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Sony's OEL Thinner And Better Than Today's LCDs? 131

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the smaller-screens-are-better dept.
Matrium writes: "MSNBC is running an article about Sony's new Slim TV is thinner, brighter, and has a better picture then current LCD screens. The organic electroluminescent (OEL) display is a little thicker then a credit card was showed Wednesday. These screens offer a faster responce then LCD becuase the are self-luminous (no back-lighting required) and allow a wider viewing angle. Sony hopes to have these screens in mass production by 2003." Someday we'll lose our laptops in between pages of books just like we lose plane tickets/notes/phone numbers today.
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Sony's OEL Thinner and Better then Today's LCDs?

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  • The article implies the image is semi-transparent. You could create some very nice psuedo-3D diaramas with layering. As for cost, no initial demand will keep it high for three or more years after production begins. At the very least, we can watch the price of LCDs go down.

    ----------------------
  • by SubtleNuance (184325) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @09:50AM (#446361) Journal
    However, I don't think Sony should be changing the acronymn to sound like their own technology. It is exactly the same thing.

    OH MY GOD! sony is trying to confuse the marketplace in order to foster the appearance of them having significant technology when none exist! This is so *NOT* like sony at all!

    Ever heard of Beta, MemoryStick, SuperDisk or MiniDisk? sony is the most notorious anti-comeptitive technology hording whore in the tech world. Doesnt anyone remember that a$$hole loudmouth VP "we'll block them at their HD, we'll block them at the monitor, we'll block them at the ISP" nonsense?

    Remeber: sony is a member of the RIAA and MPAA and is leading the pack in fighting for the control of our general artistic culture. They dont even like CDRs for god sakes because they can be used to copy audio CDs.

    I NEVER BUY ANYTHING MADE BY SONY! I tell people (because I am often asked about such things) to NEVER BUY ANYTHING MADE BY SONY! I dont care how 'cool' sonys products are (frankly I find them rather low quality and crappy for the most part (on the individual electronics end)) I will never buy a piece of sony kit. Ever. I suggest *YOU ALL* do the same.

  • There is, of course, a difference between "writing style" and "spelling and grammar errors". I notice you could only find problems with the former in my post. You must have been pretty desperate.
  • Dude. We already know you aren't gay. You wrote that story about a month ago about how you got all loaded, then wrote a sexually explicit proposal to a female coworker. Then you said you were fired the following Monday.

    If anything, when you're drunk your true sexuality comes through. This episode clearly shows you had an attraction to this woman.

    So are you trolling with the gay comments or are you confused?
  • Yep. We may have a de facto standard. Sony's almost the same 500-lb gorilla that Micros~1 is.

    Three years ago, the only acronym in use was LEP for light-emitting polymer. That one has almost completely vanished

  • I wanted to find more information on the web about this so called slim TV and all I found was a bunch of men who are thin and dress in womens clothing looking for dates!!! I think Sony should rethink the name of this thing!!!
  • Softscreens have actually featured in most of Baxter's (recent) work, from Titan onwards.

    And yes, I'd cheerfully kill to get my hands on one. :P


    "If ignorance is bliss, may I never be happy.

  • I've seen some "organic light-emitting diodes" (OLEDs), but not "organic electroluminescent" - or have I? Are these the same technologies?

    The latest OLED sighting was IBM's linux-watch at LinuxWorldExpo - they had an astonishingly small display (certainly not more than 1"x1") running mono at 640x480. Very crisp! Though LCDs can surely do this resolution, (think LCD projectors) they were showing this on a WATCH. Cool stuff.

    One last thing: How do these displays (OEL *or* OLED, if there's a difference) hold up under bright light, i.e. sunlight?

  • Actually it was a vaio joke.
    I take a lot of flak from my gay friends about boring grey toshiba tecra and inwin full tower with missing cover.
    On the downside, my tecra is 3 years old, but on the upside, it's been reliable for all 3 years while vaio's have to be serviced every few days.
    If I'm going to service anything that often, it'd better buy me dinner first ;-)
    --Shoeboy
  • I can see these being used there first. They always seem to have the cool stuff first.
  • As a practicing homosexual
    Where did this non sequitur come from?

