3439 posts • joined 3 Sep 2007
Trackpad for me, thanks
After using a MacBook for a few years, I find using a mouse a comparative waste of time, going back and forth from the mouse to the keyboard.
Similarly, I don't believe in touch screens for laptops, because moving the hand across the screen is simply too time-consuming and tiring.
@Steve Evans: Sorry, weight does very much come into it
Terminal velocity is attained when the force of gravity is equal to the force of friction (i.e. the sum of forces is zero). It is correct that the force of friction does not depend on weight. However, the force of gravity does depend on weight – and so a heavy object will have to fall faster for both forces to be equal. Since the force of friction is roughly proportional to the square of speed, an object that is say four times heavier with the same surface will have a terminal velocity twice as fast.
That is, terminal velocity is the solution of the speed variable in this equation:
9.81 * weight = constant * surface * speed^2
That would be patent EP1215867
There cannot be many patents that contain a table with examples such as (^3^)-* or (o)(o).
It does seem that the iPhone's emoticon keyboard (yes, there is one) does something very similar to what is described in the patent (for once quite easy to read).
Of course, maybe the discussion should rather be about why a patent was granted on such a system. /sarcasm
They check? I doubt it
In the US, over 100'000 patents are granted each year. That is roughly 400 patents per work day. Assuming you can read a patent in five minutes, that is eight people who do nothing but check patents. And somehow they have to know what the whole company is doing and find out if this particular patent is breached – which should take days of work to a patent lawyer to have an opinion on. Now tell me again that there are companies who check for all possible patents they might infringe upon.
It does not help that patents are generally written in a language that engineers do not understand:
So realistically, it is impossible to both have the engineering knowledge to create a new product, and the legal knowledge to find out on what patents you are infringing; even though you can be almost certain that no matter what you do, you are infringing on some of them.