole king of Cusco.

In colonizing the land outside Cusco, Pachacuti used architecture to “mark their presence on the landscape,” says Stella Nair, an art historian at the University of California at, Los Angeles, and an expert in indigenous art and architecture in the Americas. Absent a written language, he used construction to put his stamp on every conquered village, reminding potential enemies of his power. “The [Inca] are a really small population, and within 100 years, they conquer the western rim of South America,” Nair says. “You have to convey the idea that you’re there.”

Machu Picchu Wiki Commons; Illustration by Katie Belloff

Inca structures were surprisingly easy to assemble. With polygonal stones, there’s no reason to strive for individually perfect cubes. “When you’re working a stone, your most fragile part is your corners,” Nair says. “If you’re trying to make a rectangular block [and you break a corner], you just ruined your block.” Instead, a head wall-maker would direct a team of masons in matching the slopes of each new stone to the one that preceded it.

The Inca way of carving stone blurs the boundary between the natural and the man-made. “When they carve a stone, they’ll leave enough of the cortex to give some sense of its original shape,” Nair says. Experts attribute this both to the culture’s reverence for the landscape, and their desire to distort time and history to make it appear the Inca had ruled for longer than they had. Today, many indigenous people continue to build in the style of their ancestors. It’s at once an homage to this great legacy and out of necessity: Many descendants—modern-day Peruvians—live in poverty and make their homes of local stone and homemade adobe (the Spanish word for “mudbrick”).

RELATED: By destroying this female pharaoh’s legacy, her successor preserved it forever

Builders in the region continue to cap their stout structures with carefully woven reed roofs, though they’re considerably thinner than their ancestors. Thatching eclipsed two-thirds of each building, according to Nair. Some roofs were gabled, with opposing slopes, while others were hipped, in which all sides slope downward. Every one was like a three-dimensional textile, secured to the building with clever knotting (the Inca did not have nails).

Designs also followed a profound philosophical or spiritual principle. Builders selected sites based on their orientation to the natural world. “The Incas paid a lot of attention to where you can see sacred features from different spots,” Nair says. Mountain peaks, rushing springs, and spiritually significant rivers were not just premium views, but elements that defined the shape of entire complexes, even entire cities.

Machu Picchu Wiki Commons; Illustration by Katie Belloff

Pachacuti chose the location for Machu Picchu, a sprawling summer resort for his family and entourage, with great intention. It rises out of the Sacred Valley, where Inca culture originated, and overlooks the Urubamba River, which irrigated agricultural lands all the way to Cusco. But opting for this special location brought his builders new challenges. In addition to regular seismic activity, a constant flow of meltwater marks the Andes mountains; it pours downhill from its glacial origins, instigating landslides along the way. Machu Picchu’s wet season lasts roughly half the year, unleashing twice the annual average rainfall of the continental United States. “It’s just horrible if you want to think about stable landscapes to build on,” Nair says. But the hallowed nature of the site, combined with the temperate relief it provided in summer, was likely enough to convince Pachacuti to invest in such a perilous project.

To cope, the Inca rigorously surveyed the potential building sites, and developed tricks for stabilization. Machu Picchu’s structural stability comes from a series of 700 terraces, which still meet contemporary geotechnical standards for retaining walls. Like a set of stacked window boxes, they corralled water as it came rushing down the hills. The sturdy barriers prevented soil erosion, trapping dirt inside. The structures also provided flat arable land for growing crops, such as corn, squash, and beans—all essential for feeding the king’s 1,200-person entourage. Water still found its way into the heart of the complex, so engineers built 130 drainage holes into the walls of the royal city.

But preventing floods was only one of the architect’s goals. Residences cluster around drinking wells. At the top of the mountain, near a rushing spring, engineers dug a canal that stored freshwater, which then trickled down through the Stairway of Fountains. Pachacuti’s palace was at the topmost well and therefore received the freshest water, civil engineer Ken Wright told Nova. The municipal tap flowed down from there, always separate from the drainage system. The system could handle 25 gallons of water each minute to accommodate the spring’s peak flow—something Wright estimates the Inca likely calculated as part of a yearlong research and development phase before they began construction.