    Anyway, it's pretty common knowledge that some of the Viaos are built cheaply, especially the little half sized ones. If you are really breaking them left and right, perhaps you should look into a more sturdy laptop (perhaps even a ruggedized one).

    Also, when you close the screen, push from the bottom of the LCD near the joints instead of near the top, where the stress of closing the laptop is spread across the whole screen.

    Down that path lies madness. On the other hand, the road to hell is paved with melting snowballs.
  • I believe it was stated that the cost to produce would be 20% less than LCD - however, the expected lifetime of a unit at this point is only 33-50% of LCD. If the cost difference can match the lifetime, and make them user-replaceable on a laptop, then we can have disposable screens...
  • by mojo-raisin (223411) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @10:08AM (#446372)
    Actually, the did compare the costs. From the article:

    Tetsuo Urabe, general manager of Sony's OEL development department, said the company would aim to produce OEL screens to match or exceed LCDs in size, price and longevity.

    But what seemed strange to me was this comment:

    Sony's Urabe set a target of a 10,000-hour life for the screens and expressed confidence that manufacturing processes would pose no insurmountable problems.

    10,000 hours is just 417 days. So basically if you use your computer 8 hours a day, the monitor will be dead in 3 years. Most people don't want to fork out ~$1000 for a new monitor that often. I know I plan on keeping my CRT for a lot longer than that.

  • It's also extremely similar to the Thick Film Transistor technology used by iFire [ifire.com] displays.

    They're both extremely thin, low power consumption, EL material based displays.

    The thing about iFire is that it's more likely to be cheaper to produce than OLED techs (and a lot cheaper than LCD) because of it's simple, fault tolerant construction. It's also advanced a lot further, faster than OLED in the last two years and seems capable of scaling to television sized screens with little difficulty.
    -- kwashiorkor --
    Leaps in Logic
    should not be confused with

  • by typical geek (261980) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @07:26AM (#446374) Homepage
    and Americans get wider!
  • As a journalism student at a major university, I feel obligated to inform you (the Slashdot editors) that it's okay to edit quotes for grammar in the interest of clarity. In fact, it's standard practice. Now I don't expect you to go through the message boards fixing everyone's spelling and grammar manglings, but the least you could do is give news submissions a once-over before you post them. If you need to create a copy editing position specifically for this task, please be aware that I am currently available for hire. Thank you.
  • Ok, the suject is a little misleading.

    But it got you to read this, didn't it?

    Its not completely false, this technology is in an american consumer device already. I can think of 2 of them.
    There is a motorola timeport with a 3 color Organic Electro Luminescent display available now at http://commerce.motorola.com/cgi-bin/ncommerce3/Pr oductDisplay?prrfnbr=217948&prmenbr=126&phone_cgrf nbr=1&zipcode=


    The other is a pioneer car stereo head unit. It does 3d and stuff. Check it out at their site. I prefer traditional stereo displays, which are dot matrix and just show Time, Track disc, etc...i don't need visualization.
  • Right now it is just too hard to curl up in bed with your laptop. My palm is close, but is too small.

    Pretty arrogrant aren't ya? Showing off how your palm is too small to curl up in bed with...

  • What is the cost compared to todays LCD's, yeah this is nice and all but i find $1300 bucks for LCD a bit expensive, also what is the Max size they can make? I want it to look like I have a windsail on my desk :-)
  • I'm thinking of making bikinis out of this stuff ... then all hackers have to do is find a way to make it suddenly transparent. :-)
  • Maybe A.C. Clark and Stephen Baxter were pretty close to reality in the Light of Other Days. Now just adapt this stuf to work on contact like eye enhancements ....
  • so when are we getting the technology to beam the information directly into our brains, you know, aside from using the technology found in UFO's to do it...
  • Is your screen on the whole time? If so, you should consider APM support to at least turn the bugger off. 1.14 years of continuous use is a bit much, even for a laptop.
  • Just scanning through slashdot for mentions of Sony, lets see what the company is up to:

    They control what we see (MPAA, Sony music and picture industries), what we see it on (newer, flatter, sharper displays), how it gets rendered (new graphics chip on the way). How long do you think it will be till they put a copy protection scheme in effect on both their monitors and the graphic subsystem? I know this sounds silly now, but then again, the whole content control system going into effect now would have seemed ridiculous as well a year ago.

