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New LCD Flatscreen Concept: A Wedge of Plastic

samzenpus posted more than 9 years ago | from the screen-of-the-week dept.

Technology 94

SimianOverlord writes "The Register reports on an innovation in the field of flat panel LCD screens that promises cheaper screens with the same quality using existing manufacturing technology. A Flat Projection Display is created by bouncing light into a thin wedge of plastic from the bottom of the screen, at just the correct angle to allow the rebounded light to escape at the correct pixel. "We have to play around with the image to make sure that the pixels don't bunch up" explained Prof. Travis, the inventor. "If you don't do that the image can appear a little like an image reflected off water" The new technology has already attracted interest from a major TV maker, but don't expect them in your laptop until projector minaturization catches up."

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eka posti! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917468)

ha!

HUD / glasses (5, Interesting)

old_unicorn (697566) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917478)

I wonder if this could work with HUD or for display injection into a pair of glasses? That would be neat - to have the image in your glasses / windscreen!

Re:HUD / glasses (4, Insightful)

JamesD_UK (721413) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917529)

Don't expect them in your laptop until projector minaturization catches up.

The display still requires a traditional projector to transmit the image through the display. I suppose that having two projectors attached to your glasses may induce a small amounts of neck strain.

Re:HUD / glasses (1)

Troll McClure (571760) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917569)

confucious, he say, when is better, a wide page, or a page that is wide?

Re:HUD / glasses (4, Funny)

DarkMantle (784415) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917582)

But those bulbs will keep you warm during the winter time. Here in Canada that idea just may sell.

Re:HUD / glasses (2)

Archibald Buttle (536586) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917776)

The display requires a projector, but it doesn't have to be "traditional". You just need to use a little imagination...

Lasers can be built onto a chip, so why not build a laser-based projection device and use optical fibers to route the light to the screen?

First stage of this though would be to build a laser-based projector to couple with this technology for laptop displays.

Re:HUD / glasses (1)

oliverthered (187439) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918220)

I can have larger projectors head mounted than laptop mounted and the ratio finalsize/projectorsize is far better for head mounts.

The problem may be one of size and not weight, in which case HUD's could be a lot easier than laptop displays.

Re:HUD / glasses (1)

SWTP_OS9 (658064) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918585)

Sounds like the wedge light system some person developed to add light for the Gameboy that foolish Netendo DID not do.

Some where I saw some on is working on stearing light by non mechenical means. So combind both and large display with large & variable resolution could be possible.

transparence and miniaturisation (3, Informative)

feepcreature (623518) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917531)

If projection tech needs to catch up so we can use this in a TV or laptop, it'll have to catch up even more to allow it to be used in glasses. But a bigger problem is that the light exits the wedge vertically (or horizontally, if the wedge is sideways), so the diffusing coating they use to make it visible in front or behind would affect transparency.

Re:HUD / glasses (1)

Troll McClure (571760) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917558)

Dont forget -

IMAGINE A BEOWULF CLUSTER OF THESE THINGS ON MY FACE!!!!!!!!

Im troll mccure, your mom. dfhsjkdf djsfklshdf jdsfhlhasfjd hjkalsfhjask jsdh;fjks;lfher tiehbn sfjlk;shdfjk sjdk;herio;f gm,; jrt;hiogn earjl;ier hjfdk.; ruatl

Too Late (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917624)

Too Late Professor, I have already described such a display method. You did not invent anything. Also I described a fused fiber optic panel utilizing 3 lasers for display drivers... yep RGB... It amazes me that simple ideas are called inventions. For what it's worth, the technology today makes this possible, but the idea is OLD.
I described this in usegroups back in 1993. You will hear from my lawyers.

Re:Too Late (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917845)

Are you sure? This guy is my maths professor, it sounds like he's been working on it longer than you - and he has it working!

The idea may be simple (even I thought of it when I was about 13) but there are problems to be overcome, such as the pixels bunching due to the rays coming out at different angles, and black spaces between pixels due to the same problem. (Both overcome using a screen placed at a critical distance) He's also written completely new raytracing software (as you'd know if you'd read the website/attended his lectures) as standard raytracers model total internal reflection as a reflection off of a metal surface - which is not accurate for these purposes.

