Electrically Self-propelled Object Patents (Class 463/62)
  • Patent number: 8939842
    Abstract: The present disclosure relates to a robotic system including one or more self-propelled motorized vehicles 120 (SPMV) whose motion is controlled in accordance with electronic image data acquired by one or more observing camera(s) 110 configured to image a scene including the SPMV 120. In some embodiments, the SPMV includes one or more on-board lights 124, and the SPMV is operated according to analyzing images acquired by the observing camera before and after an illumination transition of one or more of the point-lights. Some embodiments relate techniques to computer gaming and/or to stereoscopic image processing techniques.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 13, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 27, 2015
    Assignee: Meimadtek Ltd.
    Inventor: Eric Ehrmann
  • Patent number: 8572176
    Abstract: The Forward Path Multi-Media Management System architecture enables end user devices to share a common wireless forward path of a multicast communication architecture in which the forward path delivered content is dynamically changed or modified based on a real-time, near-real-time, or delay-time basis via aggregated reverse path feedback from at least one of a plurality of end user devices. The Forward Path Multi-Media Management System periodically or continuously aggregates the feedback input received via the reverse path (having wired and/or wireless connectivity), modifies the forward path multi-media content, and delivers this dynamically modified multi-media content to the then connected population of end user devices via a wireless forward path multicast in a repetitive closed loop fashion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2007
    Date of Patent: October 29, 2013
    Assignee: Lava Two, LLC
    Inventors: Daniel Bernard McKenna, James Michael Graziano
  • Patent number: 8282440
    Abstract: A system and method are provided for low power electronic speed control for a model vehicle. A remote controlled model vehicle system may comprise a motor, a transmitter, a receiver, and an electronic speed control device. The electronic speed control device comprises a user interface and is at least configured to control a magnitude of average power applied to the motor in response to a user input. The electronic speed control device can operate under at least two profiles, wherein a desired profile is selected by the user. In one embodiment, under a first profile the electronic speed control device applies 100% magnitude of average power to the motor in response to maximum forward throttle, and under a second profile the electronic speed control device applies a percentage magnitude of average power lower than 100% and greater than 0% to the motor in response to maximum forward throttle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 2006
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2012
    Assignee: Traxxas LP
    Inventors: Michael S. Jenkins, Kent Poteet, Brent W. Byers
  • Patent number: 8235826
    Abstract: Various contact systems and methods for manufacturing and using such are disclosed herein. Examples of the contact systems include a surface with one set of pads biased at a first voltage level, and another set of pads biased at a second voltage level. Such a contact system can be used, for example, to transfer power to an electromechanical device disposed thereon. In one particular example, the electromechanical device can include a power storage element and two or more couplings. When one of the couplings contacts a pad biased at the first voltage level, and another of the couplings contacts a pad biased at the second voltage level, a circuit is completed where some derivative of the differential between the first voltage level and the second voltage level is placed across the power storage element. Completion of the circuit causes the power storage element to charge. Power can be drawn from the power storage element to operate the electromechanical device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2012
    Assignee: Childlikes, Inc.
    Inventor: Mitch Randall
  • Patent number: 8137203
    Abstract: A virtual-space hazard assessment system, for use in a virtual space, having target identifying information that identifies a target that appears in the virtual space. The system includes: a hazard-rating-request receiver for receiving a hazard rating request to rate the degree of hazard of the target; hazard storage for storing a table in which the degree of hazard of the target and the target identifying information are associated with each other; a hazard-degree increasing mechanism for increasing the degree of hazard of the target stored in the table in the hazard storage according to the degree of hazard received by the hazard-rating-request receiver; a hazard-degree decreasing mechanism for decreasing the degree of hazard stored in the table in the hazard storage with the elapse of time; and hazard-information-output instructing mechanism for issuing an instruction to output hazard information stored in the hazard storage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2012
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventors: Megumi Nakamura, Mika Saito
  • Patent number: 7831666
    Abstract: The present invention relates to an application that is configured to be operated in a multi-participant environment on a computer network. The application manages participants in an online session of a multi-user application so that if one of the participants exits the session, the session can continue without interruption. The application initiates an online session of the multi-user application, wherein the online session includes two or more participants comprised of network computers that are communicatively linked to a computer network.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 13, 2006
    Date of Patent: November 9, 2010
    Assignee: Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc.
