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Author Topic: Live Screensaver  (Read 5507 times)
michaewlewis
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« on: February 02, 2010, 05:15:02 PM »

Where I work, we usually have the screens on the same information for very long periods of time. I used to think that screen burn-in was impossible on an LCD, but we have several monitors that have semi-permanent burn-in because of our needs. (to clear the burn-in, you have to unplug the monitor for a few days). Normally, you would just set a screensaver to turn on after a half-hour or something, but our needs demand that the information on the screens be visible at all times. I've seen some screensavers that take a snapshot of the screen and move that around or run swirling graphical somethings all around. That is a step in the right direction, but I need the information to continue to update itself at least every 5-10 seconds.
I'm wondering if anyone wants to try to tackle this for me. At this point, I'm not exactly sure what such a screensaver would look like, but maybe someone else will have an idea. I'll be thinking about it a little more over the next few days and edit this post or reply if I think of something.

Thanks.
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mouser
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« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2010, 05:27:23 PM »

Quote
but I need the information to continue to update itself at least every 5-10 seconds.

that's an interesting idea and i'm not sure i've seen it implemented yet.

To sum up:
  • You want a screensaver -- something that kicks in automatically after some disuse, or which could be triggered manually
  • You want something that acts prevents burn in by changing the screen pixels regularly, but presumably leaves the information on the screen in a somewhat readable state.
  • But you also need it to work with the latest view of the desktop, which is going to be changing regularly.

Some things that would be useful to know:
  • You mention swirling screensaver effects, etc.  it's not clear to me what your ideal desire is in terms of how readable the screen should be while this is in effect.
  • Does anyone know what kind of minimal visual manipulation is necessary to prevent burn in, and might also save energy?  In other words, could you simply invert the screen colors for every other second?

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Target
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« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2010, 05:44:43 PM »

what about just moving the window every so often, eg 10mm to the right, then 10 down, 10 left, 10 up, etc

(i assume it's a windowed app huh)
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michaewlewis
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« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2010, 05:55:57 PM »

Wow, I'm surprised how fast you guys replied!
My application is full-screen only, so moving a window is not an option. Perhaps doing a screen shot every 5-10 seconds and shrinking it by 5-50 pixels and making the image move around on the screen? Very subtle, but may do the trick.
Or even something like the Bubbles screensaver on Vista, but having the background continue to update...... The only problem with that is the corners would not be affected.
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Deozaan
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« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2010, 02:06:27 AM »

Could you set up something like ScreenShot Captor to take a screenshot every 5-10 seconds and use that as the image for your screensaver?
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JavaJones
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« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2010, 12:53:20 PM »

The "swirling effect" thing coupled with a live (or frequently updated) desktop view should do it. I could swear there were older screensavers (Win 98 days??) that did this, though maybe I'm just remembering them realtime and they weren't... But in any case with modern graphics card capabilities this should be a snap. That being said I don't know of any screensavers that do this...

- Oshyan
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michaewlewis
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« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2010, 10:23:39 AM »

Yes, there was a screensaver with Win98 Plus that had the swirling effect (also a black hole, bump, dent, etc.), but it didn't update the screen with current information, only a screenshot from the beginning.
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michaewlewis
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« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2010, 06:49:32 PM »

Just checking in on this topic.... Any start on it yet?
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3of0
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« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2010, 03:45:17 PM »

It sounds like as long as the pixels are changing it doesn't matter much.

Instead of a screen saver, what about an app that runs over the top while no mouse is moving.  Same idea, just not in a screen saver format.  So for your bubbles, have an app that waits for no mouse or keyboard, then have a bubble go from bottom to top.  Or a clock that has an adjustable size that goes from side to side, top to bottom, bottom to top, diagonally, does a little dance, etc... just to change the pixels.  Wouldn't have to worry about updating the screen since it's updating, just being covered by the other app.
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michaewlewis
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« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2010, 10:53:57 AM »

That's an even better idea than I had thought of. Maybe have a 50 pixel inverse-color square scroll around the screen to freshen things up a bit. It probably wouldn't even need a timeout. Something that small could always be running with no interference to the operator.
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michaewlewis
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« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2010, 01:49:57 PM »

Just visiting this site again and noticed that the dimsaver.scr program sort of does what I'm looking for. It dims the screen, while still allowing updates through and then runs another screensaver after an amount of time. I can set the timeout to 3-4 hours and dim the screen to 200 and it might be alright. Is it possible to add a moving object to the dim saver? How about a 10 pixel inverse vertical line 100% screen height that moves left to right during the dim state?
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kobi7
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« Reply #11 on: January 31, 2011, 07:52:53 AM »

hi, here's a possible solution for you.
It would work assuming you mostly watch the screen and rarely interact with it.
what is it?
it's a black box that walks the screen.
the black box is small 2px * 2px, so it doesn't hide too much.
it moves, and waits 10 milliseconds (1/100 second)

I assume it's enough to draw to a portion of the screen for it to be "refreshed".
it may use something like 2% of cpu time on modest computers.

you can still see it running, so an optimization would be to compute all positions in the screen, and randomly take a different one each time.
another optimization would be to make the drawing a bit faster (using windows calls instead of c#'s), or make the timer have a smaller interval.

The time it takes to visit all the locations on the screen depends on the resolution of the screen.
you can try and see if it's ok for you.

to close click the "Form1" in Taskbar, and press alt+f4.
a really quick job, i didn't even make a title. :/

Enjoy, kobi

* LiveScreensaver.zip (4.29 KB - downloaded 94 times.)
« Last Edit: January 31, 2011, 07:56:22 AM by kobi7 » Logged
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