Patents Examined by William N. Hughet
  • Patent number: 6073114
    Abstract: The invention relates to an improved method for accounting for, and keeping track of, commodities which are gathered or harvested in one location and thereafter transported for delivery to another location. While the invention is applicable for use with a variety of commodities, the embodiment discussed concerns timber. It provides for a paperless process which accommodates the use by, and inputs from, various persons responsible for different steps in the process. It can be initiated by the timber owner and thereafter allows for the accumulation and recordation of pertinent information by other persons responsible for the various steps of timber identification, harvesting and delivery, such as the forester, loader, timber cutting crew chief, transporter, and destination purchaser. The method provides security, accountability, data entry, data retrieval, and reporting, with respect to commodity harvesting, transport, delivery, and receipt.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 6, 2000
    Assignee: Talent Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Frank N. Perkins, III, Frank M. Riley, Jr., J. Blake Sullivan, Charles R. Rutledge, Patricia G. Rutledge, Blake D. Reid, Karen E. Albritton, Reuel Dulaney, Andrew G. Bailey
  • Patent number: 5966695
    Abstract: An electronic sales and service support system and method for identifying sales targets using a centralized database to improve marketing success. The system includes a central database that receives comprehensive information from a variety of internal and external feeds, and standardizes and households the information in a three-level hierarchy (households, customers, and accounts) for use by a financial institution. The comprehensive information stored on the central database is accessed through micromarketing workstations to generate lists of sales leads for marketing campaigns. A database engine is provided for generating logical access paths for accessing data on the central database to increase speed and efficiency of the central database. The system distributes sales leads electronically to branch networks, where the sales leads are used to target customers for marketing campaigns.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 1995
    Date of Patent: October 12, 1999
    Assignee: Citibank, N.A.
    Inventors: Anthony R. Melchione, Rafael Martinez, Eric Seifert, Martin Hirsch
  • Patent number: 5953704
    Abstract: A health care management system for use by hospitals, physicians, insurance companies, health maintenance organizations, and others in the health care field includes a processing unit and health condition guidelines. A user inputs information related to the health condition of an individual and guideline treatment options are identified. The user also inputs actual or proposed and final recommendation treatments for the same individual. The resulting comparative information can be used to modify the actual or proposed treatment, or provide explanatory information as to reasons for the difference between the final recommendation treatment and guideline treatment options. Also, the comparative information can be used by a reviewer for evaluation or utilization purposes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 15, 1997
    Date of Patent: September 14, 1999
    Assignee: Health Risk Management, Inc.
    Inventors: Gary Thomas McIlroy, Julie Ellen Kees, Jacquelyn Ann Kalscheuer
  • Patent number: 5950175
    Abstract: A data processing system for managing a plurality of discrete accounts. Each account provides a swap between a property holder and the plan manager wherein the holder dilutes their exposure to the real estate market by exchanging future appreciation of the property for a current cash flow stream. The system thereafter implements the packaging of plural accounts into baskets of real estate assets and sells this real estate exposure to the institutional market. The data processor retains a system equilibrium by continuously updating the relative positions and the control parameters influencing these positions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 14, 1994
    Date of Patent: September 7, 1999
    Assignee: Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated
    Inventor: Clive H. Austin
  • Patent number: 5940811
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for closed loop, automatic processing of typical financial transactions, including loans, setting up checking, savings and individual retirement accounts, obtaining cashier's checks, ordering additional checks, issuing credit and debit cards, wire transferring money, and so on. The transactions are provided from a kiosk and controlled by a computer controller interacting with the consumer. In the case of loans, a computer controller helps the consumer in the completion of the application, performs the underwriting, and transfers funds. The computer controller obtains the information needed to process the application, determines whether to approve the loan, effects electronic fund transfers to the applicant's deposit account and arranges for automatic withdrawals to repay the loan.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 1996
    Date of Patent: August 17, 1999
    Assignee: Affinity Technology Group, Inc.
    Inventor: Jeffrey A. Norris
  • Patent number: 5930764
    Abstract: A sales process support system and method for identifying sales targets using a centralized database to improve marketing success. The system includes a central database that receives comprehensive information from a variety of internal and external feeds, and standardizes and households the information in a three-level hierarchy (households, customers, and accounts) for use by a financial institution. The comprehensive information stored on the central database is accessed through micromarketing workstations to generate lists of sales leads for marketing campaigns. A database engine is provided for generating logical access paths for accessing data on the central database to increase speed and efficiency of the central database. The system distributes sales leads electronically to branch networks, where the sales leads are used to target customers for marketing campaigns.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 23, 1996
    Date of Patent: July 27, 1999
    Assignee: Citibank, N.A.
