Linked by David Adams on Fri 25th Mar 2011 15:06 UTC
Graphics, User Interfaces Samsung has developed a completely transparent solar-powered monitor that's designed to be used with ambient light. Though they're marketing it as a television, it's almost certainly going to be used initially as displays in commercial areas, and it apparently is also a touch-screen, opening it up for the coolest kind of kiosk you've ever used. See a video after the jump.
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Nothing special
by jtinz on Fri 25th Mar 2011 15:34 UTC
jtinz
Member since:
2006-02-06

Every LCD panel has a transparent pane inside. You can disassemble the one in front of you and make a similar display. But the glass pane usually is really dark. So the real question is how brightly the scene behind the panel was illuminated.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Nothing special
by David on Fri 25th Mar 2011 15:42 UTC in reply to "Nothing special"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

What's special is that they've developed a backlighting system that can properly illuminate a transparent display. If you just took the back off a regular LCD and reinforced the glass, you wouldn't get results like this.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Nothing special
by hohlraum on Fri 25th Mar 2011 15:48 UTC in reply to "RE: Nothing special"
hohlraum Member since:
2005-12-13

Nothing special is correct.

They've been doing this with slot machines in Japan for like 5-6 years and in US slot machines for 2 years.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Nothing special
by _txf_ on Fri 25th Mar 2011 16:25 UTC in reply to "Nothing special"
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

So the real question is how brightly the scene behind the panel was illuminated.


Yeah, more impressive would be if the sun was shining behind it. Still, could be useful for windows on the inside of buildings (offices and whatnot).

Shame they seem to imply it could be used for external windows by having the cityscape maquette behind it.

Edited 2011-03-25 16:28 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Nothing special
by WorknMan on Fri 25th Mar 2011 16:30 UTC in reply to "RE: Nothing special"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

Instead of transparent screens, what we really need are ones that can stretch out to grow larger than they are. Like, being able to somehow dynamically turn a phone into a tablet ;)

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Nothing special
by ichi on Mon 28th Mar 2011 08:10 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nothing special"
ichi Member since:
2007-03-06

Instead of transparent screens, what we really need are ones that can stretch out to grow larger than they are. Like, being able to somehow dynamically turn a phone into a tablet ;)


And a tablet into a 10m tall robot with dual 30mm chain guns and a rocket launcher.

Edited 2011-03-28 08:11 UTC

Reply Score: 2

This.
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 25th Mar 2011 15:35 UTC
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

This.


The future. Displays need to be ever thinner. People don't want ugly big things. They want things that don't bother them when not in use. Thin sheets of glass that act as displays will be everywhere. Cars. TVs. Phones. Storefronts. Add in some augmented reality, and the possibilities are endless.

Reply Score: 1

RE: This.
by Soulbender on Fri 25th Mar 2011 17:16 UTC in reply to "This."
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Yeah, and computers will bring forth the paperless office.

Reply Score: 8

RE[2]: This.
by pandronic on Fri 25th Mar 2011 18:39 UTC in reply to "RE: This."
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

Well, they bloody should! Why anyone still uses paper is beyond my comprehension

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: This.
by Kroc on Fri 25th Mar 2011 19:30 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This."
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Nothing confronts you like a piece of paper can. I don't fear e-mails. I fear letters.

Paper is still the better medium IMO, for now.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: This.
by fretinator on Fri 25th Mar 2011 19:38 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This."
fretinator Member since:
2005-07-06

Nothing confronts you like a piece of paper can. I don't fear e-mails. I fear letters. Paper is still the better medium IMO, for now.


I definitely fear paperless restrooms.

Reply Score: 9

RE[5]: This.
by abstraction on Sun 27th Mar 2011 12:10 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: This."
abstraction Member since:
2008-11-27

He doesn't know how to use the three sea shells!

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: This.
by pandronic on Fri 25th Mar 2011 20:26 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This."
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

Nothing confronts you like a piece of paper can. I don't fear e-mails. I fear letters.


That's very much true, but I believe it's just something we've grown accustomed to, because there is absolutely no objective reason why we can't abandon paper.

The only reason I see is subjective: namely us.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: This.
by Moredhas on Fri 25th Mar 2011 21:38 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: This."
Moredhas Member since:
2008-04-10

People have this idea that things like contracts, receipts, pay records, job records, and the like need to be retained in hard copies. About all email has been able to replace in the workplace is the hard copy memo (if that). If we had a legal provision for storing digital copies of contracts, for example, or better yet a legal provision for signing them in e form, rather than dead tree form, we could do away with paper.