    Well, at least they haven't moved in on the simple pleasures of life: pets (oh, wait), human companions (uhhhhh)... oh forget it. Sony will be introducing a MIPs powered girlfriend next year, and somehow she will deter you from watching your movies over the Internet.

    bort
  • I'd like to put my APM onunder Linux but I have not been that lucky until now :-(

    It is not even able to shut down properly.


    --
  • Probably because you wouldn't have a choice.

    What if this takes less power than an LCD? Then you really have no design choice if you want to create a powerful PDA that still happens to be miserly.

    You may never see this on your desktop, replacing your CRT. But your next Palm, or Gameboy Advance, or handheld computing unit, may be built around the OEL for other properties; size, weight, power, etc.

    Geek dating! [bunnyhop.com]
  • "As a practicing homosexual
    Where did this non sequitur come from?"

    What he meant was that he purchased a vaio and in doing so allowed the salesman who sold it to him to, well.. as the saying goes, you know?

    :)
    (psst, he got reamed)
  • >As a practicing homosexual, I've had
    >to replace my
    >vaio 4 times already due to
    >a cracked screen.

    Just a hint... turn the dang thing sideways first. It might be easier. Heh heh.

  • How are we going to loose our laptops between the pages of books? When my laptop gets that small, I won't have any need for books anymore. It is the best way of making digital books acceptable to more than just the geek few. Right now it is just too hard to curl up in bed with your laptop. My palm is close, but is too small.
  • by dublin (31215) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @10:45AM (#446389) Homepage
    This sort of thing makes me wonder whatever happened to the Sony Plasmatron of a few years ago. It was based on a plasma switched LCD technology invented by Tektronix, and was supposed to be a way of building large screens using simple printing processes rather than the photolithigraphic semiconductor process used by LCDs, conventinal plasma screens, and thier ilk (including this OLED panel).

    The real savings was supposed to be that the elimination of the clean room requirement and processing would allow screens to be almost arbitrarily large and *much* cheaper.

    Sony even showed a working prototype at CES several years back (1996?), and said it would be available soon, but the technology has dropped completely out of sight since then.

    Anybody know what happened? Inquiring minds want to know...
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Sony is uspeakably evil, which is something most Slashdotters seem to miss when eyeing the latest Vaio laptop. I'm constantly amazed at how many times the word 'Vaio' appears on Slashdot; they're overpriced, underspecced, and (poorly) manufactured by a company that makes AOL Time Warner look benign by comparison. People, Microsoft is just a software vendor; Sony's the company that's going to make your Sony movies and Sony music play only on Sony media in authorized Sony hardware.

    Superdisk is Imation's format. Sony did have an entry into the superfloppy market--the 200 MB HiFD disk--but it was too late, since by that point most people had a Zip or Superdisk drive. Since all the other superfloppy formats are equally proprietary, I'm not sure this is the best example of Sony's modus operandi.

    Minidisc is a perfect example. Even back in 1992, data and audio MDs were purposely made incompatible. Today, it's impossible to find a portable Minidisc recorder with digital output. Sony, of course, claims this is to prevent people from making illegal copies without some generational degradation. True to form, however, Sony offers digital output on all their high-end home decks.

    Of course, Minidisc utterly failed to take the world by storm, but that's poor consolation, because it's actually a good format--a cheap, rewriteable, magneto-optical disc in a 2.5" jacket with a write-protect tab. It could hold 140 MB back when that was a reasonable size for a hard drive, and 640 MB discs have appeared throughout the years. Why the hell am I paying several dollars for a 4" cartridge that holds only 100 MB and can only be write-protected using special software?
  • There's a couple huge ones in the Big House. You can see the damn thing from several hundred feet, even when under direct sunlight. Of course, they are also the only ones built by sony that do not have "sony" on them.
  • Except when you replicate that DNA and use it at a bank terminal to pull money from the credit card.
  • You need geek-dyke friends. We'd never bug you about such things..hell, it sounds like it matches my no-name grey laptop (that is currently broken, 'cos I went in to fix the pcmcia slots and it doesn't boot now and I haven't had the time to troubleshoot what I did wrong this time) and my home-built tower (the cover is..erm..somewhere...I think in the back cupboard..)

