google glass

For a few years now, we’ve heard about Google Glass, wearable technology that essentially brings the functionality available on a smartphone to a pair of eyeglasses.

Users of the $1,500 glasses experience augmented reality, or enhancement of the real world with digital elements. For example, say you are studying an ancient sculpture at a museum. While wearing the glasses, simply look at the artwork and a variety of pertinent facts about it will appear on your glasses in real time, enhancing your learning experience.

It remains to be seen whether Google Glass adoption will become mainstream. While some research seems to indicate customers might not be interested in the product—being that it’s a new and untested device—other studies predict more than 800,000 pairs of glasses will be ordered this year. Fast forward to 2018, and that number explodes to 21.1 million.

One detractor from Google Glass usage could be that, despite the fact that Google likely knows quite a lot about us from our previous use of its products,  some customers might be reluctant to allow the company deep visibility into their lives—from where they go, to with whom they speak , to what they’re seeing at any given time.

Wanting to take advantage of the promise of Google Glass, one Indian inventor put together some wearable tech of his own. Arvin Sanjeev built a Raspberry Pi-powered Google Glass knockoff—his “Smart Cap”—using open source technologies. The instructions to Sanjeev’s project can be seen here.

While it’s probably safe to say that the smart cap isn’t the sleekest looking piece of technology, it might be a pretty good alternative to Google Glass for those who want to maintain their privacy, enjoy challenging projects and not spend $1,500 on the technology anytime soon.

Sanjeev’s smart cap speaks to the power of open source: figuring out how to build or create something and then sharing those plans with the world. As such, we can expect to see someone figure out how to make the Indian inventor’s project slightly better, a process we hope will continue.

Read More: 5 Reasons Why Google Glass was a Miserable Failure

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