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Google Patents Tiny Cameras Embedded In Contact Lenses

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#1 +techbeck

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 18:58

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Google has a new patent application with the USPTO (via 9to5Google), which takes one of the basic concepts of Glass and extends it even further, embedding tiny cameras that could be embedded in contact lenses for various uses, including photographing what a wearer sees, or providing the basic input for a contact-based assistive device for the visually impaired.

 

Google has previously detailed a plan to build smart contacts that measure blood glucose levels in diabetics to provide non-invasive, constant feedback to both a wearer and potentially their doctor, too. This new system describes uses that could also benefit the medical community, like using input from the camera to spot obstacles and alert a wearer who has vision problems as to their whereabouts. They could also offer up vision augmentation for people with all types of ocular health, and even act as a next-gen platform for a Glass-like computing experience.

 

More....

http://techcrunch.co...contact-lenses/

 




#2 HawkMan

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 19:04

So patenting stuff they don't have, stuff that doesn't exist yet and that they don't and can't make yet.

Sounds awfully lot like a patent troll tactic.

"Well totally cash in on this in 10-20 years"

#3 OP +techbeck

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 19:07

So patenting stuff they don't have, stuff that doesn't exist yet and that they don't and can't make yet.

Sounds awfully lot like a patent troll tactic.

"Well totally cash in on this in 10-20 years"

 

Only patent trolling if the company holding the patents use them with the main purpose to sue others.  And many companies patent ideas and do not actually make what they patent.  And who knows what this tech will be used for down the road.



#4 +Audien

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 19:12

I assume this patent covers a specific mechanism for adding a camera to the lens, rather than the idea itself that is not patentable.



#5 MDboyz

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 19:30

They need to change the way of applying for patents.  If a company applies for a patents, but they do not have a working prototype in like ... 5 years or so.  That patent should be invalid.  This will prevent people to apply patents for just idea ...



#6 +DConnell

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 19:31

Next week: Google patents a system for displaying information (cough*ads*cough)  on a transparent, lens-sized screen . . .



#7 HawkMan

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 20:00

Only patent trolling if the company holding the patents use them with the main purpose to sue others.  And many companies patent ideas and do not actually make what they patent.  And who knows what this tech will be used for down the road.

 

Yeah, that's called patent trolling. Down the road... yeah that's the problem, they just patented an idea with no design or guidelines. 



#8 OP +techbeck

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 20:08

Yeah, that's called patent trolling. Down the road... yeah that's the problem, they just patented an idea with no design or guidelines. 

A patent troll uses patents as legal weapons, instead of actually creating any new products or coming up with new ideas. Instead, trolls are in the business of litigation (or even just threatening litigation). They often buy up patents cheaply from companies down on their luck who are looking to monetize what resources they have left, such as patents. Unfortunately, the Patent Office has a habit of issuing patents for ideas that are neither new nor revolutionary, and these patents can be very broad, covering everyday or commonsense types of computing – things that should never have been patented in the first place. Armed with these overbroad and vague patents, the troll will then send out threatening letters to those they argue infringe their patent(s).  These letters threaten legal action unless the alleged infringer agrees to pay a licensing fee, which can often range to the tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

 

 

https://www.eff.org/...t-troll-victims

 

Not trolling to patent an idea.  It is trolling to use the patent for the main purpose of suing another...or buying patents who the soul purpose of suing others.  What Google tried to do with Motorola.  However, in this case, this is not trolling.

 

Want to see real patent trolls...take a look at the Rockstar Consortium or Intellectual Ventures.



#9 HawkMan

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 20:19

https://www.eff.org/...t-troll-victims

 

Not trolling to patent an idea.  It is trolling to use the patent for the main purpose of suing another...or buying patents who the soul purpose of suing others.  What Google tried to do with Motorola.  However, in this case, this is not trolling.

 

Want to see real patent trolls...take a look at the Rockstar Consortium or Intellectual Ventures.

 

Rockstar bought a bunch of patents that they all already licensed and thus they are using. So they are not trolls, they also offered google to join and they denied so...

 

and google is patenting non existing technology based on vague terms that will cover EVERY use case, it's the basic tactic of a patent troll as anyone who comes up with this in the future will have to pay them even though they invented and created the technology, Google just basically wrote a scifi story about camera lenses.

 

The only reason they're not a patent troll yet on this is because there's no one to see yet or at least for the next 10 years. 



#10 Max Norris

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 20:32

They need to change the way of applying for patents.  If a company applies for a patents, but they do not have a working prototype in like ... 5 years or so.  That patent should be invalid.  This will prevent people to apply patents for just idea ...

