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Snap a photo by winking your eye?

Code in the software for Google's Glass eyewear suggests users will be able to snap photos with a wink of an eye.

Story highlights

  • Code for Google's Glass eyewear suggests users may snap photos with a wink of an eye
  • Google Glass just shipped to beta users but won't be available to everyone until 2014
  • The code includes provisions for enabling and disabling winks as a command

Those of us who have yet to lay hands or eyes on anything but images of Google Glass are prone to daydreaming about how we'll actually interact with the device.

We know there are buttons, a tiny touchpad, and voice inputs, but what about the times when we want to check our e-mail and don't want to speak aloud to an inanimate object?

A Reddit user who bore into the Google Glass code came out with an interesting discovery: the ability to trigger an event with a "wink" gesture. The code includes provisions for enabling and disabling winks as a command, as well as a couple of lines for calibration and one called "EYE_GESTURES_WINK_TAKE_PHOTO."

The need for calibration suggests that users will be able to set up the wink trigger to prevent Glass from registering a blink as a chance to fire off whatever action is attached to the gesture.

The Google Glass headset lets users shoot photos and video, among other features.

While this sounds like a potentially useful feature, we can't help but picture enjoying ourselves in a public space when another person wearing Google Glass catches our eye. We lock gazes. Slowly, deliberately, they wink.

Google has apparently been working on a number of control and interaction schemes, including virtual buttons projected onto nearby surfaces (hands, arms) and audio playback designs that vibrate the bones in the user's head to make themselves heard.

Explorer editions of the headsets are in developer hands now (as well as those who submitted proposals), and the consumer versions are set to hit sometime next year.