Valve files patent for trackball controller

With the rumors that Valve is developing a “Steam Box Console”, plus their less subtle teasing of “big picture mode”, it appears Valve is hoping to heroically usher PC gaming from the office chair to the (much more comfy and social) sofa. So, it’s no surprise that Valve has filed a patent for nifty-looking convertible trackball controller to give couch surfers a practical point-and-click device.

The controller shown in the patent looks like a standard Xbox 360 controller, but with two bays where thumsticks would normally be located:

“A variety of modular input interfaces can be plugged into these sockets. Hardware specific to the input type of the modular input is contained within the modular input itself, and plugged in via an interface. This allows for dual analog sticks, a combination of analog and trackball, or further any combination of touchpad, directional pad, or additional components.”

Will Valve’s increasingly successful game delivery system does find its way into our living rooms? If so, here’s hoping that we can leave the mouse behind.

– Steven

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