Google X’s tether force sensor

Patents are a mess but they are real. A patent like this will probably be extended to near worldwide coverage

Better to go to or as those give you more info on the status of the patent.

For this one:

It’s been a few years since I’ve done this, but you should be able to find if the patent was approved and in which countries it is currently active? I couldn’t find that info now.

That has to be done within a specific timeframe. I don’t remember what that timeframe is. This looks to be issued on 2016-05-03.

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I’m not a patent lawyer, but the Google Patents states «Grant» and __B1 in the patent number. So I would think this patent is valid and active

This link leads to “patent citations” (11) and “cited by the examiner” (4), and other. So the reader should read all in order to determine the degree of relevance of the prior art.

For most other countries there is a search report which mentions the degree of relevance.
For example click on then on search report page 24/26. One can see only three occurrences: A, A, A. The documents “A” are not considered to be of particular relevance. But the documents “X” then “Y” are considered to be of particular relevance. So a good search report has no X no Y.
But be quiet! My patent will not block AWE industry, not due to its possible validity as its search report is positive, but because its interest field is limited!

Congratulations on your patent.

It’s not just the patent, but also how you use it. Hope you don’t use it to stunt AWE progress, but of course you will use it to your best advantage

Genuinely Laughable Pish
If that’s one of the claims, I seriously am going to piss myself laughing reading it.
So for the sake of less washing, ergo energy expenditure, don’t even bother looking at it.

Any good IP belongs in

In essence a kite is a pressure sensor device which flies and moves you can pull it, you can see it, you can touch and twang it, you hear it in stereo, you can feel the wind wash off it. The obvious levels of interaction needed for control of an elevated device with tethers, has been know to humans for centuries, and doesn’t need to be dictated back to us with a statement of ownership by a computer system.

That site could be wholely instrumental for the massive adoption of AWES. I have so much stuff I’d love to share for open development there.

Sorry to hear that @tallakt
This is the potential of software on society… we’re witnessing this principle at work right here on this forum.
Something we couldn’t take for granted 20 years ago.

Fair enough though this earthledger scheme is mysterious and underpopulated, so was facebook at the start. there’s little engagement obvious … However, Vapour has a habit of exploding.

Posting IP with open ledger accreditation, Where the IP ownership is communal should help toward ensuring IP is made for a common good.
You wouldn’t have to use any particular blockchain if side chaining (it’s just a linked spreadsheet) is considered for the diversity of personal design releases.
There’s not much of a whitepaper (#trendy word for plan) needed.

Considering global benefit is an essential part of design.
It’s certainly a great starting mindset for a design project.

Project development is different.

I’m happy to let whomsoever wishes to use my designs for their project …

As such my designs can be registered as having had a stake in your project development. Your ongoing project may consider the wishes and intent of my design without me having to interact further. (a smart contract for me)
You may choose to rip the design off. Fine. As long as the design has been made with seriously sound fundamental use to society. Please be my guest. The registration exists and as such you can £^"( off telling me or anyone else not to use it.

What is the point in open online discussions on our hardware if you don’t think they’re going to progress our designs. This site is stored and hosted on (referenced from) github. You’re the expert on the potential of how software and data is referenced and held. The content of this forum is timestamped and related to users… Can this be associated to the same IP development project? Surely. Lets have a sign in form. You could include various classes of permission to include your discoveries.

Where green-tech really needs opened is somewhere which will adopt it. Somewhere that really needs to experiment on cleaning their emissions. Somewhere with the clout to be able to test this with spare change on a large scale budget. China for 1, you love kites… Everywhere else, you too.

This is no time to pussyfoot around. Having seen the scale of China personally in October (yes I flew lots) We need scalable ambition to match.
I recommend actively seeking means to share our designs globally.

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First, I deleted my initial comments about the Earthledger project regretting them immediately. They were negative and unnecessary. For anyone reading, @Rodread is referring to those comments above.

