AT&T stores to trial Microsoft ‘Surface’

April 7, 2008

According to, full scale trials of Microsoft’s Surface interative table top are about to begin in the ‘States. This is a significant landmark in the development of gesture-based interfaces, and something we are sure to be seeing a lot more of in the next few years. Products like Surface allow technology to become much more user-transparent, and therefore much more accessible. The combination of Surface and mobile phones is an excellent example of how this can work in practice.

AT&T Stores in 5 locations across the US, will be the first to install the new Microsoft touch-screen interactive 30″ tabletop display – ‘Surface’ – on 17th April.

Customers will be able to place one of eight handsets on the display, and the computer will immediately recognize the phone and present information on the device. Placing another phone on Surface will allow users to trigger side-by-side cost and feature comparisons of the handsets.

As well as general media on the phones, AT&T is touting the ability for customers to view an interactive network coverage map. By using two fingers to pinch or expand the map, users can zero in on their homes, offices and schools to ensure AT&T provides them with good cellular coverage. In the near future, AT&T plans to allow users to customize their phones through Surface by dragging icons of ring tones, graphics and videos over to their handset.

The roll out will then continue through May – and should eventually reach all 2,000 outlets.

GE demonstrates OLEDs manufactured by roll-to-roll process

March 18, 2008
A manufacturing process similar to that used for newspaper printing could eventually result in low-cost, commercially viable OLED lighting.

GE Global Research has demonstrated what it claims to be the world’s first roll-to-roll manufactured OLED lighting devices.GE described the demonstration as a key step toward making OLEDs and other high performance organic electronics products at dramatically lower costs than what is possible today. “Researchers have long dreamed of making OLEDs using a newspaper-printing like roll-to-roll process,” said Anil Duggal, manager of GE’s Advanced Technology Program in Organic Electronics.

“Now we’ve shown that it is possible. Commercial applications in lighting require low manufacturing costs, and this demonstration is a major milestone on our way to developing low cost OLED lighting devices.”

OLEDs are thin, organic materials sandwiched between two electrodes, which illuminate when an electrical charge is applied. They represent the next evolution in lighting products. Their widespread design capabilities will provide an entirely different way for people to light their homes or businesses. Moreover, OLEDs have the potential to deliver dramatically improved levels of efficiency and environmental performance, while achieving the same quality of illumination found in traditional products in the marketplace today with less electrical power.

Duggal continued, “Beyond OLEDs, this technology also could have broader impact in the manufacturing of other organic electronic devices such as organic photovoltaics for solar energy conversion, sensors and roll-up displays.”

“For businesses, architects, lighting designers and anyone interested in pushing the envelope to achieve increasingly energy-efficient lighting — and vastly expanded lighting design capabilities — today marks the day that viable, commercialized OLED lighting solutions are coming into view,” said Michael Petras, GE Consumer & Industrial’s Vice President of Electrical Distribution and Lighting.

“We have more work to do before we can give customers access to GE-quality OLED solutions, but it’s now easier to envision OLEDs becoming another high-efficiency GE offering, like LEDs, fluorescent or halogen.”

 From LEDs Magazine

Hyundai Motor applies in-car dual display monitor to Grandeur

February 26, 2008

Hyundai announce dual-view dashboard LCD monitor

Hyundai Motor announced that it completed the development of its in-dash dual LCD monitor which can display two different pictures simultaneously based on one the viewer angle. This means the driver can see the navigation while at the same time the passenger watches a DVD movie. According to the company, the newly developed monitor will be applied to Grandeur.

By Grace Won 2008-02-20

Mitsubishi uses multiple cameras to enhance HD video

February 24, 2008

Mitsubishi Electric has reportedly developed an innovative technique, which increases the resolution of HD video, by combining shots from multiple cameras into one super HD stream. According to some reports, Mitsubishi is believed to be currently testing the technology at its research facility in Tokyo, using five video cameras capable of shooting high-quality images.These are linked to computers with 3D graphics processors, which process the raw data. The camera images are analysed for differences and the input is mashed together to form a composite video, giving a substantially higher resolution. Using five cameras and five PCs in this way produces video with four times the resolution of normal HD TV and it takes just 0.15 seconds to process and deliver the data.

Sources at Mitsubishi allegedly claim the new system delivers video of as high a quality as that produced by commercial digital cinema. The technology could be used in surveillance systems and possibly in live TV broadcasts.

Original story –

New Mitsubishi product range benefits display integrators

February 20, 2008

Mitsubishi Electric has significantly expanded its offering to Systems Integrators with the launch of the brand-new new 3000 series Display Wall sub-system at ISE 2008. The perfect complement to its market-leading range of DLP projection cubes, the new family of modular display wall processors enables integrators to create very sophisticated display systems quickly and easily, without having to worry about compatibility or interfacing issues. Using the new sub-system, commissioning costs and project timescales can be drastically reduced without compromising performance, reliability or sophistication.

The hardware element of the new system consists of the VC-X3000 Display Wall processor and the VC-MK3000 synchronous graphics insertion processor. Both units can be used as standalone processors or in combination to create a powerful hybrid system capable of handling synchronous live video, DVI-I/VGA and data inputs in real time. The processing sub-system is complemented by the new D-Wall software suite, which brings together processing and hardware control into a single integrated environment, and allows extremely sophisticated display systems to be created virtually straight from the box.

