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LG Phillips Patents Oil and Water Display

kdawson posted about 7 years ago | from the mixing-it-up dept.

Displays 90

jordanhh writes " reports that LG Phillips has filed a patent for a new type of thin, flexible display. 'The pixels are made from tiny plastic cells filled with minute amounts of oil and water. The oil floats on the surface of the water and shrouds the colored surface underneath it. When electricity is applied across the cell, the oil moves aside, changing the color of the pixel.'"

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oil and water (2, Funny)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | about 7 years ago | (#20146991)

What? No vinegar?

Re:oil and water (4, Funny)

Applekid (993327) | about 7 years ago | (#20147017)

What? No vinegar?
Don't know about the display quality, but it's already clearly an inferior salad.

Its just a multi-pixel lava lamp (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | about 7 years ago | (#20147237)

Groovy baby!

Re:Its just a multi-pixel lava lamp (1)

Anonymous McCartneyf (1037584) | about 7 years ago | (#20147959)

No. Lava lamps use random mutations to make their patterns. These monitors, if made correctly, should use intelligent design for that. [grin]

Re:oil and water (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20147119)

If you mean Vinegar & Water, I think that patent is already owned by Massengil.

Re:oil and water (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20147507)

Gee... I wonder how many BLACKS came up with this idea...
How many Australian aborigines, or Somalians, or Congolese...

Of course, blacks couldn't even invent a wheel, let alone new technology. Yet the liberal idiots keep telling us that non-whites are making our once ALL WHITE countries BETTER! Anybody care to explain how?

If you don't start doing something about non-whites NOW, we will soon have NO countries worth living in, as they will be overrun by useless, feckless, criminal non-white parasites.

Re:oil and water (1)

Hucko (998827) | about 7 years ago | (#20150193)

Decreasing the average waist line measurement?

Wait just a cotton pickin' minute! (1)

p51d007 (656414) | about 7 years ago | (#20150991)

Oil & water don't mix! I've been told that a million times.........LOL

Re:oil and water (1)

Whiteox (919863) | about 7 years ago | (#20155109)

A little bit of caster sugar makes it yum!

Re:oil and water (1)

Zaatxe (939368) | about 7 years ago | (#20155415)

What? No vinegar?

I'm taking your comment with a pinch of salt...

Heathens! (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20147029)

You patented oil?!

Bush is gonna invade the shit out of you!

The bible says it's his & occasionally god tells him that he should do it. By the way, we need to stop Karl Rove from getting into that crawl space in the white house right above Bush's bedroom ...

Confusing phrasing (3, Funny)

c0d3h4x0r (604141) | about 7 years ago | (#20147045)

Am I the only one who read this as LG Phillips Patents Oil and Water Display ?

Re:Confusing phrasing (0)

slapmyass (1126391) | about 7 years ago | (#20147177)

no, you're not the only one!

Re:Confusing phrasing (3, Funny)

Anonymous McCartneyf (1037584) | about 7 years ago | (#20147245)

No, that's what it actually says. The headline doesn't have boldface, though.
At least it isn't "British Left Waffles on Falklands."

Re:Confusing phrasing (1)

CodeShark (17400) | about 7 years ago | (#20147377)

Yep. Just before the British navy made pancakes from Argentinians (jets, that is).

Okay, that wasn't nice, I admit it.

Re:Confusing phrasing (1)

spun (1352) | about 7 years ago | (#20147403)

That's almost as hilarious as the New York Daily News headline about the state bailout of the subway system in the 80s: 'Sick Transit's Glorious Monday.'

Re:Confusing phrasing (3, Funny)

Kingrames (858416) | about 7 years ago | (#20150125)

Another funny real headline:
"Carpenter nails wife, kills self."

The headline guy was fired for that one.

Re:Confusing phrasing (2, Funny)

orangepeel (114557) | about 7 years ago | (#20151413)

If you liked that headline, you should check out this link [] (Google cache because I think the original site now requires registration).

Two of my favorites:

"Day gives daughters 1st-hand job experience"

"Shooting spree spreads Christmas bliss"

But the headlines are only part of the hilarity. Some of the stories posted on that page are an absolute riot.

Re:Confusing phrasing (1)

Zaatxe (939368) | about 7 years ago | (#20155535)

The headline guy was fired for that one.

Here in Brazil that news about lead in Mattel's toys painting got this headline:
China-made toys cause brain damage

Re:Confusing phrasing (1)

Fizzl (209397) | about 7 years ago | (#20157173)

Offtopic, but I'll ask anyway..
Do american companies really fire people left and right for simple mistakes? Or is it just an euphenism?
Seems that I see "XXX was fired for XXX" all the time.

