I'm hoping there's more to the patent application than 'look! look! you can tilt the touchscreen!'
Here's a sign that Apple is not only thinking seriously about touchscreen iMacs, but that it has a rather smarter view of the technology than its rivals. A just-discovered patent application - kudos to Patently Apple - shows not a touchscreen machine per se but a clever stand designed to make using a touchscreen desktop all-in …
No one does this for a few reasons:
1.) Unless it is bolted to the desk, it will tip over. Physics 101.
2.) Viewing angle. You have to stand up or crank your neck to use a device at that angle, causing pain.
3.) PC makers make PCs, not mounts, stands and desks. People can buy the mounts if they want them...
Here, here, Apple's doing it again...
I happen to own a couple of SyncMaster 971p displays. Though they're not touchscreens, their hinges are exactly like presented in the application, and, naturally, allow for a very shallow angle if such is desired, and even for fully horizontal display.
Moreover, I'm sure I've seen a Wacom display-drawing tablet combo, which is too, naturally, touch-sensitive, and is also almost horizontal.
Think Jobs's taking this patent thingie a little bit too far, ain't he?
...Mine is the one with patent application for a round device that helps lowering the friction while moving heavy objects... Think I'll call it "the Wheel(tm)"
I'm not really impressed with a lot of modern monitor stands. They are all a bit flimsy and the slightest movement seems to make the monitor start oscillating back and forward.
Now look at the figure 4, which seems to be designed like a spring to test theories of simple harmonic motion. Touch the screen and see how many times it wobbles back and forth before it stops.
A better idea IMHO is a prop leg out of the back of the monitor that allows the angle to be adjusted, but holds it in a more stable way. I haven't patented my idea because:
1. It's probably been done already (and I don't i-work i-for i-apple)
2. It's obvious to anyone (except those who work on i-touch i-screen i-monitors)
It's not the same as a 21" Cintiq. For a start the Cintiq doesn't do touch. Secondly, the stand isn't spring-loaded allowing for easy repositioning. Thirdly, the Cintiq doesn't have a accelerometer built in to it so it can switch view modes when it's position is changed. If you actually take the time to read **just the 'Patently Apple' article**, you'd know this, but it's much easier to jump the gun and denounce this as 'prior art' to sound like one of the 'cool' kids. Chaps, stop it. Hardly any of you, **including you bloggers/journalists**, have any real understanding of patent law, which is in very stark evidence, and all we end up with is a list of ill-informed rants and articles based on rhetoric and conjecture.
They weren't happy ripping off the form factor of the TC1100 for the iPad, they've also ripped off the stand too. Let me guess, the stand allows for portrait/landscape rotation too? Sheesh, they should have just photocopied a TC1100 brochure and sent that in for patenting...
Go to Google, click on images, and search for "touch screen cash register" and you will find dozens of examples of tiltable and touchable screens. Of course they do not look quite as pretty as the fruity offerings mentioned here but then they will probably stand a damn site more wear and tear too.
Bloke at the next desk has got one. I'm envious. Eyewatering price, though - but that's just what you want with Apple, eh?
And I'm not sure that you can touch type on this one!
Presumably, too, the iPad can sit on a similar mount.
That native touchscreen support will appear on Mac OS X soon. I'd like to see my Acer T230H supported on a Mac Mini as I'm planning to get one soon for experimental purposes (4 ports on KVM. Only three used at the moment. Not happy about how the wire on the fourth port is left dangling in thin air).
I'm probably not the first to comment on this, but...
It looks like a very good idea to implement this, but I can't see how it is worthy of a patent. It's just a regular tiltable desk stand. I'm sure there are plenty of previous art: a generic touch screen mounted on a generic vesa mount (with tilt) for instance.
This works. Just move it closer, say within arm's length, and all is well. Why you can even make the screen smaller since it'll be so much closer. But for me this is a waste of time and effort. If I want a computer right at my fingertips, I'll just use my netbook. No screen smudges either; fewer chances of scratches too..
All touch screens suffer from the same basic problem (yes, even ones blessed with a half-eaten fruit on the logo) - your finger covers up the thing you want to select.
