Guy Who Used Google Glass for 18 Hours a Day Got Addicted to Being a Glasshole

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A visitor of the "NEXT Berlin" conference tries out the Google Glass on April 24, 2013 in Berlin. "NEXT Berlin" describes itself as "a meeting place for the European digital industry". Organisers say that at the conference, "marketing decision-makers and business developers meet technical experts and creative minds to discuss what will be important in the next 12 months". The conference is running from April 23 to 24, 2013.       AFP PHOTO / OLE SPATA / GERMANY OUT        (Photo credit should read OLE SPATA/AFP/Getty Images)
Photo: DPA/2013 AFP

A 31-year-old man serving in the U.S. Navy checked himself into the branch’s Substance Abuse and Recovery Program for alcohol addiction over the summer, but the harder habit to kick was his special case of “internet addiction disorder” — specifically, a dependence on Google Glass. According to a new paper by Dr. Andrew Doan, head of addictions research at Naval Medical Center, the patient claimed he was “going through withdrawal from his Google Glass” during the mandated detox from technology as well as substances. “He said the Google Glass withdrawal was greater than the alcohol withdrawal he was experiencing.” 

The man had been using Google’s futuristic eye computer about 18 hours a day for work, stopping only to bathe and sleep. The Guardian reports on the dystopian novel-like symptoms:

Doctors noticed the patient repeatedly tapped his right temple with his index finger. He said the movement was an involuntary mimic of the motion regularly used to switch on the heads-up display on his Google Glass. […]

By the time the patient checked into the facility, he was suffering from involuntary movements, cravings, memory problems and dreaming as if he was wearing the glasses. When he was not wearing them he felt irritable and argumentative.

After 35 days in treatment, the patient “felt less irritable, was making fewer compulsive movements to his temple, and his short-term memory had improved.” Like vodka, the internet should probably not be taken in large doses straight to the eye.