Patents Represented by Attorney, Agent or Law Firm Joseph A. Rhoa
  • Patent number: 5984031
    Abstract: A zero-turning radius self-propelled power lawn mower includes a standing platform structure for supporting a standing operator during mower operation. The mower has a combination parking brake and pump lockout structure which, when actuated, simultaneously applies a braking force to rear drive wheels and prevents hydro pumps from being moved from their neutral positions. The mower also includes a biasing system for automatically returning hand control levers to their neutral positions when they are not being manipulated by an operator. Unique cutter deck structure, caster structure, grass catcher structure, and steering control levers are also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 18, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 16, 1999
    Assignee: Wright Mfg., Inc.
    Inventors: James D. Velke, William R. Wright
  • Patent number: 5964082
    Abstract: A zero-turning-radius power lawn mower for operation by a standing-occupant includes first and second independently driven and controlled rear drive wheels mounted on separate drive axles. A riding platform for supporting the standing-occupant or operator is located between the first and second rear drive wheels. The rear drive wheels are independently driveable in both the forward and reverse directions at variable speeds so as to allow for substantially zero-radius-turning of the mower about a central turning point. The riding platform is positioned at this turning point so that the standing-occupant remains substantially unaffected by centrifugal force created during approximate zero-radius-turning of the mower thereby allowing the mower to take such turns at higher speeds.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 12, 1999
    Assignee: Wright Manufacturing, Inc.
    Inventors: William R. Wright, James D. Velke
  • Patent number: 5966401
    Abstract: A method and system are provided for the reception of a biorthogonally-modulated RF signal in a simplex free-space system. The method is found to substantially diminish the coupling between the error probabilities of those bits associated with signal selection and those bits associated with signal polarity in prior art biorthogonal receivers. By decoupling the error probabilities, the polarity information error rate is reduced and consequently the overall error rate of the receiver system is improved. The receiver system preserves soft-decision reliability information for the signal selection bits in a manner so that the information is insensitive to uncompensated amplitude fluctuations in the received signal. A symbol deinterleaver in the receiver is located between the correlators and the bit estimators. The method and system are applicable to all known biorthogonal signal sets but requires a specific interleaving structure in the corresponding transmitter system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 27, 1995
    Date of Patent: October 12, 1999
    Inventor: Derek D. Kumar
  • Patent number: 5963284
    Abstract: A liquid crystal display includes a patternable diffusing layer therein positioned between the display's substrates. The diffusing (or diffuser) layer includes a host material having a plurality of particles (e.g. substantially transparent spherical balls or spacers) provided therein in order to perform a diffusion function. The refractive index n.sub.p of the particles is different (i.e. .DELTA.n) from the refractive index n.sub.h of the host material by at least about 0.05, and .DELTA.n is preferably from about 0.05-0.15. In certain embodiments, photoimageable color filters, with diffusing particles embedded therein, function as discrete diffusing members across the passive substrate. In other embodiments, a substantially continuous diffusing layer with a transparent host, including spherical balls embedded therein, may be provided across the passive substrate between the substrate and the color filters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 5, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael R. Jones, John A. VanderPloeg, Matthew W. Warmuth, Laurie D. Lovshe
  • Patent number: 5955744
    Abstract: A liquid crystal display having an increased pixel aperture ratio is disclosed along with a method of making same. An array of a-Si TFTs is deposited on a transparent substrate. Subsequently, an organic insulating layer (e.g. Benzocyclobutene) and a corresponding array of pixel electrodes are deposited over the TFT array so that the pixel electrodes overlap the display address lines thereby increasing the display's pixel aperture ratio. The low dielectric constant .di-elect cons. (e.g. about 2.7) and relatively high thickness (e.g. greater than about 1.5 .mu.m) of the insulating layer reduce the pixel electrode-address line parasitic capacitance C.sub.PL in the overlap areas thereby reducing cross-talk (or capacitive coupling) in the display. In sum, an increased pixel aperture ratio is achieved without sacrificing display performance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 21, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Tieer Gu, Willem den Boer
  • Patent number: 5952941
    Abstract: A system and corresponding method for monitoring traffic violations. A satellite based system determines the location, and upon which roadway, a vehicle is traveling. A memory (e.g. RAM) in the vehicle system stores speed limit data relating to different roads, speed limits, and/or red lights across the globe. A controller in the vehicle compares, for example, speed limit data relative to determined speed of the vehicle so as to detect when the speed limit on the road upon which the vehicle is traveling is exceeded. When the speed limit is exceeded, a transmitter on the vehicle transmits a signal to at least one satellite indicative of the violation. The at least one satellite forwards the violation signal to a motor vehicle department so that a ticket can be issued to the vehicle operator. In a similar manner, the satellite based system can detect other infractions such as running of red lights, and issue tickets in response to same.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 14, 1999
    Assignee: I0 Limited Partnership, L.L.P.
