Apple patents show revolutionary input devices
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Apple patents show revolutionary input devices

New Apple patents at the US Patent & Trademark Office show that Apple is planning on tweaking its input devices -- and apparently has new devices at least in the planning stages.

Patent number 2010039381 is for a rotatable input device. Think of the Magic Mouse on steroids. In an example embodiment, a computer mouse is provided. This computer mouse includes a surface tracking sensor that detects movement of the computer mouse along the support surface. Additionally included are one or more orientation sensors that detect a movement of the computer mouse relative to a pivot point. The computer mouse also includes a controller that is configured to translate the movement along the support surface into a two-dimensional coordinate and to translate the movement relative to the pivot point into a magnitude of rotation. The inventors are Michael Andrew Cretella Junior and David Thomas Amm.

Here's Apple's background and summary of the invention: "As is well-known, a computer mouse is a hand-operated device typically used for navigating a cursor displayed on a computer screen for control of graphical user interfaces. The mouse functions by detecting translational, or two-dimensional motion along its support surface, and translating this motion into movement of the cursor. A conventional mouse usually includes at least one input or control button or an equivalent touch-sensitive location, but may commonly include multiple buttons or touch sensitive locations, and may include one or more scroll balls, and/or scroll wheels that provide additional input or control. It is believed that typical configuration of the mouse, although serviceable for input purposes, requires more complex motions, and therefore is a less intuitive experience for a user than is possible with other configurations and functionalities of the mouse.

"Accordingly, embodiments of the invention provide new computer mice and methods for navigation with a mouse. These computer mice and navigation techniques offer particular advantages to navigate content displayed on a computer screen.

"Example embodiments provide various computer mice and techniques for navigation with a computer mouse. In general, examples of the invention as described herein allow for additional movement of a mouse adapted to operate on a support surface. The examples are described herein primarily in the context of having a rotatable mouse situated on the support surface where a rotation of the mouse relative to a pivot point translates into a particular event.

"As an example, such a mouse has a bottom surface with a convex shape. This convex shape allows the mouse to be rotatable on the support surface. This mouse includes a surface tracking sensor that detects translational movement of the mouse along the support surface. Additionally included are one or more orientation sensors that detect the rotational movement of the mouse.

"A rotation of the mouse is used for moving content displayed on a processing system, such as a computer. As one example, a rotational movement of the mouse may translate into a scroll event that, when processed by the processing system, scrolls the displayed content. In another example, a rotational movement of the mouse may translate into a yaw event that, when processed by the processing system, rotates the displayed content."

Patent number 20100039394 is for a hybrid inertial and touch sensing input device. It relates to electronic input devices and more particularly to electronic input devices having both inertial sensors and touch sensors. The inventor is Farshid Moussavi.

Here's Apple's background and summary of the invention: "Conventional input devices, such as computer mice, typically employ optical sensors, track wheels or track balls to control the motion of a cursor or other navigational object on a computer display screen. Other types of input devices that measure a force imparted onto the input device typically incorporate one or more accelerometers for sensing acceleration forces exerted on the input device as it is moved by a user. A velocity of the electronic input device may be calculated and estimated by integrating the measured acceleration over time, and a position estimate of the input device may be calculated by integrating its velocity over time. In this way, motion of an accelerometer-based input device may be translated to motion of a cursor or other navigational object on a computer display screen.

"Touch-sensitive panels can also be used as an input device to control the motion of a cursor or other navigational object on a computer display screen. One common type of touch-sensitive panel is a touch pad. In general, touch-sensitive panels can detect one or more touch contacts on the surface of the touch-sensitive panel and generate signals indicative of the touch contacts. A computer can then control a cursor or other navigational object based on the detected touch contacts.

"Various problems are associated with conventional input devices. For example, most, if not all, conventional input devices are inadequate in tracking both large and fine motions. For example, inertial sensing-based input devices typically track large ranges of motion well (e.g., moving a cursor across the length of a display screen), but not fine ranges of motions. In contrast, touch-sensitive pads typically track fine ranges of motions well, but not large ranges of motion. For example, moving a cursor from one end of the display screen to the other end may require a user to swipe his or her finger across a touch pad multiple times before the cursor moves to the other end of the display screen.

