Patents Examined by Eric Nelson
  • Patent number: 5826113
    Abstract: An AF section receives a reflected light beam from the subject. A CPU calculates a distance to the subject based on an output of the AF section. An underwater detecting section optically determines that the camera lies in the water. A transparency detecting section evaluates the degree of muddiness of the surrounding water when the camera lies in the water. A focusing section sets the focusing position of the photographing lens of the camera based on an output of the CPU and an output of the transparency detecting section when the underwater detecting section has determined that the camera lies in the water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 1995
    Date of Patent: October 20, 1998
    Assignee: Olympus Optical Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Osamu Nonaka
  • Patent number: 5797046
    Abstract: A visual axis controllable optical apparatus, which is used in different postures. The optical apparatus includes a light detecting device for receiving light reflected by an eye, and detecting the intensity distribution of the received light, a storage device for storing personal data associated with a personal difference of the eye in correspondence with the different postures and a visual axis detecting device for detecting a visual axis. The visual axis detecting device detects the position of the visual axis using the personal data stored in the storage device corresponding to the posture of the optical apparatus, and the intensity distribution detected by the light detecting device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 22, 1995
    Date of Patent: August 18, 1998
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Akihiko Nagano, Akira Yamada, Yoshiaki Irie
  • Patent number: 5790236
    Abstract: This invention discloses an apparatus for apparatus for conducting a comparison of a plurality of versions of a movie which differ at least in their audio channels and for generating an editing list for an output movie on the basis of the comparison, the apparatus comprising a movie version synchronizer operative to compare a plurality of movie versions which differ at least in their audio channels and generating a signal representing the mutual synchronization of the plurality of movie versions and an output movie generator receiving the synchronization signal and operative to generate a signal representing an output movie editing list for an output movie.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 26, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 4, 1998
    Assignees: Elop Electronics Industries Ltd., Television Multilingue S.A.
    Inventors: Asher Hershtik, Dani Rozenbaum
  • Patent number: 5787314
    Abstract: An automatic focusing device includes a focus detection device for detecting focus data from a plurality of focus detection areas established in the imaging region. A selection device selects a specified area from the plurality of focus detection areas. A focus control device performs focus control of the photographic lens corresponding to the focus data of that specified area. The selection device may include a statistical prediction device for performing a statistical calculation on the past focus data in the specified area and for determining a predicted value of the focus data by extending a trend of the focus data. A statistical determination device determines whether the most recent focus data of the specified area is outside the acceptable range of the predicted value. A statistical tracking device searches for focus data within the acceptable range of the said prediction value and changes the specified area to the searched-out area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 21, 1996
    Date of Patent: July 28, 1998
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Toru Iwane
  • Patent number: 5752094
    Abstract: An autozoom apparatus for a camera having an operating member for designating a first point and a second point in a scene to be photographed; a circuit using an angular velocity sensor for detecting a displacement angle of the camera when the camera is rotated from the first to second points; an autofocus circuit for measuring the object distance; a zoom encoder; a zoom motor; and a circuit for controlling the zoom motor. The autozoom apparatus calculates a focal length corresponding to the picture frame defined by the first and second points and makes automatic zooming to the calculated focal length.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 1995
    Date of Patent: May 12, 1998
    Assignee: Olympus Optical Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Motoko Tsutsumi, Minoru Hara, Kenichi Kishida
  • Patent number: 5748994
    Abstract: An optical device, such as a camera, which includes an image blur suppression optical system to optically prevent image blur of a photographic image on an image plane of the optical device by changes in at least a portion of a photographic optical system. An image blur suppression drive unit drives the image blur suppression optical system, and a suppression position detection unit detects changes in the position of the image blur suppression optical system during the time of the image blur suppression. A lens prime and a memory unit generates constants indicative of optical conditions in the optical device which correspond to changes in the position of the image blur suppression optical system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 29, 1996
    Date of Patent: May 5, 1998
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventors: Tadao Kai, Nobuhiko Terui, Shinichi Tsukada
  • Patent number: 5749000
    Abstract: A camera which can focus on one or more of multiple focus detection areas and which allows a photographer to change the focus to a new focus detection area by voicing a reference code corresponding to the new focus detection area. The camera includes a voice recognition mechanism which recognizes a voice of a photographer, a selection mechanism which selects at least one focus detection area from the multiple focus detection areas in correspondence to a voice recognized by the voice recognition mechanism and a focus mechanism which detects and adjusts respective focus conditions corresponding to the focus detection areas selected by the selection mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 1996