It’s that type of careful planning and rigorous technique that allowed Pachacuti and his people to thrive, wherever his empire expanded. That’s why architects, engineers, and enthusiasts still revere Inca designs to this day. We see their influence in the words we use: In 2010, meteorologists in alpine Europe named a method for measuring rainfall in mountainous areas the Integrated Nowcasting through Comprehensive Analysis, or INCA.

It’s also increasingly in the way we think. As drought wrinkles many parts of the Andean desert and climate change brings still-harsher weather to the region, researchers are reexamining Inca water-storage practices for insight into how we might survive our desolate future. In contemporary Cusco, where Pachacuti’s journey began, archaeologists are helping locals restore water-retaining terraces, which remain damp deep into summer. Smaller Inca strategies work too. By reintroducing gravel into the soil, farmers can prevent landslides without inhibiting growth. And by switching to local crops, which are already adapted to the regional climate, they can ensure a better harvest than less-hardy imported varieties.

Despite their long and revered history, the indigenous people of the Andes—the direct descendants of this ancient civilization—get short shrift. They’re displaced by new airports and growing hotel chains and other hidden costs of tourism. Many live in poverty. And, Nair says, among many Westerners with cable TV and YouTube access, wild theories about Machu Picchu’s alien origins are more popular than the very real Inca men and women who built these lasting monuments to their empire’s strength. Pachacuti’s legacy may be written in stone, but conspiracies zipping around the internet threaten to erase him.

Razer’s New Bluetooth Glasses Are Built For The Work

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By now, your coworkers have likely gotten used to a giant pair of headphones sandwiching your face or perhaps little, white AirPods sticking out of your ears. Now, computer peripheral maker Razer has introduced a pair of connected glasses with built-in headphones designed for working at home.

The $199 Anzu Smart Glasses come in both square and round frame shapes, with small and large sizes of each. Regardless of what size you choose, each temple (or arm) comes equipped with a 16mm audio driver inside that funnels sound toward your ear without isolating you from your surroundings. That’s not ideal for perfect sound quality, but it’s useful in an office situation (if we ever get back to that) or for work-from-home folks who are also trying to keep tabs on kids or particularly rambunctious pets.

Don’t let the “smart” in the name mislead you, though. There’s no display involved, so if you’re expecting a screen like the one Google Glass or some other augmented reality glasses have, you won’t find it here.

The IPX4 rating means the Anzu glasses can endure sweat without breaking so they’re useful for light to moderate workouts. razer

The glasses connect to an Android or iOS device using Bluetooth 5.1, on which Razer has implemented its own proprietary low-latency tech to prevent distracting lag or out-of-sync video calls. Each temple has its own independent battery built-in and they offer five hours of use before they need to go back on the juice. Leave the Anzu glasses dormant and they’ll hold a charge for up to two weeks. Then, when you pick them up and open them, they’ll immediately turn on and connect to your device.

[Related: A review of Razer’s Opus noise-canceling headphones]

A built-in, multi-directional microphone picks up a wearer’s voice, so the Anzu glasses can handle all the audio tasks you’d expect a typical pair of Bluetooth headphones to perform. Touch controls on the side of the arms allow users to perform typical tasks like adjusting volume, picking up calls, skipping tracks, and summoning a phone’s built-in smart assistant.

The lenses claim to block 99 percent of UV light (both UVA and UVB) and also block 35 percent of blue light coming through. The science is still somewhat undecided about whether or not cutting blue light will help reduce things like eye strain, but cutting the amount of blue spectrum that hits your eyeballs at night can play a part in reducing larger sleep issues.

