quantified running with google glass

So I’m part of the first wave of Google Glass people. Some sort of wearable computing platform will eventually come to pass, whether its Google’s project, time will tell. For now I’m perfectly happy to get my hands on Glass and play around with it, push it around, test the limitations. Regardless of the current capabilities I thought it fun to toss together some concepts. I focus on quantifying my running, finding ways of improving my training and races, Glass is an obvious candidate for a useful Biofeedback device. Below are just a few ways a HUD for runners could look like. I’ve written about this previously here, but now we are actually getting closer to reality. I’m not focusing on the downsides here, just on possibilities.

google glass running sports hud
“ugh, my pace is dropping up these hills”

This shows the user looking down towards their watch and getting total time, heart rate, and pace displayed in a clearer way. This would eliminate mashing of buttons on the watch and the display could remain in view after the hand is taken down, perhaps fading after 10 seconds. Pointing Glass towards a device such as a smart phone or GPS watch to enhance and augment seems a pretty obvious step, although I’ve so far seen little mention of it.

google glass hud sports running
“only a few feet in front of me…”

This image of a running buddy or training partner shows how you’re running compared to the scheduled workout. Time, heart rate and pace are displayed under the current weather. The red square around the heart rate is meant to alert you that you’re exceeding maximum levels for the workout.

google glass hud running shoes display
“these shoes are looking pretty worn out”

Keeping up with use of your equipment could be just a matter of looking at it. This displays the make and model, how many miles have been put on them and how much you can purchase them for currently. One could imagine direct links to purchasing current models from the website as well.


google glass hud running sports map
“where the hell am I?”

Display of progress and a hint at where you are going could be useful. Mile markers show up as well as the next point of interest. Your estimated time of finishing the workout would be based on your current pace. Navigation would be useful in unknown areas. (although I thoroughly enjoy getting lost myself)

There are multiple other concepts I might share later, the social sharing and media recording side of the device are also features worth exploring. Imagine experiencing a sporting event through the eyes of the athlete for example. I would love to be able to flip through a dozen runners competing in HardRock100 for example. Their POV could be amazing. Perhaps even while I’m running myself in some boring workout.

Integration with Nike+, Garmin, DailyMile and other workout services is inevitable. How well the device performs while running and how much it will be adopted by consumers remains to be seen. I plan to test Glass for all its worth and won’t spare the scorn either. Who knows, it might be useless for runners in its current form.

Thanks and any feedback or input is much appreciated.