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A lucky search at the USPTO turned up Patent No. 7,117,136 (.pdf) describing a whole-body input device with built-in force feedback.  The patent issued to Second Life founder and former Linden Lab CEO Philip Rosedale in 2006, and has been assigned to Linden Lab.

How does it work?  “An input and feedback system for use with simulator devices immobilizes a portion of the user’s body using a securement device which holds the immobilized portion in a fixed position. [...] Such immobilizing devices may be used to allow input and feedback based on the motion of various parts of the user’s body, such as the head, arms, legs, and torso.”

So basically, it’s a rudimentary holodeck, with straps and helmets.  Images from the patent follow.  Jokes go in the comments.

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6 Responses to “Philip Rosedale and Linden Lab Patent Whole-Body Force-Feedback Holodeck-Style Input Device”

  1. on 11 Sep 2008 at 3:02 pmMarkMA

    So Clockwork Orange, so creepy.

  2. on 11 Sep 2008 at 3:53 pmlarryr

    from the “patent” being granted, to the actual device illustration and comments….

    more pathetic than funny… funny ha ha that is
    maybe ill build and sell one in SL…



  3. on 12 Sep 2008 at 8:20 amDoubledown Tandino

    see, this is the kind of zany invention that deserves registered ownership.

    … not things like the word “slart”

    Now, hopefully, Phillip Linden will team up with Sharper Image and make this full body controller also give me a vibrating and oscellating back massage

    PS… I love figure 6a…. is this intended for podpeople that only grew stumps to the wrist?…. but they still work out judging by that bulging bicep. Is that Phil’s arm?

  4. on 15 Sep 2008 at 10:41 amLOLCATS

    R O F L

  5. on 16 Sep 2008 at 3:34 amTateru Nino

    This sort of thing was Linden Lab’s original business. The virtual world was … well, an accident of sorts.

  6. [...] Virtually Blind] Filed in Industry News « Watch Someone Else Play LittleBigPlanet For 14 Minutes [...]

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