  • No, they may have used the Plasmatron name for the stadum displays (seems like they did), but this was something completely different. Most of the monster daylight-capable displays are ripoffs of Mitsubishi's DiamondVision, which actually uses three small CRTs for every pixel (or at least did in its original incarnation - I have no idea what they're using these days, but it has to put out a LOT of light...)
  • Most people don't want to fork out ~$1000 for a new monitor that often. I know I plan on keeping my CRT for a lot longer than that.
    Well, in three years time these things will have come down in price significantly. If a 1280x1024 18" one of these displays costs $2000 this time next year, then it will cost $800 three years afterwards, and have a resolution of 1600x1200 or more....

    Still, I am more excited about the use of these displays in PDAs and mobile phones. This story was on ZDNet.co.uk a lot earlier today, and they mentioned that mobile phone displays using this technology had already been produced, in full colour. Anything make makes a monochrome low-contrast crappy screen like a mobile phone is good in my books. Imagine an Ericsson R380 with one of these screens. *** Drool *** (like the blubbering eedeeot that I am).

  • I've seen that stat for toddlers in numerous 'reliable' sources (the wash post a few years ago, for example) though I doubt it, personally.

    50hours/week is 7 hours a day...if you figure 8 for sleeping that leaves 9 for work/food/everything else...*I* don't have that sort of time..maybe the 'average american' does..

    but then, I went for four years with no TV (no interest) and now only occasionally watch my girlfriend's TV (mostly for the same reason that people climb mt everest, unfortunetly)

  • Here [cnet.com]

    Mentions '20% cheaper' and uses less power than LCD...

    Geek dating! [bunnyhop.com]
  • I thought ShoeBoy was referring to all the goatse.cx links on slashdot. Everytime he gets duped into clicking the link and the image loads up he just *has* to drop his pants and have a go!

    "Oops, I've put my knob through the fscking screen again!!!"

    Eugh!

  • by Capt_Troy (60831) <<moc.oohay> <ta> <ognadnaft>> on Thursday February 08, 2001 @07:57AM (#446399) Homepage Journal
    Besides, who would use a laptop as a bookmark anyway?
  • Sure, by the time they get the technology perfected it might be a really nice screen but by then it will only accept Sony/MPAA-encrypted [sony.com] input.

    --

  • It's only beta!

    Since it uses similar techniques to LCD manufacturing, expect similar sizes and pixel densities. Supposedly 20% cheaper because one doesn't need a backlight any more.

    However, that still means $1000 for a similar OEL disply. Or would that OED?



    Geek dating! [bunnyhop.com]
  • nope, the credit card will be your DNA... no more fakes...
  • Poor you, you'd have been enlightened if you had followed that link!

    Geek dating! [bunnyhop.com]
  • Well, here's a question. Does anyone know where we can get a PDA-sized color OLED for under, say $40? Since we can get the LCDs for Palm/Handspring for about $80, it would not make sense for the OLED version to be more than half of that... Handspring is 160x160 with 16-bit color... So, at least that or better at the same size...

    And from a company that we actually WANT to encourage?
  • Here's some of what I've found with newer, but not really current, information. It's really odd that a large display tech. that doesn't require semiconductor processing could just drop off the face of the earth like this...

    http://www.meko.com/palc.html

    http://www.eurodisplay.org/pdf/progr_eurodisplay .p df (Page 8 contains a description of a 1999 conference discussing a 42" prototype.)
  • The world is full of demonstation CRT killers, yet the only ones I can buy are $10,000 monsters based on 10-year old technology. I want to finally see some of this cool tech actually reach the market, and the supposed cheap production costs invariably touted actually translate into affordable prices. Until then, yawn!

    BTW, what does the backlight have to do with LCD update speed? Some reporters need to get a clue.
  • very odd.. both of my roomie's are gay (bi really, but i havn't seen either one with a woman, ever)

    they both own fairly identical new Vaio's
  • I swear, that's what I read before clicking on the link. Would have been a bit more interesting.
  • I think we have more to worry about than this:

    Estimated lifetime of the screen: 10000 hours. That's a little over a year, if constantly on.

    Cost of manufacturing: Estimated the same or less. Current expenses are, well, damned expensive.

    How is a screen that may or may not be cheaper and won't last as long a better alternative? What, I can roll it up?

  • you, sir, have the intelligence of a rum cake.
  • Where did this non sequitur come from?

