27 May 2011

Gregg's List, or Shibboleths: Sound Like an Expert in Any Field!

Howdy -

Does your field have a phrase or two which folks use in the hopes that they'll be perceived as an expert? Or, put less snobbishly, what words help you determine if someone's an expert?

Wonder no more! Don't tell anyone - here's a super-secret list of shibboleths for every field. Well, maybe 10 fields. With your help we can round this out.

Autostereoscopic Display Engineering
  • they're getting so much view-aliasing outside the sweet-spot
  • [+5 points] I can't believe they're still spatially-multiplexing, how 1908!
Chef, fancy-dancy
  • coulis
Computer Scientist
  • order log N
  • obviously NP-complete
Entrepreneur, ca. 1998
  • sticky portal with p13n
Entrepreneur, ca. 2011
  • obviously fail fast, and then pivot
Executives who were Once Engineers
  • not really impedance-matched to the customer
Investment Banker
  • they didn't get the optics right on the investment thesis
Optical Engineer
  • That NA will be tough with that fiber
  • ...can squeeze all the etendue out
Physicist, applied
  • Hexagonal close-pack
  • condensate
  • it's normative
Stereoscopic Cinema: engineer
  • obviously too much crosstalk
  • too much vertical disparity
  • (evidently, too much [anything])

Got more? Share your secrets in the comments below.


20 May 2011

Display tech conferences: SID 2011, LA

A return to our blog-roots in display -

I came to SID in search of new stuff in autostereo, chance encounters with colleagues, and a week-long forced “immersion program” back in my native skillset. Hello, 3-D without glasses, I have returned.

What did I find noteworthy? I mean, besides realizing that the volume level on the SID show floor was conducive to actual, rational, lengthy conversation? What a welcome change from CES.

CE Companies Pushing Autostereo Too Soon

Well, that’s what I think, at least.

Toshiba, LG, NEC, and Samsung are displaying various spatially-multiplexed autostereo panels, e.g. parallax barriers and lenticulars. Fraunhofer HHI showed several which used head-tracking to improve the imagery.

Still, universally, observers must position their heads carefully within a sweet spot, so that left- and right- eye zones straddle their nose. I saw many people walk up, try to use a display, and wander away in confusion.

In my opinion, couldn’t more companies try an alternate approach – time-multiplexed displays – that will give you 100 instead of 8 views, with very realistic imagery and freedom in head placement? All it takes is a fast image source, like a DMD… Perhaps that’s just my bias. 3-D that actually works.

A tiny sampling of the autostereo on display:

  • NEC: 7.2” SVGA, 400 cd/m2, demo of dog swatting at butterfly, perhaps 2” of depth, unusual curved “fringing” at upper corners
  • Samsung:
    • 55” 9-view autostereo 1920 x 1080 “LC lenticular,” switchable on/off
    • 15.6” notebook with “moving parallax barrier” 1366 x 768 – looked pretty good to me
  • Hitachi: 4.2” WSVGA, parallax barrier, 600 x 1024, 0.03 x 0.09 mm pitch

I wonder, my fellow researchers, if the key to breaking free from “hold your head still,” might be breaking away from spatial multiplexing?

Here’s what I mean about this. [YouTube playlist]

Some papers

The SID 2011 program lives (lived?) here.

  • Mike Klug gave very impressive talk about Zebra Imaging’s dynamic 3-D display, as part of a co-located conference on the future of touch technology. Photos!
  • Wavien is developing their dual-paraboloid bulbs for digital cinema, and provided analyses trading off arc-length, drive power, and on-screen lumens. Some Barco disagreement from audience. Hilarity ensues.
  • Wavien also spoke of their LED arrays with light-recycling for low-power apps.
  • Kodak: 12-laser digital cinema projector, 11k on-screen lumens. f/6 instead of f/2.6, allowing less expensive lenses.
  • Viewzone tripling. (34.3) National Chiao Tung University / Coretronic Corp (Taiwan) – tripled the number of viewzones on directional sequential backlight systems (like 3M’s) by adding a filter with a sort of repeating trapezoidal cross-section. One could call it the Toblerone Display.
  • Holographic “Retinal” Display. Though I don’t understand the cases in which researchers insist that they are projecting “right into the retina!” (I mean, doesn’t perceived light always enter your eye?) the folks of paper 41.1 managed to create a multi-planar near-eye display ostensibly to help with focus / vergence mismatch pain. Oh, the pain of focus / vergence mismatch.
  • Unfortunate no-show. I was looking forward to V V Petrov’s talk regarding his acousto-optical holographic displays, but he was not present.
  • 360-degree panoramic imaging – in stereo! D Montgomery (Sharp Labs Europe) shocked and amazed in paper 41.4 with their three-truncated-hyperboloidal mirror camera system. Here on Google patents. Plus, if you replace the camera with a projector, it’s a stereoscopic panoramic projector.
  • Physically-accessible 3-D above a tabletop. X Xia et al from Zhejiang University (Hangzhou, China) demonstrated several 3-D displays using various horizontal directional diffusers. These looked very promising. They did remind me of this Actuality invention [YouTube].

Something literally cool

Did you see Samsung’s collection of large transparent displays? One covered the face of a see-through fridge. This video doesn’t quite convey the awesomeness.

Time to Return to the East Coast

I don’t have a tinted-window Mercedes, and I’ve never purchased wrap-around sunglasses, so that’s my signal that this East Coaster needs to return to Beantown.

Oh: this life-sized advertisement struck me as just a wee bit odd. “Oh, come on over, I’m just watching my show. The one about OLED, LCD, and PDP.”




The long hours of this conference-visit and blog-update were brought to you by:

  • Wondering why 30% of the folks in the audience were diligently photographing every slide.
  • Puddle of Mudd, “Drift and Die”
  • Emmanuel Santaorromana, “Metropolitain”
  • David Battenfield, “Sonic Ghazal”
  • Traffic, “Dear Mr. Fantasy (Stereo Version)”
  • Bright Eyes, “Lover I Don’t Have to Love”
  • John Kelley, “Desert Days”

Informally yours,


ps Have you joined the NON-GLASSES 3D DISPLAY TECHNOLOGY group on LinkedIn? There are several autostereo groups, but this one seems to be where it’s at.