Patents Examined by Peter J. Rashid
  • Patent number: 5477042
    Abstract: Hand-held devices are provided for both scanning and decoding coded images such as two-dimensional bar codes. A linear scanning array of image sensing elements in the scanner/decoder provides image data with pixel-to-pixel synchronism, but lacking scan-to-scan synchronism as the scanning array is moved transversely across the bar code image. No tracking ball or roller is included to provide data enabling scan-to-scan synchronism. Redundant scan cancellation is employed to delete redundant image data from the stored image, with the adequate representation of coded information taking precedence over storage of a high resolution image. The stored image is sampled to correlate bar code edge pattern elements in order to identify the bounds and orientation of scanned bar code images. The redundancy-reduced stored bar code image is decoded within the hand-held unit, with use of data on bar code bounds and orientation, to provide decoded information for further use.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 1993
    Date of Patent: December 19, 1995
    Assignee: Metamedia Corporation
    Inventor: Ynjiun P. Wang
  • Patent number: 5453601
    Abstract: An improved monetary system using electronic media to exchange economic value securely and reliably.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 15, 1991
    Date of Patent: September 26, 1995
    Assignee: Citibank, N.A.
    Inventor: Sholom S. Rosen
  • Patent number: 5446543
    Abstract: A pattern extracting apparatus extracts a pattern of a desired color from an object containing a plurality of color patterns. In the apparatus, the object is irradiated by light to provide data relating to color components and the data relating to color components are converted into Munsell color data H (Hue), V (Value) and C (Chroma). After that, a pattern of a specific color is extracted from the object based on the Munsell color data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 1993
    Date of Patent: August 29, 1995
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba
    Inventors: Kazuyo Nakagawa, Toshio Sato
  • Patent number: 5430285
    Abstract: There is disclosed an apparatus for illuminating a sensing region having an object therein, comprising a reflector that is elongated in a first plane, the reflector having a width dimension that is less than a width dimension of a sensing region to be illuminated, and further having a first curved profile in the first plane about a center of curvature. In a preferred embodiment the reflector is disposed between the center of curvature and the sensing region. In a second plane which is orthogonal to the first plane and includes the center of curvature, a reflecting surface of the reflector has a second curved profile. A plurality of substantially Lambertian light sources each face the reflector for directing light thereto generally in a direction of the center of curvature for reflection toward the sensing region. The second profile preferably comprises a portion of an ellipse and a light source is disposed substantially at a primary focus thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 1993
    Date of Patent: July 4, 1995
    Assignee: Welch Allyn, Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas W. Karpen, Kenneth A. Wright, Gerard F. Beckhusen, Mark A. McClaude, William H. Lagerway, Jeffrey B. Powers, Theresa M. West
  • Patent number: 5426282
    Abstract: A retail checkout station for purchaser self-checkout is coupled to a service terminal with a video monitor directed at the checkout. The service terminal preferably services a number of checkouts. Product codes can be downloaded from a remote location to a checkout presented with a product lacking a product code barcode label, such as an item of bulk produce. A product database having product price information stored in a memory is normally indexed to product codes which are scanned in, and also is at least partly indexed by product identity information. The checkout station can have an electronic scale for determining the weight of a product. A video image of an uncoded product in the security zone is captured by a camera and displayed on a video monitor which is viewable by store personnel. A keyboard associated with the video monitor permits the store personnel to enter a product code corresponding to the product displayed on the video monitor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 1993
    Date of Patent: June 20, 1995
    Inventor: David R. Humble
  • Patent number: 5422730
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for optical detection and imaging of regional circulatory flow in biological tissues for research purposes. An animal or plant organ is perfused with a saline suspension of colored and/or fluorescent microspheres. The organ is excised and fixed in the form of a specimen block for mounting in a microtome or other suitable apparatus. Under automatic control of a microcomputer equipped with a frame grabber, a surface layer of the block is removed, the resulting new exposed surface of the block receives a flash of illumination from a light source, and light reflected by colored microspheres or, alternatively, light emitted by fluorescent microspheres, is detected by a CCD video camera aimed at the block. Also under microcomputer control, light filters having suitable light bandpasses are interposed between the light sources and the block, and between the block and the camera.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 6, 1995
    Inventors: Clyde H. Barlow, Jeffrey J. Kelly
  • Patent number: 5420688
    Abstract: A method is presented to produce a change in the optical path length in the gap between two single mode optical fibers proportional to the lateral displacement of either fiber end normal to its axis. This is done with the use of refraction or diffraction at the interface between a guiding and non-guiding media to change the direction of propagation of the light in the gap. A method is also presented for laying a waveguide on a cantilever so that the displacement of the tip of the cantilever produces a proportional path length change in the gap by distancing the waveguide from the neutral axis of the cantilever. The fiber is supported as a cantilever or a waveguide is deposited on a micromachined cantilever and incorporated in an interferometer which is made totally on a silicon substrate with the use of integrated-optic technology.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 1992