    Inventor: Aris Mardirossian
  • Patent number: 5953091
    Abstract: A multi-domain liquid crystal display includes multiple liquid crystal alignment domains per pixel. In certain embodiments, only a single mechanical buffing step is required per substrate to provide the multiple domains per pixel. A continuous base underlying mechanically buffed alignment layer is provided, and a reactive alignment layer is provided thereon. The reactive alignment layer is doped so as to cause twist of molecules therein. The reactive layer may be photo-polymerizable and patterned so as to form an array of alignment portions and expose/uncover a corresponding array of areas of the underlying buffed alignment layer. Thus, liquid crystal molecules contacting the patterned reactive alignment portions are aligned in one direction while liquid crystal molecules contacting the exposed mechanically buffed polyimide layer are aligned in another direction. Multiple domains are thus provided, with only a single mechanical buffing step being necessary.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 9, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 14, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael R. Jones, Laurie D. Lovshe
  • Patent number: 5949506
    Abstract: A liquid crystal display includes a patternable diffusing layer therein positioned between the display's substrates. The diffusing (or diffuser) layer includes a host material having a plurality of particles (e.g. substantially transparent spherical balls or spacers) provided therein in order to perform a diffusion function. The refractive index n.sub.p of the particles is different (i.e. .DELTA.n) from the refractive index n.sub.h of the host material by at least about 0.05, and .DELTA.n is preferably from about 0.05-0.15. In certain embodiments, photoimageable color filters, with diffusing particles embedded therein, function as discrete diffusing members across the passive substrate. In other embodiments, a substantially continuous diffusing layer with a transparent host, including spherical balls embedded therein, may be provided across the passive substrate between the substrate and the color filters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 24, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 7, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael R. Jones, John A. VanderPloeg, Matthew W. Warmuth, Laurie D. Lovshe
  • Patent number: 5949796
    Abstract: A method and system are provided for the transmission and reception of an In-band On-channel (IBOC) FM-band digital audio broadcast (DAB) signal. The IBOC DAB signal is generated in the transmitter to substantially occupy the upper and lower sideband frequency regions in the RF emission mask for the conventional broadcast analog FM-band. Redundant source bit information is transmitted in both the upper and lower sidebands so that the loss of information in either one but not both sidebands due to large amounts of interference or distortion, caused by, for example, first-adjacent interference, does not deleteriously affect the IBOC DAB receiver performance. The system exhibits both frequency-diversity and time-diversity. The receiver determines which codeword bit estimate, corresponding to either upper or lower sideband signals, is less likely to be erroneous.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 1996
    Date of Patent: September 7, 1999
    Inventor: Derek D. Kumar
  • Patent number: 5942540
    Abstract: Methods are disclosed for prophylactically and chronically preventing symptomatic depression, neuronal cell injury and cell death in systemic and neurological conditions, populations with cerebrovascular risk factors, and invasive vascular procedures, employing a glycine-site antagonist at the NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate) complex e.g., 2-phenyl-1,3-propanediol dicarbamate (felbamate).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 10, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 24, 1999
    Inventor: Walter E. Kozachuk
  • Patent number: 5926236
    Abstract: A backlit transmissive liquid crystal display including non-linear resistive thin film diodes (TFDs). Select address lines on the active substrate provide both conventional address line functionality, as well as acting as one of the electrodes for each thin film diode. Two such diodes are provided in each pixel in certain embodiments. Still further, black matrix material is provided between the aforesaid address line material and the substrate so as to form rows of stacks on the active substrate. The thin film diode semi-insulating material, the address line material, and the black matrix material are patterned together in a single step to form elongated rows (or columns) on the active substrate. In such a manner, the display has reduced ambient light reflections, and reduce photosensitivity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 24, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 20, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Willem den Boer, John Z. Z. Zhong, Vijayen S. Veerasamy, Yiwei Lu
  • Patent number: 5920084
    Abstract: A liquid crystal display having an increased pixel aperture ratio is disclosed along with a method of making same. An array of a-Si TFTs is deposited on a transparent substrate. Subsequently, an organic insulating layer (e.g. Benzocyclobutene) and a corresponding array of pixel electrodes are deposited over the TFT array so that the pixel electrodes overlap the display address lines thereby increasing the display's pixel aperture ratio. The low dielectric constant .epsilon. (e.g. about 2.7) and relatively high thickness (e.g. greater than about 1.5 .mu.m) of the insulating layer reduce the pixel electrode-address line parasitic capacitance C.sub.PL in the overlap areas thereby reducing cross-talk (or capacitive coupling) in the display. In sum, an increased pixel aperture ratio is achieved without sacrificing display performance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 6, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Tieer Gu, Willem den Boer
  • Patent number: 5917199
    Abstract: A TFT structure includes a variably doped contact layer system in order to reduce leakage current characteristics and increase mobility of the TFT. Such TFTs may be utilized in, for example, X-ray imagers or liquid crystal displays. In certain embodiments, the contact layer system is lightly doped adjacent a semiconductor or channel layer, and is more heavily doped adjacent the source/drain electrodes. The variation in doping density of the contact layer system may be performed in a step-like manner, gradually, continuously, or in any other suitable manner. In certain embodiments, the contact layer system may include a single layer which is deposited over an intrinsic semiconductor layer, with the amount of dopant gas being used during the deposition process being adjusted through the deposition of the single layer so as to cause the doping density to vary (increase or decrease) throughout the thickness of the system/layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 29, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Young Hee Byun, Yiwei Lu