Personally I don't know anyone who has ever been fired for anything but gross, willfull, bordering-the-law hazardous actions.

Even if you are incompetent, the company that hired you tries to find easier work for you instead of firing. Even if you come to work drunk, you've given two weeks paid leave to get yourself in shape and perhaps some counseling. Never fired unless you really try to get yourself fired.

(Finland says hi! _o/)

Re:Confusing phrasing (1)

gharris (188182) | about 7 years ago | (#20159569)

Even if you come to work drunk, you've given two weeks paid leave
I think I need to move to Finland!


Re:Confusing phrasing (3, Interesting)

Gordonjcp (186804) | about 7 years ago | (#20153427)

Needs a little introduction, but here goes - there is a fairly low-end football team in Scotland called Inverness Caledonian Thistle, and a much much better team called Glasgow Celtic. Now as it happens, Inverness Caley were drawn against Celtic for a particular match, and things were, to be honest, looking like a bit of a foregone conclusion.

A chap I know is one of the sports writers for the daily red-top rag, The Daily Record. Like most tabloids, about a quarter of it is sports pages, and what they do to get the issue out quickly is have two whole back pages set up - one talking about Celtic's win, one talking about Inverness Caley's win (should it happen). So they're sitting in the office the night before the match, writing up headlines to use for the next day. One of my mate's colleagues says "Oh, well it's never ever going to happen, but - 'Super Caley Go Ballistic, Celtic Are Atrocious'?"

Celtic basically needn't have turned up. Inverness Caledonian beat them 4-1, and the headline went out.

Re:Confusing phrasing (1)

omnipresentbob (858376) | about 7 years ago | (#20150631)

I know, me too! It should definitely be LG Phillips patents ((Oil and water) display) blarghy.

Re:Confusing phrasing (1)

nevvamind (988833) | about 7 years ago | (#20157515)

now supermarkets will need LG licenses to *Display* "Evian" & "Extra Virgin Olive Oil" :)

Re:Confusing phrasing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20169771)

Am I the only one who read this as LG Phillips Patents Oil and Water Display ?
Ok, colour me stupid, but how is that equivocal? "Water display" isn't a phrase ...

Am I the only one who doesn't get this????

Well this sucks (0, Troll)

Anonymous Crowhead (577505) | about 7 years ago | (#20147075)

The patent part anyway. The probably sunk millions into it but no one here thinks they should be able to profit from their innovation, right?

Re:Well this sucks (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20147179)

They sunk millions into it and they haven't been able to get it to work yet (this is old old news). A fair amount of that money going to lawyers and work to avoid existing patents no doubt. Hell who knows, maybe they'd have been able to get it to work if random areas of science weren't cordoned off to engineers trying to create products.

Re:Well this sucks (2, Funny)

Lockejaw (955650) | about 7 years ago | (#20147181)

Well, so far it seems that nobody here has seen this done before and thinks it's a pretty neat idea. So, no, you just need to get the latest groupthink patch.

Re:Well this sucks (1)

jaavaaguru (261551) | about 7 years ago | (#20147225)

It's not a software patent ;-)

Re:Well this sucks (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20147295)

n the 1990s another type of electronic paper was invented by Joseph Jacobson, who later co-founded the corporation E Ink which formed a partnership with Philips Components two years later to develop and market the technology. In 2005, Philips sold the electronic paper business as well as its related patents to Prime View International. This used tiny microcapsules filled with electrically charged white particles suspended in a colored oil.[3] In early versions, the underlying circuitry controls whether the white particles were at the top of the capsule (so it looked white to the viewer) or at the bottom of the capsule (so the viewer saw the color of the oil). This was essentially a reintroduction of the well-known electrophoretic display technology, but the use of microcapsules allowed the display to be used on flexible plastic sheets instead of glass. ... From the wikipedia entry on Electronic paper ...

It's most likely a tweaked version of the same.

Re: Re: Well this sucks (better informed) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20153141)

This comment is well informed but has some important details wrong.
What Philips did sell to PVI is a business that uses E-Ink [] technology. E-Ink uses an electrophoretic technology, where tiny capsules contain both black and white particles with opposite electrical charge and fluid. Applying a voltage across the capsules makes them look black, white or grey from the users side. No coloured oil involved.
SiPix [] is similar, but uses only one kind of particle and a coloured liquid.

