Feeds

US Patent Office exposes Apple secret plan

Cupertino's 'silence' landgrab

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

April Fool The US Patent and Trademark office published an Apple patent filing on Wednesday that analysts are calling a bold attempt by the Cupertino Fruit Company to protect its core corporate values and business practices.

Since the return of Steve Jobs to the consumer electronics giant and sometimes computer maker in 1997, Apple has become famous for its secrecy - so much so that many a journalist has programmed Microsoft Word's AutoText capability to replace brief key codes with the phrases "We don't comment on unannounced products" and "Apple declined to comment on this report".

Wednesday's patent filing endeavors to put a legal framework around Apple's paranoia secrecy by patenting procedures the company employs to maintain its renowned cone of silence.

One entire subsection of the filing is devoted to requests for information from its press contacts. For example, a voicemail system is described in which an outgoing message is provided and followed by the traditional beep, but any message left by the caller goes unrecorded.

A lower-tech system in which a series of steps to be taken when a ringing phone is detected by an Apple contact is also described. The steps include (and, as the filing states, "are not limited to") facing away from a ringing phone, rubbing one's hands briskly over one's ears, and loudly repeating "La-la-la-la-la!" until the "auditory signal" - patent-speak for "ringing phone" - is no longer detected.

Apple secrecy-patent illustration

One image accompanying the patent filing depicts phone-avoidance methodologies

The filing also details an automated system for intercepting and deleting email messages received from a broad range of domains, including *@macworld.com, *@appleinsider.com, *@macsurfer.com, *@macdailynews.com, *@theregister.com (and *@theregister.co.uk), and hundreds of others.

Another subsection of the filing lists an "electronic device for the inculcation of data-denial modalities among front-line liveware". This iPod-like device can be securely locked into a trainee's ear canal, where it will repeat an infinite loop of denial vocabulary until switched off by a prequalified Apple HR officer.

According to the filing, the terminology implanted into a newbie's cortex "includes but is not limited to no, absolutely not, most certainly not, of course not, under no circumstances, by no means, not at all, negative, never, not really, nope, uh-uh, nah, not on your life, no way, no way José, ixnay, and I'll have to get back to you about that."

Perhaps unsurprising to long-time Apple watchers, a final subsection describes a "simulation-shaping and snookering solution system" into which is fed digitized renderings in Autodesk's Maya binary-file format (.mb) of upcoming Apple products, and which morphs those designs into similar-but-altered 3D-image files that the system then automatically posts on MacRumors.com's forums, thus engendering the buzz that always precedes an Apple product launch.

As described in the filing, this system can modify lighting in certain sections of the image so as to make them appear Photoshopped. It can also be set to reproduce a series of images with increasing accuracy - or, should the operator so desire, inaccuracy - as the known-only-to-Apple product-release date approaches.

Apple declined to comment on this report. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Swiss wildlife park serves up furry residents to visitors
'It's ecological' says spokesman, now how would you like your Bambi done?
Win a year’s supply of chocolate (no tech knowledge required)
Over £200 worth of the good stuff up for grabs
Facebook's Zuckerberg in EBOLA VIRUS FIGHT: Billionaire battles bug
US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention contacted as site supremo coughs up
Internet finally ready to replace answering machine cassette tape
It's a simple message and I'm leaving out the whistles and bells
ePassport to Transnistria: NEXTIFYING the Nation State with BONG
Hey the Man, you can't geoblock distributed democracy
Red Bull does NOT give you wings, $13.5m lawsuit says so
Website letting consumers claim $10 cash back crashes after stampede
Down-under record: Australian gets $140k for pussy
'Tiffany' closes deal - 'it's more common to offer your wife', says agent
Trolls have DARK TETRAD of personality defects, say trickcyclists
Think psychopathy and BDSM dungeons, not desktops
The iPAD launch BEFORE it happened: SPECULATIVE GUFF ahead of actual event
Nerve-shattering run-up to the pre-planned known event
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.