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Patent

Hero image - German Patent No. 37435 was applied for by Karl Benz on January 29, 1886

On January 29, 1886, Karl Benz filed a Patent No. 37435 at the Reich Patent Office in Berlin – it is generally regarded as the birth certificate of the automobile and became the first of over 80,000 patents awarded to the Mercedes Benz marque. Benz’ Patent Motor Car was equipped with a horizontal single-cylinder four-stroke engine, which developed an output of 0.55 kW at 400 rpm from a displacement of 954 cubic centimetres. The vehicle’s top speed was 16 km/h. Happy birthday to the automobile and congratulations to the company which today remains at the forefront of personal transportation. Extensive detailed images  Read More

Amazon has patented system to exchange gifts before they’ve been dispatched (Photo: Per ...

Whether it be a difference in personal tastes or a case of doubling up of gifts, in the days since Christmas countless numbers of people have been braving the queues at refund counters in stores around the world looking to exchange unwanted gifts. Online retailer Amazon is looking to make such hassles a thing of the past with the company being awarded a patent by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for a system that would allow users to exchange unwanted gifts purchased online before they’ve even been dispatched.  Read More

Samsung's design for a liquid zoom lens uses two liquid lenses stacked together (Image: fr...

Samsung has filed a patent for a new type of liquid lens that provides not only autofocus capability, but also true optical zoom capability. Liquid lenses, with their small form factor and lack of motors or moving parts, are ideal for use in compact cameras, phones, and other mobile devices. Where a conventional liquid lens may provide only autofocus, Samsung’s design uses two separately controllable liquid lenses in a single array to provide both functions.  Read More

Apple patents invisible, Magic Mouse-like controls suitable for next-gen MacBooks

An Apple application had been unearthed detailing plans to develop invisible touch, pressure sensitive controls. Using similar technology currently found in Apple’s Magic Mouse, the concept designs show plans for buttons which could be implemented on a next-generation range of MacBooks, iPods or Apple TV remotes.  Read More

Method and apparatus for controlling a computer system

AllThingsDigital brings news of yet another patent issued for technology we've been using for years. The patent, Method and apparatus for controlling a computer system, which was filed in June 2006 and granted last week, is shockingly broad - essentially describing any means of using an accelerometer to control a computer.  Read More

Apple's iKey would see your keys and wallet replaced by an iPhone or similar device

The humble mobile phone. What started out as a communication device has quickly evolved to become a take anywhere entertainment apparatus and essential tool for work and play. So much so that many people feel panic-stricken if they accidentally leave their phone at home. Such separation anxiety could be even worse in the future with a patent filed by Apple suggesting that the company wants the iPhone to replace your house and car keys and wallet, thereby making it even more indispensable.  Read More

The patent application shows the controller and console setup (left) and different button ...

According to a patent recently filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Sony is working on a universal game controller that could be used with competitor consoles from Microsoft and Nintendo. The proposed controller would see an LCD touch screen positioned on the front of the controller to replace the controller's face buttons, directional pad and thumb-sticks.  Read More

Clockwise from top left: the 2009 MotoGP Desmosedici GP9, two patent application drawings ...

Last year when we did an extensive feature on Ducati’s motogp carbon fibre semi-monocoque frame, we lauded its groundbreaking technology. Now it seems the Italian powerhouse is so pleased with its handiwork that the semi-monocoque design looks set to replace Ducati’s trademark trellis frame on its road bikes in the future too.  Read More

The Delta 7 Arantix mountain bike, featuring carbon fiber/Kevlar IsoTruss tubes

Go ahead, stare. It’s OK, they want you to. Delta 7 Bikes currently manufactures two of the most unusual-looking bicycles on the market, the Arantix hardtail mountain bike and the Ascend road bike. Their open-lattice spider-web tubes incorporate patented IsoTruss geometric design, wherein carbon fiber and Kevlar are woven into a network of isosceles triangles. The triangles join together to form pyramid-shaped trusses, which provide incredible structural support while using a minimum of material. If you’re a bicycle-maker looking for something with a great strength-to-weight ratio, it’s hard to beat.  Read More

As each barrel can contain a variety of projectiles, it can fire a sensor from each of the...

Metal Storm has been granted another round of patents and one in particular has important implications for the future of minefields. The company’s weapon technology functions somewhat like an inkjet printer, using computer-controlled electronic ignition and a system of stacked projectiles in multiple barrels. As each barrel can contain a variety of projectiles, it can fire a sensor from each of the barrels to cover an area with sensors. If any sensor is triggered, the barrel to which it belongs fires a subsequent explosive projectile to the exact same point. The system offers many advantages, including the ability to be switched off leaving no explosive ordnance remaining in the area that had been protected. With landmines being one of the most dreadful and enduring legacies of war, it’s an enormous shame that only one side will be using Metal Storm, as it represents a potential solution to the deployment of this insidious device.  Read More

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