Apple pop-socket with an optical sensor turns your iPhone into a Magic Mouse!

It’s a pretty great idea in theory, and ties well into Apple‘s ecosystem of creating products that support each other and add to the collective experience. It’s also something fresh that would set Apple apart in the hardware space. Meet the Magic Mouse Mini, a concept created by Yongbin Kim who gave the smartphone pop-socket the ultimate upgrade by also fitting an optical sensor into it!

The Magic Mouse Mini looks and feels like your regular pop-socket. It attaches to the back of your phone, giving you a pop-out grip that you can firmly hold onto between your index and middle finger as you use your phone or click selfies. Given how large and slippery smartphones are nowadays (further factoring in the iPhone’s curved edges). However, a switch on the side turns the pop-out grip into something vastly more functional. Switch the device on, and the optical sensor above the Apple logo powers on, turning your iPhone into a magic mouse!

The iPhone and the socket at the back work in tandem to replicate the Magic Mouse experience. The optical sensor on the socket helps with cursor-tracking, while the iPhone’s touchscreen shoulders the responsibility of providing the control surface, allowing you to left-click, right-click, pinch, zoom, scroll, and do a variety of other gestures, just like you would on a Magic Mouse.

I’d surmise the Magic Mouse Mini concept would work remarkably well with iMacs and MacBooks, but would even probably do a pretty good job with iPads too! It’s a small, clever addon that helps your phone (by allowing you to grip it better), and helps your MacOS devices too, by giving you a Magic Mouse experience without having to shell out a hundred bucks for a new Magic Mouse. And yes, the presence of a socket on the back of your phone could give it an uneven surface, causing the mouse to potentially rock back and forth while you’re using it… but think of this less as a practicality and usability issue, and more as a clever way of turning an existing piece of hardware (your iPhone) into something absolutely new! After all, it’s just a concept, no?

Designer: Yongbin Kim

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The (optical) illusion of time


Time is relative, and flexible. According to Albert Einstein, “the dividing line between past, present, and future is an illusion”. Furthering that idea is Alessio Romano’s Optical watch, with its two hypnotic hand-dials that come with a parallel line graphic that is capable of telling you the time but also mesmerizing you in the process!

Romano was heavily influenced by the works of Op-Artists such as Victor Vasarely, Bridget Riley, and Richard Anuszkiewicz… his goal being to create an ever-changing optical illusion with the movement of the hour and minute hands. The result is Optical, a watch with a series of rotating parallel lines that create an ever-changing visual painting that can indicate the time to the nearest handful of minutes. In keeping with the artistic integrity of the watch’s face, the Optical comes with no number markings on the dial either, so as to create a sense of mystery and curiosity while telling the time. Just promise us you won’t look at it too long. It may put you in a trance!

Designer: Alessio Romano for Project Watches

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