Keyboards Patents (Class 235/145R)
  • Patent number: 4441001
    Abstract: A keyboard for inputting plural letters or symbols includes a number of switches, each of which has its associated letter or symbol displayed in a transparent window adjacent thereto. The keyboard is arranged such that a display card located beneath the transparent windows may be replaced so as to easily change the letters or symbols which are visible through the transparent windows.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 1981
    Date of Patent: April 3, 1984
    Assignee: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Ryuzo Miyano, Haruyuki Uenishi, Hisashi Akatani, Takenori Akamine
  • Patent number: 4420666
    Abstract: A key contact set includes a plurality of electrical key contacts having key buttons, and includes a cover plate with a plurality of key openings through which the respective key buttons project. The key openings and the key buttons each have the shape of a segment of a circle, an ellipse, or a similarly shaped figure. The marking associated with each key is provided on the cover plate in the complementary segment of the circle, ellipse, or other figure. The portion of the cover plate surrounding each key is preferably bent forwardly or rearwardly from the main plane of the cover plate to define a curved surface, and each key button preferably is provided with a service surface having substantially the same radius of curvature as the bent portion of the cover plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 4, 1981
    Date of Patent: December 13, 1983
    Assignee: Dieter Graesslin Feinwerktechnik
    Inventor: Gerd Kammerer
  • Patent number: 4417824
    Abstract: A keyboard assembly (FIG. 1, 11) is constructed of first light transmission members (13) second light transmission members (15), a key actuation assembly (17) having a matrix of keybuttons (25), plural light source assembly (19) and plural sensor assembly (21). Each light source on assembly (19) is exclusively and sequentially energized causing its light to be transmitted through the first light transmission member (13) to be split up and deflected downwardly by the surfaces (43) and then rightwardly by the surfaces (45) to emanate through the surfaces (47) to enter the surfaces (49) of the second light transmission member. Actuation of a keybutton (25) causes its associated interrupter (29) to assume a light blocking position between the first light transmission member (13) and a second light transmission member (15). Light passing through the second light transmission member (15) to the sensor array indicates that none of the interrupters (29) have blocked the light path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 1982
    Date of Patent: November 29, 1983
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventors: Robert L. Paterson, Jerry M. Sublette
  • Patent number: 4400593
    Abstract: A key array in which, progressing from key to key, the switching functions are derived by an AND-operation from mechanical or electrical signals indicating the actuation of pairs of adjacent keys of a row of keys or indicating the actuation of at least two diagonally opposite keys of a square group of four keys arranged in a rectangular keyboard. The pairs of adjacent keys and the square groups of four keys, respectively, each are allocated to a single symbol and each are depressable simultaneously by the operator's fingertip in order to initiate the single respective switching function. Thereby, a large surface lying in one single plane and being divided by gaps between the respective keys of one pair of keys or one group of keys, is available for the symbol legend and for engagement by the fingertip.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 10, 1981
    Date of Patent: August 23, 1983
    Assignee: Hans Widmaier Fabrik fur Apparate der Fernmelde-und Feinwerktechnik
    Inventor: Kurt Kunz
  • Patent number: 4398086
    Abstract: A game-calculator having a single housing for a handheld calculator and an electronic game each sharing the same display, with a sliding mask to alternatively cover in a first or second position either the calculator keyboard input keys, or both the game input keys and that portion of the display panel not used to display the calculator functions, with the slide also serving to position a switch which is coupled to the programmed data processor, responsive to movement of the slide from the first position to the second position, or vice versa.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 1982
    Date of Patent: August 9, 1983
    Assignee: Smith Engineering
    Inventor: Jay Smith, III
  • Patent number: 4396830
