Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Ink Breakthrough Heralds Bendy PC Screens

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the 1001-positions-for-computing dept.

Displays 140

An anonymous reader writes "Researchers claim to have developed a type of soluble semiconductor ink which could help to make bendable computer screens a reality. Developed at Polyera and BASF Future Business, the ink carries an N-Type negative charge. Previously, semiconductor inks have only been able to carry a positive charge. The new ink can be printed onto any flexible material, including plastic and paper, using only a modified ink-jet printer."

cancel ×

140 comments

How much will this new ink cost? (5, Funny)

Swordopolis (1159065) | more than 5 years ago | (#26565997)

As if I didn't already spend enough money on those damn cartridges.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (5, Funny)

JCSoRocks (1142053) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566187)

Can't be more than the $8,000 a gallon we're all currently paying.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

Swordopolis (1159065) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566241)

SHHHHHHH! Don't tempt them!

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

H3g3m0n (642800) | more than 4 years ago | (#26568079)

When you consider that you only need to print once then never again, just keep uploading documents to the printed screen, you will probably save money.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (5, Interesting)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566343)

Somewhat off topic, but I just had to share.

As if I didn't already spend enough money on those damn cartridges.

That right there is why I decided to purchase a laser printer. The Brother MFC-7840W may cost $300 up front ($238 from Amazon w/free shipping), but the cartridges are only $46 and last for thousands of pages. (Standard cartridge is rated at 1,500 pages, though you can get more out of it.) In addition, the unit is an office-quality copier, scanner, and fax machine. All over a wireless network.

I've gotten into the habit of scanning my documents to PDF, then sticking the original paper version into a "safe place" where I'm sure it will never be found again. Which doesn't worry me because I can electronically pull the document and reprint. Because it's a laser, reprinting is not an issue now that I don't have to wait all friggin' day for my printouts!

Sure, there's no color. But it's not like I've been trying to get a color printer anyway. Compare to the HP and Lexmark I had previously where the ink cost twice as much, "dried up" before I managed to print more than 50 pages (stupid protection circuitry), had the flimsiest of paper trays that could only hold a dozen sheets, would only work if both the color and BW cartridges were full, and regularly crumpled the paper and jammed while they ponderously swung the print head back and forth.

I'm never going back to inkjets. Ever. I'd rather live without a printer than subject myself to such horrors again. If anyone here is thinking of making a printer purchase, consider upgrading to a laser. You'll save yourselves a fortune in the long run, and you'll send a message to these greedy printer companies that we don't want to deal with their crappy ink cartridges any longer.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (2, Interesting)

ProudWhiteTrash (1365921) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566537)

I purchased a Kodak ESP 9 All-in-One Printer for $299. I am amazed at how cheap the ink is for it compared to my old Epson. $20 gets you a black and color cartridge with 120 sheets of 4" x 6" photo paper. You have to put a little more money up front but in the long run I think it will save a tan on $$$$$.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#26569211)

I'm only interested in black and white prints so this doesn't apply to me, but you may want to be wary of the cost of Kodak paper. The word on the street is that their ink costs are lower, but they make up the difference by requiring you to use their special paper to get good colors. Alternative photo papers don't appear to work because of a difference in the texturing of the paper. (The printer can't feed it properly.)

The other issue to watch out for is driver bizarreness. Various reports have complained of odd problems with the printer becoming unavailable, missing parts of the print job, PC crashes, and other driver-related oddities.

So as long as you can either fix, workaround, or otherwise avoid these issues, it should be a good printer. However, I still recommend a laser if you don't need color. :-)

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (2, Interesting)

Urza9814 (883915) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567171)

Seconded, though I prefer the Brother HL-2040. Got it from Amazon for $70. Hell, by the time I finished the toner it came with it had paid for itself. It's rated for 2,500 pages, and I get them refilled locally for $30. Compare that to HP's ink cartridges, which will run you $30+ for around 800 pages. So, you pay $90 for 2400 pages worth of HP ink, or $70 for a laser printer that comes with a full toner cartridge (and it was a _full_ cartridge, not one of those crappy half cartridges). I still have the old inkjet around for if I need color...though I can't remember the last time I used it...but it's actually cheaper to buy a laser printer and throw it out whenever you run out of ink than it is to buy ink for an inkjet. Plus my laser has _much_ better linux compatibility (plugged it in and it worked...the inkjet I've never gotten to work) and it's a lot more durable.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567257)

That right there is why I decided to purchase a laser printer.

