Browse Prior Art Database

Multimedia System Packaging

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000105860D
Original Publication Date: 1993-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-20
Document File: 6 page(s) / 258K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Huynh, DQ: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

Disclosed is a personal computer system packaged as a user station and a remote unit joined by a fiber-optic link. The user station contains all of the controls and devices frequently physically accessed by the user, while the remote unit contains remaining components. In this way many components which generate heat and noise are located remotely from the user. System logic supporting multimedia requirements is partitioned to address ergonomic issues.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 25% of the total text.

Multimedia System Packaging

      Disclosed is a personal computer system packaged as a user
station and a remote unit joined by a fiber-optic link.  The user
station contains all of the controls and devices frequently
physically accessed by the user, while the remote unit contains
remaining components.  In this way many components which generate
heat and noise are located remotely from the user.  System logic
supporting multimedia requirements is partitioned to address
ergonomic issues.

      Fig. 1 is a front elevational view of the system, Fig. 2 is a
schematic diagram showing how circuits and components of the system
are partitioned and connected, Fig. 3 is a block diagram representing
the hardware architecture of the serial fiber-optic link between the
user station and the remote unit, and Fig. 4 shows the time sequence
of buffer control operations.

      Referring to Figs. 1 and 2, user station 1 includes a CRT
display unit 2, a desktop unit 3, a keyboard 4, and a mouse 5.  Unit
3 includes removable media devices, such as floppy drives 6 and SCSI
drive 7, which are located so that magnetic and optical media can be
conveniently removed and replaced.  Also located in unit 3 are ports
for a number of multimedia devices, shown in Fig. 2, such as a
telephone-style handset 8, earphones 9 or stereo speakers (not
shown), a microphone 10, and a MIDI connector port 11, configured in
accordance with the standards established for a Musical Instrument
Digital Interface (MIDI).  Also included in unit 3 are controls 12,
shown in Fig. 1, for audio volume, stereo balance, etc.

      Remote unit 13 is connected to desktop unit 3 by means of a
fiber-optic link 14.  As shown in Fig. 2, the logic of the system is
partitioned to minimize the number of signals transmitted along this
link 14 and to optimize performance based on device data rates and on
frequency of access.  Remote unit 13 includes a processor 15 and a
bus 16, which is preferably a Micro Channel* bus, to which adapter
cards, such as graphic adapter 17 and SCSI adapter 18, are connected.
Digital signals from graphic adapter 17 are transmitted over link 14
to a digital-to-analog converter 19, which produces the RED, GREEN,
and BLUE signals required to drive CRT display 2.  This configuration
provides an efficient use of link 14, since the number of signals
transmitted between the graphics adapter 17 and display 2 is
substantially fewer than the number of signals transmitted between
bus 16 and adapter 17.

      Keyboard 4 and mouse 5 are connected to driver circuits 20 and
21 within desktop unit 3.  The outputs of these driver circuits are
transmitted to I/O controller circuit 22 within remote unit 13 by
means of link 14.

      A floppy disk controller 23, which performs data transfers
between floppy drives 6 and processor 15, is located within desktop
unit 3 because the traffic of signals is more intense between drives
6 and controller 23 than between proce...