U.S. Patent Number 8,203,531 - Vector-Specific Haptic Feedback

Every Tuesday, the United States Patent and Trademark Office publishes new granted patents. I thought some of you would like to read about Idaho-related patents--that is, patents having at least one Idaho inventor or assigned to an Idaho company. I'm going to do a weekly series of blog posts in which I will pick an interesting new patent that has Idaho connections and briefly describe it.

Inventors: Cody George Peterson (Coeur d'Alene, ID), Andrew Parris Huska; (Post Falls, ID), James William Schlosser (Spokane, WA), Douglas M. Krumpelman (Hayden, ID)

Assigned to: Pacinian Corporation (Spokane, WA)

Current video game controllers provide haptic (tactile) feedback to gamers through vibration (using a mechanism similar to that found in most cell phones), which is a non-directional type of feedback. This patent discusses a type of controller feedback system that is directional. When a game system sends certain signals to the controller (the signals will indicate a direction and magnitude), electrically-deformable material move and deform the controller accordingly.

Examples of devices into which this invention can be implemented include "game controller, hand-held computing device component, mouse, key or keyboard element, PDA component, smart phone component, remote or non-remote controller device, steering device . . ."

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