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Ceci n'est pas une idée.
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Problem: Others approach you while reading medical, salary, work history or other such personal or private data on your computer screen.
Solution: Special glasses, or "flip-down" lenses mounted on regular reading glasses. The glasses might be polarized and/or be able to view data displayed in
a frequency higher or lower than the human eye can see. Or, the data could be displayed in camoflauge pattern of pixels that the normal human eye could not see (A variation of the color blindness test images).
It may be possible to produce a variety of glasses, each pair being able to only view a certain pattern of pixels or frequencies, so that one could only view only their screen, with a display matched to the glasses used at that station, in an office full of others using the same technology.
Dec. 3, 2005 update: I came across this website today (see link below). The 3M product is described as "3M's microlouver privacy technology which works like tiny vertical blinds to narrow the viewing angle so that only persons directly in front of the monitor are able to see on-screen data; darkens screen data when viewed from the side."
The privacy screen only blocks out unwanted viewers who see the the computer from indirect angles. I am still hoping for a filter that will block out unwanted viewers from all angles.
3M microlouver technology
[Sunstone, Dec 03 2005]
ScreenGuardz four direction screen privacy
We have arrived [Sunstone, Feb 08 2013]
DIY computer monitor privacy
[Sunstone, Oct 30 2013]
||The way they do this on paper is to print grey text on a red or green background. Because the particular shade of red has a particular color value (or amount of lightness vs. darkness), it blends in with a shade of grey that shares that same property. In order to read the text, you need glasses with red tint in order to filter out the grey. The same prinicple could apply with the computer screen.
||The 3M product is used in some banking kiosks.
||Back when laptop screens were all monochrome LCD, this was easily bakable. The front polarization layer would be removed, and the user would wear a pair of polarized glasses. By doing this, only the wearer of the glasses could see what was on the screen.
||Or instead of shutter glasses or polarized lenses, a "monitor" built into LCD glasses. The glasses are the display. Might interfere with normal vision, though.
||Or you could display the information in one of the
many illegible fonts available. You yourself would
practice with this font in advance, sort of like taking
small doses of poison so that you become immune.
||Of course it could not be completely
illegible or you would not be able to read it.
||It occurs to me that no font is completely illegible,
since for a font an ascii code is mapped to a symbol.
So even those dingbats could be read, with practice.