Patents Examined by Howard B. Blankenship
  • Patent number: 6142632
    Abstract: A film position detection apparatus and a method for precisely detecting a film position are provided. An image film projection apparatus is also provided for correcting deflections of images through precisely detecting a film position and thereby projecting images recorded on the film in a good condition. A film position detection means has a ground electrode attached to a movable picture gate; detection electrodes placed in a fixed picture gate; and auxiliary electrodes placed around the detection electrodes. The auxiliary electrodes suppress erroneous variations in electrostatic capacitance generated between the ground electrode and the detection electrodes. As a result, accuracy in film position detection by the detection electrodes is improved for achieving precise detection.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 20, 1998
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2000
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventor: Kiyoshi Inatome
  • Patent number: 6134388
    Abstract: A camera housing includes a front cover part and a rear cover part which have two adjacent end portions provided with respective concavities that similarly extend inward to define adjacent concave surfaces of the two end portions. The two end portions continue over the concavities to form adjacent ribs spaced from the concave surfaces to permit an accessory for the camera housing to fit between the ribs and the concave surfaces. The accessory has at least one fastener that fits between the ribs and the concave surfaces and engages the ribs to hold the ribs together in order to prevent the front and rear cover parts from separating at the two end portions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 17, 2000
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Edward N. Balling, Jeffrey A. Solomon
  • Patent number: 6128447
    Abstract: An intermediate storage unit for use with electronic film of the type having a body in the shape of a film cartridge and a tab, extending from the body and bearing an image sensor adapted to be located in the film plane of a conventional photographic camera and having electrical contacts for interfacing the electronic film with another electronic device, such as a computer. The intermediate storage unit includes a data connector for connecting to the electrical contacts on the tab of the electronic film and a communication interface connected to the data connector. A non-volatile semiconductor memory capable of storing at least twice as many images as the electronic film is provided in the storage unit. A microcontroller connected to communication interface and the non-volatile memory controls the transfer of data from the electronic film to the non-volatile memory.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2000
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: David J. Nelson, Gregory J. Lukins
  • Patent number: 6118941
    Abstract: A lens-fitted film unit includes: a first member for constituting an external surface of the lens-fitted film unit; a second member for constituting the external surface together with the first member; and an external member adhered to at least a part of the first or second member so that at least one portion of a boundary portion of the first and second members is covered. A direction in which the external member is easily torn, is a direction intersecting with the boundary portion of the first and second members.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 12, 2000
    Assignee: Konica Corporation
    Inventor: Nobuaki Sugiyama
  • Patent number: 6115557
    Abstract: A front chassis and a rear chassis of an electronic camera are made of light transmissible resin. The electronic camera has a plurality of light-shielding elements to prevent unnecessary light (external ambient light and internally emitted light, for example) from entering optical systems such as taking lenses and light guides which guide light to an electronic flash control sensor. Further, the shielding elements prevent unnecessary light from entering photoelectric converters such as imaging devices and electronic flash control sensors. These light shielding elements enables the interior components of the camera to be visible therethrough, while ensuring that operational functions of the electronic camera are not adversely affected by entering unnecessary light.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 1998
    Date of Patent: September 5, 2000
    Assignee: Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Yutaka Maeda, Takayuki Hayashida, Yoshihiro Ishikawa, Keizou Uchioke
  • Patent number: 6115559
    Abstract: A camera is assembled according to the following method. A one-piece shock-dampening elastomeric member is placed over the front, top and rear of an inner housing. Respective openings in the elastomeric member are aligned with openings in the inner housing for a taking lens and a pair of front and rear viewfinder lenses. A protective outer housing is placed over the inner housing and the elastomeric member. Respective openings in the outer housing are aligned with the openings in the elastomeric member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 10, 1999
    Date of Patent: September 5, 2000
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Edward N. Balling, Anna C. Schelling, William F. Preston, Jennifer Linnane
  • Patent number: 6104885
    Abstract: A camera for recording images on a photographic film in a cartridge and for recording selected ones of such recorded film images on a magnetic tape having tracks corresponding to image data files and image identification data for each image data file in a cartridge is disclosed. The camera receives a cartridge which can contain either photographic film or magnetic tape. Optics are provided for recording an image of a subject on the photographic film when a photographic film cartridge is disposed in the cartridge. A digital image of a subject is stored as an image is being exposed on the photographic film. The camera is adapted to receive a cartridge containing magnetic tape for selectively recording files representing selected images from the image storage means onto the image data file tracks and image identification data onto the image identification data tracks of the magnetic tape.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 3, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2000
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Dale F. McIntyre, Norman L. Koren
  • Patent number: 6097901
    Abstract: A camera has a case and a taking lens that defines an image plane in the case. A capture member of the camera captures a series of images formed by the taking lens at the image plane. The camera has a viewfinder that displays a viewfinder field aligned with the image plane. The camera has a locator that is switchable between a primary position and a secondary position relative to the viewfinder field. The locator demarcates, in said secondary position, a partition of said viewfinder field into a plurality of areas. The camera has a selector that is switchable among a plurality of capture settings. Each capture setting identifies at least one of a plurality of image modification states. At least one of the capture settings identifies the partition and associates different image modification states with each of the areas.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 18, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 1, 2000
