Google now owns Word Lens – Visual Translator

When I came across Word Lens at the beginning of the school year, I was immediately impressed.  It was incredible how the software on my i-Phone worked and even with printed handwriting.  Once, while trying to communicate with a Spanish speaking parent, I couldn’t get the message through.  Using the Word Lens app and Post-It Note, communication was accomplished!  I have really thought about this tool since that day and wondered how English Language Learners (ELL) could benefit from this technology.  Predicting that this acquisition was a key move on Google’s part to incorporate it fully into the Glass platform, it will be some time before Glass devices are affordable to schools.  Hoping that  Google’s  “Do no harm” mantra will continue, this app may find its way into the Google Apps for Education within Chrome and could be a staple on the millions of Chromebooks in schools for the 14-15 school year.


In order for students to use the translator, there needs to be a solution around the usefulness of the camera.  In its current state, students would have to hold up the text or book and read over it while viewing the computer screen.


A work around would be to utilize a light, portable, durable USB document camera that would sit to the side of the Chromebook and translate text in real time making books, directions, vocabulary accessible to the emerging language learner.

The best part?  If you have an Android or iOS device, the App is currently free as are all the language packs which are usually priced at $3 each.  I guess it’s time to put those aging i-Phones to good use.

Word Lens

MetaPro: 15 times the screen of Google Glass

Umm… Wow!  Not as clean looking as the Google Glass but I am so excited for where technology will be in about 5 years.  I love the concept of hand recognition for digital manipulation.  I can see students writing and solving mathematical formulas without ever touching a piece of paper.  You won’t win any style awards but essentially as a working first production, pretty incredible.
The largest augmented reality optics in the world under $100,000, coupled to the most powerful wearable computer. Real time 3D scanner on board.
500+ Applications that run directly on the Meta Glasses.
Use your phone, laptop and computer without ever touching them again.

Student Academic Awareness (SAA): How will you see your students in a few years?

Google Glass Student TrackingI have been watching the deployment of Google Glass with much trepidation and wonder how society will receive the ultimate Big Brother on my face.  Will people not speak with me until I remove the Heads-Up Display that I wear like a fighter pilot careening around the corners of my school halls once the novelty wears off?  I don’t think the real value of what they have to offer will be fully realized by showing student perspectives on classes or making first person experiments come to life because, really, we already had this ability. Rather, it will be the infinite data that will present to a teacher as they differentiate, adjust instruction in real time and work with students using data that simply  loads by looking at a student’s scan sheet and providing instantaneous feedback.  Realizing that hurdles will have to be overcome with the current (as of my last understandings) limitations of facial recognition software being released, the possibilities for Student Academic Awareness (SAA) are limitless.  As an administrator, the benefit of interacting with students and being able to coach them using relevant, in the present, data would be invaluable.  Even more so, the software suite that measures the statistical probability of being told the truth when trying to find out who wrote all those nice things about me in the bathroom.