  • Patent number: 5907378
    Abstract: A liquid crystal display in which a negatively birefringent layer is used as both an orientation film and as a retarder in the display. An improved method of making such a display is also disclosed. In preferred embodiments, each of the orientation layers has a retardation value of from about -80 to -200 nm.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 1998
    Date of Patent: May 25, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Adiel Abileah, Gang Xu, John Z. Z. Zhong
  • Patent number: 5895106
    Abstract: A normally white (NW) twisted nematic liquid crystal display (LCD) outputs improved viewing characteristics which are defined by high contrast ratios and/or reduced inversion. The display includes a pair of negative tilted retarders (#2 and #6) located on one side of the liquid crystal layer (#10), each of the tilted retarders including a tilt or incline angle which varies throughout the thickness of the layer. Additionally, one or two negative uniaxial or biaxial retarders (#4 and #7) are provided on the same side of the liquid crystal layer as the tilted retarders. As a result of the particular orientations, alignments, and retardation values described in the different embodiments, the display exhibits improved contrast and reduced inversion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 13, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 20, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: John A. VanderPloeg, Gang Xu, Patrick F. Brinkley, Michael R. Jones
  • Patent number: 5896255
    Abstract: A disc cartridge and corresponding method/system are provided for limiting the number of copies which may be made of software stored on a magnetic disc. A magnetic field generating member is provided within a magnetic disc cartridge, or embedded within a magneto-optical or magnetic disc, so that after copying of the software from the first disc to a second disc, the magnet is energized so as to create an erasing magnetic or electromagnetic field proximate the first disc in order to erase the copied software therefrom, while an anti-copy signal is copied or otherwise sent along with the software from the first disc to the second disc so as to prevent later copying of the software from the second disc. According to certain other embodiments of this invention, a method/system is provided for erasing software from a disc using the above-discussed cartridge after a user attempting to copy the software enters an incorrect password a predetermined number of consecutive times.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 20, 1999
    Assignee: Aris Mardirossian, Inc.
    Inventor: Aris Mardirossian
  • Patent number: 5886763
    Abstract: An LCD heater includes a substantially transparent conductive heater layer (e.g. ITO) deposited on a transparent sheet. Attached to the conductive layer are a pair of tin coated bus bars, each of which is adhered to the conductive layer via a Z-axis conductive adhesive that reduces thermal stresses induced on solder connections between the bus bars and wires soldered thereto.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 26, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 23, 1999
    Assignee: OIS Optical Imaging Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Joseph A. Wolkowicz, Richard L. Schneider, James C. Modrak, Timothy Ewald
  • Patent number: 5882020
    Abstract: This invention relates to a stand-on sulky device to be attached to the rear of a self-propelled power mower or other self-propelled vehicle. The sulky includes first, second, and third pivots to provide improved maneuverability of the two-wheeled sulky platform during operation. The first and third pivots are arranged substantially parallel to the ground during sulky operation and are vertically spaced from one another thereby resulting in improved sulky performance. According to certain embodiments, the sulky includes a design allowing for a more compact storage position wherein the platform is hung from the mower handle bars with the upper or foot receiving surface of the platform facing away from the mower and the first arm being received in an optional recess defined in the bottom of the mower so as to restrict swinging movement of the platform while in storage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 5, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 16, 1999
    Assignee: Wright Mfg., Inc.
    Inventor: James D. Velke
  • Patent number: 5880536
    Abstract: A customer side power management system including at least one auxiliary fuel cell(s) source is provided. When the power derived from the electric utility reaches a predetermined threshold level, all remaining power needed to supply the customer's loads is obtained from the at least one hydrocarbon powered fuel cell which is/are located within the customer's facility. In such a manner, high peak demand utility charges are avoided by the customer, and the simple cost effective power generation from the fuel cell is provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 14, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 9, 1999
    Assignee: IO Limited Partnership, LLP
    Inventor: Aris Mardirossian
  • Patent number: 5875433
    Abstract: A point of sale tax reporting and automatic collection system including a smart tax register located at a retailer location. The retailer smart register processes consumer transactions and calculates the amount of sales tax due the retailer by the consumer for each transaction. Following the transaction, the consumer requests and is give a tax paid receipt. After the sales tax is paid to the retailer by the consumer, the register either immediately or periodically forwards the amount of the transaction and the amount of sales tax collected by the retailer to a computer and memory located at a remote location (e.g. state government taxing authority). The computer and memory receive and store the retailer's transaction and sales tax information, and report same to the Internal Revenue Service at least once a year.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 1996
    Date of Patent: February 23, 1999
    Assignee: TaxNet Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Paul A. Francisco, Frederick J. Petschauer