A quote (probably from star trek -- i forget): "History is written by the victors"

Re:Too Late (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10918181)

A Maths Professor? Did you mean Mathematics? Certainly math would enter into the equation. But I would think someone specializing in the physics of optics would be a better start. But that is not important. Say for instance, you take a buttload(technical term) of fiber optic elements and fuse them in a sequemce at one end, then move them up a surface(call it a screen) at intervals allowing each fiber to be a "pixel" on the "screen". Then you "shine" red, blue and green lasers into the base fibers(which are ordered to correspond with placement on the "screen" to enable a picture to form. Then further suppose that you designed a control program to coordinate the color display based upon video information. you can grab a bunch of fiber optic strands and do this yourself, using your garden variety of light to see how this could work. Using computer generated bending techniques, you could position the fibers into a screen usable as a display. It would be relatively heavy, but "solid state" stuff like this would be. Pump the colored laser impulses into the base of the device and you would have a "LightBrite" that was actually useful.

This would eliminate "pixel bunching". Controlling the thickness of the fibers would control the resolution of the display. Displays could even be "grown" from a substrate using current 3-d modeling.

Re:Too Late (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10918276)

my apologies - i meant maths lecturer. He's actually part of the Photonics and Sensors group. I should have remembered one of his favorite sayings when posing before: "I am not a mathematician!"

History was written by the victors (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10928987)

A quote (probably from star trek -- i forget): "History is written by the victors"

This page [thinkexist.com] attributes it to Winston Churchill.

I could have sworn that I read an excerpt from a document related to Hitler's orders to invade Poland that used the phrase (or, rather, the history book's translator chose to translate it that way). It would be ironic if the Nazis had quoted the British politician in ordering the actions that eventually brought Churchill to power. It would have been sort of like reading from a cursed scroll for the Nazis.

Re:HUD / glasses (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917637)

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.xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc 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.uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc.Xdefaults .Xmodmap .Xresources .addressbook .addressbook.lu .bash_history .bashrc .dayplan .dayplan.priv .dvipsrc .emacs .exrc .gimprc .grok .holiday .hotjava .jazz .kde .kermrc .lyxrc .muttrc .nc_keys .pgp .pinerc .profile .seyon .signature .ssh .stonxrc .susephone .tex .uitrc.console .uitrc.vt100 .uitrc.vt102 .uitrc.xterm .urlview .vimrc .xcoralrc .xfm .xim .xinitrc .xserverrc.secure .xsession .xtalkrc

There's a better way, alredy out. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10922900)

glasses with a reflecting prism allowing a low powered laser to project the image directly onto your retina.

happy thanksgiving... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917480)

chumps

Slippery pixels (4, Funny)

welshwaterloo (740554) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917483)

"We have to play around with the image to make sure that the pixels don't bunch up"

Anyone else picturing all their pixels sliding down to the corner of the screen in a pink mess..?

Re:Slippery pixels (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917561)

No.

Maybe (1)

uberdave (526529) | more than 9 years ago | (#10919063)

Maybe they forgot that they've got the "melting screen" screensaver on their computer.

Poster... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917484)

I for one welcome our new SimianOverlord.

TV Windows? (2, Interesting)

Blue_Nile (793198) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917485)

Eventually then you'd be able to put these at the bottom of you window to use it as a tv then?

official site: (3, Informative)

yruf (463879) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917488)

The video [camfpd.com] on their website [camfpd.com] is crap. Don't try it...

Re:official site: (4, Informative)

Chundra (189402) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917518)

However, the pdf [cam.ac.uk] has some nice pictures and a more details of how it works.

Re:official site: (1)

PhrostyMcByte (589271) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917551)

Looks like they still have some work to do. The picture looks fairly washed out.

Re:official site: (2, Insightful)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917604)

"Looks like they still have some work to do. The picture looks fairly washed out."

To be fair, projected images don't photograph well.

Re:official site: (3, Interesting)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917611)

Sorry to reply to my own post, but I thought I'd elaborate a little bit. I used to work for a company that sold a computer system along with some equipment they built. We hired a professional photographer come in and shoot photos of it in operation. He actually did a double exposure to make the LCD stand out more clearly. Took one shot with all the lights on, LCD off. Then he turned out the lights, turned the LCD on, and exposed the film again. Nice result. :)

and, like all innovation and progress.... (0, Offtopic)

mat catastrophe (105256) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917495)

this will triple the price of the hardware, instead of lowering it. right?

will regular lcd prices slide down?

will it tell me when my toast is done? (sorry, no breakfast yet...)

Re:and, like all innovation and progress.... (1, Insightful)

aardvarkjoe (156801) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917522)

this will triple the price of the hardware, instead of lowering it. right?
Yeah, of course. After all, it's not like prices for computer equipment ever goes down...