    Inventors: Masayuki Chatani, Glen Van Datta
  • Publication number: 20090005180
    Abstract: The invention provides a game machine enabling a self-running body to smoothly run even in a corner section by using a plurality measurement lines provided at a constant pitch with reference to the inner circumference of a round track. The game machine (2) includes a game machine main body (10) having a plurality of measurement lines (36) arranged at a constant pitch (PTm) in the longitudinal direction of a round track (35) with reference to the inner circumference of the round track (35), and a self-running body (30) capable of self-running on the round track (35), wherein the self-running body (30) is provided with a measurement line detecting device (52) which has a plurality of detecting elements (60) arranged in the longitudinal direction of the self-running body at a constant pitch (PTms) and respectively capable of detecting the measurement lines (36), and controls its running on the round track (35) based on the results of detection.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 18, 2006
    Publication date: January 1, 2009
    Applicant: KONAMI DIGITAL ENTERTAINMENT CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Tetsuo Ishida, Satoru Atsuchi
  • Patent number: 7241223
    Abstract: A racing game device for use with non-powered toy vehicles which are released from a starting incline and travel along independent tracks through a finish gate. Electronic starting light tower signals players for remote vehicle release which are electronically interconnected with starting lights and finish gate to indicate winner and elapsed time on a digital display. Sound effects are activated during the start by players remote release mechanism which simulates actual race car sounds.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 2003
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2007
    Inventor: Wesley Caudill
  • Patent number: 7235013
    Abstract: In a game machine, platen dots are provided on a traveling field. A plurality of self-propelled members are provided on the traveling field. Each self-propelled member includes a first linear motor and a second linear motor for respectively propelling the self-propelled member in a first direction and a second direction perpendicular to each other. A miniature member is coupled with a motor so as to be rotatably supported on each self-propelled member. A controller controls the motor such that a rotated angle of the miniature member is determined in accordance with a propelling direction of the self-propelled member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 2001
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2007
    Assignee: Konami Corporation
    Inventor: Yusuke Kobayashi
  • Patent number: 7137862
    Abstract: A system and method for controlling multiple model vehicles while using only a single remote control transmitter. A remote control signal transmitter is provided for transmitting control signals. The transmitted control signals are received by a single master model vehicle. The master model vehicle contains a remote control signal receiver and various motors that enable the master model vehicle to move along a first pathway in response to the control signals that are received. At least one slave model vehicle is provided that is coupled to the master model vehicle. The slave model vehicle(s) contain no motors but are rather propelled by the master model vehicle. Each slave model vehicle does not travel along the same pathway as the master model vehicle, but rather travels in formation in pathways that are adjacent to the pathway of the master model vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2006
    Inventor: L. Taylor Arnold
  • Patent number: 6872141
    Abstract: A crawler driving apparatus and a game apparatus in which a storage battery mounted on a crawler is charged with electricity in a state that the crawler is adjacent to or not separated from a runway surface. In the crawler driving apparatus, the crawler 50 has a storage battery to self run by electric power of the storage battery, a charger 70 is disposed at a stand-by position of the crawler, and the storage battery is charged with electricity by the charger in a state that the crawler is not separated from a runway surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2005
    Assignee: Sega Corporation
    Inventor: Makoto Kaneko
  • Publication number: 20040235571
    Abstract: In a game machine, platen dots are provided on a traveling field. A plurality of self-propelled members are provided on the traveling field. Each self-propelled member includes a first linear motor and a second linear motor for respectively propelling the self-propelled member in a first direction and a second direction perpendicular to each other. A miniature member is coupled with a motor so as to be rotatably supported on each self-propelled member. A controller controls the motor such that a rotated angle of the miniature member is determined in accordance with a propelling direction of the self-propelled member.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 5, 2001