    Date of Patent: May 5, 1998
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Tsutomu Narisawa
  • Patent number: 5740477
    Abstract: A multi-point object distance measuring device which includes a plurality of object distance measuring areas, and a detecting device for detecting the amounts of defocus or distances of objects in the plurality of object distance measuring areas. The plurality of object distance measuring areas are disposed in a manner such that at least two object distance measuring areas of the plurality of object distance measuring areas partially overlap each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 10, 1997
    Date of Patent: April 14, 1998
    Assignee: Asahi Kogaku Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Kosei Kosako, Takuma Sato
  • Patent number: 5740478
    Abstract: A camera having an autofocus apparatus for multi-spot focus detection. Particularly, a camera is provided in such an arrangement that selection operation members for selecting an arbitrary area from a plurality of focus detection areas by a manual operation are provided at positions where a photographer can operate it readily with a finger while holding the camera in a lateral posture or in a vertical posture and that selection information selected through one operation member out of the above two operation members depending upon a holding condition of the camera, is validated, thereby improving the operability.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 1996
    Date of Patent: April 14, 1998
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Ryuichi Kobayashi
  • Patent number: 5737649
    Abstract: A camera powered by a battery has a first memory area for storing first data used in operating the camera and for retaining the first data irrespective of a power source interruption in the camera, and a second memory area powered by the battery for storing second data which is dependent upon the first data. A power interruption in the camera, such as occurs when the battery is exhausted or replaced, is detected by comparing the first data stored in the first memory area with the second data stored in the second memory area. After detection of a power interruption, the camera is initialized and the first data stored in the first memory area is then copied into the second memory area. Since the first memory area and the second memory area are compared each time the camera is activated, the state of the battery can be reliably checked.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 1995
    Date of Patent: April 7, 1998
    Assignee: Seiko Precision Inc.
    Inventors: Yoshiyuki Iwamatsu, Isamu Ishii, Shinichi Endo
  • Patent number: 5734934
    Abstract: An emission angle variable flash apparatus of the invention alters an angular aperture to be formed by side reflection plates disposed oppositely to both side surfaces of a reflector in linkage with a change of a distance between a Xe tube and a reflector on their optical axis, thereby enhancing the efficiency of utilization of flash from a light source and expanding a variable range of an emission angle in the horizontal direction. As a result, the emission angle variable flash apparatus of the invention is made smaller in size than in the prior art.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 16, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 31, 1998
    Assignee: West Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Katsumi Horinishi, Akira Iwamoto, Mitsuo Fuke, Katsunori Kawabata, Shinji Ando
  • Patent number: 5732288
    Abstract: An auto-focusing device for a camera according to the present invention comprises many different systems. Included is a focus detection section which intermittently calculates focus detection information corresponding to the distance to the photographic subject. Also included is a photographic subject position prediction section which predicts a future position of the photographic subject based on the focus detection information. Finally, a lens driving section then drives a photographic lens based on a predicted result of the photographic subject position predicting section. The photographic subject position predicting section includes a neural network that predicts the future position of the photographic subject with an input parameter that has values regarding focusing positions of the photographic lens. These values correspond to focus detection data calculated by the focus detection section. The neural network makes it possible to predict the future focusing position of the photographic lens accurately.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 14, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 24, 1998
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Masaru Muramatsu
  • Patent number: 5732299
    Abstract: A camera is provided having a film transport device that performs accurate detection of an end of film, even if there is a change in the electric power voltage or film transport mechanism load, e.g., because of a temperature change in the camera. The film transport device includes a film advance device that winds the film onto the spool of a camera, a motor, and first and second edge detectors that detect perforations in the film by detecting edges of the perforations. The film perforations are arranged before and after the film frame in a direction of the film advancement. A film transport controller stops the winding of the film by the film advance device when the film transport controller determines that the film has been wound to its end. The film transport controller determines that the film end has been reached when a perforation is detected by the first edge detection device prior to the detection of a specified number of perforations by the second edge detection device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 24, 1998
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventors: Akihiro Yoshizawa, Toshiyuki Nakamura
  • Patent number: 5729771
