Friday, October 3, 2014

Google Glass now closed-captions conversations

From Gizmag:

Google Glass hasn't exactly set the world on fire – or, for that matter, even left beta status. But that doesn't mean there aren't still some cool potential uses for the headset. Today Glass has two big new apps: one that can turn it into a life-changing tool for the hearing-impaired, and another that, erm, helps movie theaters sell tickets.

Captioning on Glass (CoG) is a real-time closed-captioning app for Google Glass. If you're deaf or hard of hearing, you'll see the words that a partner is speaking to you on your Glass display – almost instantly.

The only catch is that the speaker needs to be talking into a paired Android smartphone with a companion app installed. Google Glass has its own built-in microphone and voice recognition software, but it's much better at recognizing the wearer's voice than it is background voices. The CoG service uses the paired phone's microphone, held near the mouth of the person that's speaking, to deliver much more accurate transcription.

If the Captioning app transcribes something wrong, the speaker can easily correct it from within the phone app (either from a list of suggestions or entered manually). And if the Glass wearer is also visually-impaired, he or she can adjust the text size.

Like most other Glass functions, the process is triggered with an "OK Glass" command (in this case, followed by "... recognize this!").

Preview for Glass offers new functionality as well, but it's of a more commercial nature. After installing the app, you simply wear Glass to a movie theater, look at a coming attraction poster and say "OK Glass, recognize this!" (yep, the same command as CoG). The movie's trailer will then play on your head-mounted display.

If you aren't yet convinced of Google Glass' merits, then Preview won't likely change that. After all, it isn't exactly hard to whip out your smartphone and open the YouTube app while waiting for a flick to start. But if you're already a happy Glass Explorer, then perhaps it could save you the trouble of reaching into your pocket the next time you pass that new Mockingjay poster.

Both of the new "Recognize this!" apps are available now from the source links. And you can learn more about Captioning on Glass in the video below.