Seconded. It's been said a million times (at least by me), but if you print lots, get a laser. If you don't, have Walmarts/Kinkos/the local shop do it for you.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

dissy (172727) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567993)

I'm never going back to inkjets. Ever. I'd rather live without a printer than subject myself to such horrors again. If anyone here is thinking of making a printer purchase, consider upgrading to a laser. You'll save yourselves a fortune in the long run, and you'll send a message to these greedy printer companies that we don't want to deal with their crappy ink cartridges any longer.

I can't agree more!

I've had an old HP LaserJet 4mv for the last 15 years, and only just now am having issues finding toner for such an old printer in local stores.

I was just looking at color lasers recently (hey, color is cool!) and found a nice one similarly spec'ed like yours but without the scanner/fax part, for $250. Sadly, black ink is $48, and there are 3 color toner carts that are $42 each. Thats like $200 in ink, which for now is making me delay the purchase.

But I have firmly decided to do without any working printer instead of buying a cheap inkjet. Never ever again.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26568597)

Disclaimer: I'm in the remanufactured ink and laser industry

Here are a few routes you can go:
I prefer HP. If you have to have color, get an HP Business Inkjet Printer. They take the HP 88XL black cartridge, which is rated at around 2500 pages. An aftermarket cartridge should cost $20. This matches the price per page of an entry level laser cartridges, such as an HP Q2612A.

For anything else, eBay is your friend. More modern laser cartridges tend to give you less pages for more dollars. Cartridges like the 92298X (which are very old) do over 8800 pages (at 5% page coverage, think newspaper text). A decent aftermarket 98X should cost ~$60.

If you need a color laser, I prefer the HP printer that takes the Q6000 series. They are not too big machines, and the toner isn't too expensive.

If you want to reman your own (I highly suggest you don't), A few of the Brother toner cartridges would be a way to go. Most of them are :

a. Dump in Toner
b. Reset a gear
c. Print.

The older ones don't have a drum built into the toner cartridge, which also helps for a home reman.

Less than a cent per page is easily achieved, even if you buy decent quality re manufactured product.

Uh oh, here comes my boss. Back to work.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#26569123)

Back in the day, I used to have an Epson laser printer. The manufacturer stopped producing toner after only a year or two of service. Which was really enough to peeve anyone off, considering how much they cost back then. By remanufacturing the same cartridge over and over, the printer was able to last for YEARS after Epson gave up on the unit. And since the cartridges held so much ink back them (big bastards, too!) remanufacturing only needed to be done every year or so. Thankfully the drum held out too (it was one of those combination cartridges) because that would have been hard to replace.

Your suggestion for an HP printer is well taken, but I've got to be honest with you. I just don't need the hassle. Changing the ink cartridges is only half the battle. Dealing with drivers going bonkers, protection circuitry, broken parts, feed jams, ink splots, slow prints, and other typical inkjet issues just isn't worth my time. Much better to have a laser which feeds paper through at a good clip. Especially a nice unit like these Brothers that are well supported on Mac/PC/Linux and scalable to nearly any situation I can come up with. Amazingly, the software isn't half-bad either! (I think that's the first time I've ever said THAT about a printer.)

So thank you for the suggestion, but I think I'll hang on to this laser. I will consider remanufacturing though. :-)

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

aperion (1022267) | more than 5 years ago | (#26568789)

What sits idle better for long period of time? Does toner start to clump together if you haven't printed in a month? Ink start to soak through? I go through a cartridge maybe every year, maybe two. our printer is typically regulated to map print outs on the way to somewhere I've never been.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#26569177)

I'm not sure if I can give a good answer on the Brother yet, but my experience with laser printers in the past has been that Laser toner holds up better over time than inkjet cartridges. It's not entirely clear if the ink dries up or it's completely the fault of the protection circuitry, but the inkjets I've used stop putting sufficient ink on the paper if I let them sit for a month or two. I have never had that problem with a laser. In fact, I've previously let lasers sit for months at a time and still gotten a good quality print out of them.

