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IBM Research Enables Flat-Panel CRTs

timothy posted more than 13 years ago | from the if-cheap-then-buy dept.

Hardware 166

joescrooge writes: "IBM's got something new to give those LCDs a run for their money." That something new is CRT technology which removes the unsightly humps that take up most of the space of traditional monitors, and directing the electron beams through a magnetic panel about the size of the displayed image. Considering that 15" LCDs are now under $400 at Walmart, even cheaper ones sound like a pleasant fantasy for dual- and triple-headed flat-panel systems.

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Re:Great news! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#63631)

Disclaimer: I haven't read the linked-to stories, so take this with a grain of salt.

While appropriate to point out, I don't think anyone assumes otherwise anymore on this site. Does anyone before post 100 actually read the articles anymore?

IBM and patents (1)

vipw (228) | more than 13 years ago | (#63633)

IBM gets tonnes of patents and they also make a significant percentage of their revenue from licencing the technology they develop. many cmos, hard drive, and other technologies were developed at ibm and the manufacturers pay ibm to use the technologies and processes.

just because they developed it doesn't mean they'll use it directly. of course they won't just give it away for free, either.

the original stupid poster who didn't read the article of course missed the part in the end where it said ibm was hoping to licence this technology to another manufacturer.

Re:Come to think of it... (1)

shogun (657) | more than 13 years ago | (#63636)

Ok I think you need to learn some basic physics here. A vacuum is a very very low pressure region with an (almost) total lack of air, or anything else for that matter. Any kind of fluid exerts pressure on its surroundings, yes that includes all the air around you, you dont notice it though because its generally pressing in equally from all sides. However if you take a glass bottle and pump all the air out of it, there is an imbalance because there is no long any air inside puhsing outwards. If you do that with a bottle thats weak enough it will simply collapse under the pressure of all the surrounding air. Would you like a monitor that does that spontaneously? If so make one with really thin walls on the CRT....

Re:Again with the IBM? (1)

shogun (657) | more than 13 years ago | (#63637)

How about a a big squared off IBM logo covered in borg tech. (cube)

Question (1)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | more than 13 years ago | (#63640)



With so many different flat-panel monitor / screen coming out into the market, it is getting confusing.

Is there anybody out there who can simplify the whole confusing thingy into something that idiots like me can comprehend?

Please?

Thank you !

Re:The best of both worlds (1)

khuber (5664) | more than 13 years ago | (#63641)

Many gamers change their resolutions often
because games have trouble driving graphics
at the full resolution of a normal desktop.

With a laptop, you get a black border
and your game in the middle instead of full
screen, for example.

I think that software scaling would solve the
problem though.

-Kevin

Re:Again with the IBM? (1)

craw (6958) | more than 13 years ago | (#63653)

A bit of /. history. A long time ago, IBM crack legal team told /. to stop using /. rendition of the IBM logo. This was sort of the IBM letters, skewed in a 3-D sort of way with I in front. The letters also cast a slight shadow. /. mentioned this story and the flames ensued.

Fortunately, some IBM'ers actually visit this site and got this mess squared away pretty quickly. The result? /. uses the official IBM logo provided by IBM (IIRC).

See here [slashdot.org] for the resolution of this crisis. BTW, no need to Borg-ify IBM at this time

busted,,, (2)

trb (8509) | more than 13 years ago | (#63654)

There was an article about this in New Scientist [google.com] recently, archived by our friends at Google. This article stresses the fact that they are "spy-proof" (they don't leak much RF).

There are a handful of citations about the patents involved in this innovation at the uspto [164.195.100.11] and at ibm.com [ibm.com] .

Beeteson has written a book called Visualizing Magnetic Fields [amazon.com] . It got some favorable reviews at amazon.com. Hey, wait a minute, those cheery reviews are by his co-patent-holders, Drs Knox and Lowe. Dude. Might be a page turner, you never know.

That's not what I want (2)

Compuser (14899) | more than 13 years ago | (#63657)

I don't care about thinness. When will they come out
with 48-bit monitors at regular CRT prices?????!!!!!

IBM's research site (2)

DiningPhilosopher (17036) | more than 13 years ago | (#63659)


More technical information can be found at the IBM Research display technology [ibm.com] site.

And a New Scientist article... (2)

DiningPhilosopher (17036) | more than 13 years ago | (#63660)


here [newscientist.com] . Jeez, it's hard to find real information about this.

These would rock... I hate LCDs... (1)

Twilight1 (17879) | more than 13 years ago | (#63664)

I wish this article had a little more substance to it or maybe some links to somewhere that did. It's a bit thin on details and information.

Regardless, having a thin CRT solution to replace LCDs would be great. I mean, I love the things that LCD screens enable me to do (especially with mobile applications, laptops, etc.)... but the bad thing about LCDs is that they are extremely fragile.

A nice LCD screen compared to the same size/resolution is probably really nice to look at... for a while. Then that nasty thing happens... you get a bright yellow pixel stuck "on" in the middle of your screen, forever taunting you from the midst of dark colors.

When LCD pixels go out, it sucks... but usually not a big deal. When one of the pixel's colors gets stuck to "on" it's absolutely terrible.

Hopefully these thin CRTs will bring the advantages of LCDs and the reliability of big-tube CRTs together for a nice package.

Wheee!

Re:Perhaps old news? (1)

Twilight1 (17879) | more than 13 years ago | (#63665)

Ah, yes... that's much better. Thanks for the link!

"...dual- and triple-headed flat-panel systems" (1)

ashitaka (27544) | more than 13 years ago | (#63668)

We've watched The Matrix again haven't we?

