Fruity gadget maker Apple appears to be planning to ship a pen with its new tablet computer.
The much hyped, rarely seen gadget is expected to be in the shops by next year and hacks throughout the land have been speculating what will be in it.
We are not sure if this is connected or not, but it appears that Apple has a patent number 20090279783 which describes an "ink manager" which receives "ink information entered at a pen-based input/display device" and turns them into "strokes" which are passed to a handwriting recognition system.
It seems that Apple wants so desperately to prove to the world that its huge lemon, the Apple Newton, was not a complete joke, but rather ahead of its time.
The Newton was also a pen based tabletish device but it was laughed off the market. If the Patent technology is going under the hood of a tablet then it is clear that it will have a few new features.
The first is that the gadget will be sensitive to handwriting-style. If you have one of these it seems unlikely you will see a conventional keyboard, but we don't see many of those on Apple gear anyway.