Buttons are so over! Yes that is what I thought when read the article on the Techcrunch and that is how the article ended as well.
Apple is trying to bring it's no button cuture in to it's other money making devices, like Macbooks and other stuff. So to bring touch buttons on iPhone, iPad to the hard surfaces on macbooks, Apple is patenting invisible touch buttons on hard surfaces that appear and disappear depending on users need. When user needs a button will light up from underneath of perforated surface and switch off when not needed.
"Taken to its extreme, seamless design would have an invisible input," the application reads. "Since a metal housing is advantageous for aesthetic, environmental, and manufacturing reasons, this presents a particular challenge. One method to overcome this challenge is to include a plastic input painted to look like metal. However, this will not match the metal look and finish exactly, so the truly seamless design is not realized."Appleinsider via Techcrunch