Now we just need them to be touch panels magically without lots of greasy fingerprints and fingerless driver's gloves for no apparent reason.

Just keeps getting better (1)

Jimhotep (29230) | more than 13 years ago | (#63669)

I'm just now enjoying my 19" monitor. Paid $170 for it. Much cheaper than the 14" it replaced. Someday!

Re:Come to think of it... (2)

JatTDB (29747) | more than 13 years ago | (#63670)

What you said didn't make any sense...

One thing you said that was right: the air pressure differential is the same regardless of how big the vaccuum is. That's not the determinant factor in the glass thickness...it's the structural integrity of a piece of glass large enough for the desired display area when subjected to that differential.

Take a small stick. Bend it until it breaks. Now get a bundle of sticks and apply approximately the same effort in bending. Betcha it doesn't break.

Re:Come to think of it... (2)

JatTDB (29747) | more than 13 years ago | (#63671)

Nobody ever said it did...the guy you responded to initially was making a blanket statement about 2 things: that CRT glass is thick and therefore heavy, and that as the screen (not depth) size increases, that's going to get significantly heavier. You have to make the glass larger in both area and thickness as the display size grows. You're the one who brought the size of the vaccuum into the discussion...

Re:Other LCD Advantages: Power Consumption, Heat (2)

dead_penguin (31325) | more than 13 years ago | (#63672)

Of course, on those rainy days, big clunky CRTs are great for drying out bike helmets and gloves. There is almost nothing worse than putting on a cold, wet clothing and having to bike home when it's already getting dark out.

"Intelligence is the ability to avoid doing work, yet getting the work done".

Re:Again with the IBM? (3)

dead_penguin (31325) | more than 13 years ago | (#63673)

Ummm... There is one. Just browse [slashdot.org] the topic and see.

As for Borgification of the logo or making other changes to it, I guess some of you haven't been around here long enough to remember this [slashdot.org] .

"Intelligence is the ability to avoid doing work, yet getting the work done".

Re:The best of both worlds (5)

dead_penguin (31325) | more than 13 years ago | (#63674)

The biggest problem with LCDs is that of fixed resolutions. An LCD screen has a fixed number of pixels, so adjusting the screen resolution is difficult at best and hideously ugly at worst...

Hate to disappoint you, but I don't think these CRTs are going to be any different. These "tubes" accelerate electrons from a cathode the size of the entire screen through a grid of holes with magnets, one hole per pixel. These magnets then redirect the beam slightly, hitting either the red, green or blue phosphors in the front of the screen.

I'd imagine, though that monitors based on this technology would have *much* less flicker than conventional CRT monitors. Since there is essentially one beam per pixel, the speed at which one can accurately scan a single beam around the screen is no longer a limiting factor for refresh rate. The *only* factors should be the bandwidth between monitor and video card, and the latency of the phosphors in the screen.

"Intelligence is the ability to avoid doing work, yet getting the work done".

Re:Come to think of it... (1)

nexthec (31732) | more than 13 years ago | (#63675)

dunno, about what is most of the weight, but I would assume they could ditch atleast some of the glass weight and most of the magnet weight, titanium is fairly light as far as metals go, this leaves transformers and the like,(iron core) but with the really cool BJT's coming out these days, I think we will be seeing much more powerfull/efficent/smaller powersupplys in everything.

Re:Come to think of it... (2)

nexthec (31732) | more than 13 years ago | (#63676)

a giant magnetic coil, to aim a(not so light) elctron gun, and the glass is pretty heavy, the tube does have to deal with some decent pressure

Price war! (1)

chill (34294) | more than 13 years ago | (#63677)

Price war! Price war!

Okay, seriously. This means that all those Hollywood movies showing us what the future of computing is like (you know -- "it's not just a multi-monitor system!"; 3 1/2" CDs; flat panel displays galore) are WRONG!

Gasp!

Now if only they can produce some before the next Ice Age hits.


--
Charles E. Hill

Re:15" LCD for $400??? (1)

mgoff (40215) | more than 13 years ago | (#63680)

Try $900 here

Or actually go to Wal-Mart and buy one for $400. Wal-Mart != walmart.com

But why pay $400 when you can get one for even less [buy.com] .

Re:Cool (2)

interiot (50685) | more than 13 years ago | (#63681)

so now we can reduce the space needed

And hopefully the weight? 21" is probably a little above what most people want to lug around.
--

Re:Come to think of it... (4)

interiot (50685) | more than 13 years ago | (#63682)

Well, the weight of the glass grows exponentially with size. Because the inside is a vaccuum, the glass has to hold quite a bit of pressure. As tubes get larger, the walls have to get thicker to maintain structural integrity. Combine that with increased surface area, and that's a lot of glass.
--

Re:Come to think of it... (1)

alphamale (53715) | more than 13 years ago | (#63684)

According to the New Scientist [google.com] story referenced a couple posts below, this will make CRTs (or at least this kind of CRT) much lighter, yes.

Impact on refresh rates and color clarity? (4)

conform (55925) | more than 13 years ago | (#63685)

Something that seems apparent from the New Scientist diagram, but isn't mentioned in any of the articles I've read, is that it appears that this technology might enable huge improvements in refresh rate and allow a lot of improvements through development of the phosphors used in the screen.

A normal CRT uses an electromagnetic coil to direct the spray of electrons coming of the (relatively small) cathode at the back of the monitor. The lines of the screen are literally traced out by the stream. This puts hard limits on the requirements for a phosphor -- the phosphor has to be designed to be as bright as possible for the entire length of time it takes to refresh the whole screen, and then fades out as quickly as possible after that interval. This is a difficult requirement and one that can really only be approximated.