    Try this exchange [slashdot.org] from a previous thread..

  • by jafuser (112236) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @08:05AM (#446412)
    "This display is extremely well-suited for broadband applications,"

    Why the hell is it always absolutely necessary to throw in some completely unreleated technology or buzzword when introducing a new technology? I'm just baffled that they didn't find a way to fit wireless or XML in there somehow...

    --
    EFF Member #11254

  • I thought that was Leon [wavlist.com]?
  • I ... errr... I *looking down at gut hanging over belt and pile of empty cans of Mountain Dew [mountaindew.com], bottles of Bawls [thinkgeek.com], and desicated Twinkies [twinkiesproject.com]...*

    I resemble that comment...
  • Someday we'll lose our laptops in between pages of books just like we lose plane tickets/notes/phone numbers today.

    Isn't the purpose of (hopefully) cheaper, extremely thin and bright computer screens to replace such things as books and papers? Then again, our society (myself included) is having a hard time giving up our beloved books that come in the dead-tree variety.

  • ...I curl up with my Palm all the time.

    Take it as you will. ;)
  • 10,000 hours of life in one of these is not enough for me. i put about 8000 hours a year into my monitors...

    they will have to do much better than that to get me to buy one...
  • But how are they going to keep making money if you only have to buy it one time?

    As you wow people with your K-Rad flat screen you can sneak in a healthy dose of planned obsolescence while you're at it.

    $ finger #timmy

  • You missed the part of the article that said it's a wireless display (both input and power) and that it's XML optimized.
  • Hey, I'm just trying to help these guys out a little, they obviously need it, spelling is actually a very useful and important skill in the workplace - most of us will at one time or another be involved in producing supposedly professional documentation. And really, it doesn't take that much effort to learn the absolute basics for 6 year olds (e.g. then vs. than). And it really doesn't take that much effort to quickly scan something before you post it, just to catch at least some of the huge, obvious, gaping grammar and spelling errors. Come on.
  • No, it's just that my daughter is boosting the average.
  • So if the monitor is only a little thicker than a credit card, then how thick are credit cards going to become!?!?!

    They'll have monomolecular edges. Everyone will go around lopping off their fingers every time they try to pick up the tab at a restaurant...
    --
  • dots nothing - how about camo patterns? How about camo that updates dynamically from input from tiny cameras? (effective invisibility). How about downloading and displaying pr0n on your pious neighbor's car?
  • IEEE 1394, ilink, firewire, you say potAto,
  • ... doesn't take a rocket scientist d00d... 4.73 reads it fine.. 4.76 does too... you could always DL netscrape 6 and try that though... oh and I think you meant to say 'properly' : ~I am a forgotten God in a world slowly losing it's religion~
  • Yes, the "Predator cloake" but that would be dangerous on cars in traffic don't you think ;-)

    And the power consumption would be much higher. I'm thinking crystals that is "set" to reflect perticular light by an electric pulse and then keeps the setting without any current.
  • . . . and you won't be able to buy one at any price.
  • All my to submit my vision of the future :

    When stuff like OEL becomes truly ubiqitious -- ie you'll be able buy rolls and rolls of the stuff like wrapping paper -- people will start decorating their houses with it. You'll walk into someone's house, and -- hey! Its the African Sahara!

    The truly interesting application of this technology will be the rise of Visual DJs (VDJs). Dance clubs will be covered wall to wall with OEL-like material, and, much like audio DJ's mix music today, VDJs will be mixing video and sound. Creation of mixed video will become a truly creative art. (And its going to make for some very interesting parties. Not to mention some bad trips ... )

    Sozin, peering into the crystal ball.

  • My house's "great room" is over 1000 square feet, but due to the layout, windows, doors, fireplace, and limited ways to arrange the furniture, there is NO room for a TV of reasonable size, UNLESS it's a flatscreen.

    IOW, there are only two walls that don't already have a door, window, or fireplace, one of those walls you can't face the couch towards, (and is our dining area anyway), and the other wall is very narrow, and leads to the bottom of a staircase. Hanging a large flatscreen on that wall would be fine, but a big box on the floor would obstruct traffic from the staircase.

