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computer desk

Project the computer display on a drafting board
 
(+2, -2)
  [vote for,
against]

Artists and architects prefer to do their drawing on inclined drafting boards, about 2 feet deep by 3 feet wide. Computers should have the same interface.

This is nearly feasible today. You need:

* A drafting board, wooden will do.

* Two projectors, one to either side of the drafting board.

* A "screen", which is a black piece of paper that selectively reflects the red, green, blue produced by the projectors.

* An input pen, and some way to tell exactly where the pen touches the screen.

You can "write" on the screen with the pen; there's no distance between the hand and the action like there is with the mouse. You can rest something on the display without casting much of a shadow because the display has two sources. If pixels go bad in one projector, the other can pick up the slack, which means it's reliable even with spotty projectors. Ambient light isn't much of a problem because the screen is black except to those frequencies the projectors use. Nothing (except the wooden desk) needs to be bulky.

A black screen that reflects red, green, blue already exists (by Sony). Projectors that work at an angle already exist too (by Mitsubishi). The pen probably already exists. Drafting boards already exist, as do chairs and computers.

rjenkins, Jul 12 2005

projecting at an angle http://global.mitsu...ess_acute_proj.html
[rjenkins, Jul 13 2005]

black projection screen http://www.gizmodo....n-screen-016964.php
[rjenkins, Jul 13 2005]

Wacom LCD http://www.wacom-as...q21x/cintiq21x.html
Write directly on the screen [Aq_Bi, Jul 13 2005]

LCD Desk LCD_20Desk
very similar idea [hippo, Jul 13 2005]

electronic paper http://www.sciencen...10&language=english
[rjenkins, Jul 13 2005]

[link]






       No need for dual projectors. Make the writing surface out of frosted glass, and put a single projector behind it. Wacom makes a similar writable display out of a 21" LCD monitor. It's pretty impressive.
Aq_Bi, Jul 13 2005
  

       Fantastic product. Only a little step remaining, and we will be able to have a real full-size desktop.
I think the desktop idea is elsewhere in the halfbakery.
Ling, Jul 13 2005
  

       What Aq_Bi said. Technology has moved past this.
DrCurry, Jul 13 2005
  

       Aq_Bi, I like the frosted glass with a rear projector alternative. It eliminates shadows. It needs a desk designed specifically for it, can't be just any old table. But I expect computer desks will be explicitly designed as computer desks from here on out so that's not much of a limitation. It needs frosted glass for the screen, which will be heavier and harder to replace than a colored piece of paper. One projector may turn out to be more expensive than two because of how reliable it has to be, but the frosted glass could take two projectors if two turns out to be cheaper than one.   

       I don't know which design (front projector onto a black screen or rear projector onto frosted glass) would win in terms of display contrast and wattage required in a well lit room.   

       An LCD desk, on the other hand ... you need to produce an LCD display that's as big as a desk, works perfectly, can be written on without being damaged, and either lasts for decades or is cheap enough to replace whenever it gets marked up or pixels go bad. Cheap electronic paper might eventually fit that bill, but I doubt LCDs ever will.
rjenkins, Jul 13 2005
  

       I agree with the behind-screen projection modification. Otherwise, it's entirely pragmatic and a better human-machine interface. [+]
wylie_coyote, Nov 02 2006
  
      
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