This screen, however, uses a large cathode and localized electromagnetic fields (one per pixel) to direct the beam. That means the screen is refreshing all over, all the time, instead of a line at a time. Phosphors for this new monitor, then, need not be designed to stay at full intensity for anywhere near as long as traditional CRT phosphors, which means that they can probably be made to improve the contrast significantly.

I'm no expert on this, so corrections are welcome... but as I understand it, the light0gun model and it's impact on phosphor choices has long been one of the biggest impediments in CRT improvement, and it sure looks to me like this design breaks that problem down very efficiently.

Flat iMacs (1)

mr100percent (57156) | more than 13 years ago | (#63686)

So this is how we'll get CHEAP flat iMacs.

Wouldn't a flat iMac look more like an ugly Netvista?

CRTs are better than LCDs (1)

oldzoot (60984) | more than 13 years ago | (#63687)

I have both flat-panel LCDs and CRT monitors, and I have decided that I like the CRTs better, particularly for their color fidelity. The prospect of a flatish CRT monitor is interesting. I do have to admit that the desks with LCD monitors have much more usable space than the CRT equiped desks.

Z

I'm not sure it's variable resolution. (2)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | more than 13 years ago | (#63688)

... my main gripe with LCD panels is that they don't handle non-native resolutions gracefully. But if this is true CRT-like technology, we'll finally have the best of both worlds (great support for various resolutions, and the thin form factor!).

It's not clear to me that the CRT is actually variable resolution. The ilustration seemed to show a matrix of holes through one layer. If the beam is steered through those there may be a fixed resolution.

Unfortunately the image is so low-res that I can't make out what's actually going on, and the text isn't particularly helpful either. So we'll have to wait for another article with more info on what's actually going on in the guts.

Even if the resolution is fixed, the cost reduction, viewing angle improvement, potential color rendering improvements, and/or simplified electronics may make it viable.

Power consumption (2)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 13 years ago | (#63694)

What about power, reliability, and safety? From the limited information, it looks like these might be better due on all 3 factors due to the less "leaky" radiation, excess heat, and smaller transformers. But that is highly speculative, and are some of the strongest arguments for LCDs.

My employer recently replaced all the monitors in their "data center" with LCDs because of long term cost advantages (less A/C in the lab, and less power consumption)

Re:CRTs are better than LCDs (3)

Apotsy (84148) | more than 13 years ago | (#63696)

That sounds like it might be akin to CD players vs. turntables.

No it doesn't. The idea that CRTs are better than LCDs for color is supported by cold hard facts. [macworld.com] Even a cheap-o CRT has better delta-E values than the LCDs in that test.

Next thing you know, we'll be saying CRTs have "warmer" color.

No, just considerably more accurate color.

Mmm... CRTs... (2)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 13 years ago | (#63699)

Now I can get my US RDA of radiation and still have a sexy flat screen! The best of both worlds! I was afraid that in a year or two all I'd be able to get would be an LCD, and the radiation from my CRT is the only thing keeping my tan going.

On a more serious note, I recently got a Viewsonic 19" monitor on pricewatch for $280. Once you can run 1600x1200 on a decent sized display, it's pretty hard to go back to a 15" one. I don't care if it is flat. If I could get a 19" to 21" monitor in the CRT price range (21" is still a bit pricey for a good one) I'd be very happy. This article is talking about the potential of making projection sized displays! Even better! I'd love to have a data wall!

Re:IBM's research site (1)

MikeyNg (88437) | more than 13 years ago | (#63700)

Hmmm... that article seems to talk about new LCD technology, rather than CRT technology. I may be mistaken, however; it was only a cursory glance.

On a related note, these will probably never replace laptop screens (primarily because of thickness and weight), but for desktops, this should be a very nice upgrade. I can only hope that this means we'll all have $300 21" CRTs soon.

Re:Other LCD Advantages: Power Consumption, Heat (2)

Chairboy (88841) | more than 13 years ago | (#63701)

That would important if I bought my monitor specifically to avoid power consumption, but I suspect that most people are like me, they choose their monitor for the cost and resolution, the specific areas where LCDs are lacking.

I have an 18" LCD monitor on my desk for one of my servers, and it's great for occasional use, but my 21" CRT is king for everything else.

Remember, a computer peripheral is for the USER.

The best of both worlds (3)

Dirtside (91468) | more than 13 years ago | (#63702)

This is the kind of thing I think we've all been waiting for: a monitor technology that combines the form factor and weight-savings of an LCD (thin = light = easier to carry around = less desk space taken up) with (hopefully, if their tech is any good) the quality of a CRT monitor. The biggest problem with LCDs is that of fixed resolutions. An LCD screen has a fixed number of pixels, so adjusting the screen resolution is difficult at best and hideously ugly at worst (you end up with big unused areas on the screen, or it does a kind of interpolation to stretch a 640x480 image to 1024x768).

But a CRT can adjust to almost any resolution within a huge range, 320x200 all the way up to, I dunno, a lot :) (2048x1280, anyone?) If this tech is for real, and useful, then we (namely, gamers) may have what we've always wanted: a nice, big, flat, lightweight, thin, good-looking monitor with fast refresh, vibrant colors, and adjustable resolutions!

Sorry, this is more or less just a bit of happy-fun-cheering, no real useful content here, move along, move along kind of post.

Sweet! (2)

artemis67 (93453) | more than 13 years ago | (#63703)

I have a number of graphic artists on my LAN. Let me tell ya, those 21" CRT's can really kill your back when you have to move them around! This will be a greatly welcomed change, if they can manage the same color quality that current CRT's have.

