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Google Glass apps start to hit. Wink! Wink!

Winky app lets Glass users take a picture with just a blink of the eye

May 3, 2013 01:10 PM ET

Computerworld - Now that developers have Google Glass in hand, the first apps are starting to come out.

An early app that's already getting lots of attention is called Winky. Aptly named, the app enables Glass users to take a picture simply with the wink of an eye.

Glass was designed to be manipulated with touch, gesture and voice. For instance, a user could say, "Google Glass, shoot a video."

Developer Mike DiGiovanni from Roundarch Isobar, an app development and digital marketing firm based in Chicago, decided to make it even easier to manipulate Glass.

"Winking really changes things," DiGiovanni wrote on Google+. "You might not think it's hard to say, 'Ok, Glass Take a Picture' or even just tap a button. But it's a context switch that takes you out of the moment, even if just for a second. Winking lets you lifelog with little to no effort."

He added that he's taken more pictures using Glass in one day with the Winky app than he had in the previous five days.

"Sure, they are mostly silly, but my timeline has now truly become a timeline of where I've been," DiGiovanni wrote.

Winky will be released first as Android source code that can be compiled and run as an APK, or in the Android Application Package file format..

"I'm trying to stay away from providing just APKs since there may be personal information that is less protected than on your average Android device and I don't want there to be any questions about whether I'm touching your data," he explained.

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Last month, Google started shipping early editions of Glass to developers and testers, who it dubbed Explorers. The computerized eyeglasses don't come for free, though, even for developers and testers. They have a price tag of $1,500.

In an interview with the BBC.com late last month, Eric Schmidt, Google's executive chairman, said Glass still is about a year away from being officially released.

He also said Glass, which can take photos and video surreptitiously, will create a need for a new conversation about privacy and digital etiquette.

Sharon Gaudin covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter at Twitter@sgaudin, or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed Gaudin RSS. Her e-mail address is sgaudin@computerworld.com.

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