    Date of Patent: May 30, 1995
    Inventor: John Farah
  • Patent number: 5418355
    Abstract: A storage phosphor radiography patient identification system which matches a patient with an x-ray image of the patient stored in a storage phosphor. The system includes a patient identifying bar code--uniquely identifying a patient; a storage phosphor identifying bar code uniquely identifying a storage phosphor and a portable bar code scanner. The bar code scanner is used to scan the patient bar code and the storage phosphor bar code when a patient is exposed to an X-ray which is stored on the storage phosphor. Preferably, a portable x-ray source has a chart having sets of bar codes identifying x-ray examination type information. The bar code scanner scans the examination type bar codes at the time the x-ray of the patient is taken. The storage phosphor has a non-volatile read/write memory adhered to it. The bar code scanner has a memory probe which transfers the patient ID, storage phosphor ID and exam time information from the bar code scanner to the storage phosphor memory.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 12, 1993
    Date of Patent: May 23, 1995
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventor: Richard Weil
  • Patent number: 5418354
    Abstract: A self service cart system is provided to speed throughput at a check out counter and thus reduce space devoted to check out counters. The cart comprises a bar code scanner for acquiring a price and a description of a product, a security scanner for converting a tag from an unsecured state to a secured state, a magnetic card reader for activating the cart and a controller. The controller stores the price and description of all products in a store and keeps a running total of the price of the products scanned and placed in the cart and coordinates the various activities of the various parts of the cart system. An inventory control computer is connected to the cart's controller at the check out counter to down load the price and description of the products scanned. The products then pass through a security sensor which determines if the products are in the secured state and raises an alarm if the products are in the unsecured state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 20, 1993
    Date of Patent: May 23, 1995
    Inventors: Leonard W. Halling, Dale B. Halling
  • Patent number: 5406061
    Abstract: A bar code scanner suitable for use with a variety of different host terminals includes a microcontroller whose frequency of operation is changed as a function of the host terminal to which the scanner is connected. Where a particular host terminal is operable at a lower rate the microcontroller may be operated at a lower frequency to reduce the power consumption of the scanner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 1993
    Date of Patent: April 11, 1995
    Assignee: Opticon Inc.
    Inventor: Gerard Knight
  • Patent number: 5406059
    Abstract: Molding machine, particularly of the centrifugal type, for low-melting materials, synthetic materials or the like, including readers for reading reference markings located on one side of a mold; these readers are connected to a programmable logic controller, which supervises the operation of the machine, for the automatic selection of the molding parameters according to the mold used.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 1993
    Date of Patent: April 11, 1995
    Assignee: Nicem S.p.A.
    Inventor: Romeo Nicetto
  • Patent number: 5401947
    Abstract: An electronic pricing display system for displaying product information on display strips (24) attached to shelf edges. A strip controller (30) heats selected thermochromic ink markings (44) printed on display strips (24) to form price display segments. An encoder prints and programs product identifiers (14) at a regional center. Store personnel snap product identifiers (14) on top of display strip (24), thereby causing the system to display new product information for selected products along the display strip (24).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 1994
    Date of Patent: March 28, 1995
    Inventor: Terrell A. Poland
  • Patent number: 5402238
    Abstract: An assembly preferably utilized in cooperation with a method for determining a surface topology of a workpiece. The assembly includes a projectile; means for coupling the projectile to a surface of a workpiece, and for imparting an initial momentum to the projectile with respect to the surface; and, means for sensing a relative movement of the projectile with respect to the workpiece surface, for generating a locus of positional points over time of the projectile as a measure of the surface topology of the workpiece.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 1992
    Date of Patent: March 28, 1995
    Assignee: Eastman Kodak Company
    Inventors: Thomas W. Dey, Philip F. Marino
  • Patent number: 5401946
    Abstract: Advertisements and promotions to which a consumer has been exposed are monitored together with the subsequent purchasing behavior of that consumer. The information is combined to analyze whether and to what extent the advertisements and/or promotions influenced the consumer's purchases. Purchases are monitored by producing a machine readable record thereof with a store cash register. The consumer inserts this record into a home unit which stores this information. The home unit is also capable of issuing a reward to the consumer for cooperating. Also, the advertising, promotion and/or purchase data is classified by the home unit into selected categories which can be accessed by a computer for further processing to provide, for example, certain test results of interest relatively quickly because only a portion of all the collected data needs to be analyzed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 1991
    Date of Patent: March 28, 1995
    Inventor: Lee S. Weinblatt
  • Patent number: 5399845
