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Apple Patents: Optical Touch Pad Mouse?

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
51,594
13,227
MacPlus.org (French) notes a relatively new Apple Patent (Filed Sept 2002):

A peripheral input device for controlling movements on a display screen, the peripheral input device comprising: a housing; and an optical touch pad carried by the housing, the optical touch pad being configured to translate finger motion into movements on the display screen.

Essentially, the new patent appears to be for a mouse with touchpad in place of the button. This appears to be an update to a previous concept patented by Apple -- the rotary mouse.
 

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DPazdanISU

macrumors regular
Mar 15, 2004
173
0
Near Chicago
I think it would be neat to have a mouse without any push buttons. Apple has done a great job on the iPods with sensor buttons that I think if they came out with a wireless mouse like that I would have to buy one. Even cooler would be one with sensor pad inbetween the right and left sensor pads on the mouse that would allow u to scroll simply by sliding your finger up or down it like on laptop pads... :)
 
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aftk2

macrumors regular
Nov 10, 2003
132
19
Pacific NW
bigsteve said:
cool, so basically a small ipod scroll wheel, but on a mouse

Yes, which, incidentally, would be so much better for scrolling a document or web page. With today's scroll mice, you have to scroll the wheel, stop, move your finger back to the top of the wheel, and repeat. With something like the previous rotary mouse patent, you wouldn't have to do that. You could use your index or middle finger and scroll the page with one continuous motion.
 
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rueyeet

macrumors 65816
Jun 10, 2003
1,070
0
MD
Maybe a bit like the touch-sensitive scroll-wheel on that Kensington mouse that I can't think of the name of. Maybe it could scroll up, down, left, or right with the touch of a finger, like the iPod scroll wheel. Maybe it could be like the trackpad on the laptops, but with a hand rest.

With Apple, only two things are certain: there's no way to tell, but it's always fun to find out. :)
 
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jrv3034

macrumors 6502a
Oct 23, 2002
802
0
If they do this right... it could be the evolution of the mouse as we know it. Think of the possibilities:

Gaming: use the mouse to control the direction of your movement, and the touchpad to move in that direction, or something like that!

Pro video/audio: built in shuttle jog in the mouse!

Web surfing: scroll up/down AND left/right with a flick of the finger!

The list goes on and on...

As long as it matches the aluminum G5, it's all good! ;)
 
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jeffgarden

macrumors member
Dec 28, 2003
75
0
Miami
but from looking at my friends laptops, which are all a few years old now, the part of the trackpad they use the most is discolored. i don't mind the laptop mouse but i use a usb one for my powerbook just to keep the trackpad looking new. and the one on the ipod you don't really use enough to wear out.
 
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DPazdanISU

macrumors regular
Mar 15, 2004
173
0
Near Chicago
??

jeffgarden said:
but from looking at my friends laptops, which are all a few years old now, the part of the trackpad they use the most is discolored. i don't mind the laptop mouse but i use a usb one for my powerbook just to keep the trackpad looking new. and the one on the ipod you don't really use enough to wear out.

I use my trackpad on my iBook constantly everday for the past 3 years and it isn't discolored one bit. Tell your friends that they don't have to press down so hard! ;)
 
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mvc

macrumors 6502a
Jul 11, 2003
760
0
Outer-Roa
This is just so Apple can put in a scroll wheel without appearing to be just like everyone else (say Microsoft) and simply using a Scroll Wheel™. And there is still no second button ;)
 
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mvc

macrumors 6502a
Jul 11, 2003
760
0
Outer-Roa
DPazdanISU said:
I use my trackpad on my iBook constantly everday for the past 3 years and it isn't discolored one bit. Tell your friends that they don't have to press down so hard! ;)

Or perhaps wash their hands more often :p
 
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Wonder Boy

macrumors 6502a
Feb 18, 2003
835
0
South Windsor, CT
aftk2 said:
Yes, which, incidentally, would be so much better for scrolling a document or web page. With today's scroll mice, you have to scroll the wheel, stop, move your finger back to the top of the wheel, and repeat.

yeah, thats really killing me. if it wasnt for scrolling, i would exercise at all. :)
 
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nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
12,546
1,196
* Apple patents stuff that doesn't always become a real product. Looks cool though. I want a BT version.

* Looks very Kensington-like in function--which I've heard is NOT that functional, and Apple couldn't patent that, so I'm clearly wrong :)

* The little touch pad could also be a second mouse button (tap, or click down like an iPod Mini).

* From the picture, it is clear that this mouse is targeted towards tree frogs.
 
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klaus

macrumors 6502a
Feb 4, 2004
796
0
Belgium
scrolling along a touchpad..that sounds really weird to me.. i've simulated here, on my mouse, and it feels so akward.. the scroller with steps feels so much more natural to me, with an emphasis on "me"
 
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niter

macrumors 6502
Sep 9, 2003
324
0
I think the concept is really revolutionary and I would love to see Apple develop it. My ideal design would be BT and the scroll on the mouse would have a depressible button underneath, as do traditional scroll mice. Once I figured out what the ctrl button does, I do not need a two buttoned mouse. However, I keep one around so that I can set the F9 expose function to it. Imagine if this type of scroll could do the same. I am understanding that this scroll is similar to the one in the iPod (which I love).

I am also thinking more of this rendition:

<img src=http://www.macplus.org/magplus/IMG/jpg/souris2.jpg>
 
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lostngone

Contributor
Aug 11, 2003
1,418
3,592
Anchorage
Two things

Did anyone look at the picture? In the top two diagrams the hand looks disfigured?

Doesn't Kensington already have a product that looks like that already?
 
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greenstork

macrumors 6502a
Jan 5, 2003
617
0
Seattle,WA
Man, it seems like everyone is so interested in the technology and is not seeing the big picture here. Apple, more stubborn about their one button mouse than any other computer maker on the planet, is finally, after years and years of complaints, developing a new mouse!!!

This is the best rumor day in months. New PM's, iPods, Displays, and now mice.

:eek:
:D
 
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