    Publication date: November 25, 2004
    Applicant: KONAMI CORPORATION
    Inventor: Yusuke Kobayashi
  • Publication number: 20040127293
    Abstract: An apparatus for controlling operating features of a model train includes a plurality of selection devices, each of which corresponds to a respective operating feature of the train. The apparatus also includes a controller connected to the selection devices of the apparatus. The controller is operative to generate digital or DC offset messages corresponding to the selection devices. The apparatus further includes a transmitter connected to the controller. The transmitter is operative to send the digital or DC offset messages that are generated by the controller to a receiver located on the train in order to carry out the desired functions. This invention provides for at least a single button output of complex messages.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 10, 2003
    Publication date: July 1, 2004
    Inventors: Louis Kovach, James Rohde, Neil P. Young
  • Patent number: 6752720
    Abstract: In one embodiment, a gaming system includes a mobile remote control vehicle. The mobile remote control vehicle communicates wirelessly with a control unit, and may be operated outside a line-of-sight (LOS) of the control unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 15, 2000
    Date of Patent: June 22, 2004
    Assignee: Intel Corporation
    Inventors: Edward O. Clapper, Greg E. Scott
  • Publication number: 20030236121
    Abstract: A powered scale model vehicle having a transmission with a forward gear and a reverse gear. The transmission is shiftable between the forward gear and the reverse gear. The vehicle has a radio control receiver, a sensor and a microcontroller. The receiver is adapted to output a throttle signal and a shift signal to the microcontroller. The sensor is adapted to obtain a vehicle speed measurement. The microcontroller is electrically coupled to the receiver and the sensor. The microcontroller may be adapted to control a timing and execution of a forward/reverse shift on the transmission based on at least the vehicle speed measurement, the throttle signal, and the shift signal, for example.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 28, 2003
    Publication date: December 25, 2003
    Applicant: Traxxas Corporation
    Inventor: Brent W. Byers
  • Patent number: 6666746
    Abstract: Each of first vehicles has an individual address dependent upon an insertion of a selective one of different keys into a socket in the vehicle. Each vehicle is movable in any desired direction on a first support structure formed by intercoupling male detents on first beams and female detents on other beams and on blocks. The first support structure may be, but does not have to be, intercoupled with a second support structure. The second structure may define a track on which an additional vehicle (e.g., a monorail) is movable in first and second opposite directions. Each of a plurality of manually operated pads generates signals for addressing any unaddressed vehicle and for providing movements of, and the performance of functions in, the vehicle when addressed. Each pad communicates the pad-generated signals to a connected central station. The central station communicates these signals by wireless to the vehicles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 2002
    Date of Patent: December 23, 2003
    Assignee: Rokenbok Toy Company
    Inventors: Daniel J. Aldred, William H. Barton, Jr., Peter C. DeAngelis, Paul Eichen
  • Publication number: 20030228916
    Abstract: A motorized mobile toy remote controlled by light beams. The remote control projects a spot on the ground, the toy, equipped with optical sensors, follows the spot. The optical sensor delivers instructions on the variation of the position of the spot compared to the center of the image, the processing of an electronic circuit then controls the motors to compensate the variation.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 29, 2003
    Publication date: December 11, 2003
    Inventor: Janick Simeray
  • Patent number: 6394898
    Abstract: A loop track for race horses is disposed at the center of a horse race game device. Twelve race horses run on the track. A gate is disposed in a paddock in the track. The gate is advanced to a start point of the track from the paddock. Twelve satellites are disposed on three sides of the track. A large projector for displaying images of developments, etc. of a race is disposed on one of the short sides of the track. Speakers for live broadcasting, fanfares, BGM, etc. are disposed on both sides of the large projector. The horse race game device enables a larger number of running objects to be raced at once, whereby race developments are made more amusing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 1998
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2002
    Assignee: Sega Enterprises Ltd.
