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A Billion-Color Display

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the i-can-see-clearly-now dept.

Displays 206

The Future of Things covered the introduction last month of HP's DreamColor display, with 30 bits/pixel, developed in conjunction with DreamWorks Animation. The display is aimed at the video production, animation, and graphic arts industries. HP promises blacker blacks and whiter whites — though TFoT quotes one source who notes that if they deliver this, it will be due to the back-lighting and not to the number of bits/pixel. No word on the size of the displays that will actually be delivered, or on the price.

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To what end? (2, Insightful)

Eudial (590661) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364112)

Is it really possible to improve screens further, in a way that's visible to the naked eye? It's the same with high end audio system. I sure can't tell the difference between a mid price-range audio system and a bleeding edge $50,000 system.

My point is that 24 bpp ought to be enough for anyone.

Re:To what end? (1)

Ethan Allison (904983) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364158)

If you're doing graphics, you often have to make edits on tiny things that aren't perceptually different unless you're zoomed really far in but have an impact on things as a whole. Which is important if you're making a movie on an eight-figure budget.

Re:To what end? (1)

KiloByte (825081) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364412)

If you're doing graphics, you often have to make edits on tiny things that aren't perceptually different unless you're zoomed really far in but have an impact on things as a whole.
Yeah, but you don't need these displayed. Having the in-memory image have a better resolution or a better color depth is a good idea, but I would leave showing the details for when you actually zoom it in.

Accurately showing red as red and blue as blue is an entirely different story, not related to bit depth.

Re:To what end? (1)

Ethan Allison (904983) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364168)

Also, "well the old one is all people should need" is never an excuse to stop innovating.

Re:To what end? (0)

plantman-the-womb-st (776722) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364288)

You know, you are absolutely correct. I for one am really glad that we still see inovation in the whalebone corset fields as well as Flint Chipping (tm) Now! technology.


We could agree that yes, these flat display screens we already have work great and really improving them further is a bit of overkill and instead direct our inovative talents at something new.

Perhaps you just don't like the design of your wheels and really want to see a better one, perhaps this time based on the square instead of the circle, developed?

Re:To what end? (1)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365184)

Ok, an incrimental improvement where the additional bits of information (2 bits per gun) is used to control the intensity of the LED backlight for that pixel sounds like a massive improvment.

Especially when you consider that black is not black on most monitors.

Re:To what end? (1)

HateBreeder (656491) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365478)

instead direct our inovative talents at something new.
You know, these are all parallel efforts. Different people have different interests, and the people who will innovate screen design can't just "divert" their talent towards, say, stem cell research.

Some people, don't want or simply can't innovate.. so would you suggest they just stop whatever it is they're doing because we "don't need" any more incremental improvements?

From my point of view... every little helps and this is not waste. Having them doing nothing would be a waste.

Re:To what end? (3, Funny)

Harmonious Botch (921977) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364300)

Also, "well the old one is all people should need" is never an excuse to stop innovating.
Yes, you should have your eyeballs upgaded immediately!

Re:To what end? (1)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365118)

I thought we had decided the whole Gillette thing wasnt innovating? :P
This is just adding more detail to the colours.

Re:To what end? (4, Insightful)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364220)

And yet that 24bpp can't reproduce the full range of colors that can be printed on a piece of paper. And the ink on that piece of paper can't reproduce the full range of colors visible to the naked eye. Yes, there's room for a whole lot of improvement. That's not to discount the progress we've already made (24bpp is pretty impressive), but there's still a long way to go.

Re:To what end? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364334)

And yet that 24bpp can't reproduce the full range of colors that can be printed on a piece of paper.
Also worth noting that the colors that can be printed on a piece of paper also cannot reproduce the full range of colors that can be seen on screen.

Both have color gamuts with areas that lay outside of one-another.

Re:To what end? (2, Insightful)

somersault (912633) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364646)

Reminds me of one of the couple of times I went scuba diving in the sea. I don't think I've ever seen colours so bright as some of the plants on the bottom of the sea bed that day (and this was on a dull stormy day in west-coast Scotland, which is hardly very exotic!). When you take stuff like stones and weeds out of the water suddenly they look very dull.. I wonder what the difference is.. maybe something to do with the refraction of the light going from the water to the glass to air into my eyeballs upping the contrast or something? :P

Re:To what end? (1)

mikael (484) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365248)

The red and green ranges of the spectrum are reduced under seawater. So you see a higher contrast in the blue range. M

It's the same with pebbles - when they are dry, they are just stones, but once wet, light greys become black, and you see all the specks and lines of minerals.

Re:To what end? (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365372)

Aye, I'd noticed the same of pebbles, they look better at the beach :P I got some nice polished marble stones so that I don't have to keep them wet all the time.. thanks for the info about under the sea. I remember the green being especially vivid for some reason though.

Re:To what end? (5, Informative)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364518)

Modern monitors use an additive method of color blending, while printers (by their very nature) must use subtractive blending.

The range of colors that can be reproduced by a 24-bit RGB device is always going to be different from the range of colors that a 24-bit CMY device can reproduce.

By the same note, a 24-bit RGB display can produce colors that the CMY printer cannot.

One color space isn't bigger than the other; they're simply different. Once you increase the bit-depth far enough to encompass the full spectrum of visible light for both color spaces, the distinction can finally be dropped.