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a focus detecting apparatus comprising a field mask disposed near a prescribed image plane of an objective lens and having an aperture offset from the optical axis of the objective lens in order to restrict a field area. A field lens is disposed near the prescribed image plane of the objective lens with a pair of secondary imaging lenses corresponding to the aperture for reimaging an image formed by the objective lens. A stop is disposed adjacent to the pair of secondary imaging lenses and having a pair of apertures for restricting light passing through the pair of secondary imaging lenses. A senor for detecting light quantity; distributions of images formed by the secondary imaging lenses. The pair of secondary imaging lenses are in contact with each other and have different projection shapes on a plane perpendicular to the optical axis of the objective lens.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 18, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 17, 1998
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Keiji Ohtaka
  • Patent number: 5729768
    Abstract: A one-time-use camera comprises a film cartridge and a lighttight enclosure which contains the film cartridge and can be opened to remove the film cartridge. Further, the one-time-use camera has a flash unit which is characterized in that a frangible support device for the flash unit is located to be destroyed when the lighttight enclosure is opened to remove the film cartridge.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 3, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 17, 1998
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Roger Alan Fields, Stanley Ward Stephenson, III
  • Patent number: 5727234
    Abstract: A camera is provided that accomplishes a warning display using a range measurement frame indicating a specific subject field region. The camera includes a shake amount detection system that detects the amount of shaking of the camera, a drive system that drives the correction lens to effect shake correction and a movement amount detection system that detects the amount of movement of the correction lens. The camera may also include a lens MPU and a camera MPU. The lens MPU determines whether or not shaking has been negated through driving of the correction lens accomplished by the drive system. When shaking has not been negated, the lens MPU outputs a warning signal. The camera MPU sends a signal to the warning display system upon receiving this output warning signal to cause a range measurement frame to flash.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 23, 1995
    Date of Patent: March 10, 1998
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventors: Yasushi Sakagami, Yoshio Matsuzawa
  • Patent number: 5721998
    Abstract: A fixing member includes a body member having a contact portion with a fixed member outwardly and a spring member disposed in an inward portion of the body member and protruding from the contact portion. The spring member is composed of a plastic material and formed integrally with the body member. The spring member has a bending portion disposed in the inward portion of the body member, a protruded portion, contacting the inward portion of the body member, for generating a first biasing force and a bent portion for reversing an extending direction in the interior of the body. The fixing member and the spring member are aggregated, formed into one united body and PMed (plastic-molded), thus providing the fixing member at a low cost.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 1996
    Date of Patent: February 24, 1998
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Shin-ichi Kinoshita
  • Patent number: 5717966
    Abstract: Camera capable of indicating set photographic field by masking an area out of the photographic field nearby an image forming plane within a visual field of a viewfinder or lowering transmittance of the area in accordance with a change of photography format such as from an ordinary shot to a panoramic shot. The camera includes light-receiving elements for photometry which output a signal in response to amount of light transmitted through the image forming plane within an optical path of the viewfinder, a correcting circuit for correcting the element output in response to the set photographic field, and a photometry circuit for calculating a photometric value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 1996
    Date of Patent: February 10, 1998
    Assignee: Minolta Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shigeto Ohmori, Ichiro Kasai, Jun Ishihara, Ichiro Tsujimura
  • Patent number: 5717965
    Abstract: A device has a photometry unit for performing a photometry operation of an object field using an accumulation type photometry element, and an accumulation time determination unit for determining the accumulation time of the photometry element. The accumulation time determination unit determines the value of the accumulation time for the next photometry operation by calculating a weighted average of the accumulation times in previous photometry operations. Since the value of the accumulation time for the next photometry operation is determined by calculating a weighted average of the accumulation times in previous photometry operations, the influence of flickering of an illumination light source can be eliminated, and a photometered value can be output within a short period of time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 1995
    Date of Patent: February 10, 1998
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Hiroyuki Iwasaki
  • Patent number: 5713050
    Abstract: When a remote control shot mode is set, a voltage of an electric battery mounted in a camera is detected. The detected voltage is compared with a predetermined remote control OK voltage. A quantity of electricity consumed within 5 minutes until function of automatic power-off is operated after the remote control shot mode is set, is added to a quantity of electricity consumed from a shutter release by a remote controller to the setting of a next frame shot. The added value is converted into a voltage of the electric battery to be the remote control OK voltage. The remote control shot mode is allowed only if the detected voltage of the electric battery is more than the remote control OK voltage. As a result, when the setting of the remote controller shot mode is allowed, the photographing can be performed without fail.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 1996
    Date of Patent: January 27, 1998
    Assignee: Fuji Photo Optical Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Katsuji Ozawa