Pop diva Lady Gaga’s latest sunglasses are straight out of a spy movie. Produced in collaboration with Polaroid, and unveiled recently at CES 2011, the GL20 Camera Glasses use two small screens in the lenses to display images and video from an embedded camera. Users can snap photos or record video of their surroundings, and then upload that content to a computer via Bluetooth or a USB port hidden in the ear piece. The GL20 is scheduled to be available later this year at an undisclosed price. You can see the premier of Gaga’s latest venture into electronics at the CES press event in the video below. Devices like these Camera Glasses will make it remarkably simple to record one’s life as it happens. With her new line of products, Lady Gaga could help bring lifelogging to the masses.
Over a year ago, Polaroid announced it had hired Lady Gaga as its Creative Director. Through that collaboration was born the Grey Label, Gaga’s new line of designer electronics. Along with the GL20 Camera Glasses, Polaroid also announced the launch of a $150 mobile photo printer (with Bluetooth connectivity), and a new line of Polaroid cameras (with both digital and photo printing capabilities). During the press event, Gaga also mentioned that she’ll be producing a device that could push your photos directly to social media outlets:
Mobile printers and Polaroid cameras really don’t excite me much, but I’m going gaga for the Camera Glasses (oh, c’mon, I get one bad joke, don’t I?). The device, inspired by a time when Lady Gaga built costume spectacles out of two iPod screens, isn’t that remarkable technologically. It’s a digital camera with two small LCD displays – big deal. But the form of the GL20 could lead to a different kind of use case from traditional devices. Instead of pulling out a camera to take a picture, you’re always wearing your camera, and it’s always pointed where you are looking. That’s going to encourage you to take more candid photos. You’ll be creating a more passive visual record of your life.
That, in essence, is lifelogging. We’ve discussed the phenomenon many times before, and while it comes in different forms it always has the same basic premise: instead of capturing a few special moments on film, go ahead and record them all. Now, the GL20 Camera Glasses aren’t a continuous recording device. I’ve no idea how much memory or battery life they even have. Yet they are a wearable camera, and one that is promoted as an easy way to record what’s happening around you as you live it. Lady Gaga may not have designed the device as a lifelogging enabler, but it could definitely be just that.
It’s hard to know what vehicle will bring the concept of lifelogging into the mainstream. I’ve proposed extreme sports vlogging, and nostalgia as two possible driving forces. Celebrity could be a third. With her popular singing career and design cred, Lady Gaga might get many more trendy people wearing cameras and recording their lives. That idea is certainly bolstered by her plans to develop a social media enabled camera in the near future. Part of the draw of lifelogging will be sharing the visual minutiae of your life through the social network. Devices that do so automatically are further enabling a lifelogging mentality. Could Lady Gaga help give that phenomenon the push it needs to enter the public consciousness? Too soon to tell. But as video recording technology gets easier and more fashionable to use, we may all end up as our own personal paparazzi.
(Ok, so apparently I get two.)
[image credit: Polaroid]