The stock lenses block UV light as well as 35 percent of the blue light coming through. razer

For those with a prescription, Razer offers a 15-percent discount to users who choose Lensabl for adding RX lenses to the frames.

While Razer clearly expects work-from-home to be a common use case for the Anzu, the glasses are also IPX4 rated against moisture, which means it’s not out of the question to wear them while working out. They weigh just 1.7 ounces and Razer sells optional sunglass lenses to pop in for $29.

At $199, the Anzu glasses certainly aren’t cheap, especially if you’re going to go the extra distance to put prescription lenses in them. Given that they check in at the same price point, they inevitably draw some comparison to the original Bose Frames. The Bose glasses, however, are specifically designed as sunglasses rather than typical specs. The Razer glasses also offer five hours of battery life compared to the 3.5 hours offered by the original Bose Frames.

Each temple charges independently via those metal contact points on the bottom. razer

Compared to the new $250 Bose Frames, the Anzu have slightly less battery life (5.5 hours for the Bose) but offer slightly stronger water resistance at roughly the same weight.

Amazon also charges $250 for its second-gen Echo Frames, which offer two speakers in each temple instead of one, as well as two beam-forming microphones instead of a single multi-directional unit. Predictably, Amazon’s glasses also offer much tighter integration with Alexa. That comes at the cost of shorter battery life.

Razer’s Anzu glasses are available for order now through the Razer site.

Sonos One Official: Alexa Built

Sonos One official: Alexa built-in, Google Assistant in 2023

Sonos may be rolling out Alexa support to its existing speakers, but the connected music company also has a brand new speaker with Amazon’s assistant onboard. The Sonos One looks at first glance like the existing Sonos PLAY:1, but it’s not just full of speaker drivers. Instead, it has a microphone array on top so you can speak directly to Alexa – though that’s just the start.

Those six microphones are a far-field array, intended to hear you from across the room, just as an Amazon Echo or Google Home might. You’ll be able to control it via the existing Sonos app – which is getting a visual refresh today – in addition to by tapping and swiping the control surface on top. Finally, you’ll be able to ask Alexa to play tracks and playlists.

In fact, Alexa will be capable of controlling not only the Sonos One but any other Sonos speakers in your network. Still, the speaker company isn’t placing all its eggs in Amazon’s basket. Sonos says it’s open to working with any voice assistant technology that wants to integrate, and that users would like to see.

Indeed, Google Assistant will arrive on Sonos in 2023, it was confirmed today. Beyond that, we could one day see Samsung’s Bixby onboard, if that escapes from the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy Note 8, or any other virtual assistant that wants to play ball. It’s part of Sonos’ reminder that, unlike some platforms, it isn’t just interested in giving access to a single music service but instead every one which listeners are subscribing to.

Next year, that’ll include Apple AirPlay 2 streaming, with the Sonos One among the first of Sonos’ speakers to support the technology. CEO Giles Martin insists that Sonos’ goal is “a world where customers us Sonos One with multiple voice assistants,” removing its dependency on Amazon alone – which has a higher-quality version of its own connected speaker, Echo Plus, launching soon.

“It’s the smart speaker that’s been built to be beautiful and sound great throughout your home,” Martin says. Inside, there are two Class-D digital amplifiers, one tweeter, and one mid-woofer. Of course, you’ll also be able to pair two Sonos One speakers together into a stereo pair, just as you can currently with the PLAY:1. It’ll also be groupable with other, non-Alexa-enabled Sonos speakers, and there’s Trueplay tuning support for making Sonos One sound better in irregular locations.

Sonos has baked in some privacy features, too. The light which illuminates when the microphone array is active is hard-wired into the circuit, for instance, so that the Sonos One can’t listen to you without some visual indication of that happening. Meanwhile there’s active noise cancellation, and any music being played while you give commands automatically has its volume lowered to give Sonos One a better chance of hearing.

Sonos One will go up for preorder today, and will ship on October 24. It’s priced at $199 in the US and £199 in the UK, or 229 euro in Europe.

