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back to article Apple gets fans juices flowing with iMac-like laptop dock

The latest Apple patent filing to excite the Mac masses shows the manufacturer's iMac recast as a docking station for a MacBook laptop. Apple's been here before, of course, with its Duo range of PowerBooks, launched in 1992. Unlike standard PowerBooks, the Duos were designed to dock into a Mac-like desktop unit that improved the …

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Groan...

You really can patent f***ing anything these days.

I call prior art. as I used to have my docking station vertically behing my monitor. All I needed to do was put a little box around the whole lot and hey presto......

Pay up you bastards!

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Si

Don't they already have a patent for this?

If they did this back in '92 shouldn't they already have a patent for this? It doesn't seem like they're doing anything significantly new or different.

I remember back in the day we had a Duo system at school, but I think the teacher bought it for herself and just pretended it was bought in the pursuit of edumacation...

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RTFC

Claim 5. "A docking station as recited in claim 1, wherein the docking area is configured such that a plane parallel to at least one largest face of an imaginary rectangular polyhedron of the least possible volume that can contain the portable computer docked in the housing is more parallel than normal to the direction of gravity."

Once you've finished guffawing at the patentese, it looks like what they're claiming novelty for is the fact that it holds the laptop vertically behind the screen, rather than horizontally. Not that I'm saying this should necessarily be patentable, of course.

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Joke

Urmm...

So....this is basically an iMac without the Mac part, and just a enlarged monitor with a connector an port...all well and good. And they are going to close, and insert a full scale Macbook into it, with very little ventilation? As in...the things which tend to get rather warm and have rather "fun and innovative" flamability?

So, due to what these things tend to run like, am sure what Apples patented here is the spinkler system along the top of the panel which its surely going to need :P

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US patent system is broken.

USPTO staff obviously have their brains sucked out as a pre-condition of employment. It's the only excuse I can find for some of the bullshit they're allowing through as patentable these days.

That or they're only hiring people with liberal arts degrees who have never used a computer, and then not allowing them to interact with anyone who actually knows something about computers.

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Stop

There are new claims they want to protect

Anyone who's actually written patents knows that patents are incremental, and any sort of new work needs to be patented if it's going to be afforded the protection of the patent system. An integrated display and a low-footprint vertical dock are both new, and the integrated display itself makes it a much more different beast than current and former docking solutions. Also, remember that many patents cover things which are obvious-in-retrospect, but can anyone complaining about the patentability of this innovation honestly say they came up with this idea first?

Also, the DuoDock did more than just improve the video and audio; it also had slots for its own RAM and FPU, to actually vastly improve the capabilities of laptops (back when RAM densities were so low and FPUs were so large that they actually made a noticeable impact on the size of the notebook).

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Not true

"USPTO staff obviously have their brains sucked out as a pre-condition of employment. It's the only excuse I can find for some of the bullshit they're allowing through as patentable these days."

They just make money on the application, then granting of the patents.

See less granting means less people applying. That equals less money

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Is it scratch proof?

The most innovative thing here would be, how you would get to slide it in and out day after day without battering the hell out of the MacBook casing.

Anyway it is surely the most obvious, space saving and minimalistic way to dock a laptop to a screen and keyboard.

Now I have just thought that there should just be enough room to put 1 or 2 laptop HDD(s) into the docking unit as well. Hence providing a backup or additional storage solution to boot.

Now you heard it here first so if Apple use that idea, then I WANT MY FREAKING MONEY!

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Alert

Apple at it again

I thought patents are supposed to protect innovation and new ideas? This is as dubious as Apples patent application for an 'extra wide' mousepad for their laptops. So now patents are for 'take an existing idea, tweak it slightly and it becomes a whole new patentable product'? The whole system needs rebuilding from scratch

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Stop

Maybe an Aple Hoax

Is this not Apple trying to put people of the cent, for what they will actualy release next week. Why else would the pantent be released for public show, so close to launch??

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