"Embodiments of the present invention are directed to input devices using both inertial sensors and touch sensors. An exemplary input device has a motion sensing element capable of estimating a position of the input device based on a force applied to the input device. The motion sensing element can be used to track large ranges of motion. The input device can also include a touch sensitive surface operable to detect touches on the touch sensitive surface. The touch sensitive surface can be used to track relatively smaller ranges of motion.

"In accordance with some embodiments, a method for using inertial inputs and touch inputs of an electronic input device can include receiving a motion input from a motion sensor, and calculating a first estimated motion based on the motion input. The method can further include receiving a touch input from a touch sensor, and calculating a second estimated motion based on the touch input. The method can further include outputting the first estimated motion if the first estimated motion exceeds a first threshold, and outputting the second estimated motion if the second estimated motion exceeds a second threshold.

"In accordance with various embodiments, an electronic input device can have a motion sensing element operable to measure a motion of the electronic input device to obtain a motion input, and a touch sensing element operable to measure a touch motion on the electronic input device to obtain a touch input. The electronic input device can also include a processing element operable to calculate a first estimated motion based on the motion input and calculate a second estimated motion based on the touch input. The processing element can also operate to provide the first estimated motion as an output if the first estimated motion is greater than a first threshold, and provide the second estimated motion as an output, if the second estimated motion is greater than a second threshold. The electronic input device can also have an external interface operable to send the output to a receiving device.

"In accordance with various embodiments, a computer-readable medium can have instructions for receiving a motion input from a motion sensor, and calculating a first estimated motion based on the motion input. The instructions can further include receiving a touch input from a touch sensor, and calculating a second estimated motion based on the touch input. The instructions can provide for outputting the first estimated motion estimate if the first estimated motion is greater than a first threshold, and outputting the second estimated motion, if the second estimated motion is greater than a second threshold.

"In accordance with some embodiments, method for using inertial inputs and touch inputs of an electronic input device includes receiving a motion input from a motion sensor, and calculating a first estimated motion based on the motion input. The method receives a touch input from a touch sensor, and calculates a second estimated motion based on the touch input. The method obtains a first weight and a second weight, and calculates a motion output signal based on the first and the second weights, and the first and the second motion inputs. In this manner, the motion output signal can be calculated by the relationship V=Wa*Va+Wt*Vt, where V is the motion output signal, Wa and Wt are the respective weighting factors of the velocity Va and Vt, Va (first estimated motion) is the velocity output signal derived from the accelerometer output signal, and Vt (second estimated motion) is the velocity output signal derived from the touch sensor output signal device.

"Various embodiments relate to an electronic input device having a motion sensing element operable to measure a motion of the electronic input device, and a touch sensing element operable to detect a touch motion on the electronic input device. The electronic input device can also include a processing element operable to calculate a first estimated motion based on a motion input, calculate a second estimated motion based on a touch input, and calculate an output based on a first weight and a second weight, and the first and the second motion inputs.

"Further embodiments relate to computer-readable medium embodying instructions for receiving a motion input from a motion sensor, and calculating a first estimated motion based on the motion input. The instructions can also include receiving a touch input from a touch sensor, and calculating a second estimated motion based on the touch input. In additional, the instructions can include obtaining a first weight and a second weight, and calculating a motion output signal based on the first and the second weights, and the first and the second motion inputs. In this manner, the motion output can be calculated by the relationship V=Wa*Va+Wt*Vt, where V is the motion output signal, Wa and Wt are the respective weighting factors of the velocity Va and Vt, Va (first estimated motion) is the velocity output signal derived from the accelerometer output signal, and Vt (second estimated motion) is the velocity output signal derived from the touch sensor output signal device."

