Fasten Your Seat Belts…..
“Cambridge Display Technology group has acquired its rival Opsys, fusing the two companies together in the hopes that flexible, rollable TV and computing displays might see the light of day by 2005. As we’ve reported before, Organic LEDs will be the Next Big Thing? in flat panel displays, and Kodak, IBM, and CDT are racing furiously to get a grasp on the emerging market. CDT owns a patent relating to one of the major OLED production technologies, but this acquisition moves the target date up, so it seems….
While the energy efficiency and wide viewing-angles of OLED technology is exciting to me, what really gets me going is the idea of a roll-up display. Since an OLED-based displayed needs no backlight and can be printed on flexible plastic, it’s a real possibility. What can I say, Semi and I want our Globals! Imagine a visual communicator with a retractable screen that fits inside something the size of chapstick. Or how about a pull-out display built into your dashboard that can display anything from maps, to TV, to websites?…
I would like to see maps that get updated via bluetooth, and/or are synched to a GPS unit, allowing for a constant update of the users postion. Imagine if you bought a subcription ($10/year) to a map service that automatically updated your atlas, with options for countries, history, and higways.
Further uses: Flooring tiles: change the pattern of your flooring whenever you want, as the tiles are all networked together allowing you to have ever shifting patterns, video feeds, maps, or visualizations that are synched to music all on your floor. For that matter, your ceiling as well. Heck, any flat surface that they can be mounted to could be used.
Buy one game board and have it include all kinds of games, chess, checkers, backgammon, monopoly, parcheesi, trivial pursuit, all from one master board, and all you buy is the data of the game and any pieces that you might need.
Instead of buying the newspaper every day, have it fed via RSS to your livepaper via bluetooth either at home from your computer, via your cell, or at a newsstand when you walk by (since you’ve subscribed, right?) via 802.11. You could get all your magazines in this manner, simply subscribing online, and everytime you are in range of a stand, the paper automatically checks to see if there is anything new that you are due to get. Leace the paper in a cradle overnight to recharge and gather feeds while you sleep eat, etc, and that way it’s always up to date.
Given enough RAM, the paper could serve video as well, so the shows that you missed last night that you recorded on your PVR are now watchable in a comfortably sized format while you commute into the city. If you have a fat enough pipe while mobile, you could get live feeds from news channels as well, and watch what is happening in real time as you go.” [Ryan Greene’s Radio Weblog]
I don’t have much else to add to this except to echo Ryan’s thoughts. Pardon the pun, but this rolls into one “device” much of what I talk about in my presentations – constant information feeds (RSS style), The Heavenly Jukebox, mobile labs (OQO + VKB + roll up monitor), etc.
Notice, though, that Ryan doesn’t mention libraries anywhere in his speculations. And why should he? Have we proven ourselves yet that we’re ready for this brave new world of digital content, delivery, and preservation? We need to make sure we stay in the dissemination and distribution loop so that we can serve patrons (like Ryan) with these types of devices.
As a whiplash turn to make the point, witness the lack of understanding about the role librarians can and will play in a society drowning in information. Even Tom Peters doesn’t get it:
[The Shifted Librarian]
“Round two of the revolution is underway. We have a term for job positions occupied by travel agents, stockbrokers, bank tellers, librarians, receptionists, reservationists, and many customer-service oriented jobs–Toast! Not crunchy, cooked-just-right toast. We are talking about burned to the crisp and then left on the counter for three days toast. The kind of toast that leaves a thin layer of toast sweat on the counter. Toast that?s only palatable if you soak it in milk for an hour, plug your nose and swallow.” [People & Places that Rock, link courtesy of Simon Chamberlain]