    I've shopped for these flatscreen TV's and yes, they're either obnoxiously expensive (>$15,000), or, not to put too fine a point on it, CRAPPY picture quality, in the under $8,000 range.
  • it would be amusing if you had to like insert some small packets of food resembling Smartmedia cards into your device every couple of weeks... heh. In the middle of a counterstrike game your LCD goes out, so you blindly type "AFK gotta feed my LCD"


    mov ax, 13h
    int 10h
  • Hey, if you want to strain your eyes to blindness, go ahead. I happen to find ink on paper much easier to read.

    Incidentally, there have been studies done that show that reflected light, as in ink on paper, has a greater effect on the human brain and is thus easier to process and recall than direct light, as in a computer monitor. I don't have any links on hand, unfortunately.

    --
    BACKNEXTFINISHCANCEL

  • I mean 50hrs per week average TV viewing * 52 weeks says these puppies croak in four years of average use.
    Yeah, but replacing them should be a snap, and wouldn cost that much. (in 4 years the price of these screens will surely haved dropped somewhat)
    --
    Slashdot didn't accept your submission? hackerheaven.org [hackerheaven.org] will!
  • Is the average American really vieweing their TV 50 hours per week? Got a reference on that?
  • That means they'll have 100 in the initial shipment, but promise to have lots more Real Soon.
  • Considering the lesser lifespan of the OEL's, I'll take my normal laptop.

    I own an older laptop in addition to a new one, and while the display is getting on, it displays Linux just fine.

  • You can buy such a beastie. It'll run PalmOS or one of the similar OSs (Psion, fer ex) and let you read a book, compose a letter or a book (they sell fold-up keyboards, and the handwriting input isn't that bad) ... it's just that they've shrunk it a little (not much, looking at those early laptops... at least, not the display) and made it cheaper, and are calling it a PDA instead.
  • Okay $1,000 for the screen and $2,300 for the little plastic molded "Sony" tag on the front. We now have a grand-total of $3,300 which is about right for an introductrory "cool" piece of equipment from Sony.
  • But it should push down the demand and price of LCDs.

  • ...and if it's fitting into a plane seat pocket or between the pages of a book, it isn't exactly a laptop, is it?

    "god, what an annoying, nitpicking post" he thought, as he hit the submit button....
  • I think I'd prefer:
    The organic electroluminescent (OEL) display, little thicker than a credit card, was shown Wednesday.
  • My sister is currently going to shool in Japan. Her apartment is essentially a mini studio. The bathroom is so small and compactly designed that there is one faucet shared between the sink and the bath/shower. Space *is* a premium in Japan. (Although, I must say it's the same with places like New York City and San Francisco.) This is why consumer electronics from Japan focuses on being small. "Executive stereos"? Heck, it's only call that way to add "prestige" to a product that would be overlooked by most U.S. consumers... In the U.S., most Americans want big-big-big! You think Honda Civic's are small? Hah - most middle-class family would be rather pleased if they can own such a decent sized car. (It's not the money -- it's where to park it.) They think we're weird for buying 24 rolls of paper towel at a time... That would take up half of the total closet space at home!
  • by Shoeboy (16224) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @07:30AM (#446442) Homepage
    What I want is an lcd that isn't more fragile than a ming vase. As a practicing homosexual, I've had to replace my vaio 4 times already due to a cracked screen.
    That's unacceptable. I've never dropped or even slammed it shut.
    With light weight lcd matrices and plastics technology, surely they can build a laptop screen that lasts more than a week.
    --Shoeboy
  • Seems like we've heard/seen/read of approximately umpteen-thousand-and-one proposals/patents/product announcements for these "will replace dead trees" thingys. Hey, how about a thin, wall-mountable widescreen TV/monitor/touchscreen-like-Star-Trek thingy? That is, one that I can afford?

  • Reading over the article, I saw no mention of comparative cost. Usually, if this is a selling point, it shows up in the press release, which means it may be a technology for high end users, at least for the next 10 years or so.

    It still isn't cost effective to throw out my 21" (3 ft deep) monitor for the LCD replacement (maybe a $1500 difference?), so why would this new, possibly more expensive option even cross my radar?

    Wait and see, wait and see...

  • Sony's evilness (and they are evil) aside...

    With the exception of a cassette walkman I bought back in 1986, I'd have to agree that Sony products I've owned have sucked in terms of reliability. And worse has been when I've tried to get service.

