Patents Examined by Amelia Au
  • Patent number: 6219466
    Abstract: An image processing apparatus is provided with a linear processor array which includes a plurality of linearly coupled processing elements. The apparatus further includes a plurality of local memories each of which takes a form of one-dimensional pixel data memories. The local memories are respectively assigned to the plurality of processing elements. Further, the local memories are arranged so as to store in combination a two-dimensional pixel image to be processed. A plurality of buffers are respectively assigned to the processing elements. Each buffer stores pixel location information of at least one center pixel from which a unique pixel value is to be propagated if the center pixel exists on a corresponding local memory. With the arrangement mentioned above, in order to accelerate pixel data propagation in the two-dimensional pixel image, a plurality of register units are respectively assigned to the plurality of processing elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 1998
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2001
    Assignee: NEC Corporation
    Inventor: Sholin Kyo
  • Patent number: 6219459
    Abstract: A low cost image transform device capable of converting an input image to the linear drawing style in real time is presented. An edge signal of the input image is detected and normalized. The normalized edge signal is then non-linear transformed to decrease the intermediate tone level of the edges so that lines can be seen more clearly. Inversion control is further used to reverse the lightness and darkness of the non-linear transformed edge signal. The inverted signal is subsequently level adjusted and then mixed with a delayed version of the input signal using an externally controlled ratio signal. The resulting output signal is a drawing or painting type image. Since these processes are executed by simple addition or multiplication, the linear drawing style image is obtained in real time, in which edges having high-light and shaded contrast are extracted from the input image.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 15, 1998
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2001
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventor: Masafumi Kurashige
  • Patent number: 6215901
    Abstract: A method and system for performing instruction of handwriting skills by animated display of the required stroke motions with simultaneous audio verbal description of these same motions, including the means for a student to practice this lesson with use of a pen based input device by which the pen motion is captured, displayed on a computer monitor, and communicated to an evaluation algorithm which rates the quality of the writing. Based on this handwriting evaluation, the system includes means to provide visual and auditory reward, and generate the subsequent instructions and exercise for the student using embedded expert teaching knowledge. In the preferred embodiment, a tablet with a fastening mechanism fixes into position the paper duplicate of the handwriting lesson presented on the computer screen and the pen writing device is a special ballpoint pen capable of leaving a hard copy trace of the student writing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 7, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2001
    Inventor: Mark H. Schwartz
  • Patent number: 6215908
    Abstract: An apparatus to perform symmetric filtering image compression is provided. The apparatus includes an N-element shift circuit, that has N shifting blocks (SB), to store and shift data elements. Each data element represents a pixel of an image. The apparatus also includes a first plurality of adder circuits to add data elements from a first plurality of pairs of SBs of the N SBs. The apparatus further includes a second plurality of adder circuits to add data elements from a second plurality of pairs of SBs of the N SBs. Additionally, the apparatus includes a first plurality of multiplier circuits, to multiply by corresponding low pass coefficients results of additions performed by the first plurality of adder circuits. The apparatus also includes a second plurality of multiplier circuits, to multiply by corresponding high pass coefficients results of additions performed by the second plurality of adder circuits.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 24, 1999
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2001
    Assignee: Intel Corporation
    Inventors: Edward A. Pazmino, Tinku Acharya, David K. Vavro
  • Patent number: 6215904
    Abstract: An image scanner apparatus scans a document and provides image data in digital form representing the scanned document. The compression apparatus detects characteristics of the image data and compresses the image data using parallel compressors, each employing a different encoding scheme. The apparatus then selects compressed image data encoded by one of the compressors in accordance with the detected characteristics and stores the selected data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 1994
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2001
    Assignee: Xerox Corporation
    Inventor: Pierre A. Lavallee
  • Patent number: 6215899
    Abstract: An image computing and processing apparatus for computing correspondence between images from a plurality of images and for obtaining disparity corresponding to the depth of an image. Also, an apparatus for synthesizing from the disparity and image data an image as viewed from a designated viewing direction. The apparatus has a base image frame memory for storing a base image, a reference image frame memory for storing a reference image, a block correlation computing circuit for computing block correlations and confidence measure for estimation by using a plurality of block sizes, a representative pixel correlation computing circuit, and an estimation integrating computing circuit for evaluating the reliability of the result of estimation by block matching on the basis of a luminance gradient, image noise, a minimum value of an evaluation yardstick for differences between blocks, and block size, and for integrating the results of estimation obtained with the plurality of block sizes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 26, 1998
    Date of Patent: April 10, 2001
    Assignee: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Atsushi Morimura, Takeo Azuma
  • Patent number: 6212299