Mod parent (or his sibling) up... however,... (5, Informative)

Animaether (411575) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364648)

They're absolutely right that CMYK does not encompass RGB. They overlap for a large part, and don't overlap in small areas (with one larger area in the deep vivid cyans).

However, a larger bitdepth doesn't do anything for color space. It simply determines the granularity of that color space. If with 16 bit you get 65,536 individual colors within the RGB gamut (with slightly higher granularity in the green channel, typically), and with 24bit you get 16,777,216 individual possible colors within the RGB gamut, then with 30 bit (10 bit per channel; it's not new, really), you get 1,073,741,824 individual possible colors... but still within the RGB gamut (of the device at hand).

An HDR display (either by using a very bright backlight or more localized LED backlights control, etc.) also doesn't change the gamut of that device - it simply allows for much brighter values of them.

Now, if they were to make an LCD panel that aside from the R,G,B pixel elements also had C M Y pixel elements, then you most certainly could increase the gamut. It would also be much more difficult to switch to than a simple bitdepth change.

Re:Mod parent (or his sibling) up... however,... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364826)

You corrected half of his post, but you got half of yours wrong.

Adding CMY to additive RGB would do nothing to very little (depending on exactly which hues you use). To get more colors, you want to add primaries as far as possible from the convex hull of RGB, such as spectral violet which is direly missing.

Interestingly, you don't need 4 or more numbers to represent such colors, you just need to extend the RGB triple to negative values and to values greater than 1. But seeing the level here, those considerations are probably too advanced.

Re:Mod parent (or his sibling) up... however,... (1)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365142)

Now, if they were to make an LCD panel that aside from the R,G,B pixel elements also had C M Y pixel elements, then you most certainly could increase the gamut. It would also be much more difficult to switch to than a simple bitdepth change.
That would make no sense on an LCD display, given that CMY is a subtractive color model, whilst color is achieved on LCDs via additive blending.

Although adding another "primary" color should increase your gamut, CMY might not be the best choice of colors to use in that case.

Think of RGB mixing is analogous to shining three different-colored flashlights at a white target, the complete overlap [wikipedia.org] of which should also be white.

CMY color mixing is analogous to taking three different colored sheets of glass, and layering them on top of each other. A complete overlap [wikipedia.org] should be completely black).

To implement subtractive color mixing, we'd first need a revolutionary change in display technology. By their very nature, LCDs are incapable of subtractive blending.

Re:Mod parent (or his sibling) up... however,... (1)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365406)

With OLED displays, adding more colours should become a lot easier.

8 minute abs (1)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364672)

It take HP 30 bits to show color? Ha! my old Apple II could do it in just 8 bits. HP has a lot of catching up to do.

Re:8 minute abs (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364828)

> It take HP 30 bits to show color? Ha! my old Apple II could do it in just 8 bits. HP has a lot of catching up to do.

At the expense of lower case characters, yes. Still, you had Epoch to make up for it.

Re:To what end? (2, Interesting)

RalphBNumbers (655475) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364688)

Afaik, the fact that a 24bbp display can't reproduce all visible colors has more to do with the fact that the display's pixels are made up of 3 monochromatic sub-pixels than the fact that there are 8-bits of information for each of those sub-pixels. Just adding 2 extra bits for each of those 3 colors isn't going to do much in terms of spectrum coverage iirc.

I'd actually be interested in seeing research into displays that didn't use distinct pixels at all, and instead went with something like a bayer pattern composed of monochromatic elements of more than 3 colors. The advantages of easy sub-pixel rendering, and simple 1:1 display of computed pixels, become less relevant with the high dpi displays we can make these days imho. It would be a good idea to look at more exotic layouts to make use of increasing pixel densities.

Re:To what end? (1)

evanbd (210358) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365318)

Your eye only has 3 color sensors. Therefore you can reproduce any spectrum in a way that your eye will see as equivalent with only 3 color elements. That said, RGB doesn't do a perfect job of this -- there are some colors at the edges of the color space that your eye can see that RGB can't produce.

Now, it's entirely possible that the easiest way to produce the full spectrum when it comes to actually building a display is with more than 3 different color elements, but 3 is sufficient if they're the right 3 (RGB isn't quite).

Re:To what end? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364244)

Current displays are lacking in several areas:
  • They display only a portion of visible light, limited by the RGB color space.
  • The dynamic range of ca 1:1000 is far from the 1:100000 which is commonly observed in real life.
  • A lack of bit depth allows only 256 shades of gray. This can easily produce banding.
So yes, you would definitely be able to tell the difference between today's displays and displays that can reproduce the full range of visible light.

Re:To what end? (1)

pablomme (1270790) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364370)

They display only a portion of visible light, limited by the RGB color space.
That's not cured by adding more bits to an RGB system. But anyway, would humans see a difference?

A lack of bit depth allows only 256 shades of gray. This can easily produce banding.
This display has 10 bits per colour channel, which gets you 1024 shades of grey (well, yeah, 1022). Does anyone know how many shades of grey the human eye can distinguish?

It depends, but in this case about 720. (3, Interesting)

Malekin (1079147) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365430)

Human brightness sensitivity is not even close to constant across the total range of brightness we can perceive. It varies widely over the range of colours we can see, and from person to person. Scene composition affects it, too: the shape of an object in relation to nearby objects changes our perception of its brightness. You have to consider lateral inhibition, limited integration capability, the optical modulation function of the eye, and orientation and temporal filtering, not to mention the various forms of noise that affect all parts of the vision system. The human vision system is not a camera and trying to model it as one is extremely naÃve.

