Patents by Inventor Kim C. Smith

Kim C. Smith has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 7801943
    Abstract: A method, apparatus, and signal-bearing medium that monitors users' audio choices within a network and presents a sorted list of the most recent or most frequent choices in a user interface, from which the user may select. The sorted list may include attributes of the audio, such as the title, the genre, the artist, the source, and the number of times the audio has been played. The list may be kept on a per-user basis, so that all users have their own list. Further, the users may access their list anywhere in the network, and the list may be independent of the location in the network where the audio was played.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 2002
    Date of Patent: September 21, 2010
    Assignee: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventors: Glenn E. Jystad, Kim C. Smith
  • Patent number: 7707613
    Abstract: A multimedia system has multiple media sources switchable under user control to a common set of output presentation devices. A table stores parameter values for each media source separately, so that selection of a source changes the parameters of the displayed media to values appropriate for that source. A user input device has selection keys, and also has keys for modifying the values of the parameters. The modified parameter values are stored in the table, so that they persist when the same media device is selected at a later time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 5, 1998
    Date of Patent: April 27, 2010
    Assignee: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventors: Theodore D. Wugofski, Kim C. Smith
  • Patent number: 7653614
    Abstract: A method, system, signal, user interface, and software for searching information across different media types and sources is disclosed. The method includes identifying a search criteria and subsequently searching for information across one or more media types or sources based upon the search criteria. The search may also be conducted giving regard to user interaction information such as most recently viewed, most frequently viewed, preferences, etc. The media information may be stored locally or remotely and is presented to a user using a single user interface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 15, 1999
    Date of Patent: January 26, 2010
    Assignee: Spotware Technologies, Inc.
    Inventor: Kim C. Smith
  • Patent number: 7275091
    Abstract: A method, apparatus, and signal-bearing medium that presents a station list of sources of audio in a user interface from which the user may select. The station list may include attributes of the audio, such as a channel and description. The station list may be kept on a per-user basis, so that all users may have their own list. Further, the users may access and select audio to be played from their station list anywhere in a network, regardless of where the list was created.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2002
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2007
    Assignee: Gateway Inc.
    Inventors: Glenn E. Jystad, Kim C. Smith
  • Patent number: 7152236
    Abstract: A computerized system for integrating internet sources and television sources in a convergence system is disclosed. In one embodiment of the invention, the system integrates both television channels and internet channels in a single list of channels available on the system. The lists of channels are stored in an electronic program database. The system solves the problem of managing multiple channels from multiple sources by seamlessly integrating channels from the television with channels from the internet in a single channel list.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 5, 1998
    Date of Patent: December 19, 2006
    Assignee: Gateway Inc.
    Inventors: Theodore D. Wugofski, Kim C. Smith
  • Patent number: 7134095
    Abstract: A user interface, system, method and software for displaying a simulated three-dimensional display of menu options to a user, thereby maximizing use of a display's real estate by presenting all available options at once while at the same time presenting certain options in a more pronounced manner. The system monitors for running applications, polls the running applications for any available options, and displays the options in the simulated three-dimensional format. With this type of dynamic menu, standard means for bringing focus to a selectable target create complexities, and are thus avoided by designing the system's cursor to duplicate the appearance of the selected target's shape, preferably in a smaller size.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 20, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2006
    Assignee: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventors: Kim C. Smith, Theodore David Wugofski, Michael Mostyn, Thomas A. Kayl
  • Patent number: 7062723
    Abstract: Systems, methods and apparatus are provided through which meaningful or semantic portions of displayed visual information, are modified in order to improve their visual perception by a user. In some embodiments, the meaningful portion is limited to a word, a plurality of words, a phrase, a sentence, or a paragraph of text of the information. In some embodiments, the meaningful portion is predefined. In some embodiments, the meaningful portion is dynamically modified based on context of the text, and/or prior use. In some embodiments, the modification includes modifying an attribute of the text, such as size, color, and/or font.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2002
    Date of Patent: June 13, 2006
    Assignee: Gateway Inc.