That doesn't matter too much with little media players, but it's a helluva problem when you're trying to draw or alter a picture. "Now where exactly does that line end? Oh yes, somewhere under my left index-finger"
Same goes for cut'n'paste: with fingers the size of mine it's tricky to see exactly what words you're including and where the CnP ends.
Maybe when Apple patents transparent fingers, so it's possible to see what is at the point-of-selection it'll become easier. But until then, I'll stick with a selection tool that does not obscure the very part display I want to make the selection from
It will never work, for starters computer screens are bad for the skin in a real obvious way.
Aswell as causing migranes, headaches and other skin and eye illnesses, they also make psoriasis and exema unbearable
Getting closer to them for longer will just lead to a a lot more headaches and lawsuits against apple by lots of people.
Logical enough solution, but quite frankly I still don't get it. I just seriously cannot see the point of dragging your monitor across your desk in and flipping it over just so you can use it with your fingers, if you are going to fo that, you may as well just get a touchscreen tablet. I just think companies are trying to force a technology into an area that just doesn't suit it well, particularly when that area already has a perfectly good input solution that works. It works great at info kiosks and is perfectly suited to mobile devices, it just doesn't fit with a desktop in my opinion.
At last !
I'm not an Apple fan but this is a much more natural reading position (like reading a magazine)and it is obvious this will be the future with touch screens and maybe ordinary screens too. Normal monitor stands never have sufficiently low adjustment for me although some HP ones go pretty low. I bought an arm instead which allows me to do this already. We may even see indented desks in future to allow better ergonimics.
The only real problems I see are with reflections and dust.
Clearly, the patent isn't in the 'hey look, we tilted a screen!' bit. *Look* at the diagram, it's a concept of having a monitor at arms length, or a tablet at your fingertips - ie it's doesn't just tilt back, it drops forward and down as it does so. It's a 'so-simple-it's-obvious' development as the Reg says, but it's the key to making a desktop touch-friendly. I haven't seen any other screens that do this.
>it's a concept of having a monitor at arms length
So, I will have to pay Apple now for being allowed to move monitor closer to me?
>I haven't seen any other screens that do this.
Try to read other comments here. And yes, my monitor does exactly this (and more, actually - it can pivot into portrait mode too), except it's not touch-sensitive.
And it's even connected to my macmini.
The innovation here is not the bloody hinge ... it's that the hinge has sensors, so that when the screen is angled horizontally the computer switches from an OSX device to an iOS device! When you tilt it back up, it goes back to your OSX session.
There is no prior art on that folks.
With Apple's history of attracting patent trolls, is it any wonder that they'd go for a patent for this patently obvious design? I doubt they'd try to enforce it against any other company, but with this they have protected themselves from some opportunistic turd who wants to try trolling some similarly obvious tilty-screen patent in Apple's direction.
Makes sound business sense.
patently says what is actually being patented is the ability to switch between iOS & OSX mode being based on an inbuilt acellerometer or 2 "sweet spots" on the frame or a switch in the stand (or a combination) . From the patent application ...
While touch-based input is well suited to many applications, conventional styles of input, such as a mouse/keyboard input may be preferred in other applications. Therefore it may be desirable for some devices to provide for touch-based input as well as mouse/keyboard input. However, a UI being displayed by the display device during a touch-based input mode might not be suited for use during a mouse/keyboard input mode, and vice versa. and
The change in the orientation of the display could be detected, for example, by a processor based on sensor data from the sensor(s). When the processor determines that the orientation of the display has crossed a predetermined threshold, e.g., the orientation of the display has changed from a touch input mode to a keyboard mouse input mode, or vice versa, the processor could activate a transition process.
that Tyco monitor is capable of causing the attached CPU to switch OSes and input methods based on the screen angle?
Either the majority of posters haven't got a clue what terms like "prior art" actually mean ... or else they just look at the pics, skip the article and write posts based on their existing prejudices.
I thought the iPad already did that, is that what we're looking at? And maybe some tablet PCs. Turn it upright (portrait) or sideways (landscape) and the display changes. Not necessarily supposed to reboot the PC to a different OS, though.