    Abstract: A membrane type keyboard associated with a data terminal device is disclosed which is sealed to prevent the introduction into the interior elements of the keyboard of water or other types of liquid contaminants encountered during the operation of the terminal device. The keyboard includes an outer frame member which forms an air chamber extending around the perimeter of a raised keyboard, thereby preventing any liquid spilled on the keyboard from reaching the interior elements of the keyboard. The frame member is easily removable from the keyboard, allowing the interior elements to be replaced or exchanged in accordance with the business environment in which the terminal device is to be used.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 16, 1982
    Date of Patent: August 2, 1983
    Assignee: NCR Corporation
    Inventors: Hiromi Isozaki, Shuzo Kato, Satoru Sakama
  • Patent number: 4387127
    Abstract: A membrane switch control panel arrangement and a label assembly for labeling same, for providing for in field applied identification of the control panel legend upon assembly of the switch, in which the control panel arrangement is of the keyboard switch type providing for touch sensitive switch actuation, with the control panel arrangement circuit board circuiting, membrane or touch sensitive switch components therefor, and the control panel legend sheet switch location indicia therefor being arranged in superposed modular group form, and columnarily arranged, spaced apart switch actuation and observation sets, which sets are disposed in spaced apart rows and extending crosswise of the panel in a columnar configuration, with the legend sheet being delineated to receive and have adhered thereto individual in field marked labels that are to bear the switch identification indicia of the adjacent switch location indicia row.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 2, 1981
    Date of Patent: June 7, 1983
    Inventor: Ralph Ogden
  • Patent number: 4381500
    Abstract: A keyboard apparatus has item keys for data entry, and select keys for changing the display of input data written on sheets, according to the item keys, and a changer for the sheets stored in a cartridge, which separates the sheets in the cartridge into two groups, the sheets from one group being moved in the cartridge to a display position and the sheets from the other group being held in a non-display position. A cartridge holds the sheet to be displayed on the top of the stack of sheets remaining in the cartridge and a translator moves the sheets in the cartridge horizontally to the display position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 1981
    Date of Patent: April 26, 1983
    Assignee: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Yoshihito Urata, Hideyuki Kubo, Toshiharu Sasaki
  • Patent number: 4359613
    Abstract: A moldable, impulse operation synthetic resin keyboard, and a method of fabricating the same, are provided wherein the keyboard achieves essentially standard, tactile feel and feedback, mechanical N-key rollover protection and precise, reliable output. The keyboard includes a synthetic resin base plate having a plurality of elongated, cantilever mounted flippers, along with a plurality of elongated, laterally spaced, inwardly and opposedly extending, pivotal, key-supporting arms. Upon depression of a key, the associated flipper is deformed until a release point is reached, whereupon the flipper is disengaged, allowing the flipper to quickly return to its rest position. A keyboard output is developed as the flipper, during overtravel thereof past its rest position, strikes a signal-generating assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 1981
    Date of Patent: November 16, 1982
    Assignee: Engineering Research Applications, Inc.
    Inventor: Craig E. Rooney
  • Patent number: 4359612
    Abstract: An extremely low cost, high speed, full stroke keyboard is disclosed which provides momentary impulse operation. N-key rollover protection and standard tactile feedback. The keyboard includes a plurality of depressible keys mounted on respective upright synthetic resin flaps designed to collapse upon key depression and engage and move an underlying, resilient, U-shaped shifting member; the member in turn engages and shifts another U-shaped resilient element which supports one or more upstanding encoding posts. When the U-shaped element reaches a cocked position it is disengaged from the shifting member and allowed to snap back toward the original rest position thereof independently of subsequent return movement of the key and shifting member. The snap back motion is sensed and a corresponding key output signal developed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 1980
    Date of Patent: November 16, 1982
    Assignee: Engineering Research Applications, Inc.