I think the rise of the tablet computer will go a long way towards this. I already carry all my important documents around on my iPad (sort of, they're on Dropbox, and I can fetch them on cue). If I start job hunting any time soon, instead of carting around a physical copy of my resume to every interview, I can just email it from my iPad for them. Oooorrrr just hand the iPad over for a moment... When more people have tablet PCs, I'd like to see a standardised document passing protocol, so with my iPad, I could point it at someone, and just flick the document to them (or press an on screen button, but gestures are where it's at, man!), and on their Samsung they could accept or reject it, and have it appear right there on their screen.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: This.
by voodoo123 on Tue 29th Mar 2011 21:41 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: This."
voodoo123 Member since:
2011-03-24

The company that I work for has gone a long way towards paperless. They have recently developed an application that lets sales reps create, sign, and approve contracts paperless and wireless. For the contracts they use a tablet pc and a stylus so that it feels very like they are signing a hard form copy and it also makes it feel more official for the customers as they can read it as if it is in hard form due to the tablet. The signatures gathered are real signatures (the same as if you use your credit card at the store) and not some form of e-signature that is replicated. Overall the process of transitioning has gone quite well thus far.

I feel that paper is still more "official" in most people's minds, however in a few years as more and more companies go paperless the notion will start to cease.

Reply Score: 1

RE[7]: This.
by Moredhas on Tue 29th Mar 2011 21:56 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: This."
Moredhas Member since:
2008-04-10

This will sound horrible of me, but all it takes is the older generations to fade into minorities. Younger people are all for paperlessness, while older people and the more impressionable youths don't trust computers. I used to joke to mum, back when programming the VCR was a concern, that her generation and older are the only ones having problems, so all we need to do is wait for them to drop dead ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: This.
by Neolander on Fri 25th Mar 2011 21:45 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: This."
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

I think that paper is needed for several reasons :
-You can draw freely on it, not just write on a guided path
-It's light
-It's inexpensive
-It's easily transferable and disposable
-If you spill your cofee on a piece of paper, you only loose that piece of paper. Globally, paper is something which you don't have to care about, and can therefore more freely use. Frenzily scratching it with a bic crystal it is a valid option.
-It's the perfect medium for important letters, because using it shows that you care about the person.
-Considering the amount of security flaws which are discovered in mainstream OSs every year, do you really want to trust them to take care of your important documents ? I mean, seeing how quickly Elvis Presley was seen in an airport after biometric passports were introduced in the US should have some warning value...

Also, reading and writing is much easier on paper than on a computer screen.

Edited 2011-03-25 22:01 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: This.
by pandronic on Sat 26th Mar 2011 08:47 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: This."
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

- A friend just bought an Asus EP121 Win7 tablet. It's brilliant. You can easily draw with a stylus or take notes. I imagine that you can get a stylus for any of the current tablets. It's much easier to use than paper because you can erase, use different brushes and colors, layers, transparency and so on.
- Using Dropbox or a similar service you can make your documents easily transferable and furthermore accessible from anywhere. Wi-fi is widespread, mobile connectivity is reasonably cheap.
- Most people buy and carry a tablet or a laptop anyway, so there's no added cost or weight. Actually I'd say that it's easier to carry a tablet with thousands of books and documents than carrying said books and documents.
- Important letters can be electronically signed.
- You are less likely to lose your device than a piece of paper.
- You can search your local and on-line documents in seconds.
- Papers can be forged, copied or read without authorization, stolen, lost, crumbled, spilled upon, so I'm more worried about the security of keeping things on paper.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: This.
by Neolander on Sat 26th Mar 2011 09:49 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: This."
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

- A friend just bought an Asus EP121 Win7 tablet. It's brilliant. You can easily draw with a stylus or take notes. I imagine that you can get a stylus for any of the current tablets. It's much easier to use than paper because you can erase, use different brushes and colors, layers, transparency and so on.

When I need to do some heavy task, I indeed take my computer (and the pen tablet attached to it), but it doesn't mean that it's easier to use than paper for note-taking or rambling purposes.

Only the "erasing" side counts a lot among what you've mentioned, in fact that's the main reason why I'd buy a tablet if they were good enough to replace paper in other respects. But the rest isn't much needed in normal circumstances, where a piece of paper and four ballpoint pens are enough.