    Let's take, for example, the story of my TCD-3 portable DAT player/recorder. For much of the time I owned it, it had this intermittent problem where the right input would periodically just stop working. Simple cold solder joint? Nope. I first took it to the local "Authorized Sony Dealer", and that's what they tried to fix. Well, that didn't work (intermittent problem still) and so they said they had no idea what to do, so they told me they could send it to Sony. $170 of flat fees later, they sent it back to me. It worked for an entire month, and then quit 5 minutes into taping a show. When I tried to send it back to them, they claimed they had no record that they had done any maintenance for me or for the unit # I gave them. I prevailed on them to look at it, and sent a long letter detailing the history of the problem, including its intermittent nature and the fact that I'd tested the thing with a bunch of different sound sources so I knew that wasn't it. They returned the item to me in two weeks with a note saying "unit works fine; check your mics".
    Either the techs were brain damaged or their communication chain was screwed. Either way, I was done with Sony at that moment.

    (Eventually, I found my way to a guy in Philadelphia who makes his way fixing these kinds of things, and when he fixed it, the thing lasted for two whole months, after which I dropped the whole matter).


    --
  • by American AC in Paris (230456) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @08:29AM (#446452) Homepage
    Some info:

    from an article at dpreview.com [dpreview.com] (examining a different OEL being produced by Sanyo and Kodak:)

    The new 5.5-inch panel has a quarter-VGA resolution (240 x 320 pixels) with a brightness of 200 candela per square meter. It consumes 2 watts running at 10 volts. Yoneda claimed that the power consumption is lower than comparably-sized LCDs, which eat 2.5 W on average. The pixel transistors are optimized to maintain uniform brightness over the surface of the panel. The aperture ratio is about 50 percent, an improvement over the 30 percent ratio of the earlier 2.4-inch panel.

    and this, from the University of Arizona's Optical Sciences Center [arizona.edu] (discussing Organic LEDs, full authors' credits on page:)

    Recently, organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) have attracted a lot of attention, mainly due to their simplicity of fabrication, low operating voltage and power consumption, large view angle, high brightness and efficiency, ultra-thin structure, mechanical flexibility, and light weight.1 Their potential use in display applications, such as ultra-thin flat panel, roll-up, and head-mounted displays is being seriously considered by numerous companies.

    So to answer your question, it looks like the technology as it currently stands performs roughly as well as backlit LCDs, with perhaps even a slight advantage. This technology takes the middleman of backlighting out of the equation by using electroluminescent materials in the first place. Thus, the above claims make some sense, as you are only pumping power to the pixels themselves, and not the pixels and the backlight.

    On a bit of a tangent, this looks to be similar to the LEP technology Slashdot reported about some time ago (see Cambridge Display's homepage [cdtltd.co.uk] for more info.)

    First they ignore you.
    Then they laugh at you.

  • As a practicing homosexual ...

    And remember what they say: "practice makes perfect".

  • MSNBC is running an article about Sony's new Slim TV is thinner, brighter, and has a better picture then current LCD screens.

    MSNBC is running an article about Sony's new Slim TV, which is thinner, brighter, and has a better picture than current LCD screens

    The organic electroluminescent (OEL) display is a little thicker then a credit card was showed Wednesday.

    The organic electroluminescent (OEL) display, which is a little thicker than a credit card, was shown Wednesday.

    These screens offer a faster responce then LCD becuase the are self-luminous (no back-lighting required) and allow a wider viewing angle. Sony hopes to have these screens in mass production by 2003

    These screens offer a faster response than LCD because they are self-luminous (no back-lighting required) and allow a wider viewing angle. Sony hopes to have these screens in mass production by 2003

  • by SamIIs (65268) <SamIAm@math.gatec h . edu> on Thursday February 08, 2001 @08:59AM (#446460)
    Someday we'll lose our laptops in between pages of books

    Oh, come on Taco. How long do you think we'll have these cute little bound piles of wood? I can't wait till I start losing my book inside my laptop. :)

    Sam

  • Problem is, PDAs are TOO small for a lot of things. For instance, as a mobile terminal (great for plugging into the serial port of a machine with a messed up network config). Currently we use an ancient Winbook 386 for this, but it's battery life is for shame and the whole thing is starting to die mechanically. Plus it can't run Netscape and is quite slow by today's standards.

