Students to explore film-making with Google Glass


Beauty is in the eye of the Google Glass wearer.

At least that's what the internet search giant hopes a handful of young film-makers will discover.

The $1 500 (R15 000) Google Glass headset is already being used by 10 000 so-called explorers. The device resembles a pair of glasses and allows users to take pictures, shoot videos, search the internet, compose e-mails and check schedules.

As part of its experiment, Google will lend each institution three pairs of Google Glass.

The participating schools are the American Film Institute, California Institute of the Arts, Rhode Island School of Design, University of Southern California and University of California, Los Angeles.

Google Inc says it plans to share an update of how students are progressing sometime after the colleges resume in the northern hemisphere’s autumn.

The company says the institutions will explore how to use Glass for documentary film-making, character development, location-based storytelling and "things we haven't yet considered".

Norman Hollyn, a professor at the USC School of Cinematic Arts, said students will be encouraged to use Glass to tell stories incorporating the first-person point of view.

He said one model that students might follow is one explored in the film Timecode by director Mike Figgis, which uses four cameras to capture four different people simultaneously. Students will also be encouraged to try to use Glass' data overlays as a way of revealing elements of a story. At least two short films are expected to be done by the beginning of next year, he said.

"We're kind of looking at it as, 'How can we push this to tell stories rather than just sit on a cool Disneyland ride and broadcast that out to people?' This excited us in a lot of ways."

Glass users can shoot video in "720 p" high-definition quality by issuing voice or touch commands.

Google has already shown off a few examples of how people are using the device, such as US tennis pro Bethanie Mattek-Sands preparing for Wimbledon and physics teacher Andrew Vanden Heuvel taking his class on a virtual field trip to the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research.

- Sapa

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