    Abstract: A document with a plurality of characters is read, a binary document image is produced, and a character rectangle circumscribed about a mass of black pixels connected with each other (called a black-pixel mass) is produced for each black-pixel mass. The character rectangles are classified into a plurality of groups on condition that one or more character rectangles in one group are circumscribed about one or more black-pixel masses having the same character pattern. The character rectangles in each group are circumscribed about images of the same character. Thereafter, a figure feature of a representative character image in each classified group of character rectangles is compared with each of referential character patterns. Therefore, the character images for the character rectangles circumscribing one of non-separating characters are recognized as one non-separating character.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2001
    Assignee: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Ryoichi Yuge
  • Patent number: 6211972
    Abstract: An electronic mail converting apparatus for facsimile that includes connections connecting to a facsimile, a public network, and a LAN. The connections may be internally changed according to the type of data or an instruction received. A converting device exists for converting data to e-mail data or vice versa, as required, wherein the converted data is transmitted to an instructed designation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 14, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2001
    Assignee: Matsushita Graphic Communication Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Hiroshi Okutomi, Toshihisa Sawada, Kiyoshi Toyoda
  • Patent number: 6212287
    Abstract: A method, in a system for aiding the guidance of a vehicle, for identifying marking stripes of road lanes. A road image is subjected to a convolution operation with a mask matrix so as to identify discontinuities present in the image. The resulting convolved image is compared with a threshold value and a representation of the marking stripes is determined. The mask matrix is set in such a way as to eliminate at least partially the discontinuities which do not correspond to the marking stripes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2001
    Assignee: SGS-Thomson Microelectronics S.R.L.
    Inventors: Massimiliano Olivieri, Vito Fabbrizio, Roberto Guerrieri, Alan Kramer
  • Patent number: 6212285
    Abstract: A technique for embedding a tracking number as a series of bits in a printed image alters characteristic parameter values at a set of pseudo-random locations chosen for each bit in an embedding zone. The alteration markedly changes the expectation value of some linear combination of mathematical functions of the values at that set of locations. A marker bit encoded to a higher certainty than other bits in the string aids in orienting the zones in decoding. The tracking number is detected and identified by exploiting the behavior of sums of a large number of random variables, based on the Patchtrack approach.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 1998
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2001
    Assignee: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Walter Bender, Daniel Gruhl
  • Patent number: 6208769
    Abstract: A method of accurately locating a sub-pixel maximum on a two-dimensional grid having an x axis and a y axis is provided. The method, which is especially suitable for locating a sub-pixel maximum, which falls intermediate grid point locations, begins by identifying a grid point having a maximum grid point value. Then, a quadrangle containing the sub-pixel maximum is determined by locating neighboring grid points along the x and y axes, which have the next greatest grid point values. Next, four one-dimensional, fractional maxima are computed along each side of a quadrangle. Next, two lines connecting one-dimensional maxima along the opposite sides of the quadrangle are computed. Finally, a location for the sub-pixel maximum is calculated where the two computed lines intersect.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 28, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2001
    Assignee: Acuity Imaging, LLC
    Inventor: Kirill K. Pankratov
  • Patent number: 6208772
    Abstract: A data processing system including a data processor, also called a processing accelerator, processes at least one processor word each clock cycle. Each processor word includes multiple complete data samples which are received individually as part of a sequential stream of logically adjacent or related data samples such as in image data pixels which are part of an image to be processed by a machine vision system. A predetermined number of the data samples are stored together, as a processor word, in dedicated processing accelerator memory. For example, four 8 bit data samples can be stored together as one 32 bit processor word. The system also includes a data aligner which allows the processing accelerator to process at least one processor word comprised of at least one data sample from two processor words. The aligner controls data sample alignment such as for example, pixel alignment in the case of a vision system, to facilitate image data processing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2001
    Assignee: Acuity Imaging, LLC
    Inventors: Michael John Wilt, Michael Philip Greenberg
  • Patent number: 6208745
    Abstract: A method and apparatus that inserts watermark information directly into an encoded video bitstream. The method identifies specific blocks or macroblocks in an encoded video bitstieam and inserts the watermark information directly into the bitstream such that these selected blocks are replaced with a block containing watermark information or augmented with watermark information.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2001
    Assignee: Sarnoff Corporation
    Inventors: Dinei A. Florencio, Michael A. Isnardi
  • Patent number: 6208749
    Abstract: Systems and methods for the multispectral imaging of skin tissue enables automatic characterization of the condition of a region of interest of the skin, based on direct digital imaging of the region of interest or the digitization of color photographic slides of the region of interest, illuminated by appropriately filtered light. Preferably, a digital image at a low spectral band is automatically segmented and that segmented mask is used to segment the other images by a digital processor. Parameters related to the texture, asymmetry, blotchiness and border irregularities are also automatically estimated. The region of interest is automatically characterized by the digital processor, based on those parameters. The region of interest may include a skin lesion, in which case the present invention enables the characterization of the lesion as malignant or benign.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2001
    Assignee: Electro-Optical Sciences, Inc.
