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MacRumors
Oct 11, 2007, 01:57 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com)

Sharp recently made some headlines (http://www.pcadvisor.co.uk/news/index.cfm?newsid=10894) with the demonstration of a prototype LCD that doubled as a scanner.


http://images.macrumors.com/article/2007/10/11/Sharp scanner LCD scale.jpg


The 3.5" LCD screen integrated an optical scanner that could be used to scan business cards, but also be used as a method for multi-touch input.
The screen, on show at the Ceatec exhibition, features an optical scanner for each LCD pixel, and could also be used to recognise fingers or other objects.
The prototype is expected to see commercialization in the first half of 2008.

While not directly linked to Apple, the technology is very similar to an old patent application (http://www.macrumors.com/2006/01/13/apple-integrated-sensing-display/) from Apple which described an "Integrated Sensing Display". Apple's patent described possible uses in video conferencing and photos, but could have also been used for a multi-touch display. Of course, Apple has since come out with the iPhone which offers a multi-touch display. The iPhone, however, uses a capacitance-based touch screen, rather than one based on image capture.

Apple continues to research and develop various touch-based technologies. Their most recent patent applications include pressure sensitive (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/10/04/apple-exploring-pressure-sensitive-touch-input/) input technology on existing touch screens.

Article Link (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/10/11/sharps-lcd-and-scanner-an-integrated-sensing-display/)



acearchie
Oct 11, 2007, 02:02 PM
Now that could be an interesting addition to iPhone v2!

but I feel its a bigger wow factor than practability factor!

I would like to see it in action though

offwidafairies
Oct 11, 2007, 02:05 PM
is this the way of the future?
it looks cool :)

Dwight Schrute
Oct 11, 2007, 02:09 PM
Kinda spooky to think that we might some day wind up with screens that double as cameras. :eek:

Virgil-TB2
Oct 11, 2007, 02:12 PM
... Apple continues to research and develop various touch-based technologies. Their most recent patent applications include pressure sensitive (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/10/04/apple-exploring-pressure-sensitive-touch-input/) input technology on existing touch screens. ... As to the pressure sensitive part ...
doesn't this mean that we have to go back to plastic (deformable) screens?

This process certainly won't work with a milimetre or two of glass in front of the display, and Apple has just finished re-tooling their entire line to use glass screens. This kind of implies that this is for a product in the future, not "iPhone 2.0."

offwidafairies
Oct 11, 2007, 02:19 PM
Kinda spooky to think that we might some day wind up with screens that double as cameras. :eek:

Yeah but come on, who is really that interested in watching? :rolleyes:

MattJessop
Oct 11, 2007, 02:29 PM
This has the 'potential' to be cool. However in reality it will probably be fiddly, and require you to do retakes and be precise, as current touch screen devices to. But still, it's nice to know that we're getting there eventually.

I wonder if this would lead to your boss watching you while you worked at your computer. Hell, NOBODY'd look at anything remotely adult while they worked. ;)

guzhogi
Oct 11, 2007, 02:35 PM
Sounds pretty cool. Maybe someone can adapt it so we can have the viewscreen kind of thing in Star Trek.

Consultant
Oct 11, 2007, 02:35 PM
As to the pressure sensitive part ...
doesn't this mean that we have to go back to plastic (deformable) screens?

This process certainly won't work with a milimetre or two of glass in front of the display, and Apple has just finished re-tooling their entire line to use glass screens. This kind of implies that this is for a product in the future, not "iPhone 2.0."

The reason the iPhone has glass in front is to keep it scratch-free (as opposed to a plastic only screen).

Analog Kid
Oct 11, 2007, 02:45 PM
Makes a lot of sense. The color filters used for the LCD, with a photodiode behind them, could make for a very simple scanner. The awkward part would be preventing the backlight from flooding the sensor, and only capturing the reflected light from the object. I don't think this will work as a camera-- your face, for example, would be reflecting light to all the sensors at once creating one big blur. It would require really sophisticated and expensive lensing to be able to keep this flat and viewable while being able to capture an image of an object at any distance.