Re:Sweet! (2)

artemis67 (93453) | more than 13 years ago | (#63704)

Well, I think you're still looking at a significant weight reduction by lopping alot of the internal glass. Also, 21" monitors aren't just heavy, they're also bulky, making it difficult to manage the weight. A thin version, even if it weighed the same, would still be easier to carry.

Re:Come to think of it... (1)

zer0vector (94679) | more than 13 years ago | (#63705)

The lead coating on the inside of the glass is just there to send stray electrons to ground. Wouldn't want a significant charge building up inside your CRT.

IBM: Solving the wrong problems (2)

El (94934) | more than 13 years ago | (#63706)

I don't want an LCD because it's flat. I want an LCD because it has lower power consumption, no Electromagnetic Radiation, and sharper picture. This is no real improvement on a traditional CRT except for smaller footprint and possibly less weight, and regardless of what they claim, I'm sure it will sell for a premium over an old-fashioned CRT with comparable viewing area.

Re:The best of both worlds (2)

El (94934) | more than 13 years ago | (#63707)

For Pete's sake, man, how often do you change your display resolution???

15" LCD for $400??? (2)

El (94934) | more than 13 years ago | (#63708)

Try $900 here [walmart.com]

Re:IBM: Solving the wrong problems (2)

El (94934) | more than 13 years ago | (#63709)

Excuse me, that should be less radiation, although for all practical purposes the EMR of an LCD can safely be thought of as zero, especially compared to that of a CRT, or even to the power supply of the PC...

That "informative" graphic... (2)

sfgoth (102423) | more than 13 years ago | (#63710)

Can anyone find a copy of the little informative graphic they have with the story? A version that hasn't been shrunk to 50% size, so we can actually read the comments in it?

Re:Impact on refresh rates and color clarity? (2)

egomaniac (105476) | more than 13 years ago | (#63712)

Maybe, maybe not. I wouldn't get too optimistic without further details.

Consider the way the electron gun works -- you essentially have a pretty powerful (relatively speaking) stream of electrons hitting each phosphor for a very very short period of time, and then the phosphor glows for a sixtieth of a second or so.

Basically, the IBM design replaces the single gun with a matrix of them, which sounds like a win -- except that now the energy you were pumping into a single electron gun is spread out among 1.92 million of them (1600x1200 screen). Making each gun as strong as the original but "always on" would cause the monitor to suck up 1.92 million times as much energy, assuming equal efficiency. Naturally if the gun is always on it wouldn't need to be anywhere near as powerful as the original, but I'd bet that 1/1,920,000 of a normal gun's power probably isn't enough.

In any case, to keep the power consumption of the monitor reasonable, there appear to be only three options: A) dramatically reduce the power of the guns (by a factor of almost two million), B) "flicker" them, firing only for very brief periods, or C) some combination of the above.

I'd bet that (C) is most likely: that the guns will be weaker and fire in bursts. I could be totally wrong, of course, as I don't actually know anything about the technology they're using -- but it seems like a reasonable assumption. So anyway, chances are (at least until further information proves me wrong) there will still be a refresh rate. Of course, it might be a really really fast refresh rate (say 1000Hz) which would be just as good as always on, but I'd say wait until more details surface before getting excited.

More information. (4)

FTL (112112) | more than 13 years ago | (#63714)

The New Scientist had an article about this back in May. They took a slightly different angle on it -- pointing out its "spy-proof" features. Although the article appears to be gone, Google still has a copy of it [google.com] .
--

Re:That "informative" graphic... (4)

FTL (112112) | more than 13 years ago | (#63715)

Not the same graphic, but really close [newscientist.com] .
--

Re:More information. (4)

FTL (112112) | more than 13 years ago | (#63716)

Aha, found the original New Scientist article. They've moved it here [newscientist.com] .
--

Again with the IBM? (1)

tommut (123314) | more than 13 years ago | (#63717)

Crikey, IBM's been on slashdot more than Microsoft lately--just about every day. Granted, it's been mostly good news. Don't ya think it's about time to get an official /. IBM icon. Hmmm, but how could they Borg-ify that...

Re:Impact on refresh rates and color clarity? (1)

Tyger (126248) | more than 13 years ago | (#63719)

Just because all the pixels have their own cathodes, doesn't mean they will all be used at once. The electronics for that would be very complex. Even LCDs don't do that really. On the other hand, doing a simulated raster scan would be easy. In fact, LCD hardware already does that. So you could probably take an LCD controller circuit and slap it onto one of these babies and have that problem solved. You still have a faster refresh, because you are only simulating the raster scan in electronics and you can do a whole line at a time. As to power consumption, remember, a traditional CRT has consuming power both a cathode which must produce a beam to cross from the back of the tube to the screen, and illuminate the phospher brightly through the shadow mask, as well as a huge magnetic coil to direct the beam. And traditional CRTs also must run hot to work right. On the other hand, most thin CRT technologies use cold running cathodes, and the beam must only cross a short distance, usually only a few mm, and no magnetic coils.