Ob. Soup Nazzi reply... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917572)

No toast for you!! 1 year!!! >:|

If I had a dime... (5, Insightful)

OpenSourced (323149) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917498)

If I had a dime for every new display technology (or other kind of cool technologies) that gets in the papers, I could go to the same clubs of Warren Buffet. But if I had it for the technologies that actually reach me as a consumer, I could barely buy a film ticket, depending on city.

I don't know exactly why it is but it's a fact. I'm thinking of making a list. It may make for funny reading ten years from now.

Re:If I had a dime... (1)

kubrick (27291) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918040)

The other thing that I've noticed is that they're always described as "three to five years away", and they've generally been like that for the last fifteen to twenty years, and will remain "three to five years away" for the next fifteen to twenty years.

Re:If I had a dime... (1)

neitzsche (520188) | more than 9 years ago | (#10922616)

You forgot the part about how much cheaper they will be to manufacture than current technologies. Either they 1) use readily available raw materials, or 2) less raw materials, or 3) the classic standby: simpler manufacturing process (each of which is always eaten by exorbitant "unexpected" testing costs.)

Re:If I had a dime... (1)

ceeam (39911) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918195)

Your point being...?

Re:If I had a dime... (1)

Jameth (664111) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918384)

You're implying that it is because most of the technologies are hopeless, but I really think that isn't the case. The fact is, when a hundred new technologies are developed to solve one problem, only one is actually needed. The others are tossed by the wayside not because they are useless but because they are not as useful as another technology.

Re:If I had a dime... (1)

Class Act Dynamo (802223) | more than 9 years ago | (#10919454)

Does Warren Buffet go to 'clubs'? He's probably most unpretentious rich person ever. He drove his '85 Oldsmobile Cutlass almost until it did not run.

Re:If I had a dime... (1)

OpenSourced (323149) | more than 9 years ago | (#10920948)

Well, I just didn't want to share the clubs with Bill Gates ;o)

another term might be handy... (5, Interesting)

ecalkin (468811) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917500)

You might call this a prism. The concept of bouncing light off of the inside edge of a prism is what happens in the pentaprism mirror inside a slr camera.

The big advantage that I can see with this is that a reasonable quality plastic wedge/prism should be much cheaper to replace when it gets damaged. I'm sure the initial cost will still be high, but the expensive stuff can be a little more protected.

eric

Re:another term might be handy... (1)

dargaud (518470) | more than 9 years ago | (#10919737)

The concept of bouncing light off of the inside edge of a prism is what happens in the pentaprism mirror inside a slr camera.

And also inside most binoculars and also, surprisingly, when you use the 'night' position of your rearview mirror.

Still Not Cheap Enough (0, Redundant)

automag (834164) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917505)

It's interesting to note that while this process appears to be much cheaper than plasma screen technology and probably cheaper than current rear-projection methods in use, the industry still has a long way to go in making this technology as inexpensive as the good 'ol picture tube televisions that we've had all along.

Ultimately that is the real brass ring, because there are a whole lot more people that can't afford the new technology, than can. Especially when considered on a global scale. Bottom line: I don't think we're going to be hearing about the 'death' of tube-based televisions for many years to come...

Re:Still Not Cheap Enough (3, Insightful)

Ucklak (755284) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918000)

Injection molding plastic is cheaper than tube manufacturing.
CRT alignment is still adjusted by a human. Injection molding does not require human intervention.

I call bs... (1)

djupedal (584558) | more than 9 years ago | (#10921857)

CRT alignment is still adjusted by a human.
Must be why Samsung makes CRTs with onboard magnetic alignment systems (rudimentary GPS aqs it were) that don't require realignment based on hemisphere...

Injection molding does not require human intervention.
I've got 30 injection mold machines lined up and working just outside my office, and the amount of human intervention required to keep them producing error free products keeps several staff busy making adjustements, to everything from the pvc recipe to contamination control.

Re:Still Not Cheap Enough (1)

famebait (450028) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918279)

CRTs haven't always been cheap. It has now had decades to realise all the economies of scale and writing off research investments, and the price is still falling. A 17 inch hires CRT cost about twice as muach as today 10 years ago.

LCDs have been sliding in price too, and faster since they're at an earlier tim in the curve, and will eventually catch up. Techniques with cheaper production facilities will have a steeper price curve and cross into the lowest section sooner. Provided they get it to work well, of course.