It's a matter of using the right product for the right use. I know that today, all-in-ones devices which unsuccessfully try to be good at everything are trendy, but I prefer to stick with what's best for each job.

- Using Dropbox or a similar service you can make your documents easily transferable and furthermore accessible from anywhere. Wi-fi is widespread, mobile connectivity is reasonably cheap.

Introducing the notePad. A revolutionary product, at an unbelievable price.
1. Decide to give what's on a piece of paper to someone
2. Grab the sheet of paper and pull it slightly
3. Hand it to that someone

I'm sorry, but fiddling around with several apps and frenetically moving your fingers in all directions for a minute, and then asking other people to do the same in order to retrieve and use the document, just doesn't come close to the simplicity of this. Now, I agree that digital services win hands down when it comes to sharing files with lots of people, due to how easy it is to make many copies of a digital document. I heavily use e-mail for that. But for working with one or two individuals, which is what many of us do on a daily basis, paper wins.

- Most people buy and carry a tablet or a laptop anyway, so there's no added cost or weight. Actually I'd say that it's easier to carry a tablet with thousands of books and documents than carrying said books and documents.

A laptop has a significant cost in terms of used space in the backpack and weight, that's why I don't carry mine around anytime, but only when I know I will need it. If I wanted something to always carry around everywhere, I would have had to get something thinner, smaller, and lighter, but then I'd have to give up on some other desirable characteristic on my laptop (power, comfort...), which are more important to me that carrying around things which I most of the time don't actually need (which also includes thousands of books).

- Important letters can be electronically signed.

Yeah, and ? For the receiver, this means that you've taken around a second of your time to click a button in your mail client. That doesn't exactly makes him feel any more important.

- You are less likely to lose your device than a piece of paper.

But it is more likely to be stolen, and the cost in terms of lost money, time spent setting up everything, and personal data is much, much higher.

-You can search your local and on-line documents in seconds.

Don't know how I feel about this argument.

On one side it's true. For some tasks, like exploring an article's bibliography, the superiority of big online libraries and their offline copies is unchallenged. Even though it's an absolute pain to read something on a computer's screen, when you want speed and either read short documents or don't read them carefully, the benefits are much, much higher than the cost.

On the other hand, for more daily tasks, I have this principle that if you need some fast search mechanism to organize your own files, you're doing it wrong, because it means that either you organize your files very poorly or you have too much of them around compared to what you actually need. I tend to disable things like indexed searches on my computers, in order to increase performance, battery life, and storage media longevity, and I can ensure you that if the inside of your brain (as reflected by the folder hierarchy you spontaneously create) is properly organized, you really don't need that. It's valid for my uses of my computer, though, yours may be different.

- Papers can be forged

If you're talking about unprotected content, it's much easier to make a perfect-looking copy of a digital document (Ctl+C, Ctl+V) than it is to make a perfect-looking copy of a physical document. If you're talking about protected content, every single DRM which has ever been out there has been hacked within a few months or years, whereas physical protections like those which we put on money tend to last much longer.

copied or read without authorization

Like most digital content out there ;) Seriously, though, every protection has a cost. If you have some papers which you want people not to see, you put them in a safe place with a good lock, but it has a cost, and accessing them becomes harder. In the same way, you can protect digital content with things like encrypted partitions, but there's a cost: the passphrase. You have to type a password any time you turn your computer on (which increases the chance that someone will read it on your back), and thus to remember it. If it is easy to remember, it's easy to crack. Maybe biometrics are the solution on those matter, but afaik they haven't delivered so far. Plus, even in this case, nothing would prevent you from putting your paper in a case with a biometric lock.

stolen, lost

Computers can be stolen or lost. In fact, where I live, it happens regularly.

crumbled, spilled upon, so I'm more worried about the security of keeping things on paper.

Computers are, taking into account how much data they hold, much more vulnerable than paper to physical dangers, except if you have sold one of your arms to buy one of those uncomfortable and technologically dated "rugged" things which a tank is supposed to safely roll on. Plus, digital storage media tend to have a pretty short life even when they are taken care of, as compared to books which can survive for around a century, more if they are built to last, which means that they require the hassle of frequent backups to be reliable.

