While the current iteration of Project Glass includes a single lens with all the computer bits on one side of your head, Google has applied for several patents in the past that show off a model that more closely resembles a full set of glasses. With that design comes a whole second half of the frame that could be filled with technology and purpose. Currently, you interact with Project Glass through a combination of voice, head gestures, and the touchpad on the side of the headset. Each has their own distinct purpose, but the limits of these interaction methods become clear when you have to make a single selection out of multiple options. For example, it wouldn’t be easy to dial a phone number with these input methods. For this, Google seems to be headed to the projector for answers.
As this is just a patent application, there’s no real concept for how this would actually work.Microsoft has the closest thing to something like this patent with their Omnitouch demonstration, pictured above, but that technology is far from being wearable just yet. The speculation is a lot of fun, but there are plenty of obstacles first. Pico projectors would have to run cool enough to be on for any length of time while strapped to your head, and the camera would need to be able to accurately detect your hand in a 3D space. While all of this is going on, the headset would need to be just as light as the current Project Glass headsets. This could be an interesting insight into the next generation of wearable tech from Google, but for now it’s just a fun pipe dream.