Apparently you will soon be able to control your Apple machine by shaking it - an action that Sneak got quite used to under the old Mac OS and its tendency to go belly-up. Now you don't have to be frustrated by the sight of a sizzling bomb to seize your PowerBook and fling it around, however. The accelerometer fitted to new laptops, designed to safely park the hard-drive heads if an unscheduled visit to the deck is detected, can now be co-opted under Mac OS X to do some nifty things. Like controlling on-screen elements, according to New Scientist. "Using the technique it is possible to manoeuvre open windows by shaking or shimmying the machine. Using another program [created by developer Amit Singh], called the Orientation Visualizer, it is even possible to display a 3D image that appears to hang in space as the PowerBook is moved around it." It's a neat idea, albeit one that may run foul of patents no doubt filed as a result of the Itsy project at Digital (since passed on to HP by way of Compaq). Itsy is, or was, an experimental PDA designed to rely on movement for navigation. It used a neat system called Rock 'n' Scroll. Sneak, for one, hopes the intellectual property issues won't be a barrier to widespread adoption. Finally, it will be possible to have an on-screen pinball table with a proper "tilt" function.
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