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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Google, google glass podu - ellame theriyum.....

Do you wear spectacles ? – the technology at this stage may not work for people like us who wear prescription glasses for myopia and other corrections !!!!!

Sankar’s Robot – Enthiran with the storyline of Sujatha, as a science fiction is exceptional…….. it is really stretching the realms of possibility – be it Chitti reading the entire book in a scanning motion before his face or helping Sana [Aishwarya Rai] write her exams with virtual images showing the pages…. Months ago there was this Idea advt – where people would take help [through connected phone line] and talk in language of that particular place, though they would be there on a transfer……

How great it would be to have answers to all the Qs that flash your mind when in an open place or have the right guidance and assistance at places where you need them most…  how great would be to have a picture just by saying ‘take picture’ – rather than doing so much of coordinated activity in taking out a picture in a camera – or having the distance and route flashed on the screen before you, the moment you think how long it is and how you are going to reach the destination ??

In recent days, we have been hearing so much of - Google Glass (styled "GLΛSS") -  a wearable computer with an optical head-mounted display (OHMD), developed by Google in the Project Glass research and development project, with a mission of producing a mass-market ubiquitous computer. Google Glass displays information in a smartphone-like hands-free format, that can communicate with the Internet via natural language voice commands. While the frames do not currently have lenses fitted to them, Google is considering partnerships with sunglass retailers such as Ray-Ban or Warby Parker, and may also open retail stores to allow customers to try on the device. The Explorer Edition cannot be used by people who wear prescription glasses, but Google has confirmed that Glass will eventually work with frames and lenses that match the wearer's prescription; the glasses will be modular and therefore possibly attachable to normal prescription glasses.

If we are to think that all these look beyond the realms of possibility and that it could be a real thing after more decades, read this report in TOI [and in all frontline newspapers] Chennai edition…….

When the surgeon's scalpel drew a red line on the patient's abdomen, two blocks away a group of medical students leaned toward their screens. The procedure was a simple hernia repair, but the surgical team was unusually upbeat as they turned to look at the latest gadget in the operation theatre - the Google Glass worn by their chief. As the medical fraternity in the west debates the usefulness of the newest device produced by software giant Google Inc, doctors in India have joined the chorus with bouquets and brickbats, even as a surgeon in the city became the first in the country to live-stream a surgery using the Google Glass. On Tuesday, Lifeline Hospitals live-streamed an upper gastro-intestinal laparoscopy procedure on a 45-year-old man and a hernia repair on a 42-year-old woman to medical students seated two blocks away using Google Glass. "It felt like I was glancing at my rearview mirror while driving. I was focusing on the surgeries and talking to my students at the same time. At one point, I stopped feeling it was an external device," said Dr J S Rajkumar, chief surgeon of the hospital. 

It was the utlisiation of Google Glass, a wearable computer that has a frame similar to traditional eyeglasses. It follows voice commands to take photos and videos that show the viewpoint of the user. The surgeries were live-streamed on Google Hangout as well. Doctors say the gadget is yet another step forward in opening the doors of the operation theatre. "People need to know what is happening behind those doors. This is one more gadget towards that end. Students can see the surgical procedures through their seniors' eyes, quite literally. This is a phenomenal surgical tool," said Dr Rajkumar.

"We did face some practical glitches like problems with wi-fi and the battery dying early." Although the gadget is yet to hit the market, Google distributed 2,000 of the gizmos earlier this year for testing before its release to the general public. Besides being an educational tool, doctors say the technology could be used to view X-rays, MRI images and other medical information as they conduct surgeries. It could also be used to connect with doctors in far flung places, provided their internet connectivity is good.

While some doctors say the device could soon become a fixture in operation theatres, some see it as a distraction. "It's too early to celebrate this as a breakthrough in healthcare tools. Unless it is carefully vetted, it could be a disaster for patients," said Dr R Ravi Kumar, director, institute of cardiovascular disease, robotic surgery centre at Chettinad Health City. He said operation theatres already had gadgets performing the same functions as Google Glass. "I use a camera attached to my head which is live-streamed to audiences in different parts of the world. So what makes this gadget special? We'll have to wait till it hits the market," said the doctor, adding that the price tag of $1,500 was too steep too expensive for many doctors.

Google Glass is likely to be available from 2014 in India. Official Price of Google Glass for India is not yet released by the company. However, with such technology, it will cost a few thousands less than a lakh in early stages and would come down much in later days.

Are you ready for the magic ? – it has just begun…

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

18th Sept. 2013.


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