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Old 03-21-2005, 11:21 AM   #1
Alexander Turcic
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Signs of the first e-newspaper device

The Denver Business Journal (via MSNBC) runs a story today on a small start-up company called Treeless Systems LLC which is currently seeking partners to invest in a flexible computer system equipped with a screen that can be folded or rolled up like a broadsheet newspaper. Like many other near-future display technologies we've heard of lately, the final product will use a reflective display that doesn't require backlighting.

According to CEO Dave Lester, Treeless System's product would allow readers to customize their newspapers in ways print newspapers can't, such as readers selectively subscribing to different sections of the newspaper -- for instance only sports and business! The device also could convert text to speech, enlarge text portions, and enable live-video footages.

There is no information who is going to supply Treeless System with the display technology, but it seems likely that it'll be someone like Cambridge-based Plastic Logic or E Ink who are already working on screens that can bend to a radius of 5mm.

The biggest hurdle right now is finding a willing investor with $50 million in his pocket to eventually (within the next three years, according to Lester) bring the product to the market.
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Old 03-21-2005, 11:58 AM   #2
Bob Russell
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I suspect that the first investors will likely lose their shirt just trying to make it work at all. It's the folks that watch on the sidelines, and who then come in after things are figured out a bit, that will have the best chance to win big.
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Old 03-21-2005, 11:14 PM   #3
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But really, $50 million doesn't seem like all that much when you imagine where this could go. Venture capitalists have put up a lot more for a lot less.
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Old 03-22-2005, 04:52 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ignatz
But really, $50 million doesn't seem like all that much when you imagine where this could go. Venture capitalists have put up a lot more for a lot less.
True. But until today, the e-book market hasn't evolved much; I think it'll be difficult to find the right people with enough money in their pocket for this project.
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Old 03-22-2005, 05:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morpheus
But until today, the e-book market hasn't evolved much; I think it'll be difficult to find the right people with enough money in their pocket for this project.
Oh I don't disagree with that. I was just considering how much money has been wasted on things much more foolhardy. But this could have implications way beyond ebooks. It could infiltrate laptop designs and give us machines we haven't imagined. Wonder what the response time of the "ink" is expected to be? Wonder how fast it could realistically get?
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