    Inventors: Anthony R. Melchione, Rafael Martinez, Eric Seifert, Martin Hirsch
  • Patent number: 5930762
    Abstract: A computer method manages risk in multiple-parameter physical systems performing interrelated activities, where at least one of such activities is risk-related in that it may have an outcome level which may fall outside of boundary limits. The method establishes a course of action (strategy) for the physical systems that facilitates preventing any outcome levels for risk-related activities from falling outside of boundary limits. The method assumes the existence of a computational multiscenario decision-making model that describes the physical systems and determines, under some set of criteria, both feasible and desirable levels of their activities. The method may assume either certainty, under which the value of each model parameter is known, or uncertainty, under which the values of one or more of model parameters are unknown.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 1996
    Date of Patent: July 27, 1999
    Assignee: RCO Software Limited
    Inventor: Vladimir A. Masch
  • Patent number: 5918213
    Abstract: An automated product purchasing system allows purchasers to order products via a remote communications medium without having to speak to a sales representative or other human operator. According to the invention, purchasers access the automated product purchasing system and browse among the selections offered. Menu style prompts guide the customer through the various products offered by the automated product purchasing system. Product descriptions are provided to assist the customer in making his or her selections. Where appropriate, product samples are provided to the customer via the communications medium so the customer can evaluate the product prior to purchasing. Examples of product samples include movie previews, sample cuts from music tracks, software demos, and the like. Ordering and purchasing are automated so that human operators are not required to intervene in the process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 29, 1999
    Assignee: MCI Communications Corporation
    Inventors: Warren E. Bernard, Philip A. Jacobson
  • Patent number: 5918219
    Abstract: A distinctive estimating method using a concise depiction, organization, and presentation of time, related to the number of items accomplished, to produce a Historical Data Block of information, that is a stable inference base. These Blocks of information can be stored, referenced, anatomized, multiplied or divided and restacked, to create other accurate totals and estimates. This stable Block easily allows the accurate calculation of future duration times and item quantity totals. The calculated item quantities can be used to calculate current item costs and totals, by using a current item cost database. Or the item totals can be printed and sent out, requesting a quote, or sent out as purchase orders. The accurate duration times can be used to automatically produce a schedule, concurrently with the estimate, by using a predefined templet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 29, 1999
    Inventor: John Philip Isherwood
  • Patent number: 5914878
    Abstract: This invention relates to a production system for retail goods which is intended for timely collection of accurate sales information from retail outlets and flexible production of goods in accordance with the same information, and comprises a retail sales information collecting means, a production quantity setting means for determining a production quantity according to the information so collected, a directing means for directing the preparation and production of raw materials according to the determined production quantity, and a production means for producing the determined production quantity according to a direction to produce. Also provided is a raw materials ordering system, which determines production quantities of raw materials in accordance with production plans for ensuring flexible production of the products without the disadvantage of carrying excessive inventories and for economical and efficient control and supply of raw materials.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 22, 1999
    Assignee: Kanebo, Ltd.
    Inventors: Tsukasa Yamamoto, Masaya Ogawa, Eichi Yoshida, Masataka Hotta, Toru Morita, Akiko Omori
  • Patent number: 5911136
    Abstract: A personal financial management program is for implementing, coordinating, supervising, analyzing and reporting upon investments in an array of asset accounts and credit facilities within a client account. Through a mathematical programming function the client specifies his financial objectives, his risk preference, forecast of economic and financial variables, and budgetary constraints. The mathematical programming function suggests to the client a portfolio of investment and credit facilities to best realize his financial objectives over a defined time horizon. In the preferred embodiment the central structural element of the financial account is a mortgage secured by the client's home and one or more asset accounts. Client funds that would normally be used to amortize the mortgage may be alternatively used to increase the value of a designated asset account. The client account is imbalanced if the client's borrowing power is less than the minimum borrowing power specified by the financial institution.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 1997
    Date of Patent: June 8, 1999
    Assignee: Proprietary Financial Products, Inc.
    Inventor: Charles Agee Atkins
  • Patent number: 5911135
    Abstract: A personal financial management program is disclosed for implementing, coordinating, supervising, analyzing and reporting upon investments in an array of asset accounts and credit facilities within a client account. Through a mathematical programming function the client specifies his financial objectives, his risk preference, forecast of economic and financial variables, and budgetary constraints. The mathematical programming function suggests to the client a portfolio of investment and credit facilities to best realize his financial objectives over a defined time horizon. In the preferred embodiment the central structural element of the financial account is a mortgage secured by the client's home and one or more asset accounts. Client funds that would normally be used to amortize the mortgage may be alternatively used to increase the value of a designated asset account.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 1991
    Date of Patent: June 8, 1999
    Assignee: Proprietary Financial Products, Inc.