Re:Great news! (5)

Tyger (126248) | more than 13 years ago | (#63720)

Don't confuse the technology behind a CRT (The cathode generating an electron beam striking a phosphor) with the implementation (A single beam, steered across the screen by magnetic coils) of a standard CRT. This sounds remarkably similar to FED, ThinCRT, and other similar technologies. While the technology is the same (Cathode generating an electron beam striking a phospher) the implementation will likely be fastly different. In this case, it will be virtually identical to LCD - you have an address decoder that just walks through the horizontal and vertical rows, illuminating one pixel/row of pixels at a time, where each pixel is a defined area on the screen (Like LCDs) not where the beam happens to strike (Like traditional CRTs) In fact, the addressing hardware will probably be virtually identical. The biggest difference is instead of a transistor at each pixel, it just has an anode for the rows, and a cathode for the columns, and where the signals meet is illuminated. (Or vice versa) As to heat.. Most similar technologies use something called cold cathodes.. Due to their much reduced power requirements, they can use slightly different technologies, and do not require being warmed up like traditional CRTs before they operate. Of course, due to IBMs lack of information, this could all be wrong, but it is what it looks like to me. This should beat traditional CRTs for weight, power consumption, and clarity (No focus or convergence problems and simplified geometry management - push button alignment like on LCDs) but still use more power than LCDs and be heavier. I'm still keeping my eye on OLEDs though.

The Benifits of a CRT (1)

MBCook (132727) | more than 13 years ago | (#63722)

Well, I for one am glad to see this. I don't own any LCD monitors because in my opinion they are inferior to CRTs. Only a few LCDs look good out side of their native resolution, and CRTs don't have that problem where moveing your head changes the contrast in diffrent parts of the screen. Also, without a glorified light bulb infront of me, how can I show someone from the past how much more advanced we are than them if I get a time machine and go get one?

mmm, radiation (1)

kisrael (134664) | more than 13 years ago | (#63723)

How worried are people about long term exposure to CRT radiation? Is it chicken little, or do the hours and hours and hours we spend in front of these things mean something?
--

WOW. (1)

Spameroni (158440) | more than 13 years ago | (#63726)

IBM scientists in Scotland have patented a way to make a color CRT that's 2 centimeters thick-and IBM says it's cheaper and easier to make these flat-panel CRTs than LCDs.

Wow. 2cm is thinner than many LCD screens I've seen. This could be a VERY nice improvement -- small foot print + nice gradient etc. of CRT.

IBM's new monitor zips electrons through miniscule holes in a thin magnet that's a shade larger than the display screen. The electron beams stream out to a phosphor-covered, thin, slightly convex glass screen.

This really could be the next revolution in display technology. Nearly borderless picture allows for use of many of these screens together to form massive display screens. Like the TV displays around -- except with very little border. Personally, I can't wait for this technology to reach me.

Re:Great news! (1)

Spameroni (158440) | more than 13 years ago | (#63727)

The article actually mentions that they are considering other vendors to produce monitors using their technology. So don't fear.

Perhaps old news? (2)

Spameroni (158440) | more than 13 years ago | (#63728)

I couldn't find a current version of this article, but it would appear to be referencing the same technology, but has many more technical details.

Anyway, here's [google.com] the link.

Re:try breaking a monitor (1)

Dr Fro (169927) | more than 13 years ago | (#63729)

you seem pretty knowledgably about this...

Your monitors or someone else's? :)
********************

IBM has patent? Sony already has one! (2)

nsmeby (170052) | more than 13 years ago | (#63730)

Check this out.
http://www.candescent.com/ [candescent.com]
They're a partner of Sony and they've already got demos of 13 inch displays. Why wait for IBM?

Re:Great news! (1)

pizen (178182) | more than 13 years ago | (#63731)

If you actually spend the time to read the article (which I have, so we'll have to see what CID this gets...but it should be low because the article is short...but I digress...and now I've been sidetracked so this test won't work anyway) then you won't have your comment in the first 100. If your CID isn't low enough, people won't read it as much. Thus, you won't get the attention of the moderators that don't read the comments correctly anyway (-1, nested or flat, newest first). So the people who do the most and earliest postings are the Karma whores and I think this is an indication of how Slashdot has gone downhill recently.
---

Re:Come to think of it... (3)

the_other_one (178565) | more than 13 years ago | (#63732)

There is quite a bit of lead radiation shielding. This is why monitors have to be disposed of as toxic waste if they are not properly recycled.

Re:Come to think of it... (1)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 13 years ago | (#63733)

Leave it to a Slashdot poster to half-read what I said, and then arrogantly repeat what I said back to me.


--

Re:Come to think of it... (1)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 13 years ago | (#63734)

What I said was the following: "If you have a vacuum on the other side of the glass, it should be the same amount of air pressure on the other side regardless of the depth. So maybe the glass needs to be just as thick."

In other words, the depth of the monitor isn't a factor in whether the thickness of the glass needs to change for a certain size monitor. Your point about structural integrity is true, but irrelevent to the main point which is that reducing the depth doesn't change the thickness requirement.


--

Come to think of it... (2)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 13 years ago | (#63735)

What makes CRTs so heavy anyway? It can't just be the glass. Would something like this reduce the weight, or are they just shifting around whatever it is that makes them so damn heavy?


--

Re:Come to think of it... (2)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 13 years ago | (#63736)

Hmmm. If it is the glass that's mostly the weight, then do you need the glass to be as thick? On the one hand, it seems like you wouldn't need as much "vacuum volume". But on the other hand, does the volume matter? If you have a vacuum on the other side of the glass, it should be the same amount of air pressure on the other side regardless of the depth. So maybe the glass needs to be just as thick.

It would kind of suck to have a 90 pound 21" monitor 2 centimeters thick, and have it fall forward into your lap. The base would need to take up pretty much the same amount of space as a standard monitor. Kind of defeats the purpose. :)


--

Re:Sweet! (1)

Liquor (189040) | more than 13 years ago | (#63738)

A lot of the weight in a CRT is the lead in the glass at the front of the tube that protects you from the x-rays that a color CRT tube would otherwise emit.

