Google Glass isn’t just out of reach financially for a lot people, it’s also out of reach conceptually for most. Everyone gets the idea that we’re moving toward a world with more information that’s easier to access, but beyond the quirky and creepy things like snapping pictures of everyone you meet, it’s still hard to get a handle on how someone would actually use Glass and the data. What are the benefits of having an ugly piece of metal voluntarily strapped to your face? Well, if you’re at all interested in sports, baseball in particular, you finally have your answer, its name is Blue.
Blue is a essentially a HUD for a live baseball game, taking baseball’s raw data and delivering the best of television merged with the live experience. The app takes info previously reserved for the hard-to-read scoreboard and puts it in Glass’s display, giving you get info like pitch count, speed, and whether it was a ball or strike. The app goes further, though, with actively involved players’ stats, a definite wow factor for those desperate to keep getting closer to the game.
Seeing Blue in action, via the demo video, really clarifies why Glass is worth caring about, even if it flops. Glass is about taking raw data from everyday life and connecting to you in some meaningful way, or at least that’s what it should be about. Baseball, like many sports, is something that connects with a lot of people, and this Glass app allows a way to dive further into the game data.
Why was Michael Lewis’s Moneyball such a hit and a game changer when it was released in 2003? It took raw data and made sense of it. More recently, the NBA has begun all outfitting arenas with cameras that track players, for the same reason, to collect raw data and try and use it in a meaningful way.
After all of Google’s efforts, I still hadn’t cared about Glass. Seeing a simple app make sense of the enormous amounts of data baseball has to offer however, I get it. At least I get why Glass could be great. Now it’s up to other developers to take Blue’s "aha" moment and exploit it like crazy if there’s any hope of Glass catching on.
[Image: Flickr user Keith Allison]