With all that warning out of the way, the greyscale Just Noticeable Difference for a monitor of about 600cd/m^2 is equivalent to 720 steps.

For a 1024 steps, the monitor would need a peak intensity of around 4000 cd/m^2 to match the greyscale step increase with the statistically average human just noticeable difference.

Re:To what end? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364262)

Ummm, most medical imaging modalities digitize into 12 or 16 grey-scale bits. 30-bit RGB would get a whole lot closer than 24 to rendering w/o introducing down-sampling artifacts... 'course if you want your MRI for neuro-surgical planning done cheaper we can put the image on an 8-bit color mapped (say 10 grey levels, 245 colors used for web browser) or even 565 rgb. The only people I know of for whom eye strain is worse than for graphic artists are radiologiests -- thousands and thousands of images a day and it really matters if you end up missing something due to fatigue.

Re:To what end? (2, Informative)

smallfries (601545) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364282)

There are two main ways to improve over a standard system and the summary sounds as if they've done both. The contrast range on a normal screen is in the order of 500:1. On a bright sunny day outdoors our eyes pick up contrast ratios that are 1000s of times larger. The claim about blacker blacks and whiter whites will be a reference to High Dynamic Range.

Once you increase the range of colours that you are going to display it means the gaps between distinct colours become larger and so more bits are required to compensate. I'm way too lazy to actually look at the "article" but they've probably shifted from a fixed point representation for colour components to a floating-point one. This produces a colour-space that maps much better onto what we perceive.

Re:To what end? (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365064)

Not in 30 bits they haven't. That's only 10 bits per channel (compared to 8 in a regular screen). There's a reason you don't see 10 bit floating point numbers much.

Come back after you've turned off anti-aliasing. (5, Informative)

nobodyman (90587) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364416)

Is it really possible to improve screens further, in a way that's visible to the naked eye?
I think so. As a quick example of why I think this, temporarily turn off anti-aliasing in your OS. The characters on the screen should look pretty crappy relative to a book or an illustration. So, I think we have a ways to go. I think the same is true for color depth, it's just hard to recognize it because we have gotten used to 8 bits/pixel.

Most new displays have a resolution of 96dpi, whereas low-end printers can easily pull off 300dpi. Same goes for color-depth. Black and White screen images at 8 bits/pixel simply cant match the range of black&white print & film.

When you think about it, techniques such as anti-aliasing are really just hacks to work around the limitations of today's monitors. If monitors could pull off 300dpi, you wouldn't need anti-aliasing.

Re:Come back after you've turned off anti-aliasing (2, Interesting)

Animaether (411575) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364734)

Displays can already do a much higher DPI - some handhelds with 3" screens can do 800x600. That's 2.4" along the length, for 800dots/2.4" = 333.33333etc. DPI.

However, imagine a full size 17" widescreen (16:10) at a DPI of 300. 17" is about 14.4" wide by 9" high. 14.4*300 = 4320, 9*300 = 2700. A 4320x2700 display? Crikey. I'm sure we'll get there eventually, but at the resolution rate we're currently seeing - not for some time aside from high end displays.

Re:Come back after you've turned off anti-aliasing (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364860)

Most screens that claim that are cheating. They count the individual subpixels, rather than one full 3-color pixel.

Re:To what end? (5, Informative)

Divebus (860563) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364428)

Is it really possible to improve screens further, in a way that's visible to the naked eye?

Just as in audio where quantizing becomes a problem only in very low level passages, fine greyscale, especially in the blackest image areas, will benefit from more bits/pixel.

For example, an ordinary CD (16 bits) can sound rather gritty on quiet recordings such as the low level passages of classical music. That's because you're probably only using two or three bits of sample depth down there. To combat the issue, 24 bit audio will elevate the sample depth everywhere but will show itself best at low levels. Dither (essentially noise) is used to randomize and mask the problem, but that's a cheat.

In video, fine greyscale performance comes from higher bit depth per pixel and is visible throughout the entire luminance range. The issue shows itself on flat (un-textured) areas with minute lighting changes across the surface, like a softly lit painted wall. You'll see annular rings on the surface as the bit values step through their range. Again, dither may be used to randomize the quantized transitions.

24 bit video is really 8 bits per primary color - so it's not that good to start with. In professional application, it's not unusual to work with 10 bit [per channel] or even up to 16 bit[per channel] images, mostly to be more friendly to post production.

Fortunately, analog humans are fairly blind to minute color changes. Unfortunately, our system of digital video happily shows you everything wrong with it.

Re:To what end? (2, Interesting)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364452)

Although today's monitors are fairly good at color reproduction, they could easily benefit from extra dynamic range, which LCDs have never been particularly good at. Although the article lacks technical depth, it can be inferred that the extra 6 bits will be used as an alpha channel, to adjust the brightness of each pixel, which should comfortably solve the dynamic range problem once and for all if it works.

Similarly, in the visual arts industry, it is absolutely necessary for an image on the screen to look as close as possible to the final product on print or in film. It is also important for these colors to be consistent between systems, especially when multiple artists are working on the same project.

It might be a niche industry, but if HP are able to improve the status quo, they should be able to sell more than a few. The fact that they've hinted that these improvements will be inexpensive to implement simply translates to a benefit for everyday folks.