    Inventors: Dina Gutkowicz-Krusin, Marek Elbaum, Michael Greenebaum, Adam Jacobs
  • Patent number: 6208754
    Abstract: The image compression and expansion device handles red (R), green (G) and blue (B) image data, which are offset horizontally to each other by one-third of one pixel, for example. The R, G and B image data are converted to a luminance signal and color difference signals, which are compressed according to the JPEG algorithm to generate compressed image data. The compressed image data are then recorded in a recording medium. Offset information, indicating that the R, G and B image data are offset to each other, is converted to a predetermined format, and is also recorded in the recording medium.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2001
    Assignee: Asahi Kogaku Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Nobuaki Abe
  • Patent number: 6205254
    Abstract: An image coding apparatus and method efficiently compresses a variety of images by a lossless or near-lossless coding, and an image decoding apparatus and method decodes code data encoded by the image coding apparatus and method. A windowing unit determines peripheral pixel values, which include a coding object pixel value and values of pixels located near the coding object pixel. An approximation unit uses plural approximation methods so as to output decoded pixel candidates, each of which approximates the coding object pixel value based on the values of the nearby pixels by using one of the plural approximation methods. The plural approximation methods can include an interpolation method and a quantization method. A minimum error selector calculates an error between the coding object pixel value and each of the decoded pixel candidates, and outputs a rank of the approximation method that produced the minimum error. A rank/runlength calculator counts the runlength of first ranks and outputs a coding symbol.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 22, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2001
    Assignee: Fuji Xerox Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Yutaka Koshi, Setsu Kunitake, Akihiro Andoh
  • Patent number: 6201888
    Abstract: Noise-corrupted boundary information in tomographic images is restored using a data structure, called a “boundary envelope”. Both the restored boundary information and a measure of the precision of the restoration are described by the process. This data structure is used to describe the restored information in both qualitative and quantitative terms. The results of the boundary restoration process are described qualitatively by graphically displaying the boundary envelope together with the noisy CT image in such a way that allows a human observer to (a) see more details of the boundary than are visible in the CT image alone, and (b) to visually apprehend the precision with which the boundary has been restored. A boundary envelope describes a region in the image within which the boundary of a given noisy object is guaranteed to lie. The boundary envelope describes a set of limits on the object boundary, and limits on those properties of a noisy object that can be computed from boundary information.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 13, 2001
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventor: Alan David Kalvin
  • Patent number: 6198852
    Abstract: The invention is embodied in a process for synthesizing a new image representing a new viewpoint of a scene from at least two existing images of the scene taken from different respective viewspoints. The process begins by choosing a planar surface visible in the at least two of the existing images and transforming the at least two existing images relative to one another so as to bring the planar surface into perspective alignment in the at least two existing images, and then choosing a reference frame and computing parallax vectors between the two images of the projection of common scene points on the reference frame. Preferably, the reference frame comprises an image plane of a first one of the existing images. Preferably, the reference frame is co-planar with the planar surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2001
    Assignees: Yeda Research and Development Co., Ltd., Yissum Research Development Co. of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Microsoft Corporation
    Inventors: Padmananbhan Anandan, Michal Irani, Daphna Weinshall
  • Patent number: 6198841
    Abstract: In a digital full color image processor, color data are obtained by reading a color image with a color image sensor. An image forming mode of the color image such as background level and magnification is specified, and the image forming mode is changed according to the specified image forming mode when the color data is processed. A reference value for area discrimination is changed according to the image forming mode. Then, an area such as a black portion or a dot area in the color data is discriminated for image processing of the color data with the reference value, and the color data is processed according to the area discrimination.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2001
    Assignee: Minolta Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Katsuhisa Toyama, Yoshihiko Hirota
  • Patent number: 6198839
    Abstract: Dynamic control of the processing flow of an image analyzer such as a biological specimen analyzer as processing proceeds. Data collected and processed from a specimen under analysis, such as a biological specimen on a microscope slide, determines the fate of further processing. If there is enough evidence, based on the data collected from a slide, to make a decision with sufficient confidence, the processing of the slide can be stopped and a decision may be rendered. By avoiding unnecessary additional computation system throughput may be enhanced. Otherwise, data collection and computation continues until either certain termination criteria are met or no more data is left to acquire. This slide-dependent control and decision making method flexibly limits the amount of computation required to reach a system decision about a specimen.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 5, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2001
    Assignee: Tripath Imaging, Inc.
    Inventors: Chih-Chau L. Kuan, Shih-Jong J. Lee, Seho Oh, Wendy R. Bannister, Michael G. Meyer