Dennis D. McDonald (ddmcd@outlook.com) is an independent consultant located in Alexandria Virginia. His services and capabilities are described here. Application areas include project, program, and data management; market assessment, digital strategy, and program planning; change and content management; social media; and, technology adoption. Follow him on Google+. He also publishes on CTOvision.com and aNewDomain.

Has Google Lost Control of Glass?

Has Google Lost Control of Glass?

By Dennis D. McDonald

What drives me crazy about the debates around Google Glass is the groups of people who keep on saying, “Society will adjust. People will get used to it. It’s no different than what we have now with omnipresent security cameras and smartphones in every pocket.”  

So the people who raise legitimate questions are accused of being anti-progress Luddites who don’t remember the Apple 2 or the early days of cellphones?

Nonsense. Debate is good. If someone makes a ridiculous statement based on falsehoods or half-truths, call that person out and debate on facts. But don’t tell people who don’t like their pictures to be taken to just “get used to this new order.” Respond to their concerns. And don’t pillory the people who ask “how does it benefit me?” with “step aside - you just don’t understand.”

It’s a new technology. People need to debate it. Evangelists like Scoble might actually be muddying the water where other quieter folks are actually working on clever or original applications that will actually benefit people.

This “us vs. them” horse-race so early in the game is not necessarily productive. I am beginning to wonder if this is evidence that Google really doesn’t know how to manage this process — and might have actually lost control. 

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Copyright (c) 2013 by Dennis D. McDonald

Update

on 2013-05-08 12:14 by Dennis D. McDonald

I’ve been following the discussions about Glass on Google+, which is, naturally, a very friendly environment for the discussion of all things Google. People who post questions about Glass inevitably get shouted down by Glass supporters, even when the comments and questions seem justified (to me).

In one Google+ comment stream I compared Google with Microsoft because comments like “If you don’t use Android products from Google you’ll be left behind” seemed eerily reminiscent of the old days when Microsoft was so powerful. Here is one of my comments when someone took umbrage with that comparison:

People don’t like to hear any comparisons of Google with Microsoft,. I understand that, given that Microsoft is no longer dominant. But the “left behind” argument (“if you don’t switch to Android you will be left behind”) is reminiscent of Windows and the peer pressure it and its developer community once wielded. One major difference is that Google no longer controls Android the way that Microsoft is still trying to control Windows. Also, Google is proving that it really does not understand the product market the way it understands the search/advertising market; look how it has lost control of the messaging surrounding its beta product Glass: /lost.html.  

I view that as unfortunate, given my liking for so many Google products. But it doesn’t give me a great sense of comfort as Google continues to tie all of its products and services together, which in the long run may actually be increasing its vulnerability. 

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