Top Face And Image Recognition Apps To Follow In December 2023

Here are the top face and image recognition apps you can follow in December 2023

With the development of technology, Image recognition has convincingly become an integral part of our life.

Google Lens

One of the most trending and widely used testing tools with smartphone cameras is to recognize what the subject is by performing an image-based search. It offers detailed data regarding an image, text and also translates language. You just need to keep the camera focusing on the object and hold the button for a few seconds to trigger the camera and navigate choice language. The result shows possible details, links, and other relevant resources connected to the image. It also allows you to take snaps for saving information like contact, address, name, or URL of a website and saves your time for typing the data.  

AIPoly Vision

It is a very useful and excellent application designed for visually impaired, color blinded people. AIPoly helps people recognize objects, texts, food, plants and species, colors, popular products, etc., with their smartphone camera.  

Cam Find

This app also allows users with the visual search to take pictures of objects, which is then recognized, and the app would tell you what it is. The search result displays images, videos, and local shopping offers. CamFind is an image recognition search engine mobile app that allows users to identify, share, and save the data or its findings and create a social feed connecting users.  

BioID

BioID is a user-friendly face recognition app with a multi-factor user authentication system utilizing biometrics to identify and verify individuals. It enables the users to log on to various websites and mobile applications with this face identification. Through this app, you can prevent hackers with their patented fake defender feature. A user needs to open his camera for verification every time he logs in to a particular app. It also features to protect your device data from malware attacks, bugs, etc.  

Tap Tap See

This image recognition app is designed in such a way to help people affected with visual impairment or complete blindness to help identify objects using their smartphone camera lens with voice assistance. You may need a voice-over feature on iOS to enable this application talkback for Android.  

Google Reverse Image

This is a useful tool to find out similar images you want with a current object. The result shows search-related pictures of various dimensions, websites containing similar information, etc. It helps find a higher quality image, better size, and so on related to an uploaded image.  

ScreenShop

This app belongs to the shopping category, especially aiming at the fashion sector, to know about any item people accidentally bump into. ScreenShop helps you if you want to purchase or identify more about a product, its availability while you see it on photos from blogs, models, celebrities, etc. This app brings you possible information on clothes or accessories in pictures. It displays relevant products and similar available products of your choice in online stores. All you need to do is take a picture or screenshot.  

Flow Powered by Amazon

Flow is an image recognition app that helps in scanning business cards to save contacts. It is an Amazon product that identifies a diverse range of products like books, cover pages, DVDs, CDs, video games, packaged household items, etc. It has yet another feature to decode QR codes, UPC barcode, website or email address, information/business cards, phone numbers, etc.  

FaceApp

Face app is a face detection app launched in 2023 and has been trending for years on Android and iPhones. It highlighted celebrity recognition among other genres and started featuring people to view their younger or elder selves. With its tech-savvy AI-based styling features, this was a social media trend for a period, and the app got its name as the “best face recognition app actors.”  