    Finally, monochrome != Low-res, in fact I'd like to see a fairly high resolution (200 dpi or better). This would make reading a book off the laptop quite comfortable, especially if you are on a plane and have the backlight turned off. Reading off the Palm is ok, but you have to more or less continually page down while reading because the screen just doesn't hold that much character data.

    Down that path lies madness. On the other hand, the road to hell is paved with melting snowballs.
  • ...I'll finally have a reason to go to the library.
  • This means that now everywhere can be covered in wonderful moving adverts! Just think, rather than having those boring old billboards everywhere around town, they can slap up a roll of this stuff and actually play stuff for you to admire! Yay!

    We do seem to be moving towards "active" materials which rather than just being lumps of solid stuff in fact contain their own processors, memories and so on. Sooner or later we'll get to the stage where absolutely everything it made from computing material, and every brick and tile has its own IP address and can become part of a distributed computer running your house, doing SETA@home and so on.

    Heh, just imagine your toilet patiently searching for alien life whilst you're sitting on it :)

  • What about its power consumption ?
    Will it be suitable in a normal 14" screened laptop ?
    Also, a 10000-hour life means approx 2-3 years for my Linux laptop. Isn't this a bit short compared to the price ?
    --
  • by Miss Pereira (307824) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @07:35AM (#446469)
    I hope I'll be around in the future when you can download a new skin for your car or wallpapers just like you can do with Winamp or Gnome/KDE. The paint on cars, homes and wallpapers will not be regular paint. It made up of some crystal or organic goo that can be altered electronically by an in built chip. To bad your car got hacked the other day. Now it's bright pink with neon green dots and you cannot change it. ;-)
  • by jandrese (485) <kensama@vt.edu> on Thursday February 08, 2001 @07:36AM (#446470) Homepage Journal
    The article states that these displays will be self luminious, but it never mentions how much power they will draw. They aren't going to be very useful for laptops if they draw even more power than todays color LCD displays, which are already power hogs. Sometimes I wish I could buy a monocrome passive matrix laptop (they'd be *cheap* in comparision) that let you turn off the backlite (remember when this was possible) and could be used in bright(er) lighting conditions than todays laptops. Who needs 24bit color to read email, compose a letter or a book, read a book, or even surf the web (if you can surf in Lynx, missing color support in Galeon is a small problem). The biggest feature of all would be the increased battery life. Imagine a Transmeta laptop with a low power LCD (passive matrix monochrome backlit optional) laptop with the same batteries as todays power hogs? It'd run for hours on end.

    Down that path lies madness. On the other hand, the road to hell is paved with melting snowballs.
  • by toybuilder (161045) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @09:04AM (#446474)
    I imagine a day when everyone will get a free OEL-wall in their living room... The catch? You'll have to sign up for MSN/WebTV. When you're not using the WebTV, the OEL wall will display targeted advertising.
  • by CokeBear (16811) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @09:07AM (#446480) Journal
    Laptops keep getting smaller, but the traditional laptop has a limit to how small it can get. A full sized keyboard and a nice 15" screen can be paper thin, and only a few ounces, but will still be 8.5x11". The real future is in the headset/eyepeice screen, with a fold up Palm Style keyboard, and an air mouse pointing device (maybe a tiny device worn on one finger like a ring?) that all communicate wirelessly (and of course are connected to the internet with 802.11 or its descendant.

    I have seen the future... and it looks kinda cool, but only if we take some drastic steps to fix this fsck'd up planet.
  • Hello? Did you read the next paragraph?

    For Sony, "broadband applications" means being able to present moving pictures well, which requires a screen that responds quickly enough, for example, to faithfully recreate the flash of a fireworks display.
    Yeah, so it's a buzzword...but all it really means is video. It's better for video than LCDs because it (supposedly) doesn't leave ghost images like LCDs do because of the speed.
  • by malachid69 (306291) on Thursday February 08, 2001 @07:36AM (#446486) Homepage
    They just changed the acronymn. Do a search for OLED and you will find lots of other places doing the same thing -- examples: This technology has a lot of potential. In my previous post about designing VR hardware, I was thinking the OLEDs would be a good way to do the screens. However, I don't think Sony should be changing the acronymn to sound like their own technology. It is exactly the same thing.

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