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...and the TV says, "I'm gonna go watch some humans."
Think it's just an output device? Think again.

Browsing the net I came accross this new tidbit of technology:

Initally the first thing that came to mind was the story of the users trying to fax something over their computer's fax/modem by holding the paper up to their screen.

Perhaps they were just ahead of their time.

Admittedly it's only a 320x240 resolution LCD display, but it scans a image of accual screen size at 960x240x(256?) shades of gray.

How long before they have this in color, focusable (possibly using MEMs, or digital distortion/correction techniques), and eliminate the need for a seperate lense altogether? I mean essentially this is like a marrige between a LCD and a really big CCD array.

I can see how this technology can EASILY evolve into something like that REAL fast.

Something tells me thoes tiny lenses that are showing up on cellphones don't have that much longer to go before this type of technology makes it completely obsolete. Now the screen(!) will take the picture, and show it too.

And of course then they're privacy concerns; By and large we know when were being watched because we can see the lense of the camera. In 10 years will our TV watch us back and record our reactions to the shows were watching?

Boy... brings new meaning to the phrase 'putting a porno on the TV'.

How many other realistic uses can you think of for this? I'm trying to think outside the box here, but nothing's comming to mind immideately. Anyone else got some better future-vision than me on this one?


(Edited by Kevlar at 2:52 pm on April 10, 2003)

256 shades of grey is 8-bit greyscale (just helping).

This kind of thing makes me glad that I don't watch TV. Heehee. There are a variety of entertainment applications for this, but the most obvious field is in security. You know those one-way mirrors? Don't need those anymore. Security cameras can be disguised as a variety of objects - TVs, TV fireplaces, TV fishtanks. How about sending a fax through your cellphone?
Hell, your movie picture-windows (another topic inder High tech) are now your security system as well. Somebody burglarizes your house? You have it recorded. Hey, how about a palm-scanner application for your two-way computer monitor? Goodbye to newtork logins and passwords to remember. Just slap your computer uspide the head and you're in!

Yeah. 0 � � 0 � �0 � 0 � 0 �0 0 0
� � � � �128 64  32 16 8 � 4 2 1


Unfortunately that's not what the question mark is about.

The article state 'monochrome' so I'm making a -guess- that it at an 8bit color depth. Thus the "(256?)".


(Edited by Kevlar at 6:56 pm on April 10, 2003)

No, I think its horse chrome.
wow! this is fascinating to me on so many levels! heh... image capture.. via.. image display... just... *blinks*

mommy? can the computer blink?

i mean.. sure.. it's at the stage of you have to put something against the screen to get a picture... but... future.. most likey not too far OFF in that future.

ok... so� applications? how about�
facial recognition and capturing andall sorts of 'fun' security usages related to still and maybe even moving imagery. �is the person sitting in front of the screen the authorized user? is there anyone else around? (i wonder what the angle of view and depth of field on a monitor is? heh)
teleconferencing maybe?
oo oo. used by people who are mute... simply sit and sign facing the computer screen and the software interprets. no need for a keyboard... though i guess that's not that amazing. if you�re mute you can still type. heh.

but really.. the only practical applications i can see of this is eliminating the need for those dinky webcams sitting on top of monitors (webporn will be �so- rejuvenated�) inside phones, and for surveillance... spy on your already paranoid and neurotic babysitter with your TV rather then that silly looking clock/teddybear/smoke detector camera! (but that's been mentioned)

so what would this do, eliminate cameras in security and interactive web related uses... eliminate faxes... eliminate scannners... peripherals down to a minimum?

but what an interesting idea. a captured image through a medium that's been traditionally used as display �(i�m not taking into account touch screens, those are completely different since they are only interaction rather then presentation).
oh� interactive art installations� oh�. my� i�m sure there�s some MADT art students biting at the bit to get their hands on THIS one� or photography students� *cough* self portraiture� viewers watching each other� interactive skits� whoa nelly! fahrenheit 451 anybody? heh

i�m getting a through the looking glass sort of feeling here... but that could be the photo chems talkin��

and the concept of the tv watching you... i remember when i was little and first moved to canada from poland. i thought the people in the TV could see me� it did much to influence the way my mind worksthe way i view of the world around me.

thing is� most of these applications mentioned in this thread can be done with traditional cameras. to me, it seems like the elimination of the intermediary (such as a ussually visible (or at least separate) lens camera) would create much more of an intense psychological shift rather then create �too- many new applications. �(maybe i�m also not thinking outside the box enough so who knows)

wait... maybe... if one worked -this- technology in with their flexible LCDs technology... now THAT's something i'm going to have to sit and think a bit about...

but anyways.... i'm having a bad few days with compactflash cards and digital photography in general. so GRRRR� i�m taking a pinhole camera and going to live in a mud shack. ;)

(Edited by Bias at 7:58 pm on April 10, 2003)

Quote: from Johnny on 9:59 pm on April 10, 2003[br]No, I think its horse chrome.

