When I was young (somewhere in the early/mid ’90s), I saw some program (I don’t know which) on PBS and they were talking about some guy (I can’t find the program and don’t remember the name, but I presume it was either Thad Starner or Steve Mann) at MIT who is wearing a computer with a Head Mounted Display and a single hand keyboard, and a computer kept in some sort of backpack. At that point, I knew 2 things.
Wearable Computing is a future I want to be a part of.
MIT was where I wanted to go to college.
Now sadly I never got to attend MIT, in fact, other than a little time at Tarrant County College (formerly Tarrant County Junior College) in which I didn’t even earn an associate’s degree, I didn’t get to go to college at all. But I wanted to go to MIT.
This past week I’ve been attending the 24th Annual CALI Conference for Law School Computing at Harvard Law School. As usual, the conference was a blast and I have enjoyed checking out Harvard.
But what was especially exciting for me was getting a chance to visit MIT. That PBS special 20 years ago is a big part of what set me on my path toward becoming a programmer. As well as making me as fascinated as I was with technology and the future.
As I stood in front of the main building of MIT, wearing Google Glass and posing for pictures with Tim and Mayra, it struck me that I was there. I was wearing a computer at MIT. True, I was never a student of the esteemed university, and also true that I wasn’t on a team making that wearable computer, but as a glass explorer, I have been working with the team that did over the past year, providing feedback, testing it, going to events, developing apps.
And as a software engineer at Justia, I work with technology every day, and I get to work on projects that make a real difference in the world, making legal information more accessible to everyone. I may not be MIT educated, but my real dream of working with the future of technology is real, and I’m living it #ThroughGlass
A couple of quick closing thoughts… First, If the man in the video I watched 2 decades ago was indeed Thad Starner, then it is extra cool because he is a Technical Lead/Manager on Google’s Project Glass which means in the above picture I am literally wearing the culmination of his work from the project I was watching the video about in the first place.
And finally. If you walk around a frosted glass with MIT on it and look at it from behind. It says “Tim.” My boss approves.