August 16, 2004 12:59 PM PDT

Apple hints at colorful computer plans

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Apple Computer is again trying to light up the computer market, according to a patent filing with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

A patent application, listing Apple as the assignee and Duncan Kerr and Steve Hotelling as the inventors, was published on the USPTO site late last week. The abstract described a computer with an illuminable housing and a light device--red, green, blue and white light emitting diodes "disposed" inside the housing.

The filing describes a "chameleonic" electronic device which can "alter its visual appearance."

This published patent, filed on Feb. 2, is the latest in a series related to this capability.

Apple representatives declined to comment on the filing. The Web site Mac Observer first noted the updated application.

The application has 36 claims regarding what is used to light up the casing of a computer--different color LEDs and a partly translucent housing--and how and when it is supposed to occur. An indicator assembly produces an image on the surface of the case when activated.

Apple started a trend in creating more colorful desktops in early 1999 with the introduction of five "flavors" of iMac, strawberry, blueberry, tangerine, grape, and lime.

The company has acknowledged it is working on a new iMac design.

Apple will be participating in a trade show in Paris at the end of the month.

8 comments

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Color Morphing?
This use of color LED's sounds alaot like what "Color Kinetics" does in commercial installations and like what my "Sauce" keychain light from Color Kinetics does.
-Eric
Posted by EricTheO (13 comments )
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I have two questions.
1.) How much does this add to the price?
2.) Why on earth would I want it in the first place?
Posted by unknown unknown (1951 comments )
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re 2 questions
My first reaction is the same. But my experience tells me the
Apple has a keen way of making things work, and work well.
Just because schmoes like you and I can't figure it out doesn't
mean that this crack design team can't. Just wait.
Posted by Dr Dude (49 comments )
Link Flag
Apple makes PCs???
I could have sworn that the only made Macs??!
Posted by JuggerNaut (860 comments )
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Apple makes PCs???
I could have sworn that they only made Macs??!
Posted by JuggerNaut (860 comments )
Reply Link Flag
PEECEE PEEWEE
Hello:
P.C. stands for "personal computer" you know, the one Apple invented back in 1984. Macs ARE a personal computer (PC). Wintel stands for the Windows Intel Cartel Monopoly that has obviouslt monopolized your brain as well.
-Eyes wide open in Seattle-
Posted by (71 comments )
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