Computer Apps Class gets special look at Google Glass


Tori Lafon

Advanced computer apps teacher Mrs. Lori Thumler tries out Google Glass with her class last week.

Students in Mrs. Lori Thumler’s Advanced Computer Apps Class are spending their fourth period in the computer lab. One student is inconspicuously blasting “Radioactive” by Imagine Dragons and another is playing a virtual target game, where the movements of his bobbing head guide his shots.

These student activities are not a surprising sight in a school filled with laptops, smartphones, and wandering minds. These actions, however, are not the product of any of the aforementioned technology.

These students are trying out Google Glass, Google’s latest contribution to the mass of portable computer technology.

Social media consultant Kathi Browne visited Bearden on Monday in order to give the Advanced Computer Apps class an overview of Google Glass’s features and capabilities, as well as a chance to experience them for themselves.

“I think Google Glass is the perfect example of what amazing things technology can do and I feel lucky to have gotten to see them demonstrated and try them on for size,” sophomore Gavin St. Pierre said.

Shaped like a pair of eyeglasses, Google Glass is a wearable computer equipped with a small, optical head-mounted display. Operated both through voice commands and taps on the touch-sensitive bar, the device is designed, according to Google, to “be there when you need it and get out of your way when you don’t.”

With a verbal command of “Ok Glass,” the Glass user can take photos, videos, notes, make phone calls, and operate My Glass apps through the device. Smartphones can also be synced to Google Glass in order to use other features such as GPS.

“Something I feel teenagers should take away from the product is that it can make driving safer and easier,” Browne said. “Glass lets you keep both hands on your wheel instead of on your phone or GPS.”

Another feature Browne showcased was the video call capabilities of the device, where the glass user can see the person they are calling in the screen and the person can see their point of view through the device.

“I feel the video call feature is very important because that is the way people are going to be business now and will do more so in the future and now the students can be prepared for that,” Mrs. Thumler said.

Although Google Glass is currently only available to a select group, it will likely become available to the general public within the next year.

“Teenagers need to understand devices like Glass because technology these days is moving so fast and there are so many new solutions to problems through its use,” Browne said. “It’s important to know about technology today so you know where it’s going tomorrow.”

Google Glass may or may not transform the future, yet one thing is clear: It has left a strong impression on Lori Thumler’s Advanced Computer Apps Class.