apple's newest patent describes a stylus that can draw in midair (basically a magic wand)

apple's newest patent describes a stylus that can draw in midair (basically a magic wand)

steve jobs hated the idea of a stylus. he openly mocked it during the 2007 keynote of his first iPhone. he died and the apple pencil came to fruition, but the pencil shouldn’t be mistaken for a blackberry stylus, like the one he poked fun at. apple’s pencil is a tool for many artists and designers, a tool that may soon be used to draw and conceive lines and shapes and 3D content out of thin air. according to recently discovered patent application, titled ‘CONTENT CREATION USING ELECTRONIC INPUT DEVICE ON NON-ELECTRONIC SURFACES,’ as long as you have an apple pencil, absolutely anything could be a canvas, even — no — especially, the empty air in front of you. this isn’t a stylus. this is a wand, people.

apple patent
all images courtesy of world intellectual property organization



at a glance, the project seems transparent enough, with appropriate figures and explanations for each illustration; however, phrases like ‘other examples can be used and structural changes can be made’ are scattered throughout the document. here’s another head scratcher: ‘the position and/or motion of the input device can be tracked according to various methods including one or more of a motion and orientation sensor, a camera, or an electromagnetic- or sound-based triangulation scheme.’ there you have it: various methods.

apple patent



knowing apple, reading the rest of the patent won’t guarantee any detailed insights into how the air pencil intends to work, but, for most people, the how doesn’t matter. apple is still very steve in that way — although, the documents as a whole are unavoidably missing the steve jobs subtleties. ‘styli have become popular input devices,’ they say, ‘for touch-sensitive devices.’ jobs might cringe a few times while reading that sentence, but especially at that slimy word in the beginning. styli. it’s definitely more of a magic wand. read the full patent, in all its wonder and vagueness, here.

apple patent

apple patent

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