The Glass project was started "about three years ago" by an engineer named Babak Parviz as part of Google’s X Lab initiative, the lab also responsible for — amongst other things — self-driving cars and neural networks. Unlike those epic, sci-fi R&D projects at Google, Glass is getting real much sooner than anyone expected. The company offered developers an option to buy into an early adopter strategy called the Explorer Program during its I/O conference last year, and just this week it extended that opportunity to people from around the world in a Twitter campaign which asks potential users to explain how they would put the new technology to use. Think of it as a really aggressive beta — something Google is known for.