And this new technology would still need to have that shielding, 'cos you can't get the bright phosphors without the potential for x-rays.

So, these new displays are going to be much thinner - but I doubt very much that they'll actually be lighter.

Liquor

Re:Come to think of it... (1)

Liquor (189040) | more than 13 years ago | (#63739)

And that glass has to contain lead to cut down on the x-ray emmisions from the tube.

This new flat panel tech still uses high voltage electrons, so it's still going to emit x-rays, so theres going to be some irreducible amount of lead crystal glass for shielding purposes.

Less glass may mean lighter, but the need for shielding probably means that it won't be much lighter.

(Admittedly less glass is needed for structural purposes with the sandwich construction - but it's still a vacuum, and a lot of the weight of a current CRT is the lead crystal shielding at the front of the tube, which is thicker than is needed merely for strength, even for 'flat' displays.)


Liquor

Re:Come to think of it... (1)

Liquor (189040) | more than 13 years ago | (#63740)

There is quite a bit of lead radiation shielding. This is why monitors have to be disposed of as toxic waste if they are not properly recycled.

Much of that lead is tied up in the glass itself, as lead 'crystal' - which is still glass, and one of the safest forms lead could possibly be disposed in. (Some monitors have a metallic lead shield around the sides of the tube mount, that could be easily removed and recycled, but this seems to be becoming less frequent.) The '20 pounds of lead' in a monitor cried out by the overly eco-aware is really a non-issue.

The exotic compounds used for the phospors, however, are not so safely disposed of, and will be exposed to the atmosphere once the tube is inevitably broken.


Liquor

Re:LCD vs. CRT, the battle of COLOR representation (1)

MtViewGuy (197597) | more than 13 years ago | (#63744)

If IBM's news flat-CRT design can display with the same brightness and sharpness as a top-notch CRT monitor, even that would be a big improvement over current monitors in terms of space usage.

It appears that the new design will use less power, since we don't need a very powerful transformer to power a big electron gun to generate a display, both of which consume lots of power (small wonder why DPMS was developed).

in related news... (2)

Sodakar (205398) | more than 13 years ago | (#63748)

I would much rather have an unattractive LCD base than one that causes my $1500 investment to topple over. Where am I going with this? Well, while this new technology by IBM is exciting, this part worries me:

screens of any size are possible with the same depth, but building a thin vacuum panel big enough for a projection screen might not be practical.

Ack. Think, vacuum panel? Yeah... I'd like to see how that fairs against accidentally being toppled over... ...and don't tell me it won't happen, because it's bound to.

Re:The best of both worlds (2)

tswinzig (210999) | more than 13 years ago | (#63750)

These "tubes" accelerate electrons from a cathode the size of the entire screen through a grid of holes with magnets, one hole per pixel.

Don't you mean one hole per sub-pixel? It would take three of these to make up a pixel, right? (RGB)

Re:Great news! (1)

DarkEdgeX (212110) | more than 13 years ago | (#63751)

Wanna know what really sucks? I decided to read the linked-to story anyways, and forgot to remove the disclaimer.

Great news! (2)

DarkEdgeX (212110) | more than 13 years ago | (#63754)

Disclaimer: I haven't read the linked-to stories, so take this with a grain of salt.

I hope this technology makes it out into the consumer market and gives LCD panels a run for the money-- my main gripe with LCD panels is that they don't handle non-native resolutions gracefully. But if this is true CRT-like technology, we'll finally have the best of both worlds (great support for various resolutions, and the thin form factor!).

Plus the other applications for this, high-resolution replacements for television sets, can't be beat. The large plasma displays (which admittedly probably look better than a large CRT would) may have fallen in price, but a large CRT with this new technology would probably be cheaper for the masses.

Kudos to IBM, let's just hope that the fact that they've gotten a patent on this tech doesn't keep others from using it.

Cool (2)

einhverfr (238914) | more than 13 years ago | (#63757)

This will be WAY COOL for LAN fests-- LCD's don't work due to refresh rate limitations so now we can reduce the space needed!

This is gamers' heaven if the technology performs as well as conventional CRTs.

Sig: Tell all your friends NOT to download the Advanced Ebook Processor:

Other LCD Advantages: Power Consumption, Heat (4)

cube farmer (240151) | more than 13 years ago | (#63758)

CRTs are great for cost/image resolution, but LCDs and OLED win on power consumption and temperature. This article was a bit light on details for the new IBM tech, but I doubt a CRT can rival LCD and OLED in these categories.

Re:Ramblings of mad man (1)

3prong (241218) | more than 13 years ago | (#63759)

Ah, cathode ray boob humor. Good stuff.

How efficient are they? (1)

jtownatpunk.net (245670) | more than 13 years ago | (#63761)

A thin CRT is neat and all but are they any more efficient than the current monitors? Part of the LCD appeal, to me, is the fact that they use very little energy and don't put out much heat. Making a CRT thin is only half the battle. It's also gotta be efficient to get my $$$. Especially with $400 LCDs all over the place. Heck, that's less than I paid for my last 17" CRT back in the late 90s.

Wal-Mart (1)

ImaLamer (260199) | more than 13 years ago | (#63762)

Has anyone used a KDS monitor from wal-mart?

My local has them, flat screen for around $390 but there is no computer hooked up to it so I can't imagine a beowulf cluster of these things.

But I could turn it on and see something wasn't right, the picture looked funny.

Please a review!