Amazon Rekognition

With the development of technology, Image recognition has convincingly become an integral part of our life. Artificial intelligence and machine learning lead a vital reason behind this innovation. There are diverse kinds of products and applications in the market now, intended to analyze and recognize specific objects in graphics. Biometrics is now a critical feature utilized by firms and even individuals for their security. This concept now has complete application and helps control false arrests, diagnose genetic disorders and reduce malware attacks, cybercrimes, etc. Each application varies with its performance, working methods, applications, etc. Users can choose the product based on our requirements. Here we have listed a few commonly used best image recognition chúng tôi of the most trending and widely used testing tools with smartphone cameras is to recognize what the subject is by performing an image-based search. It offers detailed data regarding an image, text and also translates language. You just need to keep the camera focusing on the object and hold the button for a few seconds to trigger the camera and navigate choice language. The result shows possible details, links, and other relevant resources connected to the image. It also allows you to take snaps for saving information like contact, address, name, or URL of a website and saves your time for typing the chúng tôi is a very useful and excellent application designed for visually impaired, color blinded people. AIPoly helps people recognize objects, texts, food, plants and species, colors, popular products, etc., with their smartphone chúng tôi app also allows users with the visual search to take pictures of objects, which is then recognized, and the app would tell you what it is. The search result displays images, videos, and local shopping offers. CamFind is an image recognition search engine mobile app that allows users to identify, share, and save the data or its findings and create a social feed connecting users.BioID is a user-friendly face recognition app with a multi-factor user authentication system utilizing biometrics to identify and verify individuals. It enables the users to log on to various websites and mobile applications with this face identification. Through this app, you can prevent hackers with their patented fake defender feature. A user needs to open his camera for verification every time he logs in to a particular app. It also features to protect your device data from malware attacks, bugs, chúng tôi image recognition app is designed in such a way to help people affected with visual impairment or complete blindness to help identify objects using their smartphone camera lens with voice assistance. You may need a voice-over feature on iOS to enable this application talkback for chúng tôi is a useful tool to find out similar images you want with a current object. The result shows search-related pictures of various dimensions, websites containing similar information, etc. It helps find a higher quality image, better size, and so on related to an uploaded chúng tôi app belongs to the shopping category, especially aiming at the fashion sector, to know about any item people accidentally bump into. ScreenShop helps you if you want to purchase or identify more about a product, its availability while you see it on photos from blogs, models, celebrities, etc. This app brings you possible information on clothes or accessories in pictures. It displays relevant products and similar available products of your choice in online stores. All you need to do is take a picture or chúng tôi is an image recognition app that helps in scanning business cards to save contacts. It is an Amazon product that identifies a diverse range of products like books, cover pages, DVDs, CDs, video games, packaged household items, etc. It has yet another feature to decode QR codes, UPC barcode, website or email address, information/business cards, phone numbers, chúng tôi app is a face detection app launched in 2023 and has been trending for years on Android and iPhones. It highlighted celebrity recognition among other genres and started featuring people to view their younger or elder selves. With its tech-savvy AI-based styling features, this was a social media trend for a period, and the app got its name as the “best face recognition app actors.”Amazon brought an image recognition tool offering image and video recognition. It is highly programmed to analyze objects, scenes, activity, texts, unsafe content, identifying people from your image library, facial analysis of smiling, open-eyed, glasses, beard, etc. It highlights the ability to constantly learn. Amazon Rekognition is a highly intuitive and integral app that is not free but economical for such a well-featured tool.

Google Glass: Segway For Your Face?

Do you remember when the Segway was first released way back in 2001? It generated a lot of buzz from heavyweights like Steve Jobs and Jeff Bezos, the media, and the general public. And why not? It is an easy to operate two-wheeled, self-balancing, battery-powered electric vehicle.

In short, it was an achievement inventor Dean Kamen declared “will be to the car what the car was to the horse and buggy” in an interview with Time.

However, there were obviously concerns over the public’s safety, along with the $3,000 plus price tag. Which doomed the Segway in the end.

Despite the technology and hype, Segways just weren’t accepted by the masses. They put pedestrians in danger and people who drove them were often frowned upon.

Does that sound like a more recent device?

Enter Google Glass

In 2012 Google began testing, and later revealed, its Project Glass. Co-founder Sergey Brin wowed the audience by connecting with a group of skydivers, who were also wearing Glass, to give the audience a view of the dive. The crowd went nuts. Google proudly stated there were two goals for Glass: “communicating with images and giving people access to information”.

That was 2012. Reality would soon set in.

In July 2013, venture capitalist John Frankel announced his enthusiasm for Google Glass by stating:

It’s technology that sits between you and other people… it feels to me that it’s too impersonal. It feels more like the Segway than anything else, which is, ‘hey, this looks great on paper but I probably wouldn’t have one in the garage.’

