Google Glass: Who gets to explore it first, and why

A student charts details about which Twitter users won a Google Glass competition and the pitches that got them into the early user circle.

Google's #ifIhadglass competition has ended and just who will get the opportunity to test drive its upcoming Glass wearable computers is coming to light.

In February Google issued a call for "explorers" willing to pay $1500 to try out the computerized eyeglasses that take voice commands and replace many smartphone features. People interested in doing so had to apply via Google+ or Twitter using the hashtag "#ifihadglass" and say in 50 words or less what they would do with Glass. Within the last few days Google has been notifying some of the people who were chosen.

Want to know who they are? Andrej Karpathy, a computer science Ph.D. student at Stanford, has compiled a list of some of them: Twitter users who've been invited by @ProjectGlass in descending order starting with people with the most followers on the microblogging platform.

It looks like some very influential folks will soon be sporting Glass. Neil Patrick Harris, who plays Barney Stinson on "How I Met Your Mother," tops the list with 5.5 million followers and said he'd use Glass to let people see what it's like to act on the show's set.

With more than 5 million followers rapper Soulja Boy is next on the list and said he plans to wear Glass in an upcoming music video. And actor Alyssa Milano, with nearly 2.4 million Twitter followers, also will soon be wearing the high-tech glasses and said she'll use them on humanitarian missions.

So far the list includes 56 Twitter users with more than 100,000 followers, and while it might be tempting to think Google is skewing its invitations toward celebrities Karpathy's calculations indicate only 7 percent of the Twitter users who have been invited to try Glass have more than 10,000 followers and 61 percent have fewer than 1000 followers. Remarkably, 26 percent (more than 600 people) have fewer than 100 followers, so you can't accuse Google of slighting the average Joe.

Meanwhile, Google says some people who were invited to the program "slipped through the cracks" and will be disqualified.

According to The Verge, at least two Twitter users have had their invitations yanked.  "#IfIHadGlass, I'd throw it at your face. ._.," reads one. Another says "#ifihadglass I'd cut a bitch!"

It's a head-scratcher, and Google says it's looking into how the bad eggs were included in the mix. According to New York Magazine the company also is blaming an independent panel outside itself for choosing the competition's winners.

Could it have been that someone thought including tactless entries makes for good diversity? On the Project Glass Google+ page the company does say "We need honest feedback from people who are not only enthralled and excited by Glass, but also people who are skeptical and critical of it."

Regardless, expect to soon see these things being worn in the wild. Google is inviting a total of 8000 people to pick them up in person in New York, Los Angeles, or San Francisco. My guess is the inconvenience will give Glass newbies the opportunity for hands-on help getting started with the device.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Googlevirtualizationconsumer electronicsgadgets

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?