Apple has applied for a patent that describes a novel method for improving the tactile feedback of ultra-thin keyboards: each key emits a puff of air when either approached or touched, and can be pneumatically sucked downward in response to touch. When we discovered patent application number 20110107958, "Input devices and …
re: holographically projected keyboards
Feedback for those could be achieved by aiming a laser at your fingertip, just enough power to feel the warming as feedback. To encourage higher typing speeds increase the power so the user moves on faster.
(dammit, where's our laser icon?)
'describes a number of different embodiments that combine blowing and sucking in various combinations'
There goes my coffee.
When it goes faulty
and the suction bit starts to suck when it shouldn't, it might even start typing for you.
I wonder how many of these keyboards it would take to re-produce the works of Shakespeare?
Keyboard icon? Well....
surely iSuck is more appropriate :)
Some headlines almost write themselves. Other's descend from Slacker Journalist Heaven fully formed, ripe and inescapable. (This is a type 2)
...but no squeeze or bang? Definitely sounds like Paris.
just don´t put your pants down before shutdown the computer
keyboard that sucks?
I'll give it a week, maybe two, before it's completely clogged up with dust and therefore useless.
But when it is broken, at least you will have the satisfaction of knowing that it cost you a significant amount of money.
Not to bothered about quality keyboards at the speed I type but maybe it could dual function by removing the heat from the processor. Could be driven by the waste heat, theres a green idea,
All sounds rather steampunk to me.
Ow. My fingertips are burning!
That's all we need, a bit of dust and....
......it will sound like Darth Vader with a bad case of bronchial pneumonia.
New failure mode for keyboards
Lets make keyboards fail in more complex ways
Day 1: New keyboard goes on sale.
Day 2: Tech-head disassembles keyboard, uprates the air compressor and fits a petrol engine - reveals a keyboard that can double as a self stabilizing hover-board when inverted.
Day 3: Massed rush to duplicate the hover-keyboard.
Day 4: First person arrives at work on hover-keyboard.
Day 5: First competition hover-keyboard typing contest where the contestants type documents by manoeuvring over a small bump in an otherwise flat surface.
Day 6: First death by hover-keyboard when rider flips in traffic.
Day 7: Government knee-jerk overreaction bans all keyboards of any ilk to protect the children.
Day 8: Unable to function because of the inability to use computers, society collapses.
It'll all end in tears.
does it have a bloody '#' key?
The low noise version:
A hose leading from the keyboard, to the users' mouth, blowing when more pressure is needed.
A suitable cushion of air within the keyboard helps guard the user against head injuries when their foreheads come slamming onto the desk after they pass out from all that blowing. Or sucking.
Like Bart Simpson said, "I didn't know something could suck and blow at the same time...".
Re: I am going to disagree with the reg on this one
But if this is something useful, then you can kiss goodbye to ever seeing it now, unless you restrict yourself to buying expensive PCs from Apple. If it's anything like their magnetic power connector patent[*], they won't be licensing it.
[*] Apple invented magnets, don't you see! Nevermind that even a 5 year old puts prior art on their parents' fridge...
so if you clean it with a damp soapy cloth
it'll blow bubbles?
Actually I think I'd pay to see that... imagine the support call.
There are bubbles coming out of my keyboard... click!
So let me see if I've got this straight:
If Apple applies for a patent on what could be an incremental improvement -- the magnetic power connector, say -- Mark 1 trolling is to scream "Prior art! My uncle's step-brother's cousin's third-grade teacher had a magnet YEARS ago!", while if they apply for a patent on something genuinely new and untried, Mark 2 trolling seems to require screaming that it'll never work because no one has made it work before.
I'd be curious to know under what circumstances Apple could apply for a patent and NOT get one of these Pavlovoan responses. (Actually, I expect that the answer is "None" -- some people simply appear to have too much of their emotional self-worth tied up in the "Apple SUX" battlecry to let that Apple bell ring without reflexively drooling... Sad, really.)
You got it all crooked. The patent is for an idea, anybody can come up with an idea (like matter transmission or invisibility cloaks). The hard part is in actually building the invention. Like the patent held on the automobile by George Selden (1846-1922), the idea drawn on paper and described in legalese is not enough (as Henry Ford proved).
IMHO if you patent it you had better darn well be actively trying to bring it into existence... else you're a stone in the shoe of progress, working to prevent civilization as a whole from moving forward.
If you did actively try to sell and bring your product to market (like say time-delayed windscreen wipers (just to keep the car analogy going)) and one of those who turned you down then manufactures and profits from your hard work (you should have a working prototype and they should have signed something to keep them honest) then you have every right to take them to task for stealing your work.
So in short Kudos to Apple for an actual invention, something that could be built. Now, make it work, as claimed, to improve the tactile feedback of slim devices. If you can't, then what is the point?
Since it's intended to improve the tactile experience, rather than being a fluidic sensor, I suppose that the Monotype keyboard won't count as prior art...
Nicked from the Scottish Highlands
Clearly, Jony Ive nicked prior art: as already historically established, it's the nexus between lips of Sir Wallace and the Bagpipes of said highland.
And again, with mere sketches an English commoner, Sir Wallace takes a blow from His Royal Hammer...
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