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventor: Kenneth A. Parulski
  • Patent number: 6094543
    Abstract: Photo film has plural perforation sets arranged along one edge thereof in line at a regular pitch. Each of the perforation sets includes first and second perforations, which are arranged closely at a regular distance. A sprocket wheel is rotated by movement of the photo film. The sprocket wheel has a wheel body. Two tooth sets respectively include first and second teeth, are disposed to protrude from a peripheral face of the wheel body, and are respectively meshed with the first and second perforations serially. An arm is disposed on the peripheral face of the wheel body, for frictionally contacting a portion of the photo film between first and second perforation sets, to be rotated by the photo film. The first and second perforation sets are included in the plural perforation sets and adjacent to each other. Each of the tooth sets are meshed with the second perforation set after being disengaged from the first perforation set.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 24, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 25, 2000
    Assignee: Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Junichi Takagi, Hirofumi Katsura
  • Patent number: 6094542
    Abstract: A camera of this invention detects the presence or absence of magnetic data and prevents at least occurrence of a frame of double exposure or unexposed frame even under the influence of an electromagnetic noise. The position of a perforation of a film is detected by a position detecting section and whether a magnetic head is set in contact with a recording area adjacent to an exposed frame or a recording inhibition area adjacent to a portion between the adjacent exposed frames is determined. A threshold value used for determining the presence or absence of magnetic data is set in a threshold setting circuit based on an output generated when the position detecting circuit determines that the magnetic head is set in contact with the recording inhibition area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 1999
    Date of Patent: July 25, 2000
    Assignee: Olympus Optical Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Junichi Itoh, Yuji Imai, Yasuo Tambara
  • Patent number: 6088529
    Abstract: A method of unloading a film cartridge with exposed film from a spent one-time-use camera that has a main body part with a chamber for the film cartridge and a pair of front and rear cover parts which house the main body part between them, comprises the steps:cutting off light lock engaging corresponding bottom portions of the front and rear cover parts to provide an exterior cut bottom opening in the front and rear cover parts, without cutting the main body part, in order to leave an interior original bottom opening in the main body part in tact; andremoving the film cartridge from the chamber through the interior original bottom opening and the exterior cut bottom opening,whereby the main body part may be recycled.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 18, 1999
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2000
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Roger A. Fields, James G. Rydelek, William T. Matthias, Maureen E. Churan-King, Randy E. Horning
  • Patent number: 6088530
    Abstract: A method of recycling a spent one-time-use camera that originally includes a pair of front and rear cover parts and a main body part having a chamber for a film cartridge, and which has had corresponding bottom portions of the front and rear cover parts and the main body part cut off to provide an opening for removing the film cartridge from the chamber, comprises the steps:cutting off a further portion of the main body part in the vicinity of the first cut that was made to provide the opening for removing the film cartridge from the chamber, in order to provide an attachment edge along the main body part;assembling a sacrificial bottom portion to the main body part at the attachment edge to replace the bottom and further portions that were cut off the main body part;loading a fresh cartridge in the chamber; andassembling new front and rear cover parts without corresponding bottom portions being cut off to the main body part, in order to complete a recycled camera,whereby after the recycled camera is used the
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 18, 1999
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2000
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: James G. Rydelek, William T. Matthias, Maureen E. Churan-King, Randy E. Horning
  • Patent number: 6086266
    Abstract: A sliding movement locking apparatus for a sliding cover of a camera includes a lens barrel, a sliding cover, a drive member which is moved in association with the movement of the lens barrel and which is provided with a rack, a first gear which engages with the rack of the drive member, a second gear coaxial and relatively rotatable to the first gear, a sliding movement locking member which is provided with a rack which engages with the second gear and which is moved to prevent the movement of the sliding cover into a closed position thereof when the locking member is at the forward extremity of movement, and a clutch mechanism is provided between the first and second gears, for rotating the first and second gears together without play therebetween when the lens barrel is moved from the retracted position to the photographing position, and for initially rotating the first gear by a predetermined angle and thereafter rotating the first and second gears together when the lens barrel is moved from the photograp
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 1999
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2000
    Assignee: Asahi Kogaku Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Yoshifumi Fujisaki
  • Patent number: 6084657
    Abstract: An optical shutter device wherein a light emitted from a light source is allowed to be incident to a polarization shutter chip through a fiber array and then the light is caused to pass through the chip by turning on a voltage to be applied to electrodes connected to transmittable portions corresponding to pixels, so that a receptor surface is lighted through an imaging lens array. Light which is incident to the polarization shutter chip at an angle .theta..sub.0 is reflected from electrode vertical surfaces, and then the light outgoes from the transmittable portions in the form of leakage light. However, the aperture angle of a lens unit of the imaging lens array is set smaller than the incident angle .theta..sub.0, and thus the light (which were incident) at the angle .theta..sub.0 (leakage light) is not focused on the receptor surface by the lens unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 10, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2000
    Assignee: Minolta Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Tomohiko Masuda, Kenichi Wada, Tsukasa Yagi
  • Patent number: 6081666
    Abstract: A method of pre-loading a camera with film and a battery, and specifically a single use camera, is disclosed. According to the disclosed method, the camera is pre-loaded by withdrawing film from a film cassette into a film spool compartment. The battery is then inserted inside the film spool compartment such that the film surrounds the battery.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2000
    Assignee: Concord Camera Corp.
