Willy Wonka & The Google Factory

Willy Wonka & The Google Factory

I've got the golden ticket! 

Okay, not really.

But it certainly felt like I was Charlie and had received an invitation to visit the Willy Wonka  Chocolate Factory.


With my nerdiest-techy friend Ronald invited, we met at Google's Santa Monica campus for my appointment. Yes, it was just as cool on the inside as you imagine it to be. We were greeted by Google Glass employees sporting the device and then led to a check-in table where they handed  us our "Glass XE" badges.

My Glass guide, Anngie and I

My Glass "guide" Anngie walked us through the patio (which has a projector screen, hammocks, gorgeous landscaping and beautifully designed outdoor tables) past the cafeteria (the food smelled delicious and fresh) and then into the Glass campus.

The interior and layout reminded me of an empty, intimate Apple store. Hardwood floors, wooden accents, white displays, clean lines, and simplistic design.

Unfortunately, the only rule was "No Video"...using my camera. But I did get a bit of "OK glass: Record a video" footage!


When you try on this new technology, its hard not to get carried away with excitement. As you can tell from my "THIS IS SO COOOOL" statement in the video, I was so involved with the Glass I wasn't conscious of the actions that were being documented. You'll also notice we graciously accepted the delicious mimosas, beer and snacks offered ;)

I tried on all of the Glass colors and selected "Cotton." Also known as white, but I was indirectly corrected so many times, I now know the damn color is called Cotton.

Charcoal, Sky, Tangerine, Cotton, and Shale.


Once I selected Cotton, Anngie gave me my own box to unwrap...unbox?

The packaging is similar to Apple products. Simplistic, white, clean.

Anngie helped me get the Glass "fitted."  Adjusting it to the kind of nose you have and where your brow line sits affects how well you'll be able to see the Glass comfortably. Took a few tries but eventually we were able to find a comfortable fit.

Next, she explained how everything worked and helped me setup all of my accounts (Google+, Facebook, Twitter, etc.). I even got to use the Chrome book!

You can tell I'm excited to be using the Chrome book.

After a bit of playing with it, I got the hang of it! Swipe forward to go to the right, Swipe backward to scroll left, Swipe down to go back, Tap to select, Say "OK glass" to give a command.  I got this.

I tend to laugh at myself a lot.

 We used the ScreenCast feature which lets you share what you, the Glass user, sees with others by projecting it onto your mobile screen.

I asked Google, "How old is Barack Obama"

The last and coolest thing we did was a Google Hangout. Joining a Hangout while on your Glass means the other members in the Hangout will not view your face, but view what you are seeing. I invited Ronald to hangout and then experimented by trying to invite others. I was lucky enough to have my dad be online and I was able to share the Glass Explorer experience with him via hangout. Veryyy coool.

In the screen, you'll see my POV which is Ronald taking THIS picture. I think it's so cool.

Look at the bottom left screen. You can see me wearing the glass and Ronald taking a picture. Then look at the main screen. That's my POV of Ronald taking a photo.

After about an hour-long session, I was all setup and ready to head out on my own to try Google Glass. See all the photos from today here.  


The last cool thing I'll share is two videos. The first was taken using the handheld camera. The second video was used recording the experience of the first video via Google Glass. Just watch the first, then the second and it'll make sense.



I had a phenomenal day at Google campus and I'm extremely grateful!

For more on Thania's Google Glass experience, visit her blog or view more photos on her Google+ page. Can't get enough Glass? Check out Naji's day in Glass, or other wearable tech posts

Life at Somo

Contact Us

London Office

18th Floor Portland house
Bressenden Place

+44 (0)20 3397 3550

Bristol Office

1 Temple Way

+44 (0)117 214 0910

Get in touch