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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Houston & Washington Texas
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    12,117

    Default Probably a Dumb Question

    With cell phones that have as much power as some computers had only a few years ago, why hasn’t someone come up with a small, portable monitor that you could carry around and attach to your phone for larger and better viewing. I know there are small, fold out keyboards that can be attached to phones, so seems like a monitor would come next. With everything becoming internet based, you can do a lot away from your PC on a connected phone.

    Or maybe someone has and I just don’t know about it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
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    Nothern California
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    734

    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    The usual approach is to build the computing power into the portable monitor, and call it either a "laptop computer" or a "PDA." ;)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
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    Chicago, IL.
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    100

    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    Allen,

    With the new Intel x86 "Atom" processor and WI-MAX, you'll begin to see these new "MID's" (mobile Internet device) in spades very soon. I've even seen one model that had an accessory cell phone tucked inside. I can't find that exact link... but this should keep you busy:

    http://www.engadget.com/tag/MID/

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Louisville, KY
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    3,771

    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    Phones are supposed to be phones and computers are supposed to be computers.

    That's my take. ;)

  5. #5
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    Jun 2004
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    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    Quote Originally Posted by J.Buesking View Post
    Phones are supposed to be phones and computers are supposed to be computers.

    That's my take. ;)
    I might agree except that when I'm in the field or eating lunch or at the mall or visiting my grandkids I can't make a call with my computer but I can compute with my phone!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    VA
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    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    Allan have you looked at the iPhone? It might be close to what your looking for. It wouldn't fit my needs yet, but if they come out with a flip version I might need to give it a second look.

  7. #7
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    Jun 2004
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    Holly Springs, GA
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    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    Eyes starting to go, Allan?? ;)

  8. #8
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    Jun 2004
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    Arizona
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    2,998

    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    Allan,

    I know Kodak was working on something a few years ago using OLED (organic light emitting diode) technology that was supposed to make viewing of electronic media in a portable flexible viewing format. I guess you can fold the screen up and put it in your pocket. I guess one of th main problems is getting any useful lifespan out of the Organic LED's. If they ever perfect it that will be very cool. DL the moring paper on to it or other things you want to read. etc.
    Randy

  9. #9

    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    I've reported about various portable display technologies over the years - back when I was editing Construction Business Computing flexible displays were in the making. The issue then, as now, was cost. This was pre-Y2K, so it's been awhile.

    Here's a couple of things I wrote about back then -

    1) Flexible displays that could be bound into a familiar "book" form factor where a kid in school (or a project manager) could "flip the page" for real. Even though you don't technically need multiple pages of the display technology, there have been proposals for devices like a 10-sheet bound flexible display that would be a universal "book" - for textbooks for example. You buy one "book" for your school district and it winds up being all the books ever published... or each "book" in their curriculum could occupy one page of the flex book, or whatever. Or... you have one "Plan Book" that could convey every piece of information there was about a project. Having 10 pages would be like having 10 monitors in your office, except bound together in a book you could carry around.

    If the price came down enough and they were tough enough to hold up... they could save school systems a lot of dough over buying textbooks that become obsolete in a year or two.

    2) Tiny Projectors: Another idea that now actually exists was LED projector technology roughly the size of a PDA - and they were predicting at the time it would eventually be built into the device itself. So, You'd go to the client's house with only your PDA (or even your laptop) - and project the full-size plan or 3D model on the wall. The projector might be built into the lid of the laptop, or the end of the PDA.

    Right now there are commercially available projectors that are the size of half a box of business cards and can project a pretty decent 3' diagonal image. Not quite as small and light as that might be commercially viable in a few years, but still small enough to carry in your laptop backpack. The problem is... they're $700-1000 or more, and not as bright as a standard monitor and the image they produce isn't that much larger. You can purchase a 20-24" LCD display for a few hundred bucks - and it's light enough to carry into a client meeting no problem.

    I wrote a hypothetical blurb in CBC back before Y2K where a contractor rolled in to a jobsite with nothing more than his SmartPhone-yype device (PDA/Phone/quasi-Computer) and projected the framing changes up on a scrap of drywall or something with his micro-projector.. . All wireless of course. Probably had a virtual keyboard projected down on the table or something too - don't remember :-) Point is there were portable display technologies on the horizon 10 yrs ago, and they've pretty much materialized. The issue is still cost. At that time, a 15" LCD display was over a grand so they sounded more viable than they've turned out to be.

    JLS
    =====================================
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    Joe Stoddard
    Mountain Consulting Group, LLC
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
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    Arizona
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    2,998

    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    Quote Originally Posted by jstoddard View Post
    I've reported about various portable display technologies over the years - back when I was editing Construction Business Computing flexible displays were in the making. The issue then, as now, was cost. This was pre-Y2K, so it's been awhile.

    Here's a couple of things I wrote about back then -

    1) Flexible displays that could be bound into a familiar "book" form factor where a kid in school (or a project manager) could "flip the page" for real. Even though you don't technically need multiple pages of the display technology, there have been proposals for devices like a 10-sheet bound flexible display that would be a universal "book" - for textbooks for example. You buy one "book" for your school district and it winds up being all the books ever published... or each "book" in their curriculum could occupy one page of the flex book, or whatever. Or... you have one "Plan Book" that could convey every piece of information there was about a project. Having 10 pages would be like having 10 monitors in your office, except bound together in a book you could carry around.

    If the price came down enough and they were tough enough to hold up... they could save school systems a lot of dough over buying textbooks that become obsolete in a year or two.

    Joe:
    That would save both bucks and backs. Have you seen the amount of books kids have these days? You need one of those rolling suitcase/backpacks to carry them.

    Randy
    Randy

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Florida
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    368

    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    I've been using my Laptop "tethered" to my blackberry, and can't complain. I use verizon and I know they have a card you can put in your laptop that eliminates the need for the phone. Just a thought.
    "You couldn't do it and they didn't help.."

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
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    Senatobia, MS
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    1,897

    Default Re: Probably a Dumb Question

    We will all have VR visors that look like our glasses soon with complete heads-up displays and they will sync with our phones for a virtual computer. Who needs the computing power when you can have high speed access to it remotely? IPhone will look like a precursor.

    my .02

    BTW, with retinal scan technology you could put on anybody's headset and still access your own system. The headsets would be generic.
    Brad

    You will never stand taller than when kneeling to help a child.

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