HUD on fighter aircraft (5, Interesting)

mikewas (119762) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917524)

This sounds like the HUD on some fighter aircraft -- some have mirrors but others use a high quality chunk of optical glass. It sounds like this approach takes a low tech chunk of plastic and corrects for the abberations in the electronics.

Cheap silicon wins again -- it's been supplanting copper, now optics.

In other news.... (5, Funny)

Viceice (462967) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917533)

A prominent female fashion guru has just announced his new master piece, a dress made with 'Flat Projection Display' as it's only fabric.

"With it, ladies all over may customise their clothing with any pattern or picture they want", beamed the millionaire dressmaker.

However, he declined comment on what would happen to the otherwise transparent dress after it's power supply, rated for 23 minutes of use, failed.

Re:In other news.... (1)

Jedi Alec (258881) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917563)

does an emperor picture in this tale anywhere?

Actually seen something like this (2, Interesting)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917652)

Was an art piece. The tech used was those LCD panes that can turn opaque or transparent depending on power.

The "dress" had the panes on certain strategic locations if you know what I mean. The controller was setup in such a way that the panes were opaque most of the time but now and they would flash very fast transparent.

The trick of course being that your brain requires time to see things. Especially when you are not trying to look like a complete pervert. You clearly saw the thing become transparent but at least I was to slow to see anything.

So in one way the girl was nude. But because you couldn't actually see anything she wasn't.

Re:Actually seen something like this (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 9 years ago | (#10932274)

Not so much the brain but the retina, so-called "persistence of vision." But that's still a pretty cool bit of tech, don't suppose you have any video of it that I could single-frame through, do you?

Instead of making it cheaper (3, Insightful)

bartyboy (99076) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917535)

why not make screens with no dead or stuck pixels? It's a huge pain in the ass to repack the new screen and bring it back to the store because ONE pixel is not working properly.

And manufacturers, here's a clue for your QC people: there is no such thing as "acceptable amount of defective pixels". I don't care if they're not touching or not, if they work above 30 degrees Celsius or when submerged in KY jelly. If I'm buying a new car there are no dents or scratches on it, so why should your screens be any different?

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

vrai (521708) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917564)

Why is this mod'd as Troll? It's a fair point - you wouldn't pay full whack for a new sofa (couch) that had holes in; no matter how small or far apart they were. Why should this be any different for LCD monitors? If I buy a monitor that advertises a 1600x1200 resolution then I expect every one of the pixels to be working; otherwise the item is defective.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (2, Interesting)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917635)

"Why is this mod'd as Troll? It's a fair point - you wouldn't pay full whack for a new sofa (couch) that had holes in; no matter how small or far apart they were. Why should this be any different for LCD monitors? If I buy a monitor that advertises a 1600x1200 resolution then I expect every one of the pixels to be working; otherwise the item is defective."

It's a 'good point', but that's not what the topic is about. He was likely modded as troll for bitching about something that has little relation to this topic, not to mention that these folks don't have the power to fix the problem. Getting people riled up for no rational reason is more or less what trolling is.

As for your comment, there are a few things to consider:

1.) That's 1,920,000 individual pixels you want to work perfectly from a source that produces millions of displays. It's hard to do. Life sucks, sorry.

2.) You don't have to buy an LCD display if having one pixel misbehave is a deal breaker.

3.) Most would rather have cheaper displays at the expense of risk of a couple of dead pixels. If everybody decided that it was unacceptable, do you really think a 0 dead pixel standard would suddenly go into effect without costs going higher to maintain that level of quality?

Look, I agree, it sucks that LCDs have that standard. As I mentioned before, life sucks sometimes. However, it wouldn't hurt to be at least a little appreciative of the fact that they can't just snap their fingers and suddenly make it work. Seriously, one could make the same complaint about McDonald's not mass producing burgers that match the image in their commericals.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (3, Informative)

jetmarc (592741) | more than 9 years ago | (#10919749)

> 1.) That's 1,920,000 individual pixels you want to work perfectly from a source
> that produces millions of displays. It's hard to do. Life sucks, sorry.

Throwing in high numbers isnt really a convincing counter-argument. After all
you also return defective 512MB DIMMs, although they contain 536,870,912 individual
bits. Or defective 160GB harddrives which contain, let me see, how many bits?

