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Google Glass demo

When Dr. Betty Parker read a Kalamazoo Gazette article about a local company –Newmind Group—securing one of the few licenses for Google Glass in Michigan, she knew she had found something special to share with her internet marketing students. Like many faculty  members, Parker keeps in touch with former students and  realized that one of the employees who appeared in the article was also MBA student Daniel Proczko, Newmind’s ‘stylish marketing nerd.’

She contacted Proczko and asked if he would talk to a group of internet marketing students about working in a new technologies field and he agreed – and offered to  demo the glasses.  During the presentation by Proczko and  Matthew Vollmar, vice president of Newmind, students and faculty were exposed to the "wearable computer,” which uses an optical head-mounted display, connects to the internet via your cell phone and produces sound by vibrating on the back of your ear so only the wearer hears the sound.

Parker, who had been reading about Google Glass in the business press, says the product gives new meaning to ubiquitous computing. “It is exciting to imagine the types of applications that will be realized,” says Parker, “and just the type of innovation to share with our students.”  Parker is co-director of a new interdisciplinary major in electronic business marketing, one of the only such programs in Michigan to combine information systems with marketing.

According to Proczko, Google Glass is a “device you use in motion to capture what you do in your every day life,” noting that with a tilt of your head and a short comman, the glasses capture a picture.

During the class, Proczko and Vollmar shared Newmind’s story of success and the way they were able to secure the product.

“NewMind Group’s business philosophy is that we start with a relationship. Technology isn’t always our clients’ core business, so we try to make technology work better for our customers,” says Vollmar, who is a graduate of the WMU college of engineering..

“How we work is actually integral to how we got Google Glass,” says Proczko, who will complete his MBA in December. "To be knowledgeable in technology we need to be testing and using new devices and solutions even if they aren't consumer ready, including Google Glass. Newmind is a premier Google Apps and Chromebooks reseller and we have helped over 800 eduicational institutions and small- to mid-sized businesses deploy Google's products. This relationship helped us secure the Google Glass device."

During the presentation, students and guests were able to test out the device and then asked to think of possible uses for the product. Ideas included facial recognition for security purposes; head's up driving directions; and medical procedures.

"Glass is what I would consider a blank canvas. Google has created a product with some incredible capabilities but very little software. We will see over the next few years what sort of innovation arises from this blank canvas." says Vollmar.

Editor: Cindy Wagner
Haworth College of Business
2100 Schneider Hall
Western Michigan University
Kalamzoo MI 49008-5457 USA
(269) 387-5050 | (269) 387-5797 Fax