While at AKQA, the interns were asked to create a Google Glass experience that would showcase the company’s understanding of (and proficiency with) the platform. I didn’t have any previous experience with Glass, but volunteered because I thought the form factor presented an intriguing challenge. Oh, and I forgot to mention my two teammates and I only had one week to design and develop a functioning application. It was a long week.
Our domain research showed us that most glass applications were very functional, and many of them were interesting new ways to provide relevant information in specific contexts. The gap we saw was there was a lack of experiences centered around play, or even that weren’t entirely functional. In this we saw an opportunity to leverage a novel technology to enhance an already exciting and fun activity - Lazertag.
Considering our tight one week timeline, we decided to start with an existing product, and then divide and conquer. Sarah was responsible for the hardware side of collecting data from the guns with Arduino, While Breno was responsible for the software side of the Arduino. I was responsible for the Google Glass side of things, and making the Arduino and Glass talk.
The concept we were going for was essentially a “Call of Duty” style heads up display for lazertag. First person shooter video games without the constant stream of information shown on the interface are a lot less fun and a lot more difficult. Bringing something that people practically fantasize about on a daily basis and make it tangible in a fun and safe environment was a really intriguing idea to me.
In the end, we created a working Glazertag system with two guns (but unfortunately, only one Glass), and a document detailing our process, learnings, and next steps for the future. take a look at the document at the link below. I’m unable to share the code, but you can check out the source of my other glass app.