Re:Question (2)

egommer (303441) | more than 13 years ago | (#63766)

Since when did an abundance of choices become a problem. I am thrilled at this. Give me more choices and Damn the 'One Size Fits All' mentality.
If I had a choice between getting a product spoon fed to me or having to maany "confusing options" then give me confusion or give me death.
Choice is good!

Ramblings of mad man (2)

Kujako (313468) | more than 13 years ago | (#63767)

I don't like my CRTs flat. I prefer them to have soft curves and buoyancy... wait, what where we talking about again?

Re:Sweet! (1)

geoswan (316494) | more than 13 years ago | (#63768)

A lot of the weight in a CRT is the lead in the glass at the front of the tube that protects you from the x-rays that a color CRT tube would otherwise emit.

Are you sure? I thought the weight was due to glass needing to be thick for plain old mechanical strength. CRTs are evacuated. 14 pounds per square inch.

LCD vs. CRT, the battle of COLOR representation (1)

mkbz (317881) | more than 13 years ago | (#63769)

hearing about thin or flat-panel CRT's is great news for us graphic-ey folks. i've been reluctant to consider upgrading to newer, cheaper flat panel LCD's for one simple reason: their color calibration is utterly whacked.

the screen on my thinkpad can't imagine reproducing colors with any remote accuracy, and whatever calibration tools are available to tweak it (i have the savage/IX chipset, i've used both the s3 color and gamma correction, and adobe's gamma correction) have failed to produce an accurate color representation across a full spectrum (i.e. you can tweak it so a certain range is accurate, but then the rest of the spectrum is bunk)

so, a thinner, lighter CRT is great news (especially if it's the same price as conventional high-end CRT's) for us design folks who want to do away with clunky, heavy, power-hungry CRT's but don't want to sacrifice one of the keystones of our industry.

any thoughts? is my testbed too narrow? are there LCD's that can reproduce color as accurately as a Trinitron CRT? (and ultimately, will these thin CRT's be able to represent color as well as their bulging older siblings? if not, they have no strategic advantage over LCD's, except possibly for price and/or brightness in well-lit areas)

Re:LCD vs. CRT, the battle of COLOR representation (1)

mkbz (317881) | more than 13 years ago | (#63770)

LCD screens are a fad. They look cool, but they don't work nearly as well as existing CRT technology... and it's much more expensive.

well, i agree, there is an element of fad-ism with flat-panels. but i want to see them succeed/improve. my motivations are: heat production, power consumption, and desk space.

wouldn't you love to be able to mount (several) flat-panel displays on a swingarm and get them the hell off of your desk? to be able to put your desk anywhere near a wall (and not have to leave room for the backend of the CRT to hang over) and to be able to have multiple monitors on and not have the room get so warm you can roast a chicken? (*grin*)

i pledged when i bought my FD Trinitron that it was the last CRT i buy. i don't like conspicuous consumption of electricity- to produce heat instead of display.

so, time will tell. let's just hope they get all this sorted out before my latest monitor decides to bite the dust. ;) i'm hoping i have at least 4 or 5 years, at least.

Clustering (1)

roguerez (319598) | more than 13 years ago | (#63771)

even cheaper ones sound like a pleasant fantasy for dual- and triple-headed flat-panel systems

You mean: Can you imagine a Beowulf cluster of these? :-)

Re:Great news! (2)

roguerez (319598) | more than 13 years ago | (#63775)

I hope this technology makes it out into the consumer market and gives LCD panels a run for the money-- my main gripe with LCD panels is that they don't handle non-native resolutions gracefully.

That may be true, but in reality every screen size has an 'ideal' resolution. It's nice to be able to play around with resolutions, but when you want to work, there's is usually one ideal resolution that's best for the specific screen size.

Furthermore, LCD's have some pro's when compared to CRT's:

- no harmful radiation (CRT stands for Cathode Ray Tube, LCD just uses some backlighting with 'normal' light)

- lends itself perfectly for even better font smoothing (like the ClearType smoothing in, sorry I have to say, Windows XP)

On the other hand, CRT's are still better in color handling. Although the LCD on my sony picturebook gives WAY better image and color than my 6 year old 17" CTX monitor, in print shops CRT's still seem to only way (high end CRT's, that is, not the $250 crap 17" monitors you can get everywhere nowadays).

Re:WOW. (1)

OxideBoy (322403) | more than 13 years ago | (#63776)

2 cm is about 13/16", and that's not as thin, as, say, the LCD on my laptop, which is almost two years old, and I'm happy with.

Everyone talks about "flat panel," but in my opinion we won't have true flat panel until we get something that you have trouble seeing viewed end-on. ;-) What are some candidates for this? I know there are nanoparticle-spray ideas out there which have a lot of promise, though I think the obstacle there might be addressing the "pixels" (would you call them "nixels"?) Things like nanoparticle II-VIs, organics, carbon nanotubes, etc. are all candidates. I also know there's been a lot of work on "black silicon" (more technically silicon microcolumns) by Pedraza and Lowndes at ORNL/Univ. of Tennessee-Knoxville and Mazur at Harvard, and high-intensity electroluminescence was one application of this, though I think photodetectors, solar cells, etc. are supposed to be the real "killer app" for that stuff.

Re:WOW. (1)

OxideBoy (322403) | more than 13 years ago | (#63777)

I think what is envisioned for these kinds of things is "display paint"--it just is basically put on a wall and there it stays.

Actually, what I really want are cheaper and more powerful Xybernaut-type things. Maybe I too could actually use my desk for writing again...