A spin-off from Philips, namely Liquavista [] , developed the oil and water based displays and is currently marketing and mass producing this type of display. This technology is also known as electro-wetting. The principle is that an electric field is used to change the surface tension and thereby change the pixel electrode from hydrophilic (loves water and will be covered in water) to hydrophobic (doesn't like water and will be covered with the oil). The material not covering the pixel electrode is stored in a small reservoir at the side of each pixel.

What is new in the LG-Philips.LCD patent application, is not the oil and water idea, but the application and/or the exact implementation in a flexible display.

Re:Well this sucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20147413)

Your strawman is starving to death, make sure you share your trollfood if anyone bites.

Re:Well this sucks (1)

jdigriz (676802) | about 7 years ago | (#20149285)

Right, because everyone knows that's it's impossible to make a profit if other people have access to the same technology you do. Just like how nobody is able to make profits publishing materials in the public domain.

Re:Well this sucks (1)

heinousjay (683506) | about 7 years ago | (#20152221)

The problem is not that nobody can profit. The problem is that people who had nothing invested in the creation get to profit obscenely because they don't have to put any work into it.

"I can dig that..." (3, Funny)

starglider29a (719559) | about 7 years ago | (#20147077)

Yeah, man... I saw something like that on the screen over the heads of the Jefferson Airplane back in '67. At least I THINK it was on the screen... oh... WOW!

Sounds pretty slick! (3, Funny)

darth_MALL (657218) | about 7 years ago | (#20147081)

Thanks - I'll be here all night.

Excellent Blacks (5, Funny)

Innova (1669) | about 7 years ago | (#20147087)

They expect to get excellent blacks (the bane of digital display technologies) by using motor oil from my 1999 Saturn.

Re:Excellent Blacks (1)

Starteck81 (917280) | about 7 years ago | (#20147261)

So when I go to get rid of it 10 years later, do I take it to the electronics recycling facility or the motor oil recycling facility?

Re:Excellent Blacks (1) (1108067) | about 7 years ago | (#20149013)

Neither -b bring it to McDoanlds - fatties want MORE of that "good old crusty fried-to-cholesterol-hell and bacK" taste.

Re:Excellent Blacks (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | about 7 years ago | (#20149401)

Lucky you. When time to change my oil in my 97 Saturn SC2, I have but a single drop left!

Re:Excellent Blacks (1)

flappinbooger (574405) | about 7 years ago | (#20151529)

Yeah, black like soot, right? IIRC, you didn't have to change the oil in those cars, cuz you were always adding new every time you filled it up with gas.

Re:Excellent Blacks (1)

Dave Parrish (1050926) | about 7 years ago | (#20152393)

You mean like Morgan Freeman?

Re:Excellent Blacks (1)

n3tcat (664243) | about 7 years ago | (#20152975)

Would you have to get the filter changed every 3000 episodes?

Last Year? (3, Interesting)

bigtomrodney (993427) | about 7 years ago | (#20147105)

This was the big news from Philips/LG last year [] . Did they score another patent on this or is it the same one?

Thanks for the link (2, Informative)

oneiros27 (46144) | about 7 years ago | (#20147175)

That makes much more sense. The one from talks about floating, which would make it useless for the applications mentioned.

('street furniture' => 'bus stops') ie. vertical, not horizontal mounting

Well (2, Funny)

ajenteks (943860) | about 7 years ago | (#20147123)

That really paints the term "dead pixels" in a new light.

Re:Well (1)

zolf13 (941799) | about 7 years ago | (#20148475)

Drowned pixels

Re:Well (1)

StarfishOne (756076) | about 7 years ago | (#20152931)

They would be Dead in the Water

Not very palatable (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20147153)

I'm waiting for Hidden Valley's research into a ranch-based display to pan out.

One "L"! (4, Informative)

MaWeiTao (908546) | about 7 years ago | (#20147193)

It's Philips with one "L", by the way.

Prior art... (2, Funny)

msauve (701917) | about 7 years ago | (#20147203)

this is exactly like the light show I saw at a Dead concert once.

Ah!! (0)

Enuratique (993250) | about 7 years ago | (#20147217)

But will it blend [] ?

Re:Ah!! (1)

zmollusc (763634) | about 7 years ago | (#20147999)

i doubt it. i have been told that oil and water don't mix. You might get an excitingly crunchy mayonnaise, though.

Nice try LG, but *I* patented it first! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20147247)


Dr. Peter V. Boesen
SP Technolgies

Ugh (2, Interesting)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | about 7 years ago | (#20147287)

Pardon my pessimism, but I couldn't see this being very fast.