Patent application 20100042358, also invented by Farshid Moussavi, involves motion plane correction for MEMS-based input devices. It involves an electronic motion-based input device and method for correcting errors in acceleration due to a deviation from a horizontal plane of motion by correcting for gravitational acceleration components due to the deviation in the plane of motion.

Here's Apple's background and summary of the invention: "Embodiments of the present invention are directed to methods and apparatuses for reducing or eliminating tracking errors associated with moving an accelerometer based tracking device, or other force based tracking devices, at a tilt with respect to a plane normal to the direction of the gravitational force.

"Embodiments of the present invention are directed to motion-based input devices and provide a method and system for correcting errors in acceleration measurements due to a deviation from a horizontal plane of motion by correcting for a gravitational acceleration components due to the deviation in the plane of motion. In one embodiment, the invention provides a system and method for determining an angle of tilt (tilt angle) of the plane of motion, and correcting for gravitational acceleration if the tilt angle is not excessively large.

"In one embodiment, the invention provides a method for compensating for a tilted plane of motion for a motion-based input device. The method comprises, calculating a total acceleration of the electronic input device in a tilted plane of motion, calculating an angle of tilt of the tilted plane of motion, and estimating an error in the total acceleration of the electronic input device in the plane of motion due to the angle of tilt. The method further includes correcting the acceleration of the electronic input device based on the estimated error to obtain a corrected acceleration of the electronic input device.

"In another embodiment, the invention provides an electronic input device that includes a motion sensing element operable to measure a motion of the electronic input device to obtain a motion input. The electronic input device further includes a processing element operable to: receive measured motion parameters, calculate a total acceleration of the electronic input device in a tilted plane of motion, calculate an angle of tilt of the tilted plane of motion, estimate an error in the total acceleration of the electronic input device in the tilted plane of motion due to the angle of tilt, and correct the acceleration of the electronic input device based on the error to obtain a corrected acceleration of the electronic input device. The electronic input device also includes an external interface operable to send the output to an external device (e.g., a computer).

"In a further embodiment, the invention provides a computer-readable medium comprising program code for compensating for a tilted plane of motion for a motion-based input device. The computer-readable medium includes program code for obtaining motion parameter, calculating a total acceleration of the electronic input device in a tilted plane of motion, and an angle of tilt of the tilted plane of motion, and estimating an error in the total acceleration of the electronic input device in the tilted plane of motion due to the angle of tilt. The computer-readable medium also comprises program code for correcting the total acceleration of the electronic input device based on the error to obtain a corrected acceleration of the electronic input device."

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

How to get started with Prisma
If there's one thing people like to do more than taking pictures with their smartphones, it's tinkering with those photos in some way. Numerous apps have sprung up over the last several years that allow you to use filters and special effects to... | Read more »
6 Pokemon GO updates you can expect, acc...
Pokemon GO had a scheduled appearance at this year's San Diego Comic-Con for a while, but it was only relatively close to the show that it was upgraded to a spot in Hall H. That's the biggest venue at SDCC, one usually reserved for the largest... | Read more »
How to evolve Eevee in Pokemon GO
By now, almost everyone should be hip to how to evolve Pokemon in Pokemon GO (and if not, there's a guide for that). Just gather enough candy of the appropriate type, feed them all to the Pokemon, and evolution happens. It's a miracle that would... | Read more »
CSR Racing 2: Guide to all game modes
It might not seem like there are all that many ways to go fast in a straight line, but CSR Racing 2 begs to differ. [Read more] | Read more »
Bulb Boy (Games)
Bulb Boy 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Multi-award winning 2D point & click horror adventure about a boy with a glowing head. | Read more »
5 top free emoji keyboard apps
If we're not at peak emoji yet as a society, it feels like we definitely should be. The emoji concept has gone far beyond what anyone in Japan could have envisioned when the people there unleashed it on an unsuspecting world, but the West has... | Read more »
How to unlock more characters in Disney...
One of the big charms of Disney Emoji Blitz is seeing a wide variety of beloved Disney and Pixar characters transformed into smiling emojis. Even someone like the sneaky Randall from Monsters Inc., who probably never cracked a smile on film, is... | Read more »
Cubway (Games)
Cubway 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Cubway is a journey with an abstract story of lifecycle of rebirth, called Samsara. Guide the cube through the long way full of dangers... | Read more »
Colorcube (Games)
Colorcube 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Turn pieces and blend colours in this minimal yet visually stunning puzzler.Over 200 handcrafted and challenging levels. Features... | Read more »
Doodle God Griddlers (Games)
Doodle God Griddlers 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