Standard disclaimers apply, but I think you'll get a much better experience with a laser printer.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

Wraithlyn (133796) | more than 5 years ago | (#26568841)

Hear hear!

I have an ancient NEC Superscript 660i laser printer. I think I got it in '96 or so.

This thing is so old the only way to install the actual proper NEC drivers is to download FLOPPY DISK IMAGES and run them from 1.44MB discs.

It's so old they only have drivers for Win 3.1/9x, but that's OK because I can use a standard HP Laserjet 4p driver with it.

It's so old that the paper hopper is missing/broken, I am using a playing card as a paper guide, and I am holding the front panel in place with scotch tape.

But guess what? Damn thing still prints PERFECTLY after all these years, and I think I've replaced the toner only twice, and for 3 years or so it was used as a daily workhorse at a tech startup.

That being said, I do have an inkjet (Canon, more expensive up front than Epson but cheaper operating costs) I use when I really need colour.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#26569317)

I've gotten into the habit of scanning my documents to PDF, then sticking the original paper version into a "safe place" where I'm sure it will never be found again.

Guy: What's that (points to iron door in wall)? AKAImBatman: disused furnace. Guy: What do you use it for? AKAImBatman: Document storage.

Re:How much will this new ink cost? (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#26569361)

Sounds about right! Thanks for the chuckle. :-)

I wouldn't worry about it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26566497)

It can't be more than what HP charges.

Remind me again... (5, Interesting)

Jonah Bomber (535788) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566001)

Why, exactly, do we need bendy computer screens?

Re:Remind me again... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26566079)

in 15 years you'll be wondering how we survived without them.

Re:Remind me again... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26566085)

Portability. Was that really so hard to figure out?

Re:Remind me again... (2, Insightful)

Swordopolis (1159065) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566127)

Precisely. Imagine being able to fit your computer screen into a purse or backpack. Or a big-screen display into a poster tube.

Rolled up displays (1)

troll8901 (1397145) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566577)

In the movie Red Planet [wikipedia.org] , they used a portable "X-ray"-like machine to see broken bones, IIRC.

They unrolled it and held it over the person directly, and a "X-ray"-like image was displayed immediately.

This was a great "wow" factor. Not even Star Trek comes close.

Re:Rolled up displays (1)

Starayo (989319) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566985)

Pity everyone involved in using such a thing would probably get cancer.

Re:Rolled up displays (1)

Facetious (710885) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567323)

Or, at the very least, find that their chocolate bars have melted in their pockets.

Re:Rolled up displays (1)

FelixNZ (1426093) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567441)

Is that really a half melted chocolate bar in your pocket? or are you just impressed by my flaccid flatscreen?

Re:Remind me again... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26566097)

Well obviously it's so that we can... umm.. well, you see a screen that bends would be... Oh I know! You could use one for... Hey, what's that behind you? *runs away*

Re:Remind me again... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26566203)

Imagine a flexible screen. Now, imagine a flexible screen that slowly degrades every time you bend it (whether you deliberately bend the screen or accidentally). Now imagine planned obsolescence. Now imagine two companies, one makes a durable product that's expensive, the other makes a cheap disposable product. Which one is more profitable?

Re:Remind me again... (1)

rdnetto (955205) | more than 4 years ago | (#26568221)

The one with the best marketing division.

Re:Remind me again... (3, Interesting)

c_jonescc (528041) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566231)

One reason is so that you can roll it up for small storage. Just think if you could take a 30" monitor with you in your carry on.... All the real estate you'd ever want with a netbook while traveling.

I worked on LCDs for years, and the grail was always the rollup screen. One nifty use is that your window shades can be your displays - during the day the sun is your light source (talk about green!), and when you use the display you're shutting out the outside light automatically. At night or for interiors you can light traditionally.