I know that its difficult to produce such a large panel without any error. But
OTOH there are ways to fix the problem:

a) panels can be binned. Actually the ISO standard suggests this, but manufacturers
simply dont do it. If they were to sell zero-defect panels as such, all non-
zero-defect panel would have to have at least 1 defect. Currently manufacturers
prefer to sell "0-5 defects" instead of "0 defects" and "1-5 defects".

b) panels can be repaired. The most visible types of defect are stuck-on pixels,
and stuck sub-pixels (which change the color of the intended pixel). With laser
technology any pixel can be "burned away" and be turned into less annoying
stuck-off pixels. While this doesnt make the panel "zero-defect", it certainly
would combine well with suggestion a), because getting a "1-5 defects" item at
lower price would only mean 1-5 dark pixels. Which is more tolerable than todays
surprise-bouquet of colored pixels.

c) panels can be designed fault-tolerant. It would perfectly be possible to use
redundancy to tolerate the loss of pixels. If, eg, 2 transistors were used
instead of one, with separate control wiring, the loss of one wouldnt matter.
Only when both were to be damaged (both of any one pixel), the pixel would
actually be unusable. This method costs panel space to implement, of course.
You wouldnt be able to fit the highest resolution into lowest dimension anymore,
or would have to improve the process resolution. This is the price to be paid
for higher yield.

Unless customers start to vote with money, things wont change. Today people complain
about defective pixels, but only few actually go out and get a "zero defects
guaranteed" product. Most just hope the best, and some try to return the bad ones
with a made-up excuse.

Marc

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

rhuntley12 (621658) | more than 9 years ago | (#10921534)

I agree with both of you, it really sucks having a dead pixel, but it's a pain not to get one. But if I'm paying full price for a LCD I want it to be flawless, if you aren't going to make sure there are no pixels, then sell it a bit less then the price of one without flawed pixels?\ They are coming down in price a lot, but they are still expensive. A good LCD costs more then the whole PC I have it on, if I'm paying that money, I want no dead pixels.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10918199)

you wouldn't pay full whack for a new sofa (couch) that had holes in; no matter how small or far apart they were

All sofas have holes in them. So it does matter how small they are.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917565)

"why not make screens with no dead or stuck pixels?"

What a brilliant idea. Let's skip building a new cheaper technology that couldn't possibly have this problem and instead perfect a method that insures that 786,432 pixels are working! Afterall, any engineer who works with prisms for a living is an ideal candidate to switch gears over to LCD production!

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

bartyboy (99076) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917670)

I was thinking more along the lines of having the choice of purchasing a model that has no defective pixels, guaranteed, and the same model, which may or may not have dead pixels.

Scrapping an LCD screen because of one dead pixel at the QC stage is out of the question; however the screens could be sorted and the good ones could be sold at a slight premium. After all, how long does it take to perform a dead/stuck pixel test? 5 seconds? 10?

And if a new technology comes along and solves this problem, then hooray. But until then, give me the choice of buying a screen that doesn't have defects.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

lakin (702310) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918092)

But until then, give me the choice of buying a screen that doesn't have defects.

And forces anyone who cant afford the premium displays to buy one which definitely has a dead pixel.

Hello moderator, (0, Offtopic)

bartyboy (99076) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917584)

This is what a troll post looks like:

I read on MSNBC this wedge technology will only work on Windows. Manufacturers are refusing to provide drivers for Linux because of its inferior API and obselete filesystem. It has also been reported that Linux users frequently hold meetings where goats are used in a way that the Bible frowns upon.

You may also want to refer to the moderation FAQ [slashdot.org] to learn more about moderating properly.

Thanks,
Bart

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (2)

EkkiEkkiShiwaddle (823778) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917607)

If I'm buying a new car there are no dents or scratches on it, so why should your screens be any different?

Troll or not, I just had to reply to this one sentence in your ramblings.

I you're buying a new car, there are no scratches or dents on it. True. But you do NOT want to know what happened with your car before your received it.

I know a lot of people in the automotive industry, ranging from people who build cars to people who sell them. There are a lot of things that could happen to your car prior to accepting your beautiful new vehicle, without you ever knowing any of it. Granted, this is more exception than rule, but it is true nonetheless.