Also, in terms of how much room screens have to improve, take at the print in a phone book or the financials section of a newspaper. Then compare that to the smallest font you can comfortably read on your monitor.

Even for boring business applications, there are many benefits to be had from higher-resolution displays.

Re:To what end? (1)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364510)

I think you underestimate the capacity of human perception of dynamic range.
There is the measure of what the brain can be persuaded to disregard, and there
is the limit of perception. These are different things.

You can very easily perceive the difference between dynamic range in high-end professional video versus dynamic range in reality. Just look in the shadows. Or try to photograph flames. Or ice. What you call the threshold of human perception, is actually very far from the real threshold.

Limited dynamic range is a good thing because storage space and broadcast bandwidth are finite, and because the brain will disregard loss of detail, so the compromise is acceptable.

So you're right -- YOU probably don't need the added expense of rendering images in greater bit depth, but that does not mean the technology is useless. As with all such technology, also there is a world of difference between what the leaf node of the consumer requires, and what is desirable on the production side.

Re:To what end? (2, Insightful)

davolfman (1245316) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364608)

I'd just be happy if the manufacturers told me the panel technology in the specs so I could avoid 6-bit TN displays.

As it is, 10 bit displays are nothing new. Photographers have been swearing by them for years as they allow for the response curve of the display to be corrected without dipping below 256 displayable tones per channel. Of course the real solution is just to get someone to manufacture CRTs again. For this kind of market an analog display technology has a serious advantage in that there are no rounding errors.

Re:To what end? (1)

Vampyre_Dark (630787) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364900)

We've already moved well beyond 24 bit color spaces for higher end graphics work. Even video games often use floating point buffers with more than 8 bits per channel to do certain things instead of 8. The problem isn't with the final resulting image not having enough colors, it's getting to that final result.

16.7 million colors is a lot, but it's not a lot for any particular shade. You end up with lots of banding patterns or rounding errors when adding different colors together.

Don't forget that a lot of current displays can't support the 16.7 range already, or don't do the best job of handling it 1:1.

As for your audio argument. I have albums that I have re-bought that were remastered at a higher bit depth and then sampled back down to 16 bits, and they sound a lot better than my old copies. It's like night and day.

There is never enough bits for anyone, ever. Having a display that supports more colors is a god thing if your work will benefit from it.

Re:To what end? (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364984)

Not really. I've seen some 12-bit grayscale monitors. They used to buy them for the radiologists. Most of the radiologists now use regular (good quality, but still 24-bpp) LCDs. The contrast ratio on a monitor is MUCH more important. Contrast ratio expands the colour gamut while increased bit depth just lets you move through your existing gamut in smaller steps.

Re:To what end? (1)

mikael (484) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365222)

Higher dot pitches, more bits per pixel sample (even floating-point displays, higher contrast between black and white colors, larger framebuffer resolution, larger monitor size, 3D focus-to-infinity/stereo views without the need for headsets.

Maybe even laptops with twin LCD displays, that could be folded outwards, along with a keyboard with a foldout numeric keypad.

Re:To what end? (1)

DirtySouthAfrican (984664) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365322)

You probably can't distinguish the two colours placed side by side, but consider the following *Bill Nye voice*: With larger displays and larger resolutions, pure gradients suffer from banding quite quickly, and you need to resort to dithering and the like to make images acceptable. 256 shades of gray look pretty awful on a 1920 pixel display.

Re:To what end? (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365510)

You probably can't distinguish the two colours placed side by side

Depends on the two colors. I can't see the border between a patch of #010101 and #020202, but invert the same image and I can easily see the border between the patch of #FEFEFE and #FDFDFD.

0 comments? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364120)

Zero comments and already on front page? What's up with that?

No exact price... (1)

faffod (905810) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364128)

But from the article "The companies also revealed that the upcoming display, which will become available for purchase sometime this summer, will cost much less than todayâ(TM)s high-end studio-quality LCD displays". That does tell me that this is not going to be stratospheric. Which means that I can hope that in some time in the next couple of years this should be in the realm of the affordable.

yet another dupe :( (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364138)

A few years ago, while browsing around the library downtown, I had to take a piss. As I entered the john, a big beautiful all-American football hero type, about twenty five, came out of one of the booths. I stood at the urinal looking at him out of the corner of my eye as he washed his hands. He didn't once look at me. He was "straight" and married -- and in any case I was sure I wouldn't have a chance with him.

As soon as he left, I darted into the booth he'd vacated, hoping there might be a lingering smell of shit and even a seat still warm from his sturdy young ass. I found not only the smell but the shit itself. He'd forgotten to flush. And what a treasure he had left behind. Three or four beautiful specimens floated in the bowl. It apparently had been a fairly dry, constipated shit, for all were fat, stiff, and ruggedly textured. The real prize was a great feast of turd -- a nine inch gastrointestinal triumph as thick as a man's wrist. I knelt before the bowl, inhaling the rich brown fragrance and wondered if I should obey the impulse building up inside me. I'd always been a heavy rimmer and had lapped up more than one little clump of shit, but that had been just an inevitable part of eating ass and not an end in itself.

Of course I'd had jerkoff fantasies of devouring great loads of it (what rimmer hasn't?), but I had never done it. Now, here I was, confronted with the most beautiful five-pound turd I'd ever feasted my eyes on, a sausage fit to star in any fantasy and one I knew to have been hatched from the asshole of the world's handsomest young stud.