Re:Remind me again... (1)

ozbird (127571) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566715)

Don't forget to pack four bricks to pin down the corners of your portable bendy monitor so it doesn't roll back up again.

Re:Remind me again... (1)

aj50 (789101) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567933)

What do I want it lying down for?

I'd expect some sort of fold out frame

Re:Remind me again... (1)

TBoon (1381891) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566363)

I don't think *computer screens* is where this will be used first. But depending on power-requirements I can easily imagine "designer" watches with displays pretty much all around them and other utterly useless (but oh-so-geeky) pieces of clothing.

Re:Remind me again... (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566411)

Same reason we need bendy paper.

Re:Remind me again... (5, Funny)

amRadioHed (463061) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566591)

Bah. If stone tablets were good enough for the 10 Commandments, they're good enough for me.

Stone Tablets?! Luxury!!! (1)

Arthur Grumbine (1086397) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567147)

Why when we were young all we had to write on was unobtanium! Needless to say, not a lot ever got written down...and we were grateful!!

Re:Remind me again... (1)

Samah (729132) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567703)

Bah. If stone tablets were good enough for the 10 Commandments, they're good enough for me.

Yeah, but didn't Moses break the tablets? If he'd asked God to print them on a bendy screen he probably would have had to bash it until there were enough dead pixels.
(Footnote: this requires electricity...)

Re:Remind me again... (1)

blind monkey 3 (773904) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567275)

Origami!

Re:Remind me again... (1)

MadJeff451 (841329) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566515)

Why, exactly, do we need bendy computer screens?

So that Val Kilmer can navigate the surface of Mars, of course.

Re:Remind me again... (1)

troll8901 (1397145) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566611)

Darn, same thoughts exactly! The rolled-up display (with integrated "X-ray"-like scanner) was way, way, way cool.

Re:Remind me again... (1)

I'm not really here (1304615) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566547)

Ever think of what a newspaper could be like if it was simply a large, foldable, flexible screen on which you download your daily news? Just think - get a "newspaper" delivered once per week. It downloads the most recent news constantly via wifi or some type of cell adapter (think Minority Report). Now the failing newspaper companies suddenly have a way to bring back the morning paper, and now, they can sell unlimited pages of ads and fill it with unlimited content, all accessible via page flip buttons, and if they can figure out how to use capacitance sense pad tech with this, imagine touching a hyperlink with your finger on a page to read more about an article. Imagine the newspapers simply fitting everything as they want it with a "more" link at the bottom of each article. Now do you see how this could be used?

Re:Remind me again... (1)

Swordopolis (1159065) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566605)

Join the Mobile Infantry and save the Galaxy. Service guarantees citizenship. Would you like to know more?

Re:Remind me again... (1)

Hordeking (1237940) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567311)

Join the Mobile Infantry and save the Galaxy. Service guarantees citizenship. Would you like to know more?

Where do I sign up to squash bugs?

Re:Remind me again... (1)

LilGuy (150110) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566625)

I imagine it would be about as annoying as trying to read online articles right now. Reading 2 paragraphs interrupted by 2 or 3 ads, and then having to hit next page through more of the same 5 times to read what should have been a 1 page article.

Re:Remind me again... (3, Funny)

troll8901 (1397145) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566825)

... imagine touching a hyperlink with your finger on a page to read more about an article ... with a "more" link at the bottom of each article.

And readers can comment on each article, and rate one another's comments up or down, and label them as Interesting, Insightful, etc.

Now do you see how this could be used?

Not really. Who's going to use such features?

Re:Remind me again... (1)

ShadeOfBlue (851882) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566571)

One thing I think would be really cool is basically an iPhone with tactile feedback. Imagine a grid of small click-able buttons behind a flexible touch screen. Software can then match up a virtual keyboard, menu items, etc. to the underlying buttons, so that you can both feel when you've clicked and tell where it thinks you clicked based on the way the screen depresses.

Re:Remind me again... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26566917)

based on the way the screen depresses.