Some examples? Ok: (I'm not going to name company names here)

  • dents can be repaired
  • scratches can be removed
  • I've seen motorblocks get faulty numbers, and I've seen workers file out the numbers and punch in new ones with a hammer and chisel (sp?)
  • ever wonder how they get a car out of the way that won't run, before they fixed the engine? Yep: start, motor halts, progress: 1 meter. Wash, rince, repeat. Afterwards, the engine is fixed, and no-one needs to know

Just because you can't see the damage (as with dead pixels) does not mean there is none. Caveat emptor.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

mink (266117) | more than 9 years ago | (#10953945)

If SONY had the balls to cover all PS2/PSTwo, PSX/PSone machines with the same kind of warantee that my car comes with I'd be a happyer consumer.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

Rares Marian (83629) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918018)

Call me morbid (mmm dead pixels, cheap dead pixels), but you go ahead and check if you can get that laptop at 40% of the price. I'll buy it from you at 65% of the price. 25% means four laptops like that and you can pay for the one you want.

Hello?

Please, I'm begging you oh please get me of this 233 with broken battery compartment. I cannot bear it!

No more... No MOrE I cAN't TaKE iT.

Hello?

Thank you.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

ameline (771895) | more than 9 years ago | (#10919669)

Getting a good LCD monitor is simple -- I did it for my wife -- I went to a store (future shop), told the salsdriod what unit I wanted, and that I wanted to see it work with my laptop. I had him bring one out -- I opened the box, plugged it into my laptop, and what do you know -- 2 bad pixels -- I had him get another, and another (the third one was OK.) I just refused to hand over any money until I saw that the unit I was buying had no bad pixels.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (1)

Whumpsnatz (451594) | more than 9 years ago | (#10921542)

Might work for a monitor, but when I said I wanted to see a laptop working before I bought it, Compusa gave me a song and dance about not being able to do that. Solution? Don't buy from them. So I didn't. If I can't see the screen before I buy, I might as well buy online.

Re:Instead of making it cheaper (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10922052)

You've got a solution, that's a start!

inFormative tacoTaco (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917542)

Than its Windows Let's keep to conducted at MIT TCP/IP stack has development model THINKING ABOUT IT. niigerness? And 4, which by all gains market share Lizard - In other

Prism... (2, Insightful)

Sai Babu (827212) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917560)



First thing that came to mind was the film Brazil [filmsite.org] and the tiny CRTs with big lenses.

Pretty clever.

One way to acheive is mirror array at 'base' ala DLP. DOn't know if this is the approach, but if so, corrections for each pixel would be pretty easy to handle in firmware.

I also have a fantastic new tech! (3, Funny)

Zangief (461457) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917566)

Personal air travel!

Take off anywhere, land anywhere. Fast, secure, simple.

Just wait until airplane miniaturization catches up.
--
Wiki de Ciencia Ficcion y Fantasia [uchile.cl]

Uneven shrinkage & warpage = distortion (2, Interesting)

G4from128k (686170) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917571)

It sounds as if these folks think they know how to manufacture these displays, but have not actually done so yet. I predict they will discover that injection molding cannot create the large optically flat surfaces they need to create an undistorted image. Differences in the solidification time across the wedge will distort the shape of the surfaces and distort the images. Any differences in the temperature across the injected flow of resin will create internal ripples in the wedge. I also wonder if they have a way of controlling thermal distortions during use where the back of the wedge is warmer than the front and thus causes the wedge to curl.

Invention is easy. Manufacturing in high quantity, high quality, low price is the actual hard part. And undercutting the deflating price-performance curve of other well-established competing technologies is even harder. That said, I do wish them luck.

Re:Uneven shrinkage & warpage = distortion (2, Informative)

glesga_kiss (596639) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917603)

I predict they will discover that injection molding cannot create the large optically flat surfaces they need to create an undistorted image. Differences in the solidification time across the wedge will distort the shape of the surfaces and distort the images.

From the article, it sounds like they correct for this in software. You'd need to calibrate the firmware specially for each new display, but it's doable and can be automated.

Skeptical that calibration can fix this (1)

G4from128k (686170) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918222)

From the article, it sounds like they correct for this in software. You'd need to calibrate the firmware specially for each new display, but it's doable and can be automated

I hope so, but don't see how it can work. The problem is getting a seamless image between the part of the image that bounces N times inside the wedge before exting versus the one that bounces N+1 times. The upper edge of the light that bounces N times inside the wedge before exiting to the screen must magically fall adjacent to the lower edge of the band of light that bounces N+1 times before exiting. Nonflat surfaces cause divergence of these beams and lead to either gaps across the image or overlapping scan lines. Although one could resample/render the image to handle overlapping scanlines, the image would be unavoidably fuzzy in the overlap region. Worse, thermal distortion and aging of the plastic wedge means that the "calibration" would be time-varying.

