It never rains J. It pours. Fresh from his honorary nod at Boston University, Dr. Allard has now been spotted as one of the inventors of a revolutionary new Microsoft "magic wand".

In a patent that surfaced last week (but was submitted in 2007), J Allard is listed as one of five inventors on an application for a device that is, well, a magic wand. That's even how it's explained in the patent. As something capitalising on the fact "a number of communities or demographic segments are enamored with the idea of magic".

So what is it? The "wand" is a small, hand-held controller that's designed to operate, well, everything. Like a universal remote, except instead of just running your entertainment system, it would run your entire house. Devices listed in the application as examples include thermostats, "media devices" and computers.


Oh, and game consoles.

The "magic wand" would contain accelerometers for motion control, as well as biometric measures to identify (and customise) the device depending on who was using it. It would also pack a camera, a laser, a transmitter and a gyroscope, meaning it could control - or at least communicate - with pretty much everything in the house that needs controlling.


How this would work for games remains unclear, as more recent rumours surrounding Microsoft and motion-controlled gaming have suggested the company prefers camera-based control to the use of a peripheral.


It's also important to remember, this is just a patent application. Just because Microsoft applied for a patent doesn't mean they're actually going to make the thing.

But hey, E3 is only a couple of weeks away, so any questions you have might be answered then. And if not then? Then maybe later! Maybe.


UPDATE - Reached for comment, Microsoft would only respond with, yes, "no comment".

Patent 20090121894 [USPTO, via TechFlash]