    Inventors: Yuji Nagao, Takanori Akiyama, Naoki Kawajiri, Seiji Hayashi, Susumu Murata, Koji Yamaguchi, Yuji Ikeda, Mitsuru Todaiji, Yasuhiro Takagi, Shunichi Nakamura, Keiji Yano, Muneoki Kamata, Shingo Kataoka, Koji Osuka
  • Patent number: 6309306
    Abstract: An entertainment attraction (100) comprises remote-controlled, telepresence vehicles (204) and an environment (200) for the vehicles to traverse. The environment includes a plurality of reconfigurable portions (206). A vehicle includes an identification device (208) for providing an identifier and a camera (210) for imaging its field of view. A driver console (102) corresponding to a vehicle includes a monitor (212) for displaying the imaged field of view of the camera and a control device (214) for providing a driver-initiated control signal. A control system (218) includes detectors (220) dispersed about the environment. A detector is configured to receive the identifier or to sense the vehicle or both. The control system composes the interactions among the vehicles, the driver console, and the reconfigurable portions according to the received identifier, the sensing of the vehicle, or the driver-initiated control signal or some combination thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2001
    Assignee: Disney Enterprises, Inc.
    Inventors: Bradley K. Geagley, Joseph O. Garlington, John T. Hagen-Brenner, Gary J. Nadler, William G. Redmann
  • Patent number: 6287167
    Abstract: The invention relates to a speed controller able to change a pulse frequency and a pulse width of a pulse signal to control a driving motor. This device is able to change the pulse frequency during the run of the toy car which adjusts the torque of the driving motor in response to the revolution number of the driving motor. The speed controller adjusts the pulse frequency to be large when the pulse width is small, while the pulse frequency is small when the pulse width is large.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 9, 1999
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2001
    Assignee: Kondo kagaku Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Hirotoshi Kondo
  • Patent number: 6257585
    Abstract: An arcade-style racing game is described. The game preferably includes a surface an actuator, a game piece, and a steering mechanism. A racing track may be depicted on the surface. An actuator is preferably adapted to rotate the surface about a central axis on command. The game piece is preferably positioned substantially adjacent to the surface. The steering mechanism is preferably connected to the game piece and it may be adapted to rotate or turn the game piece a predetermined range. With use of the steering mechanism, a game player may position the game piece substantially within the boundaries of the racing track as the surface rotates about the central axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2000
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2001
    Assignee: Bob's Space Racers, Inc.
    Inventor: John F. Mendes, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5964640
    Abstract: A remotely-controllable motorized toy vehicle having a highly-maneuverable skid steering system driven by single or dual motors, having a separately motorized scoop loading device pivotally secured to the chassis of the vehicle operative to load transportable elements into a automatically dumpable hopper mounted on the vehicle, having an automatic tow hitch mechanism with both the hopper and the hitching mechanism coupled to a motorized scoop gear train. The mechanical arrangement of the scoop gear train provides for the sequential actuation of the scoop for loading transportable elements into the hopper and both the hopper for dumping and the hitch mechanism for hitching and unhitching towed vehicles or trailers. The mechanisms and gear trains have proper ratios and dimensions preventing interference between the scoop and the hopper during forward and reverse actuation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 12, 1999
    Assignee: Rokenbok Toy Company
    Inventors: William M. Barton, Lonnie C. Pogue, James A. Trinchera
  • Patent number: 5944609
    Abstract: When manually closed, switches in pads select toy vehicles and the operation of motors for moving the vehicles in different directions and moving upwardly and downwardly (and rightwardly and leftwardly) a receptacle for holding transportable elements (e.g. marbles). When interrogated by a central station, each pad sends through wires to the station signals indicating the switch closures in such pad. Such station produces first binary signals addressing the vehicle selected by such pad and second binary signals identifying the motor control operations in such vehicle. Thereafter the switches identifying in such pad the motor control operations in such selected vehicle can be closed without closing the switches identifying such vehicle. The first and second signals for each vehicle are transmitted by wireless to all of the vehicles at a common carrier frequency modulated by the first and second binary signals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 29, 1995
    Date of Patent: August 31, 1999
    Assignee: Rokenbok Toy Company
    Inventors: John J. Crane, William M. Barton, Jr., Paul Eichen, Peter C. DeAngelis, Robert T. Kulakowski
  • Patent number: 5924927