Re:Ugh (3, Insightful)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 7 years ago | (#20148083)

Not every video application needs to be able to sustain high framerates.

Re:Ugh (1)

DavidHumus (725117) | about 7 years ago | (#20148599)

It's especially slow on very cold days.

Cue the Slashbots (0, Offtopic)

Evilest Doer (969227) | about 7 years ago | (#20147361)

Now, cue the slashbots, all of whom will be saying "Haw! Haw! They patented oil and water???!!! So now they are going to sue every city that has oil slicks after a light rain? Patents suck! Information wants to be free! Buy a beowulf cluster of Macs that run Linux that only old people in Korea will use! In Soviet Russia, oil and water patents YOU! Profit! I for one, welcome our new oil and water overlords. Profit!"

The question on everyone's minds... (0, Redundant)

thatskinnyguy (1129515) | about 7 years ago | (#20147381)

Will Linux support this?

Re:The question on everyone's minds... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20151109)

What a retarded comment.

This is entirely independent of operating system.

Not a very smart thing to do... (0, Flamebait)

Xtense (1075847) | about 7 years ago | (#20147395)

...with the world being on the brink of an Oil Peak [] and everything...

Re:Not a very smart thing to do... (1)

nospam007 (722110) | about 7 years ago | (#20147527)

...with the world being on the brink of an Oil Peak and everything...
It uses liposuction wastes, so the fatter you are, the bigger the screen.

Where's the "cheap" part? (5, Informative)

Animats (122034) | about 7 years ago | (#20147463)

The "E-paper" and "E-ink" crowd have been touting "cheap, flexible displays" for about fifteen years now. But all they ever seem to deliver are expensive, rigid displays inferior to other technologies.

Electrostatic oil displacement has been used before, most notably in the Eidophor [] projection TV system. This is a technology first demonstrated in 1939, yet in use through 1993. Big, heavy, expensive, and complicated, but could project TV pictures brighter than film. The image medium was an oil film written by an electron beam, used as a reflector for a lamp.

The basic idea is simple, but making it work required rotating smoothed oil film past the projection station, so there were big moving parts. All this had to happen in vacuum, but it wasn't a sealed unit, because the cathode had to be changed every 200 hours or so. So it needed high-vacuum pumps, vacuum locks, hours of startup, and a skilled operator.

Re:Where's the "cheap" part? (1)

scottrocket (1065416) | about 7 years ago | (#20150469)

making it work required rotating smoothed oil film past the projection station...
Made me wonder-can this new display be vertical? Wouldn't the oil separate to the top, exposing water on the bottom (fine for horizontal use)?

Re:Where's the "cheap" part? (2, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | about 7 years ago | (#20152573)

It's a pixel-sized cell thing; each cell is sealed. At that scale, surface tension beats gravity, so orientation may not matter much.

Re:Where's the "cheap" part? (1)

scottrocket (1065416) | about 7 years ago | (#20163135)

yeah, right after I replied, I thought of surface tension at that tiny size, being dominant!
Still, it might be fun to shake it really hard & see what happens :)

Re:Where's the "cheap" part? (1)

Anonymous McCartneyf (1037584) | about 7 years ago | (#20164265)

Just what everyone needs:
A color Etch-a-Sketch monitor.

Iconarama, the USAF's Etch-A-Sketch (1)

Animats (122034) | about 7 years ago | (#20193491)

Just what everyone needs: A color Etch-a-Sketch monitor.

That's been tried. The Iconorama [] was a 1950s effort by the USAF to build a large-screen display. This was a computer-controlled Etch-a-Sketch like setup arranged as a projector. As with an Etch-A-Sketch, there was no selective erasing; when the image (which was mostly the tracks of attacking aircraft) became cluttered, the entire image was cleared and replaced with a newly drawn one. The previous big-screen attack plotting technology was an edge-lit Plexiglas map with people in on the back side plotting with grease pencils, so the Iconorama was a logical upgrade.

This was a mechanical device. The thing really was etching lines on a projection slide. "Erasure" was accomplished with a slide change to a new blank slide. The Iconorama was usually installed as a pair of units, both for backup and so that slide changes could be accomplished without waiting for a redraw.

I never actually saw one, but a 1970s evaluation of USAF large screen display systems once crossed my desk, and I recall the recommendation on the Iconorama being "Further systems of this type should not be procured."

Ref: Schmidt, George WN "The Iconorama System," Datamation 11, no. 1 (January 1965)

Re:Where's the "cheap" part? (1)

Woek (161635) | about 7 years ago | (#20153019)

... and by fifteen years you mean two years, right?

