updated 03:40 pm EDT, Tue August 14, 2007
iPod, ProRes patents
Apple on Tuesday had several patents approved by the US Patent and Trademark Office, and submitted an application for another. The most notable patents in the approved group are four related to the iPod; no design details have been published, but rather just illustrations, and nothing that appears immediately different from the current generation of iPods. Prominent names on the patents include Apple CEO Steve Jobs and lead designer Jonathan Ive.
The remaining approved patent is a "method and apparatus for uploading mass-distributed content to a server." Clients in the Apple scheme divide data into smaller blocks of a fixed size, assigning each a codeword. A composite codeword is then generated from a function of the set of codewords, and the data as a whole is given a distinguishing identifier. Both the identifier and the composite codeword are then sent to the server, which checks to see if the data is already present. If not, the upload continues.
Finally, Apple is attempting to patent the ProRes 422 format, used in Final Cut Pro 6. It is said to provide the quality of uncompressed HD video, while taking up no more space than a similar SD file. This makes it more practical for sharing over a network or when relying on portable storage.