I can assure you that I’m quite well versed in blockchain technology (you might just google me, I always use my full name). I find them very interesting. That being said:

Earthledger says:

  • Its A Global Log of Environmental Challenges and Solutions
  • Earth Ledger is made up of 5 key components which automate global resolutions & improvements. Projects can receive funding and support, and businesses have a platform for organic growth. Every user has the ability to share, post, vote and contribute with complete freedom & responsibility.

The 5 components are

  • Global Log: A global log of every challenge, solution, technology, patent, species, and communities. Verified user-generated information that will help support research and education for a more sustainable world – All stored transparently on the blockchain for the public to access
  • Funding: Receive support for a project, start-up, and solution. Earth Ledger has developed a funding mechanism to provide instant backing and liquidity for the network. Users can donate and invest in the growth and well-being of our planet.
  • Community: Unite around the sustainable development goals. Grow a network of forward-thinking individuals and collaborate on solutions. From local to global, help raise awareness around challenges near you.
  • Interactive Marketplace: Enter an open marketplace to submit sustainable products & services. Merchants can market goods and consumers can find sustainable alternatives and help the world shift into a green economy
  • Full-Spectrum Education: A built-in decentralized learning management system for a community to share knowledge and learn from experts around the world. Our goal is to provide high-quality education for all ages at low to no cost.

It also mentions:

  • Bridging Innovative Technology: Using existing infrastructure for a new purpose, Earth Ledger combines different blockchain-based technologies to address and contribute towards social and ecological well-being.
    • Consensus Driven
    • Digital ID Verification
    • Supply Chain Management
    • Smart Contracts
    • Incentivized Network: Every interaction gets rewarded on the platform. From a challenge, solutions and to votes, every action is viewed as a contribution to a better world.

Now this seems like a very nice project, and I’m sure the people behind it want to do the right thing. But it does seem that there is a whole lot going on in this project. Just pick a single bullet point like “Digital Id with biometric identification” - thats a huge undertaking in itself.

I cant see this being a simpler way to get stuff funded than todays alternatives (eg Kickstarter and Indiegogo, or some environmentally focused clone)

I also think that the web page is quite low on actual factual info, like which blockchain they are using.

I think these goals will be achieved, but not by one integrated system like earthledger. It will be one system for IP/patents, one system for crowdfunding, one system for community (this forum?), one system for identification of individuals (VISA?)

Also there is little synergy between blockchain and saving the environment. You could use blockchain to save the environment, but you would be using a general purpose system to do that.

I still wish them best of luck due to their good intentions, but I am not placing my money in their ICO (i expect that to be announced soon).


Thanks for the clarification @tallakt
I mostly agree with what you say.

I’d say
So far there is little synergy between saving the environment and blockchain.
There is history (lets looks again at China ) of
Governance and targeted accountability making massive differences to successful policy implementation.

Computers are a

They’re handy. We should use them.

It would be good if we can use them to account for values as diverse as carbon offsetting and energy saving as well as pure financial motives.

Thanks @tallakt.

And blockchain is surely better than blockindustry :wink:.

Here’s a chain of blocks that compliments renewable energy very well.

Now that humans have been caught moving more rock than rivers do… It’s time we let the wind do the heavy lifting work … The wind still shifts more energy than 100x human demand (despite this article perspective ).
Maybe it should be lifting rock gabion cages instead.

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That tower could have a kite lifting stones mechanically, skipping the conversion.

Hope they didnt put a force sensor on that crane, theyd have to pay Makani royalties…

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The Open-AWE_IP-Cloud is bigger and better than Makani’s IP, with far more quality patents. Its a bulk statistical contest of IP that hardly will get litigated point-by-point, but negotiated as whole. The Open-AWE License is the best armor so far against Google. There are no proven blocking patents in AWE, given the countless work-arounds, and long history of key methods.

Who really needs “load cells coupled to the tether” anyway? Tether force can be sampled or inferred many other ways, as documented on the public record, on the Old Forum.

I’ve attached and I’m going to insist on attaching a load cell right under where the PTO parts used to pivot… You’d have to be chicken oriental, beef and lentil utterly mental to have no load cell on a kite power system. Bananas.
Insane. Basically brain dead.
Obviousness to practitioners is part of the qualification of a real defensible patent.
I fully intend to ignore it and commercially too.
Makani if you are going to have issue with this. Talk now. Anytime.