    Inventor: Craig E. Rooney
  • Patent number: 4351988
    Abstract: A keyboard assembly comprises a base, a plurality of pressure-operated switches mounted on said base, a keyboard comprising support means overlying the switches and having a plurality of key locations formed therewith, each including a key hinged at one side to the support means and disposed in operative relation to one of the switches, the support means defining a first aperture in each key location to permit movement of the key therethrough, each of the keys including a cantilever switch actuator which is initially formed in a first position on one side of the support means and then rotated so that it extends beneath said key from a toggle hinge on one side thereof to a second aperture in each key location on an opposite side of said key, said actuator being positioned to engage the corresponding switch when the key is depressed, an enlarged end portion of said switch actuating means being received in said second aperture, and coacting therewith during key depressing movement, said switch actuating means be
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 8, 1980
    Date of Patent: September 28, 1982
    Assignee: NCR Corporation
    Inventor: Forrest E. Allbright
  • Patent number: 4347416
    Abstract: A membrane switch control panel arrangement and label assembly for labeling same, for providing in-field applied identification of the control panel legend upon assembly of the circuitry switching involved, in which the control panel arrangement is of the keyboard switch type providing for touch sensitive switch actuation, with the control panel arrangement circuit board circuiting switch sets, membrane or touch sensitive switch components therefor, and the control panel legend sheet switch location indicia therefor being arranged in superposed modular group form, oriented as to the switch contacts and associated observation glow bulb involving each switch set, which modules are columnarily arranged in spaced apart rows and extending crosswise of the control panel in a columnar configuration.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 12, 1980
    Date of Patent: August 31, 1982
    Inventor: Ralph Ogden
  • Patent number: 4333089
    Abstract: The computer system of this invention has, as the heart of the system, a simple processing unit for providing most data processing by the computer system under control of a read-only memory which contains only instructions and other data for the CPU. The system also includes a random access memory, a keyboard, a video terminal, and a port device in the form of a tape recorder/player. A master clock initiates timing used throughout the system. A multi-line data bus interconnects the CPU and the different memories of the system including the keyboard and the video RAM. Bi-directional communication is possible on the data bus. The addressing of these different memories is by way of an address bus from the CPU, which is a uni-directional bus. Data to be operated upon is basically stored in the random access memory. The keyboard is used for inputting data to the CPU and the video terminal is used for displaying data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 18, 1980
    Date of Patent: June 1, 1982
    Assignee: Radio Shack
    Inventor: Steven Leininger
  • Patent number: 4330776
    Abstract: An input control includes first and second keyboard assemblies mounted on a common structural unit, an encoder on the unit, and a plurality of output conductors connected to the encoder for transmitting a binary coded signal when a key is actuated. The first keyboard assembly includes a set of keys that generate the same input control function signals as do the keys in the second keyboard assembly. The structural unit is mounted for rotation between an upright position in which only the first keyboard assembly is operator accessible and an inverted position in which only the second keyboard assembly is operator accessible. A latch is provided for locking the structural unit in either position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 1980
    Date of Patent: May 18, 1982
    Assignee: Instrumentation Laboratory Inc.
    Inventors: Allan G. Dennison, Jr., Stanley B. Smith, Jr., Robert A. Fonteyn, Robert V. Jarratt, Jr.
