I'm probably going to come off sounding sanctimonious or worse but what the heck...it's just the Internet and nobody reads blogs anymore...
I saw this story about the first features available on Google Glass and yes, you'll be able to take pictures and respond to things with your voice and golly gee, you'll also be able to see your incoming email messages and read headlines from the NYT!! This reminded me of a talk that Raph Koster gave at GDC a few years back about how if games were such a powerful medium, then why weren't they addressing pressing social and humanitarian issues with that power? I actually think games are doing some of that - from Games For Change to Games for Health - I think games are being deployed to positive effect. I don't think that Google Glass is headed along the same path.
I find my self wishing that the story above was about how the first apps to be built and groups to get the devices would be efforts focused on collecting data for humanitarian relief or for scientific purposes or for First Responders to have access to critical information at the point of need. Seems like we used to start tech off at the "big purpose" level and then it trickled down to the consumer level. Now we start with the most retail of applications and hope that someone with vision can find a way to re-purpose that tech for loftier goals. I understand the dynamic...Google is an ad delivery platform and the Glasses will greatly help target that delivery. Just like Facebook Home will greatly aid Facebook (although I really don't see how Home will help Facebook users).
Don't get me wrong, I'm a big fan of capitalism - think the free market is terrific (w/ some limits) but I do think our present First World society gives pretty short shrift to the idea of service. I'm also as guilty as anyone else in engaging in that behavior. As a small step...maybe today....take a minute and Think Big...let's see what happens.