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How about a damped shock absorber to cushion surge loads? Just monitor its position to derive loading. Hardly anyone’s kite system needs load cells as such, its just not the most critical sort of part.

Its less “mental” to agilely work around any claim of blocking IP, rather than insist its essential. Less-mental to have a line shock absorber instead of a load-cell royalty to pay, with no shock absorber.

Acoustic sampling of speed of sound, without a “load cell” is another choice, with lots more data possible. Load cells could be put at the fairlead or anchor mounts. No end of effective work-arounds to any current AWE patent claim.

We won’t solve AWE by filing obviousness and prior art claims against troll patents. There are no proven patents in AWE. “No blocking patents” is the best assumption. If anyone solves AWE and some pesky block is found, there will still be plenty of success for both sides.

A bit of background: I left the Alameda Island AWE scene when Makani absorbed KiteShip in 2007, quite confident unlimited Google money was no substitute for lack of aerospace knowledge and culture in the founding circle. It did seem urgent to discover and push key IP to the Public Domain, on CC principles, before Makani could patent it.

Finding JoeF was a big win, as he shared the same open AWE IP ethos, and already was a kite patent expert. We came to see the fear of monopolistic AWE patents by players like KiteGen and Makani was undue. One can do AWE just fine from the vast trove of expired patents and kite domain knowledge.

The art of putting existing knowledge into practical form is the real challenge. Pooled IP will play out in AWE like it did for aviation, as a fairly minor factor that we are well positioned for.

Can you elaborate what Open-AWE_IP-Cloud is?

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Probably just a fancy way to say: Stuff shared publicly without prior patent registration.

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Kinda like how “Load cell” is a fancy way to say “strain gauges in a wheatstone bridge, balanced against temperature deviation, neatly packaged and made much cheaper than the effort of sticking strain gauges directly onto your groundstation for prototyping…” (as I found out the hard way)
I made a wheatstone bridge of strain gauges when I was in 6th year in school… and a digital anemometer. Bloody idea of a patent on that is a nonsense and seems to have pissed me right off


The Old Forum struggled with many AWE IP challenges at its start. Makani was known to be planning a patent blitz. Close peers had spend scant savings on AWE patents. Militarized AWE was a concern. CC IP was fairly new and uncertain. Our ideas were proliferating.

Our main strategy was to disclose key AWE art before any venture capitalist could claim it. There was a starting CC IP phase. “CoolIP” was a CC modification to address gaps in its formula. We declared an honor system in “Open AWE”, since the law gave us few rights without patent spending. We studied the 1920s Aviation Patent Pool. We got great patents into our Pool on a sort of MOU basis, by top folks like Olsen and Bolonkin.

Over time, the Pool aggregated more IP than any other player’s IP, like Makani or Massimo’s overtly monopolistic patenting. We found lots of invalidating prior art and workarounds to their patents. There were no great “inventive-leaps” found, a rather pathetic record. Cloud computing began to mature as we began to see AWE IP as an amorphous distributed thing, and we continued to theorize how AWE IP should work. The patent system itself was found increasingly broken by junk patents granted, and did not serve merit over capital.

The “Open AWE IP Cloud” emerged with many nuances, like open license for small developers, an open door for anyone to declare their IP, and intent for future stakeholders to settle fair compensation even for small developers who contributed art but did not declare IP or whose IP expired. Someday its expected dominant players will fairly settle with Open AWE IP.

So that’s the Open-AWE_IP-Cloud story, and context here for treating Makani’s load cell patent claim with our accustomed mix of work-around, prior art research, and equanimity. We don’t think modern AWE corporations will be able to act as IP robber barons, given sensitivity to public opinion, and the power of our numbers. Major AWE players may well choose to pay a small AWE IP Cloud royalty for its bulk statistical worth. AWEIA, our languished Industry Association, needs rebooting, as the logical entity to administer the Cloud.

All this is covered on the Old Forum as the journal-of-record for early AWE R&D.