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This article was published on April 10, 2012

Think Google’s Project Glass is sci-fi? This developer hacked it together with existing parts

Think Google’s Project Glass is sci-fi? This developer hacked it together with existing parts
Jamillah Knowles
Story by

Jamillah Knowles

Jamillah is the UK Editor for The Next Web. She's based in London. You can hear her on BBC Radio 5Live's Outriders. Follow on Twitter @jemi Jamillah is the UK Editor for The Next Web. She's based in London. You can hear her on BBC Radio 5Live's Outriders. Follow on Twitter @jemimah_knight or drop a line to [email protected]

Google’s Project Glass video went viral last week. The clip shows life for someone wearing spectacles with an AR display that shows messages, location and alerts.

As most of us noted, it is a mock-up of what could happen and that’s all sci-fi right? Nope.

As reported on SlashGear, an AR developer in Oxford has worked up a little version of Google Glass for himself. Will Powell was so inspired by Google’s video that he ran up a set of AR glasses and posted a video showing what it looks like.

The unit is a combination of Vuzix glasses, HD webcams and a mic headset with with a custom-coded Adobe Air application. Powell explains the speech recognition element, “It harnesses the Dragon NaturallySpeaking engine so can perform full audio recognition. It can create appointments (only within app) using the full speech recognition. Also the app can take photos upload them and share them.”

As the kit appears to already exist and the data is readily available (Powell pulls his weather report from Yahoo! for the clip) the magic of Google’s Glass suddenly looks to be less than magic but in fact readily available to those who have the know how.

For the naysayers who want to believe that Powell’s video is a compound of special effects, the video carries this statement at the end, “All video is recorded in real time and is undoctored.”

So in a David and Goliath set up in the race for heads-up AR on glasses, it looks as though David just made a score look easy. Your move Google.

See also: 5 ways that Google’s AR glasses could change our world