  • Patent number: 4326193
    Abstract: A CRT terminal includes a main unit which houses circuitry and the CRT display. An application module which includes a keyboard plugs into the front of the main unit and electrically connects to its circuitry. A flexible membrane keyboard is employed which includes a keyboard overlay that is easily changed to provide keyboard symbols appropriate to a wide variety of different applications. Resilient bumpers extend completely around the main unit to facilitate its use in industrial applications where physical abuse is common.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 1979
    Date of Patent: April 20, 1982
    Assignee: Allen-Bradley Company
    Inventors: Theodore J. Markley, Daniel J. Galdun, Charles E. Clark, Robert G. Henderson, Frank W. Jencen
  • Patent number: 4324976
    Abstract: A hand-held calculator in which respective keyboards are arranged along the front face and rear face of the calculator housing and disposed along transverse axes such that each keyboard is in immediate position for use upon rotation of a user's wrist without any repositioning of the calculator in the hand. The use of both front and rear keyboards permits additional keyboard capability without increasing calculator size and without requiring multi-function keys.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 8, 1980
    Date of Patent: April 13, 1982
    Assignee: The Laitram Corporation
    Inventor: James M. Lapeyre
  • Patent number: 4310753
    Abstract: Keys which are used in a keyboard of a miniaturized data processing device include an upper surface which is provided with a downwardly-extending wall running transversely to the movement of the finger when operating the keys. The downwardly-extending wall, which is formed, for example, by a groove disposed in the upper surface, serves as a support for the tip of a user's fingernail when operating the keys. Such keys make possible an accurate operation even if the keys are disposed closely side by side in a miniaturized key board and the fingernail is fashionably long.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 13, 1979
    Date of Patent: January 12, 1982
    Inventor: Janos Fischer
  • Patent number: 4294555
    Abstract: Keyboards designed in accordance with ergonomic viewpoints are slightly dished transversely in relation to the longitudinal direction and the key surfaces have a slope tending toward the dished shape. According to the invention, this arrangement is accomplished with the aid of adapters located between the key element plungers and the keyheads. For each row of keys there is provided a special type of adapter. The types of adapters differ from one another in their effective heights and in the slope angles of the supporting surfaces for the keyheads.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 28, 1980
    Date of Patent: October 13, 1981
    Assignee: International Standard Electric Corporation
    Inventors: Folker Galaske, Oswald Hack
  • Patent number: 4292510
    Abstract: A calculator keyboard includes a face plate and a plurality of keys supported in a predetermined location with respect to the face plate. In the face plate there are provided narrow recesses in alignment with respective keys. Each recess has a width dimension sufficient for providing access to the associated key by a fingernail of the user.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 1979
    Date of Patent: September 29, 1981
    Inventor: Manfred Hild
  • Patent number: 4257555
    Abstract: A programmable thermostat features a memory unit receptive of unit values of temperature desired at different times on different days all individualy or in various combinations both as to days and times. An output device signals a temperature control system. As controlled by a clock, the memory unit is addressed during different times of the different days to provide a signal representing the corresponding value desired. Existing temperature level is sensed and compared with each value so as to develop an error signal. In response to that error signal, the output is operated in a direction to reduce the difference between actual and desired temperatures. Numerous details as to layout, construction and circuitry are presented.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 6, 1980
    Date of Patent: March 24, 1981
    Assignee: Teledyne Industries, Inc.
    Inventor: Robert M. Neel
  • Patent number: 4203013
    Abstract: A control keyboard for electric or electronic machines, with a first plate having a number of apertures, and keys mounted through these apertures; the keys have flanges of magnetic material on their lower portions to prevent the keys from slipping out. A second plate underneath the first plate has contacts cooperating with the key flanges. The first plate has an upper metal plate and a lower magnetic layer. The keys are movable between a first position when flanges are applied to the lower magnetic layer, apart from the contacts, and a second position where the flanges touch the contacts. The lower magnetic layer and the flanges return the keys from the second to the first position by magnetic attraction. An upper grid mounts the keyboard in a casing, with the upper metal plate between the lower magnetic layer and the upper grid. Each key has a body and a cap. A sheet of fluid-tight and resilient material may be clamped between the upper grid and the upper metal plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 1978
    Date of Patent: May 13, 1980
    Inventor: Edouard Serras-Paulet
  • Patent number: 4180336
    Abstract: Touch checking key tops for keyboard on a cash register in which the keyboard is provided with a plurality of keys arranged in a generally rectangular matrix with the keys being arranged in three rows extending in one direction and three rows extending in a direction at substantially right angles to the other three rows. The keys are assigned the digits 1 through 9 with four of the keys being disposed on the corners of the matrix. The keys have key tops. The key tops for the four keys on the four corners of the rectangular matrix have diagonally disposed ridges formed thereon which serve as tactile indicia to the operator using the keyboard to improve the operator's confidence and productivity and to minimize operator errors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 25, 1977
    Date of Patent: December 25, 1979
    Assignee: Safeway Stores, Incorporated
    Inventor: Alice Lonsdale
  • Patent number: 4160886
    Abstract: A data entry keyboard includes a key array overlying a switching assembly so that a switch is operated when a corresponding key is depressed. The key array is made by forming a transparent plastic sheet into a blank having a number of upwardly extending key projections and having a downwardly extending switch actuating projection adjacent each key projection. Indicia are applied to the underside of the sheet so the indicia are both visible and protected from wear. A back coat overlies the indicia on the underside of the sheet. The blank is cut to remove material surrounding each key and to define an integral hinge permitting deflection of each key and its associated switch actuating projection. The key array is assembled with the switching assembly, and a mask overlies the key array and permits access to individual keys.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 21, 1977
    Date of Patent: July 10, 1979
    Assignee: Clare-Pendar Co.
