The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 6 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today which includes a patent for their Universal Dock along with 3 industrial designs covering the MacBook Air, iPod Shuffle and USB Power Adapter. Additionally, two documents confirm that Apple has abandoned their Time Tunnel trademark - which shouldn't have any material effect on their product Time Machine.
Apple Abandon's Time Tunnel Trademark
According to both US and Canadian Trademark Offices, Apple's Time Tunnel trademark has been officially abandoned. The trademark was abandoned in Canada on January 13, 2010 as is illustrated below - while the USPTO Notice of Abandonment was issued to Apple in mid 2009.
This shouldn't have any material effect on Apple's Time Machine – unless of course they deem it another "Hobby" of theirs - which is Apple-speak for failure.
Industrial Design Wins
The MacBook Air, not shown, was recently highlighted in our March 2, 2010 granted patent report.
Granted Patent: Universal Dock
Apple's Universal Dock is a docking system which includes a single docking station and a plurality of inserts that are placed in the docking station so that the docking station can accommodate hand held devices with differing sizes and shapes. The docking system is configured with a docking station and insert that matingly engage with one another via a rotating action. The docking system is also configured with a latching retention mechanism that secures the insert to the docking station when the insert is rotated into engagement with the docking station.
Apple credits Wim Crooijmans, Richard Howarth and Phillip Hobson for granted patent 7,675,746, originally filed in August 2008. It should be noted that various associated documents and other patents relating to the Universal Dock are presented in this patent which predate this granted patent.
Other Granted Patents Published Today
Method and Apparatus to Scale Graphical User Interfaces
Abstract: Apple's patent relates to methods and apparatuses to scale components of user interfaces. To scale a view component according to an arbitrary transformation, which may be represented by a scaling factor, a coordinate transformation, or other parameters, at least one embodiment of the present invention determines a new transformation for the view component so that, when the new transformation is used, the boundaries of the view components are aligned with pixel lines (and/or, other conditions are satisfied). In one aspect of the invention, a method to scale a view component of a Graphical User Interface includes: adjusting first layout parameters (e.g., coordinates of an origin, a width, a height, a coordinate of a boundary, and others), which correspond to a first transformation to scale the view component, to generate second layout parameters for the view component; and computing a second transformation from the second layout parameters to scale the view component. In one example according to this aspect, the view component is scaled using the second transformation; and a Current Transformation Matrix (CTM) is set according to the second transformation. According to the second layout parameters, the boundaries of the view component are aligned with pixel lines.
For more information, see granted patent 7,675,529.
Deep Pixel Display and Data Format
Abstract: A method, graphics card, system, and data stream for generating a deep pixel display on a display device are presented in this Apple patent. A first set of data relating to a region associated with a display is provided. The first set of data is processed to define a pixel definition. A second set of data relating to the first pixel is determined. At least one portion of the first set of data is rearranged to form at least a portion of the second set of data. A deep pixel is defined based upon the second set of data. The present invention also includes a system that includes a display controller that is adapted to define a deep pixel based upon rearranging the portion of the first set of data.
For more information, see granted patent 7,675,525.
One More Thing
One last tid bit worth noting stems from an Apple patent application last week:
Dynamic Control of List Navigation Based on List Item Properties: Apple's invention generally relates to information display and more particularly to scrolling through items on a list such as a list of media assets. One little thing that caught my eye was a 3-D list Apple is considering: Apple's patent FIG. 5D shows the case where frictional item 90 is differentiated from its neighbors by providing a 3-D aspect to the item. Possible 3-D aspects can include, but are not limited to, one or more of lift-off, or drop shadow. For the particular example shown in FIG. 5D, the frictional item is drawn as lifted off the plane of the drawing and provided with a drop shadow.
Apple's Patent 20100058240 was invented by William Bull, Policarpo Wood, Kourtny Hicks, Benjamin Rottler, Eric Hope and Alan Cannistraro.
Notice: Patently Apple presents only a brief summary of patents with associated graphic(s) for journalistic news purposes as each such patent application and/or Granted Patent is revealed by the U.S. Patent & Trade Office. Readers are cautioned that the full text of any patent application and/or Issued Patent should be read in its entirety for further details. For additional information on any granted patent noted above that doesn't present you with a direct link, simply feed the individual patent number(s) into this search engine.