    Abstract: A horse racing game apparatus for simulating horse races has a game board with race courses established thereon and a plurality of simulated racehorses movable along the race courses for ranks. A central field is disposed on the game board and defines an inner circumferential path for the race courses. The central field is selectively extensible and contractable in at least one direction. The horse racing game apparatus also has a start gate for indicating a start position for the race courses. The start gate is disposed so as to be movable along the race courses. The start gate is angularly movable between a first position in which it lies over and across the race courses and a second position in which it is retracted away from the race courses.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 20, 1999
    Assignee: Konami Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kazuhito Matsuura, Isao Uehara
  • Patent number: 5888135
    Abstract: A key in a vehicle socket closes contacts to reset a vehicle microcontroller to a neutral state. Ribs disposed in a particular pattern in the key operate switches in a particular pattern in the vehicle to provide an address for the vehicle with the vehicle inactive but powered. When the vehicle receives such individual address from a pad within a first particular time period thereafter, the vehicle is operated by commands from the pad. The pad operates the vehicle as long as the vehicle receives commands from the pad within the first particular period after the previous command from the pad. During this period, the vehicle has a first illumination to indicate that it is being operated. When the pad fails to provide commands to the vehicle within such first particular time period, the vehicle becomes inactive but powered and provides a second illumination. While inactive but powered, the vehicle can be addressed and subsequently commanded by any of the pads including the pad previously addressing the vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 11, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 30, 1999
    Assignee: Rokenbok Toy Company
    Inventors: William M. Barton, Jr., Peter C. DeAngelis, Paul Eichen
  • Patent number: 5885159
    Abstract: Pads remotely control the operation of vehicles. In each pad, (a) at least a first control provides for the addressing of one of the vehicles, (b) second controls provide for the movement of the addressed vehicle and (c) third controls provide for the operation of members (e.g. pivotable bins) in the selected vehicle. Each pad provides a carrier signal, preferably common with the carrier signals from the other pads. Each pad modulates the carrier signal in accordance with the operation of the pad controls. The first control in each pad provides an address distinctive to the addressed vehicle and modulates the carrier signal in accordance with such address. Each pad sends the modulated carrier signals to the vehicles in a pseudo random pattern, different for each pad, with respect to time. Each vehicle demodulates the carrier signals to recover the address such vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 13, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 23, 1999
    Assignee: Rokenbok Toy Company
    Inventor: Peter C. DeAngelis
  • Patent number: 5716275
    Abstract: A running model is used in a race game machine, and includes: a frame member; a front wheel rotatably supported at a front end of the frame; a rear wheel rotatably supported at a rear end of the frame; a dummy object mounted on the frame, the dummy object including a motion portion operatively connected with particular one of the front and rear wheels; and a support wheel rotatably supported on the frame, a lowest peripheral point of the support wheel being below a line connecting respective lowest peripheral points of the front and rear wheels.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 1997
    Date of Patent: February 10, 1998
    Assignee: Konami Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Jingo Wada, Isao Uehara
  • Patent number: 5649863
    Abstract: A running model is used in a race game machine, and includes: a frame member; a front wheel rotatably supported at a front end of the frame; a rear wheel rotatably supported at a rear end of the frame; a dummy object mounted on the frame, the dummy object including a motion portion operatively connected with particular one of the front and rear wheels; and a support wheel rotatably supported on the frame, a lowest peripheral point of the support wheel being below a line connecting respective lowest peripheral points of the front and rear wheels.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 1996
    Date of Patent: July 22, 1997
    Assignee: Konami Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Jingo Wada, Isao Uehara
  • Patent number: 5542668
    Abstract: A slot track raceway has two side-by-side slots for enabling two racing cars to run around a closed loop track. A lap counter individually associated with each closed loop is set to a selected number of laps for establishing the length of a race. Each completion of a lap causes the associated lap counter to count down. When the lap counter counts down to zero, a spring biased hinged track section snaps into alignment with an upwardly inclined ramp so that the car winning the race flies off the track, thus escaping or leaping from the track.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 1995
    Date of Patent: August 6, 1996
    Assignee: Empire of Carolina
    Inventors: Joseph Casale, Salvatore Mucaro