    Inventors: Duane H. Wright, deceased, Stephen F. Meyer
  • Patent number: 4159183
    Abstract: In a key-operated machine in which actuation of a key moves code elements of an associated code card into the path of a photoelectric sensing system, each code card is moved by a drive mechanism so as to cause the code elements to traverse the sensing system path only once, and at a speed which is independent of the speed of key movement, in response to each key actuation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 2, 1977
    Date of Patent: June 26, 1979
    Assignee: Olympia Werke AG
    Inventor: Fred Johannsen
  • Patent number: 4158130
    Abstract: A low cost, self locating auxiliary keyboard assembly is disclosed for changing the key configuration and classification of the keyboard of a data terminal device, the assembly including a cover member having a plurality of apertures which overlie associated control keys on the keyboard of the data terminal device. A classification indicia card having a plurality of predetermined positioned apertures is placed on the cover member, the apertures in the indicia card overlying certain of the apertures in the cover member to allow a removable auxiliary key member to be inserted within the aligned apertures of both the indicia card and the cover member to engage the top portion of the associated control key on the keyboard of the data terminal device for operation thereby.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 1977
    Date of Patent: June 12, 1979
    Assignee: NCR Corporation
    Inventors: Floyd G. Speraw, Michael B. Sestina, Paul L. Hittinger
  • Patent number: 4133989
    Abstract: Operation of a pushbutton or key mechanism by the operation of a single pushbutton or key through circuitry which may include fiber optics signals all keys on the keyboard included in the particular chord. The device may be built in or simply attached to the keyboard instrument. The keys are spring, and string or wire operated to return a key to its inoperative position when the next key is pressed down.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 1977
    Date of Patent: January 9, 1979
    Inventor: Juan M. del Castillo
  • Patent number: 4124313
    Abstract: A keyboard assembly includes a U-shaped carrier member and a plurality of key members connected thereon by resiliently yieldable legs having detent portions which engage cooperating recesses provided in the bottom wall of the U-shaped carrier member with snap action. Each key member has an upper and a lower housing port which are snap-fastened to each other, and an actuating shaft axially movable to energize an electrical component mounted below the carrier member. A locking member is also provided to lock the shaft in a down actuating position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 1977
    Date of Patent: November 7, 1978
    Assignee: Kienzle Apparate GmbH
    Inventors: Helmut Schmidt, Walter Strobel, Gunter Treude, Paul Blaser
  • Patent number: 4119839
    Abstract: In order to adapt a general-purpose calculator to specific tasks, the keyboard of that calculator is covered by a mask including a resilient membrane overlain by a rigid panel having cutouts registering with keys whose function is to be preserved. The cutouts receive extension keys glued or otherwise fastened to the membrane, depression of any extension key operating the underlying original key. The functions of the operative keys can be modified, in accordance with the contemplated use, by insertion of a stored-program cassette associated with the particular mask employed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 1976
    Date of Patent: October 10, 1978
    Assignee: W & G Instruments, Inc.