Ditto that sentiment.. if they were actually building it that's one thing, but just making stuff up and getting a patent for it is wayyy premature.  May as well get patents on antigravity and warp drive and such while we're at it.

 

That said, has some interesting possibilities if they can pull it off.  Combined with some sort of implant for the blind would be a pretty useful trick.



#11 OP +techbeck

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 20:35

The only reason they're not a patent troll yet on this is because there's no one to see yet or at least for the next 10 years. 

 

People patent ideas to protect their idea so no one else can use it or steal it.  This has been going on for a loooong time. To say anyone is a troll for patenting an idea and not producing idea is not accurate.  Now, if whoever patents something does not produce what they patent, then turns around and sues everyone who infringes on their patent, then that is a troll.

 

So far nothing here is trolling unless Google sues for people infringing on the patent and never produces what they patent.  Unlike what happened with Motorola.


They need to change the way of applying for patents.  If a company applies for a patents, but they do not have a working prototype in like ... 5 years or so.  That patent should be invalid.  This will prevent people to apply patents for just idea ...

 

Agreed.  Patents need to have a time when they expire.  If companies want to renew the patent, fine but it shouldnt be patented forever.



#12 HawkMan

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 20:44

People patent ideas to protect their idea so no one else can use it or steal it.  This has been going on for a loooong time. To say anyone is a troll for patenting an idea and not producing idea is not accurate.  Now, if whoever patents something does not produce what they patent, then turns around and sues everyone who infringes on their patent, then that is a troll.

 

So far nothing here is trolling unless Google sues for people infringing on the patent and never produces what they patent.  Unlike what happened with Motorola.


 

Agreed.  Patents need to have a time when they expire.  If companies want to renew the patent, fine but it shouldnt be patented forever.

 

 

You don't patent ideas. that's the problem with software patents(which I don't agree need to be completely abolished) ans I was sure that when it came to actual physical technology you wheren't allowed to patent these vague all encompassing software style patents. 

 

If you could patent ideas like this, then every scifi author would be a millionaire cause these lenses have already been created in several scifi books. I'm pretty certain Peter F Hamilton have had them in several of his books for example. 

 

you need a bit more than "camera in contacts" to make a patent. it needs to be technology that can be made or needs technology they are currently researching and is within reach in a few years to be a potential real product. 

 

For example instead of "contact lens that acts as a camera that can aid in augmented reality or restoring vision and bla bla bla"

you have

"the contact lens will have a network of single cell RGB cmos censors with a micro lense on top. These censors will be opaque on the back so so the lenses won't affect or disturb normal vision and due to them being inside the focal area they won't negatively affect vison beyond slightly reducing brightness"

 

Then you have technology and technical specs for an actual product and technology, not the description and idea of every possible camera contact lens. 



#13 ichi

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 23:02

You don't patent ideas. that's the problem with software patents(which I don't agree need to be completely abolished) ans I was sure that when it came to actual physical technology you wheren't allowed to patent these vague all encompassing software style patents. 

 

If you could patent ideas like this, then every scifi author would be a millionaire cause these lenses have already been created in several scifi books. I'm pretty certain Peter F Hamilton have had them in several of his books for example. 

 

 

Same would apply to Microsoft's patent on multiplayer gaming HMD: lots of "method for" and "could be implemented in such way or something completely different", yet no substance about actual specific technology.

 

It shouldn't be allowed, but everyone is doing it. Because they can.

 

The major players in the tech industry have invested far too much in patents already to be willing to lobby for any kind of significative reform.



#14 Enron

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 23:04

Rockstar bought a bunch of patents that they all already licensed and thus they are using. So they are not trolls, they also offered google to join and they denied so...

 

I'm not really sure what kind of groundbreaking patents were introduced in any Grand Theft Auto game, but if they start suing other companies, that would be a problem.



#15 Praetor

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 23:12

Same would apply to Microsoft's patent on multiplayer gaming HMD: lots of "method for" and "could be implemented in such way or something completely different", yet no substance about actual specific technology.

 

It shouldn't be allowed, but everyone is doing it. Because they can.

 

The major players in the tech industry have invested far too much in patents already to be willing to lobby for any kind of significative reform.

 

yep, the problem is the patents and how they are attributed.

 

Also i don't agree that a patent should be completely explained; if that was the case then a patent troll would wait for someone to register a patent so he could register the same patent but changing one or two things, thus making the same product but out of the ambit of the first patent.

 

The solution if to reform the entire patent system and the US is largely problematic in this area.