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Wearable technology – Google Glasses tries again without the Google!

Who is Ralph Oster­hout? Why should you try and send him your resume? He is the founder and CEO of Oster­hout Design Group (ODG). He was the design­er of the PVS night vision gog­gle used by the mil­i­tary and cre­at­ed heads up dis­play for scu­ba masks. Basi­cal­ly he was doing wear­able tech­nol­o­gy before any­one else. Now you’re excit­ed right?

His com­pa­ny ODG was found­ed in 1999 as a tech incu­ba­tor, and is cur­rent­ly mak­ing wear­able tech solu­tions to the gov­ern­ment, enter­pris­es, and is shift­ing to con­sumer mar­kets. The San Fran­cis­co com­pa­ny is around 80 employ­ees. In the last six years ODG has been devel­op­ing the new gen­er­a­tion of smart­glass­es. They have man­aged to stuff thou­sands of dol­lars of tech­nol­o­gy into a pair of glass­es all for mobile use. The idea is your touch­screen tablet on your face. A souped up “Google glasses”.

NASA, the out­er space peo­ple made a state­ment that they are work­ing with ODG to explore the poten­tial of their smart­glass­es for space mis­sion work. They want to use vir­tu­al real­i­ty (VR) and aug­ment­ed real­i­ty (AR) to advance NASA’s future mis­sions and giv­ing astro­nauts advanced com­put­ing and visu­al­iza­tion technologies.

These glass­es have posi­tion­al sen­sors to enable pre­cise AR and VR expe­ri­ences. “ODG’s smart­glass­es are rev­o­lu­tion­iz­ing the way we explore infor­ma­tion and inter­act with our envi­ron­ments and each oth­er,” said Ralph Oster­hout in a state­ment. “As elec­tron­ic direc­tions and instruc­tions replace paper check­lists and longer dura­tion mis­sions are con­sid­ered, there is a need for tools that can meet evolv­ing demands,” said Lau­ri Hansen, engi­neer­ing direc­tor at NASA . But imag­ine the pos­si­bil­i­ties as a com­mer­cial product.

Look­ing at the con­sumer mod­el, which should be avail­able lat­er this year, it weighs five ounces and still main­tains itself in the realm of fash­ion­able sun­glass­es. Vis­i­bil­i­ty is nor­mal, yet the inside sur­face has a view­ing capa­bil­i­ty of a 720 HDTV. They’ve been ship­ping its R‑6 smart­glass­es for 18 months, and show­ing off the R‑6S next week.

If you go onto their site, they are allow­ing devel­op­ers to sign up for a small fee and get access to
guides, tuto­ri­als, exam­ple appli­ca­tions, sam­ple code, forums, and com­ing soon: Ret­i­cleOS Mar­ket­place. The real test will be if Android appli­ca­tion devel­op­ers take advan­tage of its capa­bil­i­ties in hands-free aug­ment­ed real­i­ty, high-def­i­n­i­tion video view­ing, and 3D enter­tain­ment. A whole new way to approach media.

Wear­able tech­nol­o­gy is where it’s at peo­ple. Seri­ous­ly a smart per­son could turn this tech­nol­o­gy into some­thing that could real­ly shine. To top that, how awe­some would it be to call ODG your home, think about it!

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