3D desktop revealed in recent Apple patent filing

Dozens of Apple patent applications were published lately revealing research that Apple had completed in 2007 on many topics encompassing future versions of Mac OS X.

The most intriguing is a series of patent applications which describe a "Multidimensional" user interface. Apple has essentially been working on true 3D desktop environments.

It's not clear when and if Apple will decide to implement these new 3D desktop design ideas into a future version of Mac OS X. The 3D desktop idea suggests that Apple would take their existing Mac OS components like the dock, dashboard, add more depth and give a three dimensional look.

Apple's next major version of Mac OS X (10.6) is due in the first quarter of 2009 and will primarily focus on "under the hood" changes to boost performance.


Image Courtesy : MacRumours.com

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Davin said,
Apple can't or shouldn't be allowed to patent it as they didn't invent the 3D desktop because it already exists. 3DNA is a 3D Desktop for windows. See http://www.3dna.net/

Their are also several docks available for Windows, so what would happen to them if Apple gets it patented?


Jesus christ, they're not patenting the "idea" of a 3D desktop, but the actual implementation they're using of it.

Exactly. I wonder how many other 3D desktop patents I could fine if I put effort into it.

This is relevant because it is the first patent about it from a company that could push it mainstream. And as someone who has used Microsoft BOB... no, this is nothing like that.

This is why software patents shouldn't be allowed. There is nothing "new" in the idea of a 3D interface; nothing has been "invented" or "discovered", as in the usual definition of a patent. Apple is simply the first to try to implement or protect such an idea. All this does is restrict the competition.

Even Flip3D is a 3D interface and Sun has Looking Glass. The ideas Apple is attempting to patent are simply too trivial, seemingly with the sole intent of suppressing competition rather than protecting innovation.

theyarecomingforyou said,
This is why software patents shouldn't be allowed. There is nothing "new" in the idea of a 3D interface; nothing has been "invented" or "discovered", as in the usual definition of a patent. Apple is simply the first to try to implement or protect such an idea. All this does is restrict the competition.

Personally, I think Apple goes into detail enough to exclude patenting abstract ideas and hurting competition. For example, their patent application involves their Dock. The more specific a patent application is, the more they're excluding other ideas, and it's the general abstract stuff I'd be worried about. I've seen much worse examples than this. :S

This reminds me of the new Simpsons episode where Lisa visits Steve Mobs (Jobs) about her music bill and he's goofing with a 3D concept.

I forwarded this link to Steve Mobs - he said he is trashing the idea of 3d desktop as it is not sexy enough and going to go 1 better.
A 4D desktop!!!
He said he would get on this as soon as he got done peeing on some more MyPhones

This is the worst idea ever! It's been done before. I remember that Packard Bell had an interface (can't remember the name) that was a couple of rooms that allowed you to basically use them as an interface, instead of Windows. It sucked. I always booted straight into Windows.

The only idea I have seen, and actually liked, was a cube shape with a desktop on every side (6 in total). You could either use one huge desktop and flip/rotate the cube in a pretty 3D way to get to the rest of your icons, or use the 6 sides for up to 6 individually customised desktops.

Does nobody else get the fact that 3d interfaces just plain dont work on 2D devices! When proper 3D display technology is released, then sure, its worth looking into, but trying to cram that much multi-directional content on a restricted 2d display is just stupid.

Antaris said,
Does nobody else get the fact that 3d interfaces just plain dont work on 2D devices! When proper 3D display technology is released, then sure, its worth looking into, but trying to cram that much multi-directional content on a restricted 2d display is just stupid.

Finally someone mentioned the most obvious problem with 3D desktops. It only took 14+ comments to do it.

spacer said,
Finally someone mentioned the most obvious problem with 3D desktops. It only took 14+ comments to do it.


Quick! Tell Apple that ASAP! I'm sure they haven't considered that at all!

LOL!

If anyone knows how to make a UI, it's Apple.

The idea of a 3D desktop is stupid, and is just another way to grab attention. A 3D desktop will not increase productivity, it will not improve the GUI, it's nothing but more fecking iCandy. I'm also fed up with Microsoft sh*tting up the taskbar. Why don't they both just stick with the K.I.S.S. concept. Keep It Simple, Stupid.

Well, I have actually seen a 3D Desktop your imitations are exactly what my friend created it didn't work out at all. However, that was a few years ago, I am sure you could do much cooler and creative things now.

It may seem dumb how you think it may look. But it may be good through another way!.

Those of you who have a webcam do a search for touchless at microsoft's website try the demo then combine it with this interface and you have something workable

Touchless is multitouch (less) in the air using a webcam and your fingers

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