CWallace
Oct 11, 2007, 02:49 PM
Such a device would likely be a plus for businessfolk. Be nice to just drop someone's business card on your iPhone display and it scans into your Contacts.

mihiruthere93
Oct 11, 2007, 02:59 PM
hmmm... i wonder how much battery this would suck up? and how much memory could be packed on? this would be cool on the ipod touch/iphone v2, but i don't see it coming out for another couple of years (well, at least 1.5)

xUKHCx
Oct 11, 2007, 03:20 PM
As i said at the time that patent first appeared this has the potential to be very useful indeed. Say this was built into tablet PC, now in a lecture/other situation you get a document that you want to annotate just put it on the display and then there it is on the screen. amazing.

MacFly123
Oct 11, 2007, 03:23 PM
I thought of this idea too when I saw the Microsoft multi-touch coffee table. Just put a picture or something on the screen face down and it scans it into the computer :) Cool ideas!

I have heard things about Apple making a display with sensors behind it so you can do iChat video conferencing without an iSight because it it built in behind the screen. Anyone know anything about that???

yzp
Oct 11, 2007, 03:44 PM
Such a device would likely be a plus for businessfolk. Be nice to just drop someone's business card on your iPhone display and it scans into your Contacts.

wow, twould be sick!

princigalli
Oct 11, 2007, 03:53 PM
Sharp is probably way ahead of Apple and most others in this field.

Virgil-TB2
Oct 11, 2007, 04:24 PM
Sharp is probably way ahead of Apple and most others in this field.Well Sharp has a working model, but Apple's patents precede it by years, and their technology (assuming it ever works well enough) can do far more than just low-res scan a business card.

So Sharp might be ahead on implementation, but assuming Apple's patent is not just hot air, Apple's technology is actually "way ahead" of Sharp's.

MBHockey
Oct 11, 2007, 04:49 PM
Note that Apple doesn't actually have a patent on this, it's just the publication of their patent application. Now, that said, if Sharp hasn't applied for a patent on this technology (which i sincerely doubt), even if Apple does not obtain a patent for it the patent application publication can be used against Sharp's application (assuming the claims are close enough in scope).

It would be interesting to see Sharp's related patent applications and their dates of filing and subsequent publication relating to this technology.

Huin
Oct 11, 2007, 05:31 PM
That could make for the coolest laptop! Shut your book to scan, flip it open and edit your image! Must be James Bonds favourite gizmo in 2013.

: )

gifford
Oct 11, 2007, 06:01 PM
fingerprint scanning for security, could be an application.

twoodcc
Oct 11, 2007, 06:23 PM
Kinda spooky to think that we might some day wind up with screens that double as cameras. :eek:

yeah that is kinda spooky.

maybe in the next iPhone?

davidlt
Oct 12, 2007, 12:18 AM
It won't be used in wide variety of products. It make 2-4-6 or even more years to be ready for massive market.

ross.32
Oct 12, 2007, 01:20 AM
I have had this idea since I saw the Apple patent built into the display for things like iChat. I imagine a 15 inch convertible tablet with 1920x1200 screen with a full screen built-in camera for HD video plus multi-touch. Scanning would even be better than this prototype because you could close the tablet like a laptop and block out outside light to get a better scan. I am predicting one of these for January:D

operator207
Oct 12, 2007, 07:31 AM
This puts a whole new spin on the old joke about holding the piece of paper up in front of the screen and hitting "print". Talk about coming full circle.

Toe
Oct 12, 2007, 08:55 AM
Yeah but come on, who is really that interested in watching? :rolleyes:
It is interesting to note that in 1984, Big Brother kept an eye on citizens by looking at them through their TVs.

Toe
Oct 12, 2007, 08:59 AM
For those who haven't thought it through, this sort of technology is extremely revolutionary.

While it would be great on an iPhone imagine it in clothing or on a tank. If each pixel can display what a sensing pixel on the other side of the person/tank sees, then... you have an invisibility cloak.

Analog Kid
Oct 12, 2007, 01:08 PM
For those who haven't thought it through, this sort of technology is extremely revolutionary.

While it would be great on an iPhone imagine it in clothing or on a tank. If each pixel can display what a sensing pixel on the other side of the person/tank sees, then... you have an invisibility cloak.
How does the tank know what direction you're looking at it from? You'd need each display and scan "pixel" to be prismatic so each point on the output side changes depending on your angle of view, and some sort of ray tracing to know how to pass the image through the solid body. And you still have the same lensing problem for the scan function. This would be nearly impossible to do with a discrete display.

The best you could hope for is a good color match and maybe a general sense of texture, which might improve camouflage but which could also be done more easily in other ways. You wouldn't get an image match.

ross.32
Oct 12, 2007, 02:29 PM
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