Your current LCD screen does it too!

Re:Remind me again... (1)

NigelTheFrog (1292406) | more than 5 years ago | (#26568915)

Kinda like a Blackberry Storm, but actually good. Stupid clicking screen...

Re:Remind me again... (1)

grangerg (309284) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566699)

Because wrap-around screens would be really cool for games, if nothing else. I would like to see a "dry" version of what the ProtoType This guys did in their virtual sea adventure [grandideastudio.com] episode. A hemispherical screen (minus the projector of course) would be awesome.

Re:Remind me again... (1)

MarkvW (1037596) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566975)

Can you imagine a combat flight simulator with a bendy screen that covers a whole hemisphere! There is cool . . . and then there is insanely cool!!!!

Re:Remind me again... (2, Funny)

jlidberg (1459347) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567077)

Finally you can get a working printscreen on your pc

Re:Remind me again... (1)

Bindox (1414685) | more than 5 years ago | (#26568399)

Remember the movie Red Planet (with Val Kilmer in 2002)? The stranded astronauts were out walking the land and Val whips out the tube shaped computer and pulls the screen out like its an Old Testament scroll. Its a computer screen. Think about having one that you mount like a projector screen, only now you won't need the projector.

The questions from people who don't fathom what a new technology could be used for always precede massive adoption: "Why would we need to carry our phones in our car?", "Why would anyone want to have music on a device you have to carry around?".

Know anyone who does NOT want a cell phone? Know anybody that does NOT have or want an iPod/MP3 player?

Uhm... (1)

McCat (1438893) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566007)

"Which could help make bendable computer screens a reality" -- Is it just me, or, aren't bendable screens already a reality?

Re:Uhm... (1)

Swordopolis (1159065) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566075)

Prototypes != Mass Production

Re:Uhm... (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566369)

I think you'll find a lot of mass production products on E ink's website [eink.com] (see the products of Citizen and Seiko for examples of bended screens).

Re:Uhm... (5, Funny)

idontgno (624372) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566243)

Well, I think the crucial difference between what TFA is talking about and you're talking about is bendable screens that keep working after you bend them.

Re:Uhm... (1)

jonaskoelker (922170) | more than 5 years ago | (#26568853)

If you can't already bend your screen, unbend it and have a working screen, you haven't really learned to steal from the PFY yet.

How does this help? (4, Insightful)

dragonjujotu (1395759) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566009)

Am I missing something? Even TFA doesn't say how this is a major step forward for bendable computer screens.

Simple Really (1)

mfh (56) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566337)

Because it takes a negative charge, the screen is powered by evil and therefore is able to writhe in evil intent!

Re:Simple Really (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26567251)

Because it takes a negative charge, the screen is powered by evil and therefore is able to writhe in evil intent!

So these monitors are Designed for Windows Vista, then?

Re:How does this help? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26567007)

I've not RTFA, but it sounds like, since a transistor is basically a p-n-p junction, we only had the p-doped before in a bendy way, but this means we now can do n-doped, and thus bendy transistors. Transistors of course being quite important for deciding what each pixel will have on it. I'd imagine this will be used for e-ink or such technologies though, since LCDs generally need a backlight to look good, and lights would likely make the thing too bulky for non-hulk people to bend.

mfh is right though, it makes it evil.

Re:How does this help? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26567749)

You can print the screen circuitry onto a flexible surface.

Cool, but... (5, Informative)

lixee (863589) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566015)

The article is very light, but let it be known that N-type organic semiconductors have conductivities that are orders of magnitude lower than their P-type counterparts. They are usually much less stable too. If they managed to get something that doesn't need inert athmosphere, encapsulation and can transport a fraction of charges the p-type conjugated materials do, it would be a breakthrough. But I'm really not holding my breath. As someone working in the field, it sounds like vaporware to me.

Re:Cool, but... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26566265)

As someone working in the field

Janitor of the building doesn't count.

Re:Cool, but... (1)

AdmiralXyz (1378985) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566303)

Agreed. Flexible screens are like the fusion power of consumer electronics: always just a few years away.

