Ryan Shearman was driving to work one morning and was suddenly struck from behind and thrown from is motorcycle. Normally, this kind of motorcycle accident would spark an insurance claim and cause perturbing, possibly fatal personal injuries. It sparked an idea in Shearman, though, that eventually became the Guardian.
What the NY Daily News calls “the Google Glass for motorcyclists,“ the Guardian is an augmented reality motorcycle helmet. In other words, it is a “smart helmet.” This helmet was created to make motorcycle riding safer.
When you are using this helmet, you would be able to have a live feed of what is happening behind you, acting as a rearview mirror. The helmet also has GPS navigation.
The first thought that ran through my mind as I read about the Guardian was, “This smart helmet would cause more distracted driving, wouldn’t it? Smart phones certainly do.”
However, the helmet is completely hands-free, as it operates on voice command. Many of its features are no more distracting that looking in a rearview mirror. As for some of the other functions, you should use good judgment and remember that your first responsibility is to look and pay attention.
Shearman told Engadget that this helmet enables bikers to have more awareness of what is happening around them. Not only does it increase safety, but it is useful if an accident does occur, due to the footage the helmet records. The Guardian will also have a service that alerts the emergency personnel if a crash is sensed, similar to OnStar.
Unfortunately we won’t be seeing these on our Texas roadways this year. Ryan Shearman plans to release this helmet in the summer of 2015 with the hopes that it will have a significant impact on the amount of motorcycle accidents. To see a demo of this revolutionary technology take a quick look at this video.