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New Apple patent filings cover device ejection, text to speech

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Apple is exploring a new system that would automatically allow a portable device such as an iPhone or iPod to be safely disconnected from a host computer with a simple touch, according to a newly revealed patent filing.

Another patent made public Thursday shows that Apple is interested in a system that reads text messages and broadcasts them audibly on a separate device.

Touch and go

Currently, a USB device or similar attached to a computer like an iPod or thumb drive must be "ejected" before it can be physically disconnected. This is to ensure that no communication between the computer and the device is taking place when it is disconnected. If a device is unexpectedly unplugged, it can result in corrupted data.

Apple's possible solution for this problem would generate a signal when the device is touched by the user, or even if an impending touch is detected. The signal would trigger the host to initiate operations to disengage the device.



"These features allow a user to disconnect from the host system more quickly and also prevents data corruption due to failure of the user to follow proper procedures," the filing reads.

The patent covers USB devices, SD cards, mobile phones, media players, game consoles computer peripherals, biometric sensors, headsets and more.

Text message to speech

While this patent filing centers around multimedia data transfer, the most interesting part of the summary deals specifically with text messages.

"The reading of text messages can be troublesome due to, in part, the small size of the typical display screen or the inability to control ambient light conditions," the patent states. "This is particularly troublesome to those users having impaired vision where reading a text message, of any reasonable size, for example, is difficult."



Filed for on March 27, 2009, this patent, revealed Thursday, describes the transmission of vocalized multimedia data to a "receiver unit by way of the voice channel without the use of a backend server." Essentially, it would directly transmit the audible interpretation of a text message to an independent receiver.
post #2 of 7
There just now getting around to this.

I have been preaching for something like this for a while.
Life is not measured by the breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away. - GC
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Life is not measured by the breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away. - GC
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post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

"receiver unit by way of the voice channel without the use of a backend server." Essentially, it would directly transmit the audible interpretation of a text message to an independent receiver.

This technique could be very useful to a lot of people. Combine that with a receiver that has Bluetooth capabilities that in turn could transmit to an ear plug or headphone, you could have vocalized texting with local privacy.

Nullis in verba -- "on the word of no one"

 

 

 

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Nullis in verba -- "on the word of no one"

 

 

 

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post #4 of 7
I thought Windows allowed something like this since... well, forever.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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post #5 of 7
Maybe they could use the eject key on the Mac's keyboard. It's got to be useful for something. Is it even wired up?

Many of the most important software concepts were invented in the 70s and forgotten in the 80s.

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Many of the most important software concepts were invented in the 70s and forgotten in the 80s.

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post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

I thought Windows allowed something like this since... well, forever.

Actually Windows never did. Windows XP just doesn't tell you that you've disconnected a device without ejecting it. Plus, this covers a variety of devices, and most likely includes devices which are compatible with Windows.

I actually think this is a great idea, at least you can safely disconnect a device without having to eject it manually.
post #7 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by PXT View Post

Maybe they could use the eject key on the Mac's keyboard. It's got to be useful for something. Is it even wired up?

It ejects optical discs.
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