Bizarre Microsoft patent: Clear box that's a reading stand and book holder

Holder For Storing And Supporting Articles - Figure 1

Figure 1 of the US patent documentation, shows an isometric view of Microsoft's holder with the lid closed. A book (20) is shown inside the holder. The inventors envisioned the holder being made of a transparent material to "permit the contents of the older to be identified without requiring any external labels." The "double-acting" hinges (18) are also shown.

The inventors believed their design was an improvement on previous "holders," as it had better hinges and provided a stable support for open books even if they were "substantially shorter and narrow than the holder."

Image taken from U.S. Patent 4,588,074 - Digitized by Google

By Bill Detwiler

Bill Detwiler is Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and the host of Cracking Open, CNET and TechRepublic's popular online show. Prior to joining TechRepublic in 2000, Bill was an IT manager, database administrator, and desktop support specialist in the ...