Edited 2011-03-26 10:02 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: This.
by viton on Tue 29th Mar 2011 05:10 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: This."
viton Member since:
2005-08-09

Do you believe information stored electronically can live longer than paper?
There are hundreds or thousand-years papers around
but CD-Rs are usually unreadable after single digit age. And even shorter can be life of internet posted data.
It helps then your data was duplicated by some persons, though. But there are a lot of broken links and information lost due disconnected server with single data source.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: This.
by unclefester on Sat 26th Mar 2011 12:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This."
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

You don't need any fancy hardware to read paper.

I was recently talking to retired scientist who was working on some very important FORTRAN code he wrote back in 1970. Fortunately he had a paper printout of his code because their was no way of running the original punchcards.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: This.
by M.Onty on Sun 27th Mar 2011 16:29 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This."
M.Onty Member since:
2009-10-23

And of course relatively inexpensive good, pH neutral paper can last for millenia, rather than a few decades. The only digital equivalent that I'm aware of involves engraving binary into lumps of glass, metal or stone. Of course a punch card could last that long, but you'd probably have to hollow out a mountain to store them in.

Edited 2011-03-27 16:31 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: This.
by mahiyu on Sat 26th Mar 2011 20:16 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This."
mahiyu Member since:
2010-08-06

We tried to go paperless at work. However, we found that when we needed to look at something complicated on a client's file it was a lot easier to pick up a paper file and flick through it than to go through a lot of electronic documents.

That said, there are some parts of our work that have gone paperless and work very well. It just doesn't suit all parts of the business.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: This.
by sgtarky on Mon 28th Mar 2011 18:36 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This."
sgtarky Member since:
2006-01-02

YES! i am in the national guard and everytime I apply for a new position i have to hand them a bloody ream of dead trees, plus my retirement points statement has to be less than 30 days, fact of the matter is it doesnt change much in a year. all they got to do is put in my social sec number and get all that info they need.

Reply Score: 1

RE: This.
by phoenix on Sat 26th Mar 2011 19:47 UTC in reply to "This."
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

The future. Displays need to be ever thinner. People don't want ugly big things. They want things that don't bother them when not in use. Thin sheets of glass that act as displays will be everywhere. Cars. TVs. Phones. Storefronts. Add in some augmented reality, and the possibilities are endless.


Sounds like someone just watched this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Cf7IL_eZ38

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: This.
by Neolander on Mon 28th Mar 2011 10:25 UTC in reply to "RE: This."
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

It's amazing how much engineers manage to do with glass these days, especially considering how much of a mess this material is on the inside...

Reply Score: 1

oh sammy
by transputer_guy on Fri 25th Mar 2011 16:23 UTC
transputer_guy
Member since:
2005-07-08

Conventional LCD panels are only 5% optically efficient so thats why so much energy is needed for the CFL or LED (some less).

I had been hoping that the Samsung license of Unipixel TMOS might have produced something by now, they've had it for 2 years. That simplified MEMs opto switch is closer to 60% efficient so only about 10th of light source power needed. Funnily enough Rambus got involved with that by taking a license for the backplane lighting part for future flat LED lighting licensing.

I just hate being teased though

Reply Score: 2

So....
by Morgan on Fri 25th Mar 2011 18:24 UTC
Morgan
Member since:
2005-06-29

How long until Microsoft sends cease-and-desist letters for using a window to display Windows?

On a serious note, I do like the way this is going. I have a large picture window in my living room that is begging for such an upgrade. Granted, I'd never actually be able to afford such a thing, but it's a nice fantasy.

Also speaking of cost, I hope they include an insurance incentive in the purchase price, because the inevitable rock/golf ball/blind bird will happen, and you'll be out a window as well as a TV/computer screen.

Reply Score: 3

RE: So....
by Moredhas on Fri 25th Mar 2011 21:40 UTC in reply to "So...."
Moredhas Member since:
2008-04-10

The clear direction from here is to introduce a few more layers of screen and give us parallax 3D! Who wants to look at a 2D overlay on their very 3D view?

Reply Score: 2

RE: So....
by bitwelder on Mon 28th Mar 2011 06:44 UTC in reply to "So...."
bitwelder Member since:
2010-04-27

Heh, I bet Samsung will be in trouble if they allow their screen to have a familiar blue background :-)

On the serious side, I wonder how long the window (in its LCD elements) would last, if it's exposed to intense and continuous sunlight.

Reply Score: 1