    Inventors: Arthur Zawodny, Bill Yung Wai Lam, Eli Shoer, Franco Yik Kai Chung
  • Patent number: 6081667
    Abstract: A lens-fitted film unit pre-loaded with a roll of a photographic film strip of a type having a row of perforations formed in a lengthwise margin of the film strip for unconditionally delimiting respective image areas of the film strip at regular intervals of which one end is detachably engaged by a spool retainer. After exposure and development, the entire length of the film strip is rolled in a negative return cartridge pertinently prepared to the requirements for newly developed Advanced Photo System including printing and returned to customers for storage and for ordering extra prints.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 27, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2000
    Assignee: Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Kazuo Kamata
  • Patent number: 6076978
    Abstract: A camera holder, comprising a mast having a proximal end and a distal end, for supporting a camera having a shutter near the distal end. A camera mounting head is located near the distal end, having an upper plate and a lower plate for mounting the camera therebetween. The camera mounting head is attached to the mast with an arm. The arm is adjustable to vary the relative angle of the mast and camera mounting head, and relative distance therebetween. The mast may vary in length by adding additional tubular mast sections. An actuator assembly is located on the upper plate, having a plunger for engaging the shutter of the camera, an actuating lever pivotable on a fulcrum, and wherein an actuation cable is attached to the actuating lever on an opposite side of the fulcrum from the actuating plunger. The actuation cable extends from the proximal end toward the distal end for allowing remote operation of the camera when a user holds the camera holder at the proximal end.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 7, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Inventor: Kevin Lee McIlvenna
  • Patent number: 6078382
    Abstract: Charged-particle-beam projection optical systems are disclosed including a symmetric magnetic doublet comprising first and second magnetic lenses arranged along a system axis between a reticle position and a sample position. The lenses have point symmetry about a crossover point and a centrally located mutual focal point located between the two lenses. The dimensions on the sample-side of the cross-over point are reduced, in both the axial direction measured from the axis and the radial direction measured from the crossover point, by a demagnification ratio. The magnetic fields of each lens are opposite, the electrical excitation current applied to each lens coil is equal, and the lenses are preferably energized by the same power supply. A first beam deflector is located near the reticle inside the first lens; a second and third beam deflector are located inside the first lens and the second lens, respectively; and a fourth beam deflector is located near the sample inside the second lens.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 27, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 20, 2000
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Mamoru Nakasuji
  • Patent number: 6075952
    Abstract: A camera for partially preexposed, multiple exposure film including a body with an exposure well and a film track across the well. A lens is attached to the camera body at the other end of the exposure well. A mask which includes a plate and a substantially perpendicular flange is positioned at the back of the exposure well adjacent to the film track. The flange extends into the exposure well and is adhered to the wall thereof. The plate includes margins to overlap with the body of the camera about three sides around the exposure well. Another camera includes an asymmetrically arranged exposure well relative to the film track such that the body of the camera about the exposure well extends to cover the preexposed image segment on a multiple exposure film strip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 13, 2000
    Inventors: Frank B. Baek, Harry Mik Miller
  • Patent number: 6074105
    Abstract: Apparatus for supporting and guiding a film strip, a method for making such an apparatus and a camera incorporating the same. The apparatus includes a pressure plate configured to contact a film strip in a direction which corresponds to an optical axis of the camera, and a plurality of guide rails integrally formed with the pressure plate. The plurality of guide rails are configured to support the film strip during photographic operations and to guide the film strip during film movement operations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 1998
    Date of Patent: June 13, 2000
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Naoyuki Murakami