Question How Can I Use My Laptop to Project The Screen Image

Sep 25, 2020
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I have a Panasonic Toughbook CF-19, OS=Win10 Pro 64bit, that I use in a project working with disabled veterans and it uses both GNSS/DGPS & Inertial Navigation (INS) positioning for the highest degree of positioning accuracy [while awaiting some addition GIS/Surveying- grade equipment to install in one of the other vehicles that I use, but it will be in situ processing as well, and displays the data on to the screen]. This works fine if there is only one person with me, but if we have several people in the 4wd with me working on specific navigation or positioning exercises it becomes difficult for everyone to work cooperatively. What I would like to do is to (project the mapping image (preferably in the same manner as the heads-up display in our aircraft) onto the vehicle windshield so that everyone can participate in the group, and to come up to a group, as well as an individual solution to the positioning and navigation problems.
 
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Sep 25, 2020
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Nothing I can think of will do this. Put the laptop on a mount in front so everyone in the vehicle can see the screen. If you sit in the back you can use a wireless keyboard/mouse to control it. The car HUDs are not meant to be used with a laptop video connection. They do make USB powered portable monitors that may work for this https://www.amazon.com/ASUS-MB168B-1366x768-Portable-Monitor/dp/B00FE690DI
Thank you for this answer.

Would you happen to know of any small size USB or Bluetooth projectors that I could attach to the laptop to project the image? The problem with a portable monitor is that it would technically be illegal since it would obstruct the driver's view in operating the vehicle, as well as pretty unsafe when on the trails as every square inch of the trails can hold a hazard. By projecting an image onto the windshield, much in the way that it would be otherwise projected onto a white screen would allow that image to be visible on the windshield but with a degree of transparency when viewing through the windshield so as to allow for the safe operation of the vehicle.
Predicated upon this information it is probable that a small footprint USB projector in addition to the laptop screen is probably what I would need to accomplish the objective. I don't know of any such projectors, the one that I use in our facility is too large to be utilized within the 4x4, so I am hopeful that there may be some suggestions for this type of device out there.
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hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
Projecting a full size image on the windshield would in no way be safe. And using a projector on a windshield there is no way to really see how well the image would end up. Heads up displays are projected in a very small area with simple digits that have lots of empty areas, not a map going across the windshield. Projector would be connected with a video cable not with USB or bluetooth. I thought you would use this for when the vehicle was stopped and you are going over the map.

There are plenty of small projectors you can take a look at, many cheap Chinese things mostly done as toys then anything else. https://www.google.com/search?q=portable+projector&oq=portable+projec&aqs=chrome.0.0i433l2j69i57j0l5.3688j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8
 
Sep 25, 2020
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Projecting a full-size image on the windshield would in no way be safe. And using a projector on a windshield there is no way to really see how well the image would end up. Heads up displays are projected in a very small area with simple digits that have lots of empty areas, not a map going across the windshield. The projector would be connected with a video cable not with USB or bluetooth. I thought you would use this for when the vehicle was stopped and you are going over the map.

