Google Glass and Clips engineer shares ‘fatal flaws’ with products

there rather Interesting topic by a software engineer who worked at Google Glass and Clips who discusses the “fatal flaws” of both, and the internal cultures that allowed the devices to ship.

Beginning with Google Glass analysis, Warren Craddock worked as a Senior Software Engineer “Camera Design Specialist” for 16 months on the project.

The first flaw, Craddock said, is how “you haven’t done anything really useful” despite efforts to find “some task or situation where Glass is indispensable.” Neither Google found a “killer app” in-house, nor third-party developers once the Explorer version was launched.

Contributing to this is that the 640 x 360 “screen is too small, awkwardly placed in the corner of your eye.” In the meantime, use cases Google has found – including asking “quick questions like, ‘Ok Glass, what is the height of the Eiffel Tower? and took [photos] of potted plants on their desks,” plus phone notifications – ultimately not considered useful by the market.

The second flaw of how “you looked stupid while wearing it” is backed up by an anecdote about how “nobody wore glasses in the office at all. Devices are sitting on our desks, USB plugged in, charging endlessly.”

It is said that Google “never directly admitted fatal flaws whatsoever” and continued to push the product.

Glass eventually switched to the Enterprise edition, which was in its second edition, which found an industrial use case. Meanwhile, the work was applied to computer photography, specifically image merging and HDR+, to make the original Glass camera work really well, later being applied to Nexus and Pixel phones.

Meanwhile, Craddock – currently at Waymo – was on the Google Clips development team. A fatal flaw of the tiny camera that can automatically record moments was how it “takes pictures from strange locations.”

It turns out that humans only like photos that are taken from the eyes of other humans.

It’s an essential feature of our psychology, and it makes perfect sense.

We don’t like the vibe of pictures from tablets, backpacks, lapel pins, or dog collars.

Clips became aware of the problem and tried to correct it with everything from AI-based perspective correction that actually moved the camera a few inches to “mounting hardware”.

full thread Worth a read and also touches on what happened with the Lytro lightfield camera.

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