Why not? I plucked it from the bowl, holding it with both hands to keep it from breaking.

I lifted it to my nose. It smelled like rich, ripe limburger (horrid, but thrilling), yet had the consistency of cheddar. What is cheese anyway but milk turning to shit without the benefit of a digestive tract? I gave it a lick and found that it tasted better then it smelled. I've found since then that shit nearly almost does. I hesitated no longer. I shoved the fucking thing as far into my mouth as I could get it and sucked on it like a big brown cock, beating my meat like a madman. I wanted to completely engulf it and bit off a large chunk, flooding my mouth with the intense, bittersweet flavor. To my delight I found that while the water in the bowl had chilled the outside of the turd, it was still warm inside. As I chewed I discovered that it was filled with hard little bits of something I soon identified as peanuts. He hadn't chewed them carefully and they'd passed through his body virtually unchanged. I ate it greedily, sending lump after peanutty lump sliding scratchily down my throat. My only regret was the donor of this feast wasn't there to wash it down with his piss. I soon reached a terrific climax. I caught my cum in the cupped palm of my hand and drank it down. Believe me, there is no more delightful combination of flavors than the hot sweetness of cum with the rich bitterness of shit. Afterwards I was sorry that I hadn't made it last longer. But then I realized that I still had a lot of fun in store for me. There was still a clutch of virile turds left in the bowl. I tenderly fished them out, rolled them into my hankercheif, and stashed them in my briefcase.

In the week to come I found all kinds of ways to eat the shit without bolting it right down. Once eaten it's gone forever unless you want to filch it third hand out of your own asshole -- not an unreasonable recourse in moments of desperation or simple boredom.

I stored the turds in the refrigerator when I was not using them but within a week they were all gone.

The last one I held in my mouth without chewing, letting it slowly dissolve. I had liquid shit trickling down my throat for nearly four hours. I must have had six orgasms in the process. I often think of that lovely young guy dropping solid gold out of his sweet, pink asshole every day, never knowing what joy it could, and at least once did,bring to a grateful shiteater.

Re:yet another dupe :( (1)

Ethan Allison (904983) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364192)

Okay these stories are getting annoying (and I hate to imagine the mental state of whoever wrote this). Can't we have a string filter on these copy-and-paste troll stories?

Re:yet another dupe :( (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364776)

Can just change your threshold for comments to browse at 0 or above. Personally I browse at -1, but just stop reading when I recognise the sentence (that "let yOUR conscient be yOUR guide!" guy is annoying too :P )

Slashdot is a homo think-tank (2, Funny)

lennyhell (869433) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364146)

No word on the size of the displays that will actually be delivered, or on the price. So no point in posting that shit. Is says nothing. 100% fact free. That's not news. CmdrTaco loves cock is also not news.

Re:Slashdot is a homo think-tank (1)

Shturmovik (632314) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364630)

It really sucks when you forget to click "Post Anonymously", doesn't it?

Re:Slashdot is a homo think-tank (2, Insightful)

lennyhell (869433) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364728)

Are you stupid or what? I always post as myself. I am myself. And I'm very insightful.

Yes, I am stupid. (1)

Shturmovik (632314) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364886)

I once had positive karma, but then I foolishly criticised a post by Michael Sims, without clicking "Post Anonymously". Look where that got me.

faiLzors (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364160)

tired arguments 5tart a holy war

Oh no, not again (1)

50000BTU_barbecue (588132) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364176)

We DON'T have common 24 bit LCD displays, OK? They're all mostly dithered 18 bits. This new technology, is it perchance six extra dithering bits on a real 24 bit display?

Re:Oh no, not again (0)

SlashWombat (1227578) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364290)

Most of the actual LCD display panels on the market are 8 bits per individual colour (Which comes to 24 bits per pixel), so I would have to disagree about your statement on dithering due to the panel only having 6 bits per colour. (Which comes to 18 bits per pixel) A couple of years ago, I spent ages looking at various panels while in the initial design phase of desiging a monitor for USA cop cars. Ended up using the same display as the play station portable, which definitely had 8 bits/colour for a true 24 BPP interface.

Since most source material for the display is based on MPEG/JPEG, nobody will perceive any difference in the colour gamut anyway. This is due to the quantisation that MPEG/JPEG (etc) uses as part of the compression process. I

Re:Oh no, not again (1)

50000BTU_barbecue (588132) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364494)

I believe you are wrong and you will need to provide me with some links. Most LCD panels used for consumer LCD monitors are indeed only 6 bits per color, and are dithered in the time domain to get some sort of semblance of more colors. Why do you think one of the numbers used to sell LCDs is the response time? Who cares about a response time of 6 or 4 ms on a panel that displays only 60 pictures per second, ie every 17 ms? It's because that's what allows the dithering to happen. I happen to own one of the first and one of the few true 24 bpp LCD monitors, the SGI 1600. Of course now I can't find the one web page that showed you how to find out which kind of panel you have, but it used to be at http://www.lagom.nl/lcd-test/ [lagom.nl]. It is no longer there. Anyways, those 300$ 24 inch LCDs? 6 bits per color, guaranteed.

Re:Oh no, not again (1)

moonbender (547943) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364674)

Err. 24-bit displays aren't nearly as rare as you think. I'm sure they were, though, 10 years ago when that SGI display was still revolutionary...