    Inventor: Charles Agee Atkins
  • Patent number: 5907828
    Abstract: The invention relates to a system for analyzing and managing at least one lender owned life insurance policy on behalf of a lender to improve loan profitability, achieve investment results from the COLI, and to prevent investment loss as a result of adverse tax law changes. The system tracks mortgage balances, applies vesting schedules, determines appropriate face amounts, policy loan amounts and/or cash withdrawals to maximize return on investment for the lender. The system also reacts to adverse changes in the tax laws by adjusting the form of the insurance policy to a term policy with an increased face value and terminating the policy. Termination of the policy involves additional cash withdrawals which are used to pay back policy loans. The system further illustrates past and future performance of the policy based upon assumptions of tax law changes. Finally, the system monitors and administers the MCPP program on an ongoing basis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 26, 1995
    Date of Patent: May 25, 1999
    Inventors: Bennett S. Meyer, William D. Chatfield
  • Patent number: 5887273
    Abstract: An offering plate that permits an attender at a religious service to make a donation that consists of a cash donation acceptor, an envelope donation acceptor, a credit card donation processor, and/or a debit card donation processor. The offering plate associates a donation with an account of a member, tallies information regarding a number of donations, and stores information regarding a donation, and a plurality of donations. The offering plate is part of an offering plate network which consists of an offering plate, a clergy member's terminal, and a communication link between the offering plate and the clergy member's terminal. The offering plate network collects, analyzes, and displays statistical information.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 18, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 23, 1999
    Inventor: Witold A. Ziarno
  • Patent number: 5884285
    Abstract: A personal financial management program is disclosed for implementing, coordinating, supervising, analyzing and reporting upon investments in an array of asset accounts and credit facilities within a client account. Through a mathematical programming function the client specifies his financial objectives, his risk preference, forecast of economic and financial variables, and budgetary constraints. The mathematical programming function suggests to the client a portfolio of investment and credit facilities to best realize his financial objectives over a defined time horizon. In the preferred embodiment the central structural element of the financial account is a mortgage secured by the client's home and one or more asset accounts. Client funds that would normally be used to amortize the mortgage may be alternatively used to increase the value of a designated asset account.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 16, 1992
    Date of Patent: March 16, 1999
    Assignee: Proprietary Financial Products, Inc.
    Inventor: Charles Agee Atkins
  • Patent number: 5878400
    Abstract: The invention organizes various pricing tables and price adjustment tables and various products and purchasing organizations based on "who" (i.e. which purchasing organization) is purchasing "what" (i.e. which product). The invention utilizes a denormalized table to relate the "who" to the "what" using denormalized numbers. The invention further organizes various purchasing organizations and products into hierarchical tables. These hierarchical tables are called organizational groups and product groups. Various price adjustments may be specified for each level of the organizational groups and product groups hierarchies. The price adjustments for a particular purchasing organization are determined by retrieving the price adjustments for that particular purchasing organization as well as the price adjustments for organizational groups above the particular purchasing organization in the organizational groups hierarchy.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 2, 1999
    Assignee: Trilogy Development Group, Inc.
    Inventor: Thomas J. Carter, III
  • Patent number: 5878215
    Abstract: The present invention provides for a system and method for processing multiple electronic messages in one transmission, or data group, and responding individually to the service requests based on urgency indicators present in the data group. The disclosure describes a system that contains a switch and includes remote access devices, financial institution computers, and service provider computers all connected to the switch. Customers at remote access devices select desired services and the remote access devices construct a data group containing service requests consistent with the protocol described in the invention. The data group includes urgency indicators associated with each service requested. The urgency indicators can represent three different modes: transaction interactive, batch-interactive, or non-interactive.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 1994
    Date of Patent: March 2, 1999
    Assignee: MasterCard International Incorporated
    Inventors: Constance W. Kling, Jay S. Levy, Cheryl A. Meliones
  • Patent number: 5873069
    Abstract: An enterprise-wide integrated computer system for storing, processing and reporting pricing information regarding a plurality of products in a plurality of stores in a plurality of markets, including a pricing function for pricing and re-pricing products responsive to market price changes. Pricing and re-pricing are accomplished on a product-by-product and a market-by-market basis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 1995
    Date of Patent: February 16, 1999
    Assignee: American TV & Appliance of Madison, Inc.
    Inventors: Douglas G. Reuhl, Howard J. Lenerz, Jr., Laurie J. Vosen
  • Patent number: 5870721
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for closed loop, automatic processing a loan, including completion of the application, underwriting, and transferring funds, includes use of a programmed computer to interface with an applicant, obtain the information needed to process the loan, determine whether to approve the loan, and effect electronic fund transfers to the applicant's deposit account and arrange for automatic withdrawals to repay the loan. Information is received from the applicant preferably by using voice recognition technology but alternatively by entering the alpha-numeric information using a personal computer keyboard or using the buttons on a telephone. The loan approval determination is made using a neural network with input obtained in part from the applicant and in part from databases accessed by the computer, such as a credit bureau, to obtain a credit report.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 1996
    Date of Patent: February 9, 1999
    Assignee: Affinity Technology Group, Inc.
    Inventor: Jeffrey A. Norris
  • Patent number: RE36116
    Abstract: A centralized system of accumulating cash value for consumers based upon point-of-sale transactions with multiple merchants is disclosed wherein for each transaction, the consumer's account number (such as the Social Security number) which may be different from the consumer's credit card account number, for example, is transmitted to a central system along with data identifying the merchant and a credit value for the transaction. The credit value may be based upon predetermined incentives associated with the transaction such as coupons, rebates or discounts, and/or upon a credit rate determined by the merchant applied to the amount of the transaction. At the central location, a cash value for that consumer is incremented by the credit value and a bill value for that merchant is similarly incremented. Periodically, the merchants are billed for the accumulated bill value or credited for any third party incentive amounts confirmed at the central location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 15, 1996
    Date of Patent: February 23, 1999
    Inventor: Patrick D. McCarthy