Roy J. Lahr 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).
Abstract: A printer of the type used with typewriters and computerized equipment is provided with a system for monitoring the supply of printable media, such as paper. A first thickness measuring caliber is used to measure the thickness of the paper to be printed, and a second such caliber measures the thickness of a supply stack stored in a bin. With such information, the approximate number of sheets remaining in the stack can be determined, and the decision whether a sufficient paper supply is available to complete a printing job can be made. One or both such calibers may utilize an electrical component, such as a potentiometer, for providing an electrically measurable parameter responsive to the thickness being measured. The sheet thickness measurement signal can be used to control a motorized arrangement which controls the throat opening of the printer. In addition, this signal can be used to select one of several available platen surfaces of different hardnesses.
Abstract: A keyboard arrangement for reducing stress and tension experienced by a human operator during communication with an information processing machine. The keyboard, which may have the actuators thereon arranged in a conventional keyboard distribution, such as a QWERTY keyboard system, is splitable into first and second sections, each such section containing respective portions of the actuators. When joined, the two keyboard sections form a unitary keyboard which is conventional in appearance and operation. When separated, a display screen may be interposed between the keyboard sections, and the keyboard sections may be arranged in selectable spatial positions and orientations selected for the comfort of the operator. An adjustable mechanical mounting arrangement is provided for ensuring positional stability of the keyboard sections. In a further embodiment, an information processing system is arranged to be portable in a housing which permits the screen to assume a sloped position.
Abstract: A ribbon supply arrangement for a printer is provided with a first ribbon supply portion having supply and take-up reels therein, the ribbon being provided to a second ribbon supply portion which is installed on a carriage of the printer. In one embodiment, the first ribbon supply portion is pivotally coupled to the second ribbon supply portion, and also pivotally coupled to a pivot coupling on the frame of the printer such that the bulk of the weight of the first ribbon supply portion, including the ribbon supply therein is borne by the frame, and not the print carriage. In a further embodiment, the first ribbon supply portion is provided with a large supply reel and a plurality of take-up reels.
Abstract: A modular patchboard arrangement for arranging a plurality of electrical devices in a selectably alterable arrangement. In one embodiment, a plurality of modules, each having a predetermined height, are each provided with selectable numbers and types of the electrical devices. Each module is provided on opposite edges thereof with a mounting portion which is adapted to engage an associated rail. Additional levels of modules may be provided, adjacent levels sharing a rail. Each such level may consist of modules of correspondingly different dimensions, for accommodating different types and numbers of electrical devices. In some embodiments, a strip of elastomeric material is interposed between adjacent ones of the modules for closing gaps therebetween.
Abstract: A device is provided for printing a verbal composition in a text form transposed by an operator from the language form in which the source material is presented. Language character forms from different written language formats are encoded and maintained in electronic storage. An operator of the device selects a particular language character from a desired language character font in a single or multiple step selection process to appear at sequential locations of the text during composition of the text. The material to be transposed may be originally presented orally or visually, and is translated or transposed into a different language, or, in the case of some languages, particularly oriental languages, the text may be composed of different language character forms of the same spoken language. For language character forms that utilize a great multiplicity of characters, as opposed to language forms utilizing a relatively few alphabetic or pneumonic characters, a second order selection is made.
Abstract: A transaction accounting system for the automated royalty accounting of copyright-coded paper documents. The system includes a document copier, a copier access control system which includes a transaction data terminal for input of transaction information such as the date of the transaction, coded copyright information such as contained in the standard serial numbering or standard book numbering systems, user identification and number of copies to be produced. The access control system includes enabling circuits to access the copier upon completion of the data input and one or more data recorders and/or data transmitters to permit use of telephone line transmission of the transaction data and/or other transmitting facilities to communicate with a royalty accounting system. The documents are copyright coded with an optically transparent, electrically conductive coating. The system includes a decoder with its output connected to the transaction data terminal to input the document data.
Abstract: A progressively shorted tapered resistance device including a body of material which undergoes an irreversible resistance decrease when heated beyond a threshold temperature in operative association with a tapered electrical resistance element which develops a non-uniform temperature profile when electrically energized. Upon sufficient energization, the tapered resistor element will cause portions of the heat sensitive material to be heated beyond its threshold temperature resulting in a shorting out of a portion of the tapered resistance element. The amount of the tapered resistance element shorted out is measured at low currents to provide an indication of the energizing current.
Abstract: A consumable credit card is provided which comprises a recording device that is adapted to receive progressively advancing recording up to a limit at which time the card is consumed and thereafter is discarded. The card is adapted to be inserted into a reader which accepts, reads and advances the indication on the credit card or reading to indicate an additional use until the credit card is expended and the reader no longer allows the item or service to be dispensed because the credit card has been expended. This credit card employs tapered resistor technology in order to store a permanent record of expended credit and advance same upon energization of the tapered resistor element residing in the device. Methods of employing this device in billing systems are also disclosed.
Abstract: A system for processing a plurality of audio signals to generate binaural output signals. The signal processor has a manually operated spatial position control which provides a correspondence between movement of the control and the binaural perception of movement by a listener at a listening position within an audio signal space. The spatial position control is essentially an electric circuit analog of a particular audio signal space, with means for obtaining variable binaural output signals from the circuit to simulate movement of the listening position in the signal space. One embodiment of the position control includes a mechanical linkage to a plurality of series ring connected potentiometers. The variable outputs from the wiper arms of the potentiometers are combined to produce the desired binaural output signals. The perceived orientation of the listening position in the audio signal space may be changed by selective combinations of potentiometer outputs.