A man wakes up in a New York apartment, brews coffee and goes out into the world, and everything that can appear on a smartphone or iPad appears before his eyes instead: weather reports, calendar reminders, messages from friends, walking maps of New York, his girlfriend’s smiling face. This is the promise of Google’s Project Glass, which released the video.
On the one hand, the video is a testament to modern technology’s extraordinary feats — not only instant communication across blocks or continents, but also an almost superhuman access to information about the world around us. The Man in the Google Glasses can find his way effortlessly through the mazes; he can take photograph of anything he sees; he can make a desired purchase from any corner of the world.
But the video also captures the sense of isolation that coexists with our technological mastery. The Man in the Google Glasses lives alone, in a monotonous, impersonal apartment. He meets a friend for coffee, but the video cuts away from this live interaction, leaping ahead to the moment when he snaps a photo of some “cool” graffiti and shares it online.
In this kind of world, the Man in the Google Glasses might feel like a king of infinite space. But actually he will be inhabiting a comfortable, full-service cage.