We like womens' breasts big and our monitors flat (1)

Sigmon (323109) | more than 13 years ago | (#63778)

I've often said that there's a REASON that CRT technology has endured for so many years. I'm glad to see somebody is using resources to improve it instead of abandoning something that works so well.... and that is far superior in image quality than LCDs (IMHO).

-SIGmon

Re:LCD vs. CRT, the battle of COLOR representation (1)

Sigmon (323109) | more than 13 years ago | (#63779)

are there LCD's that can reproduce color as accurately as a Trinitron CRT?

I'm sure there are, but is it worth 10 times the cost of your CRT to have a cute little flat monitor? You'll pay... dearly.... for an LCD device that performs half as well as your CRT.
LCD screens are a fad. They look cool, but they don't work nearly as well as existing CRT technology... and it's much more expensive.

-SIGmon

Good news for the "desk estate" impaired (2)

CoachS (324092) | more than 13 years ago | (#63780)

Despite the move to "digital" and paper-less (which doesn't seem to produce less paper, oddly) we still find ourselves often scrapping for desk space. Our current standard of 15" and 17" CRTs requires quite a bit of space; especially in terms of the depth of the units -- in some cases our people have little or not choice in where to put their monitor because they have cabinets or other furniture in the way. A flat/thin screen means many valuable inches of saved space for us.

Needless to say I'm curious to see these hit our local VARs and at what prices.

-Coach-

No more windows... (1)

UserID 3.14 (410525) | more than 13 years ago | (#63781)

Now I can buy enouigh flat panel displays to replace my windows and block out that horrible daystar thingie! Plus, I get a display wall.

Re:CRTs are better than LCDs (2)

glenkim (412499) | more than 13 years ago | (#63782)

That sounds like it might be akin to CD players vs. turntables. Next thing you know, we'll be saying CRTs have "warmer" color.

Wouldn't a short CRT tube be a heat risk? (2)

baschie (453563) | more than 13 years ago | (#63788)

At a "job fair" for beta (physics, math, chemist, biology) students here at my university in Holland I talked to some employees of Philips (a dutch electronics company). They mentioned that most companies where still innovating CRT technologies, although LCD is considered to be the future.

They also mentioned (and that's most important), that most companies do have (possibly very) short CRT tubes, but that the heat is the biggest problem. Ever since CRT's started burning (in standby mode e.g.) sporadically, companies are very affraid of bringing new technologies to the market that might have a slight heat problem.

One burning television/ monitor is enough to "kill" a brand, and all the bad publicity that it brought with it is enough to frighten these companies to not sell these CRTs.

These employees didn't actually work for the CRT department, so I can't verify if there really is a risk of "overheating", but the problem seemed plausible.

Thin, not flat (1)

dublisk (456374) | more than 13 years ago | (#63789)



"The electron beams stream out to a phosphor-covered, thin, slightly convex glass screen."


The screen is not flat like an LCD, but perhaps just as thin. A flat screen would look even better, although this is good news as it is.

Re:Impact on refresh rates and color clarity? (2)

mtgstuber (457457) | more than 13 years ago | (#63790)

Doesn't this end up meaning that we are back in the land of only certain "blessed" resolutions being well supported? An earlier posting was hoping that these new CRTs would makeup for one of the short coming of LCDs -- that they don't handle other resolutions well. If these flat CRTs are using a matrix of guns I suspect that we'll be limited to the resolution provided, or crude approximations when using non-standard ones. Of course, I wouldn't mind being "limited" to 3200x2400 on a nice flat 3' screen.

FLAT Panel? Haven't we seen this before. (1)

phoenix_orb (469019) | more than 13 years ago | (#63792)

Yes, we have. It is the same situation that they place with TFT displays. They consider it a moving target for quality and cost. Why? The costs are dropping and the quality is rising. That is why the rather archaic manner of the electron gun based CRT is still in use..(after almost 75 or so years of constant use) the fact that we can upgrade it over time and still use the same or slightly modified equipment to manufacture it. Hmm, isn't this the same reason DVD's are exactly the same size as CD's? That's right skipper, have a doggie treat.

The point of the matter is that after reading the article I don't see anything new that I didn't really expect... Just regular achievements in display technology. I was much more impressed by the super high definition display by IBM just a couple of weeks ago.

Point is, this is great news, but will it replace TFT displays in Laptops? no. Will it replace the use of TFT is the office or home? No. Will is improve the CRT monitors? Eventually it will. But that is all. I honestly doubt this is going to give TFT displays a "run for it's money" so to speak.

Re:Again with the IBM? (1)

phoenix_orb (469019) | more than 13 years ago | (#63793)

There is a /. icon. The big IBM blue stripped shield thingie.... Yes, I just said thingie..

Thin... (1)

Pyrosz (469177) | more than 13 years ago | (#63794)

doesnt equal portable. This, while good for the desktop and possible TV applications, it wont work for laptops. The screen would be too heavy to cary around. Current thin screen technologies are made of platics while CRT displays rely on glass. While they wont be as heavy as your current CRT due to the fact that the tube is no longer needed, they will still probably weigh as much as your entire laptop.

Wow! (1)

Yumi Saotome (470249) | more than 13 years ago | (#63795)

Dang, maybe this will destroy LCDs like DVDs destroyed LDs? I wonder how many different patents IBM has on this new technology.

no more planar lcd for me (1)

orangel (470594) | more than 13 years ago | (#63796)

i was almost going to buy a planar 17.4 lcd (cheap only $600), but i changed my mind after reading the ibm article. clearly the first generation of lcd serves its purpose, but it's still not up to the standard of crt performance. besides the fixed resolution, dead pixels are really annoying. i guess i'll be waiting for this new technology to materialize.
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