"Could" help, yeah. (3, Insightful)

Proteus (1926) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566061)

It's possible this "could" lead to bendable screens, but the technology isn't complete enough to be used in that way.

Saying this tech could lead to bendable screens is a lot like saying that nanotubes "could lead to" a space elevator.

Re:"Could" help, yeah. (4, Funny)

VeNoM0619 (1058216) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566121)

Yea, and leaving my house "could lead to" a girlfriend, but who wants to take that chance?

Re:"Could" help, yeah. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26566859)

Yea, and leaving my parents' house "could lead to" a girlfriend, but who wants to take that chance?

C'mon, this is /.

I fessed up for you.

Re:"Could" help, yeah. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26567897)

Keep me posted every time you leave the house, then.

Re:"Could" help, yeah. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26566455)

i feel like I've seen this article on Slashdot every month or so, for as long as I've been reading it

mod 3own (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26566113)

Downward spiral. In niigerness? And

Holy crap! (4, Funny)

pushing-robot (1037830) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566115)

the ink carries an N-Type negative charge. Previously, semiconductor inks have only been able to carry a positive charge.

Do you have any idea what this means?! The possibilities are mind-boggling! You'll be able to put the batteries in backwards!

Re:Holy crap! (3, Interesting)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566409)

Do you have any idea what this means?! The possibilities are mind-boggling! You'll be able to put the batteries in backwards!

This reminds me of a funny story (funny to hardware geek types, at least)... when I was about 13 or so, I was playing around with circuit diagrams and came up with an incredible invention that I felt sure was going to make me a fortune!

I invented a way for batteries to be put into a device in any direction. I showed my invention, that used only four diodes, to my electronic engineer father and his engineer friend who happened to be there. His friend said, laughing, "Yeah, I've needed one of those on occasion." I couldn't figure out why they found it funny.

(of course, I had just invented the full wave rectifier [wikipedia.org] , not typically used for batteries, alas)

At last! (0, Offtopic)

db10 (740174) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566139)

I'll be able to roll up my monitor and stick it in my bunghole!

Devolution (1)

gomek-ramek (1340625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26566225)

My notebook computer is that much closer to devolving into a pen-and-paper notebook. I mean, you can already write on tablets. Make them a bit thinner, and more bendy, and what's the difference?

Re:Devolution (3, Interesting)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566525)

My notebook computer is that much closer to devolving into a pen-and-paper notebook.

I believe that's the point. If we can merge the advantages of paper with the advantages of electronic information, there will no longer be such thing as "paper copies". Imagine having a sheet of paper to scribble on. Now imagine that someone half-way around the world can see what you're scribbling. Imagine an architect rolling out blueprints for a client, then making changes right there as they speak. Imagine being able to add annotations to any document without damaging the original. Imagine being able to put up an advertisement poster that never needs to be removed.

Some of these items can be partially accomplished today with laptops and various display technologies. However, electronic paper would drive down the price of displays and increase the convenience and effectiveness of the interface.

Re:Devolution (1)

aztektum (170569) | more than 5 years ago | (#26569407)

Not to mention reducing waste. Although once these are ubiquitous and large enough, I imagine the billboard companies will be asking for a bailout.

Wouldn't it be neat to print out circuit boards? (3, Interesting)

jandrese (485) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566253)

It seems to me that instead of flexible computer screens (which already exist), this could be more interesting to the hobbyist market where you could sell an inkjet printer that had conductive ink cartridges to print out circuit boards for people to play with.

Sure, there are already low cost fab options out there, and people can always use breadboards, but this seems like it would let you do small one-off projects that aren't obviously built on a breadboard.

Just print out the board (with included markings for all of the components), attach the components somehow (solder won't burn through paper, but I don't know about the ink--is it heat resistant?) and watch your project light up. It might even be easier: Print the paper out, paste it on a piece of dense foam, and poke your components through the paper, maybe with a tiny dab of electrical paste/glue on each one.