The point is that the gap-inducing distortion is in the physics of the optical system. Without a projector that controls the direction of the beam from each pixel (not just the intensity of the beam), the system is in trouble. To my knowledge, they don't have a projector with calibrated beam steering.

Re:Skeptical that calibration can fix this (1)

Shmooze (784340) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918359)

Well, the main problem with the image that bounces N and N+1 times is that if you have the diffuser touching the wedge then you actually tend to get black bands around the pixels - which for 1mm^2 pixels could be quite annoying - so the trick is to adjust the distance of the diffuser from the wedge to get optimum quality. However - It still assumes that the wedge is providing a relatively uniform image, so at least to start with it'll need to be high quality, and probably machined - which isn't going to do much for costs. Although a machined piece of plastic (maybe £100 max, including diffuser) and a projector (£2000 say) is still a lot lot cheaper than £10000 for a plasma TV.

Re:Uneven shrinkage & warpage = distortion (1)

Pinkoir (666130) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917833)

I'm interested to know the cross-sectional area of the wedge. It's tough to injection mould plastic more than a cm thick without getting sinks or other defects which would seriously mess up their system.

That being said 500k sounds about right for the tool if it is a large lens (the 50" screen mentioned perhaps). The cycle times would I think be longish...perhaps 2 or 3 minutes if it is thin, much longer if it is thick. That means that in a given day you can make less than 500 of these even if everything goes perfectly. They should plan on cutting more tools.

-Pinkoir

Re:Uneven shrinkage & warpage = distortion (1)

Sai Babu (827212) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917920)



It's not too difficult to make corrections in firmware after assembly. As for the injection molding, follow on steps could make the prism faces really flat. Lapping comes to mind. Lapping works well for glass too. Pouring prismatic glass sheets is not difficult. In manufacturing think in terms of cycle time for each step. Production is limited by the longest step. Glass prisms can be poured as a contimuous process, sheared, and lapped. This works for polycarbonate as well.

So, no, I don't see any manufatruing problems with this technology.

Re:Uneven shrinkage & warpage = distortion (1)

matrix29 (259235) | more than 9 years ago | (#10967073)

There is a trick that works fairly well with our transparent acrylic parts (I work in an injection-molding plastics factory).

We anneal them in an oven for a couple of hours.

Now, how could this be used to produce perfect optical-quality surfaces inexpensively as doing this without softening the plastic to an undesireable quality? Simply anneal the part in the oven at a high pressure. Whatever surface that it rests upon MUST BE OF PERFECT OPTICAL SMOOTHNESS AND QUALITY. Done correctly, it can even allow the perfect final stage of vacuum metallized coatings to be done in the same cooking-pressurizing unit ovens. I would suggest a simpler holographic mirroring, but holograms tend to lose resolution when exposed to variant thermal zones over a long period of time.

(As an aside informative tidbit for the unfamiliar readers, when plastic in injected into the mold, the two mold halves are squeezed together by tons of hydraulic force computer-regulated as the liquified plastic is injected into the mold from a individually controlled 4-band heated barrel and hydraulically computer-regulated screw. The mold halves are also thermally regulated by usually a liquid cooling/heating system circulating softened-water or antifreeze for cooling or hot oil for
parts which require a high cooling temp before the mold ejects the parts from the ejector pins.

If the plastic is not melted completely, the side-effect can be unmelted pellets of plastic in the molded part. If the plastic is overheated then outgassing can occur resulting in "gas splay" or "burn marks". If the plastic contains too much moisture for proper molding then "moisture splay" can occur which affects the acceptable appearance of the molded part and the duribility of it --- usually many plastic types are predryed before being melted in the barrel with a computer-controlled "bigass hair dryer" dehumidifyer unit to prevent this issue. Too much pressure injecting the plastic and the result is "flash" which is a thin edge of plastic sprayed out from the seams of the mold halve join. Too little pressure and you get "shorts" or "underfilled shots". Inject the plastic too quickly and you get "stress lines", too slowly and you get visible "knit lines" where the melted goo failed to melt seamlessly into a finished acceptable part. There are other factors, but these are the most common problems with injection-molded parts). /Knowledge is never the enemy

Watch out for patents because (3, Interesting)

tod_miller (792541) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917589)

They have developed an ill fitting sawtoothed double paned glass window that pushes more light further into the room, and less hits the area directly below the window, making offices lighter.

This is basically doing the same but replacing light with a projector source.

Imagine a specially moulded radially displaced set of panes, that had a central gun firing at them in a 180 arc, and the timing /angles were such that you got a perfect image.

