Seems interesting, but who cares...speculating on Apple's crap is ridiculous. It's all anybody does.
Today's wild-ass rumor: Apple is planning to place a 9cm2 LCD display into, well, nobody knows. A blog post on the Chinese-language fanboi site Apple.pro entitled "iWatch U !!! ?" is the source of this speculation-inducing tidbit — and we thank MacRumors for starting us off on our hunt to track down the original poster. (If …
Definitely a headband LCD display.
You slap one of these suckers on your mate, and you can watch x-files while doin' it missionary (or any face-to-face position).
Connect it to your PS3, and extend your bedroom fun to include streaming videos, games, and more, all from the comforts of your favorite positions.
Why stop at just the track pad? Why not have a second screen instead of a keyboard that shows relevent controls for the currently active app (with a space for user-controlled custom hot keys).
(And before you cry about tactile feedback, I think I figured out how to do that in a way that wont feel like a Spectrum if anyone wants to invest...)
The long cables imply that it connects to something large like a laptop. Two complex cables implies two separate functions. There's a colored pattern on the screen that's too chunky for pixels but they could be light interference from touch sensing conductive films.
A visual trackpad sounds very cool but it would be useless without a new GUI paradigm. I doubt Apple wants so many GUIs at once - Mouse/Keyboard, Keyboard with gesture pad, Keyboard with visual gesture pad, iPhone/iPad, and iPod.
Agree that the flexi printed conenctors are long, though they could simply be designed to wrap around the PCB underneath should their destination happen to be situated in an inconvenient location. They also have the advantage of reduced risk of damage via being stressed during assembly.
The lower cable could easily be for the backlight however. As the LED current is not transmitted though the glass, it may be better to have that circuit entirely separate, especially if the power supply for it is situated well away from whatever generates the picture data (as on the Sony PSP for example).
Lastly, the picture data bus appears to be serial. Given the apparent large pixel count, that would make for a pretty slow frame rate, so I would guess this is not meant to display video, but rather static annunciators.
> "How about installing it in an upgraded keyboard, where it could be a context-aware or user-definable hotkey for launching apps, controlling media, displaying system stats, flicking through slideshows of the kids, or the like..."
Not exactly a new idea. Someone (can't remember who) had something similar way back in the mid-80s, although I don't think it was touch-screen. I designed and built a prototype one of those (it even used a small LCD display) for exactly that purpose in the late-80s as a University project. Wrote my own operating system for it 'n' all. Of course it was buggy as hell and broke frequently, so it never went anywhere ....
Perhaps someone's been reading their recent US political dirty-tricksery history, or is just an X-Files fan (God knows why), and is obliquely referring to some clandestine source at Apple who either gave them the screen directly, or tipped them off where to look for it.
No idea what "code A08" might be, though.
Jobs will be getting worked up again about 'theft' of his products. Fortunately he won;t be getting his local gendarmes to do anything about this product pre-release.
Likely it is genuine as the PCB has an Apple logo and obviously is not a development component.
The kind you can use on Nokia(?) phones to know if you are taking a picture of yourself or of the ceiling with the phone camera.
...Except that now that the iPhone has a front camera, it seems kind of useless. For taking high-quality pictures of you, maybe? (the back camera is better than the front one, right?)
Of course, it is also more useful on flip-open phones, because it acts as an outside screen when the phone is closed. Maybe Apple will have flip-open iPhones, now?
A touch pad might just be possible, but not a track pad - way too small for the appletastic pinch-and-sweep moves.
There is also a good chance that it is a prototype that will never see the day.
But the question is what will they use it for, not whether it is an amazing design breakthrough.
In fact, it looks rather crude, for its dimensions, which is why I'm inclined to think it is intended for machine-data exchange, rather than human user interaction. Indeed, a simple light-emitting display, coupled to software at the scanning end, that was programmed to look for it, could greatly increase the range at which a 2D bar code, for instance, could be identified and read, using fairly low quality camera feeds. Recognisable variations in baud rate at the transmitter would be a typical means of making the signal distinguishable over large distances and poor quality feeds - which would, again, explain why you'd have it as a separate display output on your device.
Go to website - flash handset at web cam - log in.
Go to checkout - flash handset at security camera - authorise transaction
So, there you have it: that's my suggestion. Rampant commercialism, seamlessly integrated with a surveillance society, and built into a high street product, at the behest of Steve Jobs... I'm sure that's control-freaky enough to whet the appetites of both opposing poles (or should that be 'proles'), in this typically bi-polar debate.
<\ maybe it could sit on the outside of a MacBook lid, where — when the MacBook is closed — it could display various system parameters, a clock, battery condition, or even email subject lines as messages arrive./>
you can be assured that from the apple view point, when implemented as MS sideshow it would have been the lamest design and function point ever.... However, if implemented as an Apple function it would be inspired, innovative, game changing, paradigm shifting genius!
Paris, as thats a sure fire way of implementing multiple interface support for enhanced user satisfaction
PS: I use the 'fanboi' spelling as it appears to wind up both fanoi's and grammar pedants - bazinga
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