Re:Oh no, not again (3, Informative)

50000BTU_barbecue (588132) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364914)

Again, I think you are wrong. There was a big stir just a few months ago about Apple displays being 18 bit. I think most LCD panels sold for PCs are still 18 bit panels, which is why you'll find it incredibly hard to get a simple, blunt "24 bits per pixel" mentioned on the box, or the company's website. But you'll get a gigantic "2ms response" sticker on the box. At best, you'll get something like "16 million colors" which means 18 bit, and 16.7 million colors when it's a true 24 bpp display.

Again, read this. [wikipedia.org]

As for the 1600, the trade-off you have for a true 24 bpp display is narrower viewing angle and slower response time, this is due to the physics of the crystals. Check out the National Semi [national.com] page for lots of info on what exactly a liquid crystal is, what the different types are and how they're driven, and lots of amusing info on the guts of LCD panels.

But for the dithering, it's sort of like buying CDs with 16 bit samples, but CD players only having 12 bit DACs but it not being written anywhere. But then, if no one can tell, why choose 16 bits in the first place? This reminds me of the waning days of Minidisc when suddenly everyone here became a very critical, golden-eared audiophile and could tell the difference between a CD and MD, but the same people turn around to their 18 bit displays, can't tell the difference, and go on thinking they are 24 bits.

Life on this planet never ceases to amaze and befuddle me.

Great (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364196)

Now, does anyone know where I can get a 30 bit-capable eye?

Re:Great (4, Insightful)

$random_var (919061) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364422)

I know you're jesting, but our eyes are definitely capable of appreciating 30 bits, and many megapixels as well. Our eyes don't work like cameras; we're excellent at discriminating fine differences within the area we're looking at. We might not be able to tell #cc1111 from #cd1111 in isolation, but if they're right next to each other we can see that difference and more.

(On a similar note, in the center of our visual field, we can discriminate physical positions with much greater accuracy than the receptor density would lead one to believe, because our analog receptors are capable of discerning fine differences by working with their neighboring receptors. So anybody who says "X resolution is higher than humans can see" is talking out of his ass. You can tell when they know what they're talking about when they say something like "at this resolution, most humans will only be able to perceive a 1-pixel difference 60% of the time" or something which sounds a lot more like signal theory than somebody comparing one arbitrary number to another arbitrary number.)

Re:Great (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365104)

The way you test resolving ability is to get the optical device (eye or camera) to resolve something. The simplest test is to determine whether two dots are separate or not. Your optometrist does something similar every time she asks you to read the eye chart.

You can certainly determine the resolving power of a normal eye. No matter what the sensor is doing, the resolving power is fundamentally limited by the lens in front of it. You need two numbers though: separation (dots per inch) and distance to the image.

Re:Great (2, Informative)

icegreentea (974342) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365250)

I think the grandparent was talking about color resolution not angular/optical (or is it something else?) resolution. There is no arguing that human eyes are fundamentally limited by our lenses, and that gives us a pretty much fixed benchmark for maximal human sight in one measure. But when it comes to distinguishing colors, human vision is far less concrete. The fact that we have an auto adjusting white balance should be enough proof of that.

Oblig (1)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364210)

Well, tech such as this will bring our holodeck dreams just that bit closer.

Also I can see where tech such as this can be implemented in the medical field, as a for-instance.

That's fine, but (1)

gnix.geo (246054) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364238)

I'd rather have a billion one-color displays.

I'm not a mod right now, so I think... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364280)

I'll just say it out loud: I think I love you.

Well, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364248)

A billion colors should be enough for anybody.

Higher gamut (1)

PhrostyMcByte (589271) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364298)

I was hoping for something like ScRGB support. I've always wanted two things out of displays: higher DPI, and higher gamut. Does this deliver either?

Chris Chinnock, President of the research firm "Insight Media", is one of those who are skeptical about HP's claims. He says that while the 30-bit resolution will allow for better gradation between the color levels, the technology will not be able to increase the color gamut of a display.

Guess not. Oh well.

Yes, but... (4, Funny)

Bradmont (513167) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364324)

how am I supposed to see how good this display is if they don't show me a picture of it?

A billion color display? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364338)

Apple's been selling those for years.

How is this different than LCD TVs? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364344)

How is this different than high end LCD TVs that have had 10-bit per color (which is 30-bits per pixel) for over a year now? For example, the Sony W3000/XBR4/XBR5 series. Higher bit depth color spaces are also supported by Deep Color introduced in HDMI 1.3, so it's not like HP had to design a new interface either.

you FAIL it? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364368)

Darren ReeDe, which

It's just a shame that.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364372)

.. video codecs used in consumer video systems (even H.264/Blu-Ray) do not have such high color depth. So what's the point?

Also: Are they actually going to test the displays to make sure that all intensities are discrete? It seems to me that quality control would have to be phenomenal to actually ensure that there were a billion discrete colors represented accurately by each and every pixel.

Re:It's just a shame that.. (2, Insightful)

mccalli (323026) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364528)

.. video codecs used in consumer video systems (even H.264/Blu-Ray) do not have such high color depth. So what's the point?

And of course, video codecs have been perfected now and will never, ever change or improve. You're right - we should all just pack up and go home, it's all been done.


Re:It's just a shame that.. (1)

Animaether (411575) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364820)

Heck, if anything, those codecs should focus on higher quality output first; higher compression be damned. I hate seeing the blocky artifacts from any non-lossless video compression. I don't mind that they're only 8bpc, video and film noise tends to kill any banding issues anyway.. until they don't anymore, I won't worry about 10bpc, 16bpc or even 32bpc video encoding.

