This article is from the archive of our partner .

The Google founder Sergey Brin's remarks about how his smartphone makes him feel emasculated was either an alienating off-color remark or a suggestion that he is turning into a robot. Specifically at a surprise TED talk this afternoon Google Glass's walking spokesman said: "I feel like it’s kind of emasculating…. You’re standing there just rubbing this featureless piece of glass," which suggests that he thinks our gadgets should reflect our manliness and that Google Glass, unlike girly smartphones, will be just the piece of wearable technology to bring that manhood back. That thought process, of course, doesn't take into over 50 percent of smartphone users who don't want their technology to make them feel like dudes because they are women.

Or, it's possible Brin's telling us something more personal. Perhaps this loss of manhood reflects his transformation from human to robot. It's hard to know for sure, but Brin said it himself: he feels less like a man. Maybe the cell phone has replaced an important piece of him? This scientific wonder would also help explain why Sergey hasn't been spotted without his Google glasses of late. He inexplicably had them on the subway that one time; he wore them to an Oscar's after-party. Come to think of it, he never takes them off. He might pass that off as a marketing play, but he has never taken them off because he can't. The robot glasses are a part of him because Sergey Brin is turning into a robot. 

It could be this robot theory. Or it could be that Brin's comments are par for the course in the dude-dominated tech world. 

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to