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Apple patents range from hot keys to iTunes media


Several new Apple patents have popped up at the US Patent & Trademark Office. Following is a summary of each.

Patent number 7,757,185 involves enabling and disabling hot keys. According to the patent, a computer program product may include instructions that, when executed, cause a processor to perform operations that include monitoring an electronic device to determine whether the electronic device is in a specific state. The electronic device may define one or more hotkeys, and each hotkey may correspond to an input from one or more input components of the electronic device. If the electronic device is in the specific state, a rule associated with the specific state may be retrieved, and one or more hotkeys may be enabled or disabled based on the retrieved rule. In some implementations, enabling or disabling one or more hotkeys includes enabling or disabling one or more operations associated with corresponding one or more hotkeys. The inventors are Michael James Paquette and Eric Charles Schlegel.

Patent number 7,756,553 involves a folded flex assembly for a personal media device. Systems and methods are provided for media devices including a housing, a frame disposed adjacent to the housing, a support panel that is integrated with the frame, and a flexible circuit that is disposed adjacent to the support panel such that the support panel provides support for the flexible circuit. The inventors are Richad Hung Minh, Tang Yew Tan, Erick L. Wang and Philip Michael Hobson.

Patent number 7,756,877 is for index compression. The inventor is Wayne Loofbourrow. Systems and methods for compressing an index are described. In one exemplary method, the results of a search are annotated and then encoded into one or more chunks of compressed data in accordance with the annotations of the results. The annotations include an indication of a best encoding method selected from a set of available encoding methods, and an indication of whether to switch to a new chunk during encoding or to continue encoding in the current chunk. Other methods are described and data processing systems and machine readable media are also described.

Patent number 7,757,108 involves a method and apparatus for implementing a sleep proxy for services on a network. The system starts by receiving a request at the sleep proxy for information pertaining to a service provided by a device. In response to this request, the system determines if the device is a member of a list of devices for which the sleep proxy takes action. If so, the system determines if the sleep proxy can answer the request. If so, the sleep proxy sends a response to the request on behalf of the device. In a variation on this embodiment, if the system cannot answer the request on behalf of the device, the system sends a wakeup packet to the device, wherein the wakeup packet causes the device to exit a power-saving mode so that the device can respond to the request directly. The inventor is Stuart D. Cheshire.

Patent number 7,756,920 is for resubmission of media for network-based distribution and deals with iTunes. The submission or resubmission of media to the media distribution site can be performed by numerous submitters in a uniform and computer-assisted manner. The submitted or resubmitted media can then be processed in a largely automated manner at the media distribution site and then made available for online purchase and distribution. The inventors are Max Muller, Ricardo Cortes, Charles Stephenson Spillar, Richard Todd Hunter, Gregory Robbing and Robert H. Kondrk.

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