That sounds suspiciously like a sarcastic remark from Westwood's Bladerunner game.

In 10 years will our TV watch us back and record our reactions to the shows were watching?

I don't think getting reactions to TV shows will be the most popular use...

1984, anyone?

I am so impressed, Murphy.

Westwood is the BOMB! Kryandia all the way, baby!


I'd say you're thinking too small scale with the security uses. Fund massive city wide CCTV and traffic monitoring with blanket camera coverage that doubles as billboard advertising space. Infact, all those expensive public surveillance projects could probable become entirely self sufficient, if not profitable, commercial ventures. Football game crowd control, show them big screen close-ups of the replays and plant your cameras right infront of their faces instead of strategically mounting them to be unobtrusive at weird angles.

Hmmm... Fancy mirror-like systems to "try on" new hairstyles before you get it cropped? A realtime virtual reflection tweaked by VirtuHair's latest fashion software. Course, same could be applied for the whole gamut of current and upcoming cosmetic products and surgery. "Here's what you'll look like with those DD's, feel free to have a bounce, make sure you like the way they move..."

Hrm. Movies where you can cast yourself and others watching onto the lead roles? Configure your "cast of characters" before the movie starts by running a pre-set pattern of facial captures.

All that said, what can this tech really do that a camera and screen combo couldn't do? All it's really offering is integration of two typically seperate products which, while technically amazing, doesn't really offer anything innovative in terms of application. It's more an improvement of existing technologies than a ground breaking new technology.

Has anyone stated this already? Apologies if that's the case.

What about having specially created films, such as horror ones where the level of horror depends on the persons reaction, by simply measuring their facial expression, which is already possible. It could either make it more scary etc, if the person is showing negative emotions such as fear, which would make the film nice and harsh, or of course, it could decrease the horror it slightly if they are too scared, or maybe have moved out of view (run away in fear, although they could simply have gone for a snack etc) to make it enjoyable by even the faintest of heart people, and of course increase the horror for those that seem calm. So even the most hardcore horror watcher could get frightened. It could be a bit like adaptive AI in games perhaps, yet without the negative connotations.

This would work by having lots of scenes and sections that can 'slot' together well in many combinations, and different shots and footage are shown depending the viewers facial expressions (and so hopefully emotion), and whether they chose the punishment or adaptive option outlined previously.
This would of course be rather costly to produce, and the editing would have to be undertaken very well to make sure that the film is coherent. Restrictions would have to be imposed on what footage can follow each other, being carefully chosen by preferably the director, using a specially designed software package.

A great thing about this is that it would bring the re-watchability of movies to a new level, and mean that even if one watches for example a horror film using this technology many times, it would still scare the crap out of you.

However, seeing that Hollywood often can't even manage to produce a decent standard film, without having to deal with 4 times more content and complex editing decisions, this could be rather difficult to implement.

Hmm, I feel that I may have gone into too much detail.
I don't actually like horror films that much; it just seems like a good genre to use for an example. However it could be used with comedy programs, especially sketch based ones, where the sketches or scenes from categories of types of humour etc that one laughs (or responds the most positively) to are shown. With sketches this would not require any of the complex editing from the horror example. I think it would be quite nice to have dynamic entertainment like this, rather than choosing the scenes oneself.

One other thing that this could do is allow a character to walk over to the screen inside the program being shown, and tap it, telling one to pay attention when one hasn't looked at the screen for a while, such as when falling asleep. Hmm, well I always wanted my screen to do that :)

I'll stop rambling now.

I actually wrote this before Tafkar made his post. You've got a point Rastus with "It's more an improvement of existing technologies than a ground breaking new technology."

I think that I thought far to small scale now, ahh well.

PS. If this post is bad, please excuse it, I was nakard when I typed it.

      Hmmmmm........... Yes I must say all this is very fascinating, but by promoting technology of this sort aren't we just begging for large-scale invasion of privacy..?? I for one don't want people watching me through my TV, let alone the things the gov't could get away with by using such things...... by the way, for those that don't know me, which most of you don't, I'm not a big fan of the gov't or of huge corps or any such things...... I just kinda get a little bit leery at the prospects of these new techs being developed. Call me paranoid, or a conspiracy theorist, or what have you.., but I kinda like my private life to stay private, you know.???  Anyways, I'm rambling again..I'll shut up now.
Surely if it's only used how I proposed, to create dynamic films, with one's responses only read by the screen, and not transmitted back to television companies etc, then it's fine, right?

Saying that, I agree that there is much reason to be paranoid, and as society and technology develop as they are, to not be paranoid would be a cue for worry, not the reverse. It's crazy how nobody wories about their mobile phone conversation being overheard, as it's not encyrpted at all, and simple devices exist that allow just that. However, their extreemely costly, and nobody seems to be exploiting it.