I could see kits being sold to kids in the vein of those old Radio Shack kits that had springs to attach each wire, only this would let you build something better than a primitive two bit adder. I'm thinking about "make your own laser pointer", build a programmable remote control, build your own robot control board (with attachment points for the leads to the servo motors).

The downside is that ink-jet cartridges are not in any way standardized, and the companies are downright hostile to third parties that try to create compatible cartridges. Convincing HP or Lexmark to make expensive (well, ok, they already like expensive) low volume cartridges is a lost cause as well.

Re:Wouldn't it be neat to print out circuit boards (1)

lurking_giant (1087199) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566389)

Uhh... It's called a Laser printer dude.

Toner is just carbon black with fusable binders in it. It's been possible to print and copy circuit boards for decades.

You gotta move beyond the inkjet technology and spread your wings and fly.

Re:Wouldn't it be neat to print out circuit boards (1)

qortra (591818) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566461)

Let's go a little deeper - what we really need is bendy circuit boards so our electronics can wobble. Just imagine Gummy brand cell phones: they wriggle away from you as you talk.

Im bending my screen right now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26566297)

and I can still see fine to ty

Without reading the article... (4, Funny)

lewp (95638) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566407)

3-5 years away? Am I right?

If only I lived 3-5 years from now...

Re:Without reading the article... (1)

Bearpaw (13080) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567283)

If only I lived 3-5 years from now...

Hey, if you live long enough, it could happen.

Re:Without reading the article... (1)

jonaskoelker (922170) | more than 5 years ago | (#26568873)

2004 through 2006 called. They want their lewp back ;)

Breakthrough Screens and Women (1)

ACQ (966887) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566677)

I like my PC screens the way I like my women: bendy.

Re:Breakthrough Screens and Women (1)

Ringl (895323) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566969)

I like my PC screens the way I like my women...

Large and in color?

Re:Breakthrough Screens and Women (2, Funny)

Richy_T (111409) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567417)

Wider than they are tall?

Re:Breakthrough Screens and Women (1)

CrashandDie (1114135) | more than 5 years ago | (#26568391)

You can stare at it all day and it won't go "WHAAT???".

It has an "Off" switch.

It will go to sleep if you don't use it for 30 minutes, WITHOUT moaning.

Doesn't mind you staring at another one, hell, doesn't mind you having two or three of them sitting on your desk, ready and waiting, just for you. Doesn't mind the big one in the living room either.

They both age at approximately the same speed? One gets yellow and its colours fade until the light dies. The screen just stops working.

This joke has probably outlived itself.

nine positions? (1)

SirTicksAlot (576078) | more than 4 years ago | (#26566835)

from the 1001-positions-for-computing dept.
Really..... Only 9 positions?

Re:nine positions? (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 5 years ago | (#26569347)

from the 1001-positions-for-computing dept.
Really..... Only 9 positions?

Yeah, you have to get into the double figures before positions get interesting.

Camouflage (1)

everweb (1099901) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567193)

Paint the object you want to hide and point the image source (camera) at whatever is behind the object.

Beating the camouflage (1)

Random Destruction (866027) | more than 4 years ago | (#26567707)

take one step to the left

Specific eh? (2, Funny)

idontneedanickname (570477) | more than 4 years ago | (#26568041)

This new form of N-type ink, made by dissolving a specific molecule in a certain solvent...

Specific reporting like that is why I keep frequenting certain websites.

With what speed... (1)

larpon (974081) | more than 4 years ago | (#26568135)

does the ink breakthrough Heralds bendy PC screens? :)

fp fuck3r (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26568219)

else to bE an

c\um (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26568371)

filed 3ountersuit,

On an inkjet? (1)

Vegeta99 (219501) | more than 5 years ago | (#26568555)

We're sorry, but your display's ink cartridge has expired! Please replace with Genuine (TM) HP (TM) ink for best results.

Then how are you reading this message you say? By violating the DMCA! Please unlock your door and put on the teakettle, the stormtroopers will arrive shortly.

charge discrimination (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26569221)

why do they like negative charges better than positive ones (apparently available from xerox since 2004 but still no bendy screens...)?
I vote for the positive charge because it sounds more positive!

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...