LOS ANGELES, Calif. - An early adopter of Google's Internet-connected eyeglasses may soon become a guinea pig of a different sort.
Cecilia Abadie was pulled over for speeding Tuesday evening in San Diego, and a California Highway Patrol officer noticed she was wearing Google Glass. The officer tacked on a citation usually given to drivers who may be distracted by a video or TV screen.
Abadie plans to contest what may be a first-of-its-kind citation, and in doing so push authorities on the question of how to regulate evolving gadgetry that will one day be mainstream.
The eyeglasses, which are not yet widely available to the public, feature a hidden computer and a thumbnail-size transparent display screen above the right eye. Users can scan maps for directions — as well as receive web search results, read email and engage in video chats — without reaching for a smartphone.
Abadie, a software developer, told The Associated Press that she was not using her Google Glass when she was pulled over.
It's unclear whether a citation for Google Glass has been issued before.
Abadie said she is surprised that wearing the glasses would be illegal and that she's "pretty sure" she will fight the ticket.
"The law is not clear, the laws are very outdated," Abadie said, suggesting that navigating with the device could be less distracting than with a GPS device or phone.
Though Google Glass users can continue looking ahead, by glancing at the screen they still divert attention from the roadway and that can make the headgear dangerous, according to David Strayer, director of the University of Utah's Center for the Prevention of Distracted Driving.
Legislators in at least three states — Delaware, New Jersey and West Virginia — have introduced bills that would ban driving with Google Glass.
A spokesman for Google did not reply to a request for comment. On its website, Google says this about using the headgear while driving: "Read up and follow the law. Above all, even when you're following the law, don't hurt yourself or others by failing to pay attention to the road."
About 10,000 units of the glasses have been distributed so far in the United States to "pioneers," and this week Google announced another 30,000 would be available for $1,500 apiece.
Associated Press researcher Rhonda Shafner in New York contributed to this report.
David Meinert, the owner of 5 Point Cafe in Seattle, Wash., took a controversial step in March when he announced a <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/14/google-glass-ban-privacy-concerns_n_2856385.html" target="_blank">ban on Google Glass</a>, generating widespread attention in international media. Media commentator Jeff Jarvis <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/14/google-glass-ban-privacy-concerns_n_2856385.html" target="_blank">called the ban "technopanic,"</a> but other businesses soon followed in banning Glass.
<a href="http://www.nbcnews.com/technology/technolog/strip-clubs-theaters-google-glass-wont-be-welcome-everywhere-1B9231620" target="_blank">NBC News reports</a> that the Las Vegas-based Sapphire Gentlemen’s Club will be asking patrons to check their Google Glass -- along with more traditional recording devices like cellphones -- at the door. “If they don’t want to check it, we’d be happy to give them a limo ride back to their hotel,” the managing partner of the strip club told NBC. <em>The photo shown is not a photo of the Sapphire Gentlemen’s Club in Las Vegas.</em>
Most movie theaters already have rules that ban recording devices, which means that Google Glass will likely be banned as well. <a href="https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:s4FvbptUdJcJ:www.amctheatres.com/Media/Default/PDFs/code-of-conduct-policy.pdf+&hl=en&gl=us&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEESi9yVjpCX6v1SCufyMu5-YzLIvi8zfgRWK4FlbIB0rmnujZy2i15cJMOaK4L2wC0tgjrn7pqPEbgVbV0HK2rKxK0-CS_H1oETsBntjMdGTzS-its_FQ_7oWb4St3XeZjv43K_Ov&sig=AHIEtbS9VXkDdsd4bBzlS-iekkQXpwhOQA" target="_blank">AMC's code of conduct</a> bans "possession of a recording device, audio or video" in the theater, as do the terms and conditions for theaters run by <a href="http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/09/10/vue_cinemas_ban_laptops/" target="_blank">Vue</a> and <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/dcmetroblogger/4366280786/" target="_blank">Regal Cinema</a>.
Google Glass will also be banned at casinos in Las Vegas, <a href="http://www.nbcnews.com/technology/technolog/strip-clubs-theaters-google-glass-wont-be-welcome-everywhere-1B9231620" target="_blank">NBC News reports</a>. "Picture-taking is frowned upon, and security officers on duty ask individuals not to take pictures for the privacy of others in the casino," an MGM Resorts spokesperson told NBC.
The West Virginia state legislature has already proposed an amendment banning drivers from wearing Glass on the road. The ban, <a href="http://www.wired.com/autopia/2013/03/google-glass-ban-west-virginia/" target="_blank">according to Wired</a>, will forbid people from "using a wearable computer with head mounted display."