Re:Where's the "cheap" part? (1)

vuffi_raa (1089583) | about 7 years ago | (#20156419)

no, I was in the sony store a couple of weeks ago and they have a $300 epaper reader there, and that is first gen so it is bound to go down from there

Just what we need... (2, Funny)

E++99 (880734) | about 7 years ago | (#20147487)

...something else to drive up the price of oil!

Prior Art (4, Funny)

skeeto (1138903) | about 7 years ago | (#20147601)

Oil based displays have been in use for years. In fact, there is famous prior art [] .

Re:Prior Art (4, Funny)

Anonymous McCartneyf (1037584) | about 7 years ago | (#20148017)

Yeah, but the burn-in rate for oil-on-canvas monitors is horrific.

mod Up (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20147973)

than 1ts Windows Notw]ithstanding,

Vertical or Horizontal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20148255)

How exactly does oil float on the surface of water in a vertically-oriented display? Wouldn't the display have to lie flat like a table top in order for this to work?

eink? (1)

roman_mir (125474) | about 7 years ago | (#20148327)

so is it that different from this [] tech? Eink has been around for quite a while now.

Re:eink? (2, Informative)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about 7 years ago | (#20148487)

If you think black and white is different from color, yes.

Shakespeare, in the original Klingon (1)

Thing 1 (178996) | about 7 years ago | (#20151845)


And what does that word mean, when translated from the German?

OLEDs are the way to go (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20148807)

I that think OLEDs is the best solution. I thought that the oil is going too used up in the twenty years; give or take. If the manufacturing of OLED is to hot for the plastic to cure right; then they need to use a technology that cures plastic a cooler temperatures to make OLEDs and this process will make cheaper and better. [] I believe it or not that this technology can be used for other applications as well.

crap... (3, Interesting)

ItsLenny (1132387) | about 7 years ago | (#20149235)

good as a toy if you're rich and wanna be like... "LOOK WHAT I GOT!!!"

however they say they wanna use it for marketing purposes such as wrapping it around street furniture [] ...

HOWEVER it also says in this part [] that it needs to be viewed from 180 (straight on)... which would make it invisible to passing vehicles almost always and i'd imagine since it's "not as bright as a standard LCD" that the sun light will just wash it out anways...

cool tech honestly.. but mostly useless I say

Re:crap... (1)

denidoom (865832) | about 7 years ago | (#20149663)

But it looks light weight, which might prove useful. I think it's funny the first thing they think about is the Minority Report-like ad displays, but there are many more uses for this. As an artist, it would be cool to send my portfolio in one of these rather than a CD or something where someone has to make extra steps to load it into their computer, they just unroll this and the display starts. This being if they could get the price down enough for it to be treated in this kind of casual fashion. If it's sealed and meant for outdoor use, maybe it would be more weather proof, giving it possible uses in the field. Maybe in medical uses it could be used as a display for enhanced X-rays (I'm just thinking of floppy mylar things rambling)

Re:crap... (1)

Woek (161635) | about 7 years ago | (#20153049)

Yeah, the text was confusing. They mean it has a viewing angle of 180 degrees. In other words: you can see it well from any direction as long as you're not looking at its back.

Write out 50 times... (1)

N7DR (536428) | about 7 years ago | (#20149615) reports that LG Phillips has filed a patent...

No they don't. They report that LG Philips has done so. How hard is it to at least get the name of the subject company right?

And it's not even right in the headline. Sometimes I despair.

Salad Oil Display (1)

mrmeval (662166) | about 7 years ago | (#20150325)

First to name the old SOD.

Sharp (2, Funny)

Loconut1389 (455297) | about 7 years ago | (#20150371)

Looks like Sharp will have to rename their Aquos line!

What use is this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20150483)

A slow display, which freezes in sub zero temperatures, must be laid flat on a table, and does not work in zero gravity environments. Brilliant!

Oleo Display or OLEOD? (1)

Easy2RememberNick (179395) | about 7 years ago | (#20152091)

So this is the real OLED, an Oleo (oil) Display, or should that be OLEOD?

Prior Art! (1)

zblach (977591) | about 7 years ago | (#20154741)

Prior Art! []

I can see it now... (1)

BrainBarker (196474) | about 7 years ago | (#20156505)

These things will become popular, and someone at NASA will forget that they require gravity to function...

"Shuttle to Mission Control: Orbital insertion in 3...2...1...ummmm.... Guys, we have a problem..."

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