There are plenty of small projectors you can take a look at, many cheap Chinese things mostly done as toys then anything else. https://www.google.com/search?q=portable+projector&oq=portable+projec&aqs=chrome.0.0i433l2j69i57j0l5.3688j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8
I would have to dispute your statement that projecting a full size (10") display "would in no way be unsafe". The safety of what is projected is dependent upon the opacity, and the location on the windshield. In many cases, a full-size projection would enhance safety. I can say, predicated upon some substantial experience, that experience in the use of Heads-Up Displays (HUD) is an important component of safety of use. Additionally, determining a correct degree of opacity predicated upon the specific location of the image, size, and slope/angle of the windshield, etc. are experience-dependent. The principle factor in their use is to effectively proportion the duration of the driver's visual scan as a fixation upon the projection, e.g. "Target Fixation" so as to permit proper allocation within the process of situational awareness. The next factor in proper utilization of HUD's is to adapt the scale of the object to the operational factors such as vehicle speed so as to adapt the scale to the speed, variations in terrain, etc., and complexity of the vehicle operation. Obviously, the scale to be projected would be as vastly different in interstate highway operations where a speed exceeding 1 mi./min. versus a complex trail operation, e.g. rock crawling where speeds are <~42 ft./min. (many times with an external spotter).
The principal alternative to a windshield projection would be the more conventional mounting of a laptop computer, e.g. a Panasonic Toughbook CF-31 is one of the most popular types of computers and is frequently used within law enforcement vehicles. In these vehicles, the computer is generally mounted so as to place the screen area below eye level, generally close to the level of the instrument panel of the vehicle or slightly above same, and they create a visual obstruction that makes the use of the screen, and data contained thereon, unavailable to the driver while in motion. This is not a problem when the computer is being used when the vehicle is not moving, however, even when the vehicle is moving at an extremely slow speed it is a major compromise of safe operation even if it is being used by a second officer in the passenger seat position within the vehicle.
The ergonomics of computers, and many other devices, being utilized while operating an automobile are a subject of much discussion by both behavioral sciences, engineers, and drivers themselves. The issues are further complicated by the infinite variables within the context of "operations" that make it difficult, if not impossible to make definitive judgments, quantitatively as well as qualitatively in respect to what actually constitutes an actual safety factor, and what is required for the integration of contextual and situational usage, e.g. does a driver who is typing a short text message on a cell phone while stopped at a traffic light that the driver knows has a long duration in each function, as opposed to a driver performing the same function while driving at a high(er) speed on a congested freeway during rush hour. Many scientists oppose even "hands-free" use of a cell phone while driving, concluding that the thought processes constitute a distraction that reduces driver attentiveness to conditions of traffic, weather, and the roadway itself, yet these same scientists draw a different conclusion when they are faced with the use of a police radio, which requires that the driver/Trooper hold the microphone in their hand with an additional "push-to-talk" requirement. We now have a recommended procedure that a second officer/vehicle join the pursuit at which time that Trooper would take over all communications responsibilities, thus allowing the Trooper initiating the pursuit to concentrate on the safety factors relating to the operation of not only the patrol vehicle but the same considerations as to the threat to civilian drivers on the roadway, and will necessarily include a judgment call as to the skill of the driver operating the vehicle being pursued as well as the severity of the underlying offense, etc.
I apologize in advance if this reply to your question as to the safe operation of a vehicle with a full-screen HUD display but the question you posed was worthy of an exploration in-depth, not only as it may relate to driving with a large display HUD, but is also applicable to the design of newer vehicles which includes progressively large displays, including "touch-screen displays", many of which are mechanically deployed by motorized mounts which, while perhaps not 100% analogous to a HUD, present an equal, if not greater, element in the obstruction of driver vision and moreso as a distraction from safe vehicle operation.
 
Sep 25, 2020
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After posting this reply, and realizing that I have not previously done so, perhaps this is a good time for me to introduce myself to the list.

I may be the most computer-illiterate/dysfunctional member of the list and thus would greatly appreciate your tolerance and acceptance of the questions that I might ask of the other members as well as any discussion that might ensue, notwithstanding the fact that I admittedly suffer from hypervigilance as well as hyper-attentiveness to detail.

I am a retired Special Agent from a Federal law enforcement agency, as well as having been a Chief of Police and a Judge of a Municipal Court (in Texas, where municipal court judges are not required to have been admitted to the practice of law). I have also served in reserve and active-duty components of the U.S. Army for ~40 years during which time my duties included those of a military aviator, having served my combat tour in Southeast Asia and subsequently earning the Master Army Aviator rating flying both rotary and fixed-wing aircraft. Academically, I am trained as a Forensic Neuro-Psychologist (M.Dsc., Psy.D., Ph.D., and having been accredited as an Expert Witness within both Federal, and several State trial courts. I have taken "Of Counsel" status in my firm as a result of some injuries that occurred during POTUS Nixon's graduation gift of a one-year vacation in SE Asia, all of which in summary means that I may have too much time on my hands, perhaps even resulting in a tendency to hyper-analyze that which I may post or respond thereto. Your indulgence to this character flaw will be greatly appreciated, as will the simplicity, and when appropriate even taking me through any solution or response that I might require and that you may offer in answering a question that I may ask in that I have just (barely) learned to accomplish the tasks necessary for me to independently, and without consultation with my grandson, program all of the functions of my satellite TV remote control.

Thank you again for allowing me to participate in this forum
 
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