This special issue of the IBM Journal of Research and Development marks the advent of an important new core technology for IBM. More than seven years ago we beganto focus on the technologies required for compact, lightweight, portable personal computers and terminals. While the path to meeting requirements in major areas such as processor and memory technology and storage was reasonably clear, the goal of providing a display with function equivalent to that available on the desktop was more of a challenge. At that time, high-information-content flat-panel displays were almost exclusively plasma displays, easily identified by their monochrome, orange-on-black appearance. IBM was then the world's largest manufacturer of such displays. Unfortunately, the plasma technology did not fit the scenario for portables which could replace desktops.
Note: The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Incorporated is distributing this Article with permission of the International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) who is the exclusive owner. The recipient of this Article may not assign, sublicense, lease, rent or otherwise transfer, reproduce, prepare derivative works, publicly display or perform, or distribute the Article.