bissl spät, aber doch…
I was flying back from California last week, watching a video on my iPhone, and next to me was this guy who kept glancing at me and smirking. “Is that an iPhone?”, he finally asked. I nodded. “Humph,” he grunted and assumed an air of superiority. I was a bit taken aback so I asked him why he didn’t like iPhones. “Oh,” he said, “they’re okay, I guess,” and then he mumbled under his breath “if you are into that sort of thing.” I couldn’t just let that go, so I asked him if he had ever actually used an iPhone.
He looked around as if to see if anyone else was looking, and gave me a conspiratorial smile. “I’ve got something to show you,” he said. And he proceeded to pull out a tiny gadget that looked like an earpiece for a phone. “Check out my device,” he said. “It’s an integrated PDA, phone, GPS and HD multimedia station.” I asked him how he dialed the phone, and he said that it uses a built-in address book with voice recognition. You just say a name , and it looks it up in your address book and dials. What about names that aren’t in the address book? He says that since the device is always online, it does a directory search over the Internet and tries to find a match that way. But, how do you know what number it found? There’s no display! Before I understood what was going on, he removed a contact lens from his eye and asked me to put it in. I thought this was crazy. But, he had a liquid that he sprayed on it to clean it. Still skeptical, I popped it into my eye, and I was completely blown away. As if floating in air was a transparent view of a screen with a phone style interface. “Now,” he said, “use your pupil to navigate the cursor, and crunch your jaw to click. Right side of the mouth for right click, left side for regular click, and bite your tongue to scroll.” It took me a little practice, but I was soon able to move things around the screen with ease. I could see as if I was looking at a computer screen. It was like nothing I’ve ever seen before. And then he played a movie for me. Unbelievable resolution, and hi fidelity sound. The growing pain in my tongue was the only downside I could see to this device.
The “phone” had a full fledged PDA interface. It had video watching mode, an Internet browser, visual voicemail, and many other features that I had never even heard of. I asked my new friend where he got this, and he said that it is a prototype of a new product he invented that he is calling the EyePhone. He had a few glitches to work out, and then he was going to try to commercialize it. I volunteered on the spot to be a beta tester for him, and he agreed. I now have a room full of these test devices, and a year’s supply of Hi Definition contact lenses. Needless to say, I am dumping my iPhone.
So, if you ever see me staring off into space with a blank look, it’s not that I’m ignoring you; I’m probably just reading email or looking something up in my calendar, perhaps checking to see what happened on April 1.
ps. april, april ;)