    Abstract: An apparatus for optically detecting data on paper or reusable plastic sheets, delivering the data directly to a computer including reflective photoelectric sensors to detect marks on the sheets. The software employed may use a multitude of methods to extract information from the data. The parallel I/O interface card between the apparatus and a computer permits data sampling of many sensors simultaneously. Many different thicknesses and reflectiveness of sheets may be used, thus permitting use of inexpensive photo copied forms. The apparatus is simplified by taking advantage of circuitry and the power source in the computer. The apparatus may be used to grade papers, tabulate votes, collect survey information, match people best suited for a job, date matching, or any other purpose in which data from marks on sheets can be used by a general or special purpose computer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 1993
    Date of Patent: March 21, 1995
    Inventor: Leslie G. Manucy, III
  • Patent number: 5400138
    Abstract: A color measuring system includes a portable spectrophotometer connectable to a general-purpose computer. The portable unit includes a microprocessor with a read-only program memory storing machine executable instructions to implement data processing for color measurement purposes and input/output functions including key reading and data transfer functions and display functions. A random-access data memory is used to temporarily store process data for later transfer to the general-purpose computer. An editor program and a compiler program in the general-purpose computer may be used to generate a program for the microprocessor using high-level, generalized commands. After such a program has been written and compiled in the general-purpose computer, it is transferred to a command buffer area in the random-access data memory of the microprocessor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 1992
    Date of Patent: March 21, 1995
    Assignee: X-Rite, Incorporated
    Inventors: Steven H. Peterson, Ross Ouwinga, James L. Overbeck
  • Patent number: 5397886
    Abstract: A motorized card reader/encoder mechanism of novel design utilizes a positionable card handling system to perform card reading and/or encoding operations efficiently and with minimal space requirements. In a preferred configuration, the card mechanism includes a generally rotatable guide assembly having a card path for receiving and transporting a card for read/encode operations, and optionally, a generally fixed throat assembly for directing a card to the card guide assembly. The guide assembly is rotatable between a plurality of positions including a card transfer position wherein the guide assembly is in generally adjacent alignment with the throat assembly, a card read/encode position wherein the guide assembly is in a rotated position not in substantial alignment with the throat assembly, and a card retention position wherein the guide assembly card path is oriented generally vertically in order to transfer a card to a card capture bin.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 1993
    Date of Patent: March 14, 1995
    Assignee: Mos Magnetics Corporation
    Inventors: Robert J. Mos, Robert J. Mos, Rene F. Baus, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5394244
    Abstract: An improved laser refractometer (10) employing a interferometer optical component (12), an object mirror (14) and an etalon (16). The etalon (16) is moved in the path of a plurality of reference beams (22, 24) and a plurality of measurement beams (26, 28) such that the reference beams (22, 24) travel through a vacuum within the etalon while the measurement beams (26, 28) travel a like distance through the etalon (16) in ambient air. In varying the distance traveled by the laser beams (22, 24, 26, 28) within the etalon (16) any interference fringes detected by an interference fringe detection device (20) are attributable to differences in the optical paths of the measurement beams (26, 28) as compared to that of the reference beams (22, 24) which, in turn, is entirely attributable to the ambient index of refraction. In a first preferred embodiment of the improved refractometer (10) the angular distance between a pair of plates (30, 32) is varied by rotation of the etalon (16).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 1992
    Date of Patent: February 28, 1995
    Assignee: Excel Precision Inc.
    Inventor: John C. Tsai
  • Patent number: 5381228
    Abstract: A method and apparatus are disclosed for the rapid estimation the macroscopic physical properties of a coating applied to an article such as, for example, a container for food, beverages, or the like. The invention is usable with macroscopic physical properties including permeation rate, thickness of the coating, and others. According to the invention, a prediction model is prepared based on correlations between an infrared absorption spectrum and corresponding measured values of the macroscopic physical property. Thenceforth, the macroscopic physical property does not need to be measured directly, but rather is estimated based on the prediction model with a measured infrared absorption spectrum as an input thereto. A significant savings of time may thereby be realized, since the infrared absorption spectrum is more easily and quickly obtained than direct, actual measurement of many macroscopic physical properties of interest.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 1993
    Date of Patent: January 10, 1995
    Assignee: Hoover Universal, Inc.
    Inventor: John G. Brace
  • Patent number: 5379102
    Abstract: A system for identifying jewels comprises an automatic microscope 2, an automatic image-analyzing apparatus 3, an electric-resistance measuring apparatus 4, a weighing apparatus 5, a spectroscopic-analysis apparatus 6, and an electronic information processing apparatus 7. The microscope 2 forms an enlarged image of an identification number 11d marked on a jewel to be identified. The image-analyzing apparatus 3 receives the image of the identification number 11d from the microscope 2, and analyzes it. The measuring apparatus 4 measures the electric resistance between spots 11a and 11b marked on the jewel. The weighing apparatus 5 determines the specific gravity of the jewel to the nearest 0.001 gram. The spectroscopic-analysis apparatus 6 directs a beam of light of particular band on a spot 11c marked on the jewel, and determines the spectrum of the light reflected from the spot 11c.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 1992
    Date of Patent: January 3, 1995
    Assignee: E.R.C. Company Ltd.
    Inventor: Masaaki Takeuchi