Apple explores using multi-user eye tracking for games and more


Multi-user eye tracking patent
A new patent shows Apple is looking into the possibilities of one computer following the eye movements of two people.
Photo: Apple

A computer tracking where its user is looking isn’t that complicated, but eye tracking two people simultaneously is more challenging. Apple worked out a method, and sees the potential for games, security and even surgery.

Apple reinvents seatbelt with gesture controls


Project Titan seatbelt
Simple drawing of a sophisticated seatbelt.
Photo: Apple/USPTO

Project Titan may take the steering wheel out of the driver’s hands, but controlling the car could be as easy as gesturing at the seatbelt.

Apple has filed an application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office that details a smart seatbelt with a surface that would sense hand gestures for adjusting the entertainment system and operating various features in self-driving vehicles.

Apple tech saves you from ever putting headphones on backward


Apple headphone patent
Apple headphones, as seen in this conceptual illustration, look a lot like the HomePod.
Photo: Martin Hajek

Apple removed the headphone jack. Soon, it may take away something else – the L and R on the headphones.

Microphones in the ear cups would detect which ear is which and send each ear the proper signals, according to an application for headphone technology filed by Apple with the United States Patient and Trademark Office.

This would make the headphones reversible.

Apple’s secret car project is less secret than ever


Avoidance collision in a self-driving car looks something like this.
Avoidance collision in a self-driving car looks something like this.
Document: Apple/U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

If there was doubt Apple is moving forward with development of a self-driving car program, events over the last week show Cupertino is indeed mapping out a course.

An Apple patent application for an autonomous vehicle collision-avoidance system published Thursday is the second public acknowledgment that Cupertino is very much in the game.

The simple patent drawing was once a work of art


A flying machine from the 1860s drawn with shading, colors and detail not seen in today's patent illustrations.
A flying machine from the 1860s drawn with shading, colors and detail not seen in today's patent illustrations.
Photo: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

The illustration that accompanies a patent application is a first glimpse inside the head of the inventor. Finally, an idea becomes a possibility, and even if an invention later proves to be impractical or an outright failure, the drawing serves as a tangible record of humanity’s quest to solve problems and move forward.
But the modern day patent sketches are stark chicken scratches compared to the intricately detailed, da Vinciesque artworks that once accompanied applications to the United States Patent & Trade Office, which first opened in 1790.

Future MacBooks Could Be Powered By The Sun [Patent]



A new Apple patent awarded this week by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office suggests future MacBooks could be powered by the sun. In its filing for an “Electronic device display module,” which was first submitted back in 2010, Apple describes a notebook with a double-sided display that has photovoltaic cells on its back for solar charging. 

Apple Now Owns The Trademark For The Word ‘Retina’




When a company like Apple is getting sued every other week, there’s no telling what they will and won’t try to patent and trademark in an attempt to protect their intellectual property. Apple already holds a patent on rectangles with rounded corners, and their latest trademark gives Apple exclusive use of the word “Retina.”

On December 4, 2012, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office granted Apple two Registered Trademarks. One trademark covers the word “Retina” while the second trademark covers Apple’s Game Center icon.