    Inventors: Kim C. Smith, Melroy E. D'Souza, Sandie E. Pollman
  • Patent number: 6885363
    Abstract: A method, apparatus, and signal-bearing medium that selects an object displayed on a display screen when a cursor controlled by a pointing device pauses at the object for a time period longer than a dwell-time threshold. The dwell-time threshold is adjusted based on the density of the objects displayed on the screen. Thus, when the density of displayed objects is higher, the dwell-time threshold is longer and the user must hold the cursor at the desired object for a longer time in order to select the object. Similarly, when the density of displayed objects is lower, the dwell-time threshold is lower, and the user must hold the cursor at the desired object for a shorter time in order to select the object.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 2002
    Date of Patent: April 26, 2005
    Assignee: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventor: Kim C. Smith
  • Patent number: 6874129
    Abstract: Mutatably transparent controls are disclosed. In one embodiment of the invention, a system includes an operating environment, and at least one computer program. The operating environment has a graphical user interface. Each computer program has at least one display displayable within the graphical user interface. The system is configured so that the opacity of the at least one display changes in response to a particular event. Desirably, each display comprises a control.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2005
    Assignee: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventor: Kim C. Smith
  • Publication number: 20040193704
    Abstract: A client device, or information appliance such as a personal digital assistant, is capable of receiving multimedia data streams from a server. However, due to processing and display capabilities, the client device may not be able to present the complete data stream, or a user may elect to configure the client device not to process data that will unduly reduce the client device's performance. Accordingly, the present invention provides a method and apparatus for allowing a server to determine the native, or user selected, capabilities of a client device, such that the server can filter and parse the data into meaningfully presentable data and non-meaningfully presentable data, and then transmit only the meaningfully presentable data to the client device for processing and display.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 2, 2004
    Publication date: September 30, 2004
    Inventor: Kim C. Smith
  • Patent number: 6799196
    Abstract: A client device, or information appliance such as a personal digital assistant, is capable of receiving multimedia data streams from a server. However, due to processing and display capabilities, the client device may not be able to present the complete data stream, or a user may elect to configure the client device not to process data that will unduly reduce the client device's performance. Accordingly, the present invention provides a method and apparatus for allowing a server to determine the native, or user selected, capabilities of a client device, such that the server can filter and parse the data into meaningfully presentable data and non-meaningfully presentable data, and then transmit only the meaningfully presentable data to the client device for processing and display.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 21, 2000
    Date of Patent: September 28, 2004
    Assignee: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventor: Kim C. Smith
  • Patent number: 6742033
    Abstract: A system, method and computer program product that pre-caches or downloads information from internet sites that the system expects the user to request. The system schedules the pre-caching to occur at the most appropriate time of day in order to increase the likelihood that the most recent information is provided to the user in a timely manner. Actual usage is monitored to adjust to user-changing habits, conserve resources at both the server and client ends, and prioritize information against interrupted downloads and exhausted or limited cache or memory space. For users that use the telephone to dial-in to the internet, the system and method pre-caches content in a manner which decreases the likelihood that the pre-caching process will interfere with the user's use of the telephone for other purposes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 12, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 25, 2004
    Assignee: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventors: Kim C. Smith, Peter E. Martinez
  • Publication number: 20040040034
    Abstract: A system and method for controlling a plurality of parental control subsystems within an entertainment system is provided. The system includes a computer interfaced to a plurality of audio and/or audiovisual devices, wherein at least two of the audio and/or audiovisual devices within the system each comprise a native parental control subsystem or locking mechanism having adjustable parameters. A software locking mechanism operates the computer to allow a user to input one or more general parental control parameters and then sets the adjustable parameters of each native parental control subsystem within the system by mapping the parental control parameters onto each separate, native mechanisms for each device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 30, 2003
    Publication date: February 26, 2004
    Inventors: Gary E. Sullivan, Kim C. Smith
  • Publication number: 20040030709