The X3000 Display Wall Processor is a high-performance display wall processor designed for demanding control room or large-scale visualisation applications. A standard chassis is capable of routing 48 video inputs and 12 DVI/VGA inputs across 24 different outputs. The system is expandable up to 128 video inputs, 62 DVI/VGA input capture channel and 64 output channels via optional expansion modules. The X3000 can also accept multiple network inputs and is capable of servicing multiple client control stations and applications simultaneously. The D-Wall software provides separate colour-coded mouse cursors that allow up to ten operators to interact with applications on the display wall. Like all Mitsubishi hardware, build quality and reliability are of paramount importance. Based on a Intel™ Xeon dual core processor, the standard chassis comes with 1GB of RAM and 80GB HDD with hot-swappable backup, both of which are expandable. Redundant PSU, fans and RAID disk controller help ensure 24/7 reliability in critical control room applications.

The VC-MK3000 graphics insertion processor provides real-time, synchronous overlay of video and DVI-I/VGA sources and is designed for high-performance applications such as control rooms and C3i facilities. Sync in/out and gen-lock also make it ideal for TV studio applications. 9.6 GB input bandwidth is shared between 32 video or DVI-I inputs, allocated at 0.3 GB per channel. 16 user-configurable outputs provide a flexible combination of overlays and screens. Auxiliary base layer inputs enable additional software applications to share the VC-MK3000 desktop for maximum flexibility. Up to 10 VC-MK3000s can be cascaded together to provide hundreds of input sources.

Mitsubishi’s new D-Wall software suite unifies X3000 and MK3000 processors in a single, powerful control architecture spanning both applications and display hardware. D-Wall allows direct control of display wall settings such as brightness and lamp modes, as well monitoring parameters such as lamp hours. The software automatically warns operators via email should a hardware alert condition arise. Using D-Wall, complex wall layouts can be created easily by simply dragging and dropping inputs from whichever X3000 and MK3000 processors are attached to the system – either singly or in combination. Layouts can then be saved for instant recall. This intuitive software environment significantly speeds-up the commissioning process by making the physical integration of different sources completely transparent to the operator. The unified software environment also allows total flexibility to upgrade or modify the physical layer to meet future demands on the system. D-Wall can be used with a standard touch panel control to simplify the operation of complex display wall systems and reduce the chances of operator error. D-Wall can also respond to system events by switching to pre-programmed display layouts which automatically give prominence to the window generating the alert message, thereby reducing the risk of an alert going unnoticed.

Mitsubishi Electric’s new display wall sub-system underlines the company’s commitment to System Integrators. With the launch of this significant new range of products, Mitsubishi continues to place the highly-valued relationships it enjoys with its Systems Integrator partners at the heart of its strategy for professional display products.

Toshiba concedes defeat in high def battle

February 20, 2008

The battle with Sony’s Blu-ray is over now that Toshiba has announced plans to withdraw HD-DVD technology. Signs pointed to Blu-ray becoming the DVD format of choice when Warner Brothers announced their preference for it at the CES in Las Vegas earlier this year. In addition, US consumer electronics chain Best Buy has pledged to prominently feature Blu-ray products. Similarly, global retailer Walmart has confirmed that from June, it will stock only Blu-ray players and movies and phase out HD-DVD products. These decisions by major companies, alongside Sony’s inclusion of the technology in PlayStation3 consoles, are believed to have cemented the victory for Blu-ray. Currently, rival Microsoft produces the Xbox 360 that supports a plug-in HD-DVD accessory. However, it is understood that Xbox 360s will be able to support Blu-ray technology. The industry’s move to Blu-ray means that consumers will no longer have to choose their format of choice. A growth in sales of Blu-ray players and discs is now expected because buyers can be confident in their purchases.

As reported in Electronic Product Design

ISE 2008 hailed as the best yet

January 31, 2008

As the doors close on this year’s ISE show in Amsterdam, it’s already being hailed as the best yet. Despite booking an unprecedented seven halls, the show still sold out six weeks before the opening. Figures are not yet available on visitor numbers, but annecdotal evidence also points to a big rise in attendance, with numbers coming through the door over the three-day event set to top all previous records. The sentiment expressed several times to me at this year’s show was very much “If you ain’t here, you ain’t nowhere!”

The Mitsubishi Electric stand at ISE 2008In terms of the new products on show, there were simply too many to mention. As one of the largest, Mitsubishi Electric’s fantastic 4.0mm Black Package LED screen absolutely dominated the show, both in terms of its impressive presence and its technical superiority. Such is the quality of the image that I for one have to keep reminding myself that it’s a daylight video screen and not a projection. And I think I’m not alone, as I noticed more than one person staring up into the ceiling looking for that elusive projector!  The Mitsubishi stand at ISE was the busiest I’ve ever seen it – testiment to the raft of new products on display including the FL7000 widescreen projector and a new videowall processor.

Digital Projection at ISE 2008No less impressive in its way was the Digital Projection stand. The circular screen, blended image and short-throw projection used on the stand combined to create an eye-catching exhibit that really stood out.

Floating in space3-D projection also seemed to be a feature of this year’s show, with many companies offering systems based on polorised filters, aimed mainly at the residential market apparently. Of more interest on the pro-side were several companies showing circular projection systems, such as the one shown here. Varying from the large to the very small, there were a number of implementations of this scanning projection technology, which I first ran across from Dynamax. Now it appears that this technology is finding an outlet in small scale digi-signage applications.

Digital signage was a major feature of this year’s event, with a large quantity of screens around the venue being run using the C-Nario system. The processor is apparently capable of running 10,000 channels simultaneously – more than enough for the biggest shopping mall. It does certainly appear that, finally, the digital signage revolution might be about to start rolling properly.

My impression of the show this year was that it was bigger, more colourful, more interesting and better supported than ever before. I for one am looking forward to the next one.


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