13-inch 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air on sale for...
Amazon has the 13″ 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air on sale for $200 off MSRP for a limited time. Shipping is free: - 13″ 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air (sku MMGF2LL/A): $799.99 $200 off MSRP Their price is the... Read more
13-inch 1.6GHz/256GB MacBook Air on sale for...
Amazon has the 13″ 1.6GHz/256GB MacBook Air on sale for $200 off MSRP for a limited time. Shipping is free: - 13″ 1.6GHz/256GB MacBook Air (sku MMGG2LL/A): $999.99 $200 off MSRP Their price is the... Read more
Free iOS Business App notably* Helps Service...
PayStudio Inc. has introduced their new business app notably* 1.0, developed for iPhone and iPod touch. notably* was specifically developed to help service and trade professionals go digital and... Read more
27-inch iMacs on sale for $200 off MSRP
Amazon has 27″ iMacs on sale for $200 off MSRP including free shipping: - 27″ 3.3GHz iMac 5K: $2099 $200 off MSRP - 27″ 3.2GHz/1TB Fusion iMac 5K: $1799.99 $200 off MSRP - 27″ 3.2GHz/1TB HD iMac 5K... Read more
Mac Pros on sale for $200 off MSRP
B&H Photo has Mac Pros on sale for $200 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges sales tax in NY only: - 3.7GHz 4-core Mac Pro: $2799, $200 off MSRP - 3.5GHz 6-core Mac Pro: $3799, $200... Read more
Save up to $600 with Apple refurbished Mac Pr...
Apple has Certified Refurbished Mac Pros available for up to $600 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each Mac Pro, and shipping is free. The following... Read more
Apple price trackers, updated continuously
Scan our Apple Price Trackers for the latest information on sales, bundles, and availability on systems from Apple’s authorized internet/catalog resellers. We update the trackers continuously: - 15″... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro (Apple refurbished...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pros available for $829, or $270 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free: - 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pros... Read more
21-inch iMacs on sale for up to $120 off MSRP
B&H Photo has 21″ iMacs on sale for up to $120 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 21″ 3.1GHz iMac 4K: $1379 $120 off MSRP - 21″ 2.8GHz iMac: $1199.99 $100 off MSRP - 21″ 1... Read more
Charitybuzz Set to Auction Unique Apple-1 Com...
Offering an opportunity to own the computer that sparked a revolution, on Monday, July 25, leading online charity auction platform Charitybuzz will auction what is claimed to be the world’s most... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions, Willow...
Job Description:SalesSpecialist - Retail Customer Service and SalesTransform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, Read more
*Apple* Evangelist - JAMF Software (United S...
The Apple Evangelist is responsible for building and cultivating strategic relationships with Apple 's small and mid-market business development field teams. This Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - APPLE (United...
Job Summary As an Apple Solutions Consultant, you'll be the link between our future customers and our products. You'll showcase your entrepreneurial spirit as you Read more
*Apple* Professional Learning Specialist - A...
Job Summary The Apple Professional Learning Specialist is a full-time position for one year with Apple in the Phoenix, AZ area. This position requires a high Read more
*Apple* Picker - Apple Hill Orchard (United...
Apple Hill Orchard, Co. Rte. 21,Whitehall, NY 9/7/16-10/228/16. Pick fresh market or processing apples Productivity of 60 boxes and 80 boxes processing fruit per Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.