Legality Issues

Before Glass was even released, there were privacy concerns, which resulted in it being banned from bars, movie theaters, casinos, and hospitals. Also, much like the Segway, laws began to prevent drivers from wearing Glass while behind the wheel – Gary Howell, for example, proposed a bill that in West Virginia would make “using a wearable computer with head-mounted display” illegal.

In fact, some people have already received tickets – California resident Cecilia Abadie was considered the first person to receive a ticket for wearing Glass while driving, however the ticket was thrown out.

Google Glass, much like the Segway, is creating a lot of legal headaches because the “technology is moving faster than the ability of our laws to keep track of it,” claims technology entrepreneur and fellow at Stanford Law School Vivek Wadhwa.

For example, there are questions regarding copyright infringement and piracy. A movie goer in Columbus, Ohio who wore a prescription pair of Glass to a showing of Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit in January, 2014 was detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations over piracy concerns. It’s also been suggested Glass wearers could be in violation of wiretapping laws in certain states if they say a command too quickly.

Public Reaction to Glass Wearers

Besides the legal issues over Glass, there’s also the problem with public perception. People hate Glass and the people who wear them – there’s even that enduring nickname “Glasshole”.

In fact, things have even gotten violent. Over the last several months, several Glass wearers have been physically attacked. There was the story of Sarah Slocum who was flipped off and had her Glasses ripped off her face while at a bar in San Francisco on February 21. There have also been incidents where the wearable computer is ripped off the face of a wearer and smashed by an unknown assailant.

Much like the antisocial perception of people driving Segways, Glass has also gotten a negative image. Overall, both the Segway and Glass were seen as “uncool”.

There’s also the question of where you can actually wear Glass. A great essay written by Mat Honan in Wired explains this perfectly.

My Glass experiences have left me a little wary of wearables because I’m never sure where they’re welcome. I’m not wearing my $1,500 face computer on public transit where there’s a good chance it might be yanked from my face. I won’t wear it out to dinner, because it seems as rude as holding a phone in my hand during a meal. I won’t wear it to a bar. I won’t wear it to a movie. I can’t wear it to the playground or my kid’s school because sometimes it scares children.

Segway also face similar concerns. After all, it wasn’t allowed on certain sidewalks, the bicycle lane, or the highway.

What Else Is Holding Back Glass?

Finally, there’s the cost. Google Glass will set you back $1,500. For a lot of people, that’s a hefty price tag for a device that isn’t welcomed by the public, is banned from many businesses, and doesn’t have wide fashion appeal (even though some designers are trying). The Segway faced similar concerns with its cost: that $3,000 could have been spent on something that was more socially acceptable.

Maybe Google has heard the comparisons with Segway.  The Big G has recently teamed up with Luxottica, the company behind Ray-Ban and Oakley. Apparently Google and Luxottica will both “design, develop, and distribute a new breed of eyewear for Glass.” While this may not change the public opinions of Glass, at least they’ll look cooler and maybe some consumers won’t be as hesitant to wear them.

So, are the comparisons warranted? Is Google Glass indeed the Segway for your face?

Some believe this comparison is unjustified. Pete Bachal argued on Mashable that the comparison isn’t fair because the Segway relied on environmental factors, while Glass has the ability to enhance users personal lives.

As of now, it’s incredibly easy to notice the similarities. Both the Segway and Glass are innovative technologies that not only challenge our ways of thinking, but also alter our lifestyles. Both presented legal questions and public opposition.

However, it’s also too early to rule Glass a failure. Google is working to make Glass more stylish and the price will drop sooner than later. And all that hubbub over privacy concerns may simmer down once Glass becomes more commonplace.

Until Glass has the chance to hit the mainstream marketplace, it appears to be following the same trajectory as Segway. The difference, however, is that Google is going to make sure Glass will eventually be embraced by a majority of people.

What do you think? Is Glass the Segway for your face? Or will be it Google’s most successful business venture?

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