However... this is in collaboration with DreamWorks. This isn't about your typical DVD or Blu-Ray disc. This is about displaying things like digital intermediate files - from film scans (often done at 10bpc) right through whatever bitdepth pipeline in use for the project (16bpc or 32bpc being common), to the filmprint which again is done at a higher bitdepth than 8bpc. Even digital cinema is ready for higher bitdepths and if you google around a bit, you'll find several proposals for how to handle it efficiently (sizes do increase quite a bit with bitdepth, whereas a film roll will always be the size of 1 (one) filmroll.. whether the image is exposed/etched from an 8bpc digital or a 32bpc digital)

This will trickle down to consumers as well, however - especially photographers who are muttering about quantization artifacts (banding) in subtle gradients like, oh, the sky when taken with a high quality camera (i.e. low sensor noise).. taking a RAW will deal with that on the camera end, but they still end up displaying it back on your 8bpc monitor at the moment (unless they already have a 10bpc display - as I said in another comment.. this is not new; see SGI )

I'd like to see a double-blind test... (1)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364438)

...in which people are shown the a series of images on two of these displays, side by side... with copies of each image in the series being presented on each display, one rendered with a full 30 bits and the other with rendering reduced to 24 bits... and with the 30-bit image being randomly assigned to the left or right.

I'd like to see whether people can actually identify the 30-bit image at a rate significantly greater than chance... or whether they're just doing it because they can.

Like the "Eight-transistor radios" that had non-functional transistors on the circuit board, just so that the manufacturers could claim to have more transistors than the competition. (Yes, companies really, really, really did this).

Oops; edited... (1)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364486)

(I meant to say... yes, I used Preview but I didn't look at it...) ...in which people are shown a series of images on a matched pair of these displays, placed side by side... with copies of each image in the series being presented on each display, one rendered with a full 30 bits and the other with rendering reduced to 24 bits... and with the 30-bit image being randomly assigned to the left or right.

I'd like to see whether people can actually identify the 30-bit image at a rate significantly greater than chance... or whether HP is just using 30 bits because they can.

Like the "Eight-transistor radios" that had non-functional transistors on the circuit board, just so that the manufacturers could claim to have more transistors than the competition. (Yes, companies really, really, really did this).

Re:I'd like to see a double-blind test... (2, Insightful)

icegreentea (974342) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364498)

Get a 1024 pixel high/wide image. And then make a perfect white-black gradient. You should be able to tell between the two. As someone else pointed out, you only have 256 greys, so you end up with one grey forming a 4 pixel band (which is noticeable). The new displace will have one grey per pixel.. much harder to tell.

Re:I'd like to see a double-blind test... (1)

evanbd (210358) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365366)

If you dithered that gradient properly it would be much harder to tell. You've essentially created a signal with a period of 8 pixels and overlaid it on top of the smooth gradient as a result of the quantization errors. It's that signal that's easy to see. If you dithered it properly, the noise would be shaped so that it didn't show up at one specific frequency band (ie 8 pixels and its harmonics), it would be much less noticeable. Note that eg digital photography processes do this inherently to some degree in the analog sensor.

Of course, very little software will do that dithering properly for you, so it's kind of a moot point. But then, not much will make proper use of 10 bit per channel color, either. I'd love to see one of these things up close...

RGB does not span the colorspace of the eye anyway (1)

viking80 (697716) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364876)

Normal RGB displays do not span the colorspace the eye can see. Just like good printer need more than 3 color ink to make good photograps, good display need more than Red, Green and Blue dots to span the whole colorspace of the eye. No matter how many bits you put behind each color, you can not improve this fact.

Brief explanation:
RGB colors are designed to match the human eyes sensitivity for the three primary colors. Each color cones spectral sensitivity partly overlaps the others. The RGB display therefore can not excite the Blue cone exclusively nor the Red cone. A new display with the following colors could get close:
Violet@400nm, Blue@430nm, Green@530nm, Orange@650nm and DeepRed@700nm

Re:RGB does not span the colorspace of the eye any (1)

Mprx (82435) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365164)

The receptor spectral overlap is one reason why the ultimate visual interface can only be direct neural connection. Anyone who's tried psychedelic drugs will have seen colors that don't exist in reality, generated directly in the brain bypassing the eyes. I also suspect the human brain will adapt well to at least five channels of color, given the existence of tetrachromat humans, and even higher dimension color space perceiving animals. Humans only see a tiny portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, but most never consider it might be possible to improve this. I want my cybereyes.

Quantum displays (2, Funny)

sveard (1076275) | more than 5 years ago | (#23364882)

Besides reqular light, I want my screen to radiate X-rays, Gamma-rays and infrared light, and also ordinary radio waves and even more kinds of waves.
I want it to emit quarks, neutrons and positrons, and perhaps god particles.
The constrast of todays screens is appalling, I want miniature black holes creating perfect black tones. I wouldn't know how to create perfect white tones though.

Yes, I am serious!

Re:Quantum displays (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365160)

You can get a few of those if you just find a really old CRT. The ones that inspired your mother to warn you not to sit too close to the TV.

