"I'm falling... backup time!"

Retroactively posted January 31, 2005

Heh heh, this is a cute example of minimal context awareness.

The newly-introduced Powerbook models include an accelerometer, to be able to tell when they are being dropped and automatically park the hard-drive heads until the danger has passed.

This may actually be part of the hard drive mechanism itself, since I've run across scattered mention of such sensors before, but this is the first time I know of that it's been advertised as a feature. Unknown whether the sensor data will be available to applications or what quality it would be, but the possibility is there.

Strangely enough, this is coming full circle for Apple... there was a famous concept sketch of the Newton/Dynabook showing how it could sense it was being dropped off a cliff and immediately start shoving data into nonvolatile storage and broadcasting the most important stuff wirelessly in the instants before impact. Unfortunately my google-fu isn't quite strong enough to dig this drawing up, though.