“Apple today was shown to have filed a US patent that may point towards the future of its desktop mice. Originally submitted in March 2006, the patent would use a variant of the multi-touch concept behind the iPhone and apply it to a hand controller. An optical sensor built inside the mouse would map the surface and recognize contact from the user’s hand based on changes in the image. Information would then be translated to a flat grid in software that the computer can use to recognize the user’s intent, the patent says,” Electronista reports.
“Apple does not give clues as to whether or not it will implement the technology in a shipping mouse but notes that the patent favors unibody mice such as the Apple Mouse and the Mighty Mouse, which include seamless surfaces on the inside and out that are well-suited to image sensors,” Electronista reports.
Full article, with patent illustrations, here.