Color e-ink on the way


27 Responses to “Color e-ink on the way”

  1. nutbastard says:

    “When voltage is removed liquid surface tension causes the pigment dispersion to rapidly recoil into the reservoir.”

    i thought the whole idea of e-ink is that it persists when voltage is absent.


  2. Pantograph says:

    This will certainly reduce battery life. The other advantage of e-ink, namely a high contrast reflective display is being retained, so it’s not all bad.

  3. Brainspore says:

    I’m going to hold out for the Kindle 5, what with its fancy multi-touch interface and video capability.

    Also, the text-to-speech function can read any book in the voice of Morgan Freeman.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I too am confused about its behavior in the absence of voltage, since the Gamma Dynamics home page describes their tech as bistable.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Holding a static field on each pixel won’t drain any power, as long as the leakage current is suitably controlled.

  6. sanity says:

    I’m going to hold out for the Kindle 5, what with its fancy multi-touch interface and video capability.

    Are you more excited about it’s video playback or video recording and professional production features? I really can’t choose.

  7. jjasper says:

    The LINUX For Kindle Firmware overwrite will read you pr0n in Marlene Dietrich’s voice, and moan at the appropriate moments.

    The Microsoft version? Well, Blue Screen Of Death, meet Blue Balls Of Death.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Not necessarily. A constant voltage does not mean constant current/power draw. The ink reservoirs may behave capacitively: the application/removal of voltage requires power (moving current on or off the capacitor) but in ‘steady state’ very little or no current is used.
    Reading the site, they claim it is ‘bi-stable’ which would imply the same.

  9. Anonymous says:

    #26 — Actually, if I’m not mistaken, XGA refers solely to a resolution of 1024×768, not the medium by which those pixels are displayed. It also says in that article that the display is e-paper. #25 might be a little over-reactionary in his description of the situation, but he does seem to make a good point.

  10. Anonymous says:

    More like E-Ink is already here and has already passed its field test and is now available in the consumer market in the form of the much-awaited Fujitsu Flepia.

    But alas, this continues the cycle of our pundit-ry always being behind the times by only paying attention to the self-congratulatory echo chamber of the US instead of looking outside and figuring out that the world has already passed us by because we have this giant millstone around our necks trying to drag us back to the stone ages. Much like the case of the robotic exo-skeleton.

    You coo and stand in awe of some half-baked, nearly unworkable POS from an American maker as the “first” and “near completion” when across the ocean someone has already succeeded in shipping a consumer model to the market.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Stable only has to be stable enough to read an single static page. Even refreshing the screen every second is a 60x improvement on traditional ‘active’ displays.

  12. Michiel says:

    Yes, great. I love my words in color. I’d prefer them to concentrate on making b&w cheaper.

    A very good Dutch newspaper (NRC) is working together with the iLiad manufacturer, and has been successfully offering an ePaper edition of the newspaper, something I’d love to be able to afford.

  13. Mark Frauenfelder says:

    “Yes, great. I love my words in color. I’d prefer them to concentrate on making b&w cheaper.”

    Errr.. comic books? Don’t you know that punks read nothing but comic books?!

  14. Anonymous says:

    When will the Kindle screen be available for my net-book?

  15. Michiel says:

    Everyone knows punks can’t afford this stuff.

    Wait, am I a punk?

  16. Anonymous says:

    Offtopicly relevant: I’m amused that the example image is an old Playboy shot.

  17. Mark Frauenfelder says:

    Click on “lennas” above for the history of that Playboy image.

  18. jco says:

    re 15: Lena Söderberg
    One of the standard image processing test shots

  19. DWittSF says:

    Sweet! I’m going to hand them out as business cards!

  20. Anonymous says:

    Anyone else creeped out by their slogan?

    “The Liquids are Alive.”


  21. Anonymous says:

    From one of the inventors: you can make it bistable. We just have not published that yet!

    Alot of the latest generation stuff is simply not publicly available yet…

  22. martin says:

    Are you saying …color? On some sort of portable computer display? Sweet Mario! (Throws analog monocle in trash.)

    I mean, I’m all for it, just sayin’.

    Um, electrofluidity rules!

  23. Jerril says:


    The technology sounds suspiciously like a really fancy Etch-a-Sketch…

    That’s basically the idea behind e-ink, yes. They’re mechanically stable, however, because the static field keeps things in place. The “pixels” are a heck of a lot smaller than the etch-a-sketch, and of course it doesn’t use a single stylus to paint the entire screen one pixel at a time, unlike the etch-a-sketch. And now we might get colour, too!

    A conceptual comparison would be the CRT, with it’s single electron gun as the stylus, vs an LCD, where the pixels shift more or less en-masse (AFAIK, I am not an engineer).

  24. nutbastard says:

    thanks to all for clearing up the technical conundrums.

  25. Anonymous says:

    #25 — read the article you reference, it clearly states that FLEPia uses an XGA display, meaning that it is bright and will cause eyestrain, unlike E-Ink. The news here is color E-Ink, not color display. Gads, my moto-Q has a color XGA display and runs Windows Mobile 6.1, has 40-hour battery life and reads ebooks too! But it is NOT E-Ink and reading e-books on bright screens equals headaches for me…

  26. schr0559 says:

    The technology sounds suspiciously like a really fancy Etch-a-Sketch… ok, those are magnetic, but this is still a real question: does the image disappear or turn into brown goo when you shake it?

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