Good and bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364918)

This is good and bad. They want to improve things. That's good. It isn't TrueColor(tm) 48 bit display. That's bad. Its 30 bits (6 more bits than the 24 we have now), and that's good. (I already mentioned 16 bits per color instead of 10). This will do nothing to alter the color gamut (unless they start producing back lighting in the monitors that delivers color frequencies not currently delivered by the fluorescent bulb now lighting displays. That's bad. If they put a full spectrum or true spectrum light source (better yet, one that you could calibrate to increase/decrease color frequencies and also adjust the color temperature) that would be very good. I didn't read anything in the article about that. That's bad.

The problem with this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364940)

I work for a large vfx studio in West LA.

The problem with displays like this, is that it looks good when you do your DI/Color timing, but that gets shot to hell when it gets reproduced and shipped to theaters. I've seen our work look absolutely gorgeous on our digital projection system, only to see in the theater with the colors desaturated and the blacks crushed out. Maybe digital projection will solve that issue. I don't know.

For a place like dreamworks its a neat tool, where the end client is the producer of the imagery. But for most of us, we're shipping our footage to the studio and hopefully their DI/Color people don't mess things up. The final look and color is out of our hands.

Just take a look at a few of the big summer release trailers out there, really bad colors/compositing/etc. Yes, trailer footage is often work in progress shots, yes the monkeys in the internet marketing departments crush and saturate the hell out of online movie trailers, but jesus, some clients are shameless in showing bad work.

Most of this great technology is going to wind up on some asshole producers desk, unused and collecting dust.

Oh well, the best I can hope for is waiting for the bleeding edge to slowly make its way into mass produced equipment.

you can say/write anything you want (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23364992)

but you can't do it here (without becoming subject to robbIE's patentdead PostBlock devise). you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. there are still some choices. if they do not suit you, consider the likely results of continuing to follow the corepirate nazi hypenosys story LIEn, whereas anything of relevance is replaced almost instantly with pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking propaganda or 'celebrity' trivia 'foam'. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on yOUR brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.


is it time to get real yet? A LOT of energy is being squandered in attempts to keep US in the dark. in the end (give or take a few 1000 years), the creators will prevail (world without end, etc...), as it has always been. the process of gaining yOUR release from the current hostage situation may not be what you might think it is. butt of course, most of US don't know, or care what a precarious/fatal situation we're in. for example; the insidious attempts by the felonious corepirate nazi execrable to block the suns' light, interfering with a requirement (sunlight) for us to stay healthy/alive. it's likely not good for yOUR health/memories 'else they'd be bragging about it? we're intending for the whoreabully deceptive (they'll do ANYTHING for a bit more monIE/power) felons to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather', as well as a # of other things/events.


dictator style micro management has never worked (for very long). it's an illness. tie that with life0cidal aggression & softwar gangster style bullying, & what do we have? a greed/fear/ego based recipe for disaster. meanwhile, you can help to stop the bleeding (loss of life & limb);


the bleeding must be stopped before any healing can begin. jailing a couple of corepirate nazi hired goons would send a clear message to the rest of the world from US. any truthful look at the 'scorecard' would reveal that we are a society in decline/deep doo-doo, despite all of the scriptdead pr ?firm? generated drum beating & flag waving propaganda that we are constantly bombarded with. is it time to get real yet? please consider carefully ALL of yOUR other 'options'. the creators will prevail. as it has always been.

corepirate nazi execrable costs outweigh benefits
(Score:-)mynuts won, the king is a fink)
by ourselves on everyday 24/7

as there are no benefits, just more&more death/debt & disruption. fortunately there's an 'army' of light bringers, coming yOUR way. the little ones/innocents must/will be protected. after the big flash, ALL of yOUR imaginary 'borders' may blur a bit? for each of the creators' innocents harmed in any way, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available. 'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet, & by your behaviors. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi glowbull warmongering execrable. some of US should consider ourselves somewhat fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate. it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc.... as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis. concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order. 'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

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whilst demanding/extorting billions to paint more targets on the bigger kids;


& pretending that it isn't happening here;

all is not lost/forgotten/forgiven

(yOUR elected) president al gore (deciding not to wait for the much anticipated 'lonesome al answers yOUR questions' interview here on /.) continues to attempt to shed some light on yOUR foibles. talk about reverse polarity;


for extremely large values of 3 (1)

Speare (84249) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365214)

HP promises blacker blacks and whiter whites -- though TFoT quotes one source who notes that if they deliver this, it will be due to the back-lighting and not to the number of bits/pixel.

Wow, the definition of dynamic range isn't based on the number of bits per pixel? Whodathunk? Then it must also be true that using a double variable instead of a float does not in fact make 3.0000000000000 > pi.

This thing's a ripoff (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#23365326)

I saw a screenshot of the thing and it looks the same as my monitor!

TuringTest for monitors... (1)

TropicalCoder (898500) | more than 5 years ago | (#23365416)

I propose a Turing Test for monitors. Have a monitor, and a window opening onto some chosen view, side by side. Through the window one could view a street with cars and people passing by, while on the monitor is a real time video of exactly the same scene. To be fair, maybe the person judging would have his head secured in some kind of harness to prevent head movement. It would be interesting to see when a monitor would pass such a test, where the majority of viewers couldn't tell the difference. Any predictions?

Of course it is just as much a test of the camera as it is of the monitor - a test of the entire system. Something that hasn't been mention much in the discussion of these hi bit depth monitors - are the cameras capable of delivering the greater pixel depth?
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