Make sense?

the viewing angle would have to be compensated a bit...

Check new scientist for the story on lighter windows.

Re:Watch out for patents because (1)

Eric Giguere (42863) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917649)

Transparent aluminum [thefreedictionary.com] gets closer and closer!

Eric
William Shatner on my cereal box [ericgiguere.com]

Re:Watch out for patents because (1)

tod_miller (792541) | more than 9 years ago | (#10950970)

I wonder when we will see a case where computer software contains so much logic and knowledge that a person asks for a solutions to something, and the computer finds the solution, and the person tries to patent it, but the software wrters say that it must have been prior art inside the computer software.

"Computer, using computational chemistry find transparent aluminium alloy"

"bleebly bleep"

"Coleco? Hang on, we went to far back in time!"

too no to (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10950977)

In Korea only old people correct thier own spelling.

Re:Watch out for patents because (1)

robotoverflow (738751) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917655)

They have developed an ill fitting sawtoothed double paned glass window that pushes more light further into the room, and less hits the area directly below the window, making offices lighter.

Now I can finally relocate my work area to that hot-air balloon I've had my eye on.

Re:Watch out for patents because (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10918632)

Sounds sufficiently different enough to not be a patent problem.

Not to mention possible prior art in the form of the Fresnel lens [wikipedia.org] , developed as recently as 200 years ago..

Free Space Display (3, Interesting)

Shanemoe (834379) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917672)

http://www.io2technology.com/dojo/178/v.jsp Free Space Display, Project the Images into the Air... No need for bulky Screens... Think it will work?

Re:Free Space Display (1)

ilyanep (823855) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917729)

That's like the movie Paycheck.

"I didn't life the bulky monitor...so I got rid of it."

Vaporware redefined (1)

colonslash (544210) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917893)

They want $9,000 up front ($18,600 total) for a 15" "screen".

picture in your glasses (1)

chrisnewbie (708349) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917812)

Yeah and some ass will kill somebody on the road because he was watching a movie while driving his car.

Hrm, what about this? (0, Offtopic)

Klowner (145731) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917827)

Can they run on methane? I'd gladly welcome any sort of device that runs longer when I fart on it.

mod dUp (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10917836)

part Of GNAa if

Oblig: That guy's my lecturer (1)

Phatboy (805714) | more than 9 years ago | (#10917887)

He lectures about half of 1st year undergrad Engineering students in Maths.

But, back on topic, I did see (what I assume was) an earlier prototype of this last year on an Open Day. From what I saw of it, the picture was quite good, however it had the same shortcomings as any other image produced by a projector - it wasn't that bright. So people who say this will not replace CRTs are probably right, but this isn't really its intended market.

This is designed for people who want a home cinema but don't have the money for expensive plasma, and don't want the hassle of having a projector that people can walk in front of. These people don't mind that they have to watch a film in the dark - they already do. It gives them a large picture without needing a deep room to allow the image to be projected and with a total cost probably of not much more than the original screen and projector.

In reality, this is more of an innovation in screen design, with silicon to stop the distortion, rather than an advance in projector technology. But, I, for one, welcome our new projection screen overlords.

English displays (4, Interesting)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 9 years ago | (#10918297)

I read a funny review of the Z88 a long time ago. The Z88 had a small LCD display "bought from the Japanese", but that was the result of an epic battle inside Sinclair. Clive Sinclair himself was quoted as saying "LCD's are rubbish, we have the only real portable display technology". This was based on the Sinclair pocket TV, which bent electron beams through 90 degrees with a big magnet. The journalist writing the review said that he saw a demonstration and "you placed your chin on a rest, and saw a ghostly green four lines of twenty characters floating in the infinite distance."

There was a memorable conversation with Alan Sugar who bought the Sinclair

Reviewer: Do you have the rights to the Pandora display?
AS: We have the rights to all the Sinclair patents
R: Do you plan any products based on Pandora?
AS: Have you seen it?
R: Yes.
AS: Well then.

Oddly, no Pandora based products were ever produced.

Re:English displays (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10922209)

There was also a short lived pocket microfiche viewer derived from Sinclair's TV. The image on the fiche was only vertically compressed and was then stretched with a prism on projection.

New? (1)

AaronGTurner (731883) | more than 9 years ago | (#10919095)

Why is this being reported as new? I first heard about it more than two years ago (may have been more like three years).

minaturization (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10920636)

my girlfriend used that word lastnite in bed.
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