    Abstract: A computer implemented method generates installation instructions for multiple devices to be configured in a network environment. Information regarding devices to be coupled by a network is first obtained from a user and databases. Customized instructions for setting up the devices are then generated. Graphical representations, including images of the devices are included as part of the instructions indicating an order for setting up the devices.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 12, 2002
    Publication date: February 12, 2004
    Applicant: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventor: Kim C. Smith
  • Publication number: 20040012718
    Abstract: A video system displays information during transition from a first video source to a second video source. During the transition, an MPEG decoder decodes a transition video signal and provides the decoded transition video signal to a video overlay which overlays the decoded transition video signal onto a display during the transition period. In one embodiment, the transition video may be a commercial video or advertisement such that the advertisement is displayed on the display during the transition. The advertisement may be related to the content of the output of one of the video sources. In the event the MPEG decoder is unavailable to decode the transition video during the transition, the video system is capable of utilizing an alternate decoder to decode the transition video.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 14, 2003
    Publication date: January 22, 2004
    Inventors: Gary E. Sullivan, Kim C. Smith
  • Patent number: 6662365
    Abstract: A system and method for controlling a plurality of parental control subsystems within an entertainment system is provided. The system includes a computer interfaced to a plurality of audio and/or audiovisual devices, wherein at least two of the audio and/or audiovisual devices within the system each comprise a native parental control subsystem or locking mechanism having adjustable parameters. A software locking mechanism operates the computer to allow a user to input one or more general parental control parameters and then sets the adjustable parameters of each native parental control subsystem within the system by mapping the parental control parameters onto each separate, native mechanisms for each device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 1999
    Date of Patent: December 9, 2003
    Assignee: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventors: Gary E. Sullivan, Kim C. Smith
  • Publication number: 20030217102
    Abstract: A method, apparatus, and signal-bearing medium that presents a station list of sources of audio in a user interface from which the user may select. The station list may include attributes of the audio, such as a channel and description. The station list may be kept on a per-user basis, so that all users may have their own list. Further, the users may access and select audio to be played from their station list anywhere in a network, regardless of where the list was created.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 20, 2002
    Publication date: November 20, 2003
    Applicant: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventors: Glenn E. Jystad, Kim C. Smith
  • Publication number: 20030214519
    Abstract: Systems, methods and apparatus are provided through which meaningful or semantic portions of displayed visual information, are modified in order to improve their visual perception by a user. In some embodiments, the meaningful portion is limited to a word, a plurality of words, a phrase, a sentence, or a paragraph of text of the information. In some embodiments, the meaningful portion is predefined. In some embodiments, the meaningful portion is dynamically modified based on context of the text, and/or prior use. In some embodiments, the modification includes modifying an attribute of the text, such as size, color, and/or font.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 20, 2002
    Publication date: November 20, 2003
    Applicant: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventors: Kim C. Smith, Melroy E. D'Souza, Sandie E. Pollman
  • Publication number: 20030210227
    Abstract: A method, apparatus, and signal-bearing medium that selects an object displayed on a display screen when a cursor controlled by a pointing device pauses at the object for a time period longer than a dwell-time threshold. The dwell-time threshold is adjusted based on the density of the objects displayed on the screen. Thus, when the density of displayed objects is higher, the dwell-time threshold is longer and the user must hold the cursor at the desired object for a longer time in order to select the object. Similarly, when the density of displayed objects is lower, the dwell-time threshold is lower, and the user must hold the cursor at the desired object for a shorter time in order to select the object.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 9, 2002
    Publication date: November 13, 2003
    Applicant: Gateway, Inc.
    Inventor: Kim C. Smith
  • Publication number: 20030212786
    Abstract: A method, apparatus, and signal-bearing medium that monitors users' audio choices within a network and presents a sorted list of the most recent or most frequent choices in a user interface, from which the user may select. The sorted list may include attributes of the audio, such as the title, the genre, the artist, the source, and the number of times the audio has been played. The list may be kept on a per-user basis, so that all users have their own list. Further, the users may access their list anywhere in the network, and the list may be independent of the location in the network where the audio was played.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 9, 2002
    Publication date: November 13, 2003
    Applicant: Gateway Inc.
    Inventors: Glenn E. Jystad, Kim C. Smith