    Inventors: Uwe L. Beckmann, Edmund Osterland
  • Patent number: 4100402
    Abstract: A key in a keyboard for programmable computers, having its farther end recessed to form a nail-sparing shelf for carrying an exchangable mark or indicia. According to the invention the shelf serves as a seat for a flat and transparent pocket for receiving a removable lable carrying said mark, and having its insert opening blocked by the inner edge of the shelf.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 1976
    Date of Patent: July 11, 1978
    Assignee: Hugin Kassaregister AB
    Inventors: Goran Lundstrom, Willem Huijsers
  • Patent number: 4084214
    Abstract: A modular housing molded of a thermoplastic material and arranged for containing electronic circuitry is disclosed. The modular housing includes a box-like base unit, two removable modules, and a rear cover unit. The base unit forms a first housing for containing electrical apparatus. The upper surface of the base unit includes two tray-like recesses for receiving and containing the two modules which are configured for containing additional electronic apparatus. The base unit recesses and the modules are configured and arranged such that each module is securely retained within the base unit recesses without the use of conventional fasteners such as screws. The upper surface of the base unit also includes an additional tray-like recess in which the rear cover unit is mounted to form a compartment for containing additional electronic apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 1976
    Date of Patent: April 11, 1978
    Assignee: Ebco Industries, Ltd.
    Inventor: Helmut Eppich
  • Patent number: 4078257
    Abstract: A calculator system having a transparent keyboard includes an apparatus for electronically labeling the keyboard by displaying alphanumeric symbols through the keyboard. The apparatus comprises a keyboard selection device and a liquid crystal keyboard display device having a predetermined number of display planes each containing preselected symbols. The keyboard selection device operates both as a selection device and as an annunciator-feedback device, for selecting the symbols or legends of a given plane to label or configure the keyboard, and for feeding back to a user of the system the status of the selection device when it is activated. An alternative embodiment of the invention utilizes light-emitting diodes (LED's) for labeling the keyboard.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 23, 1976
    Date of Patent: March 7, 1978
    Assignee: Hewlett-Packard Company
    Inventor: Alan S. Bagley
  • Patent number: 4075465
    Abstract: An exchangeable overlay for changing the character representations associated with the keys of a keyboard. The overlay is disposed on the keyboard and has openings to receive each key thereof with the inner portion of each opening above an associated key sloped to form a character bearing surface of easy visibility.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 19, 1976
    Date of Patent: February 21, 1978
    Assignee: Sperry Rand Corporation
    Inventors: Buddy Keith Funk, Elton Earl Tetrick
  • Patent number: 4071719
    Abstract: A keyboard shift and shift lock and release mechanism consisting of two shift keyswitches and one shift lock keyswitch is provided by the interaction of cams molded on the actuating plungers of the keyswitches and a slide member on each keyswitch which carries a cam follower pin and is constructed so as to move along a straight line relative to its associated housing upon actuation of the associated plunger. The two shift keyswitches have one type of cam and the slide members for these two switches are coupled together by a removable metal rod while the shift lock keyswitch has a second type of cam and its slide member interacts with the slide member of one of the shift keyswitches which is positioned adjacent to it.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 1976
    Date of Patent: January 31, 1978
    Assignee: Illinois Tool Works Inc.
    Inventor: Robert Christen Madland
  • Patent number: 4069659
    Abstract: An electronic circuit having two states, at least one of which is stable and which permits information to pass from one terminal to the other. The circuit can be activated by the flow of a minute electric current through the human body. The circuit is particularly suitable for any hand-held instrument such, for example, as an electronic calculator watch of the digital type and including electronic logic. It permits to activate certain functions or to carry out certain calculations by activating a conductive surface by means of a hand-held metallic pin or the like. This makes it possible to provide a large number of functions or operations and to display numbers say on the face of a watch and to activate each one by touching it with a pin held by the wearer of the watch or instrument.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 19, 1976
    Date of Patent: January 24, 1978
    Inventors: Phillip A. Harris, Charles W. Rutledge
  • Patent number: 4066850
    Abstract: A printed circuit keyboard assembly is disclosed comprising a waterproof jacket portion which includes a cover member overlying a sheet of raised key-tip portions, the jacket portion being releasably mounted to a position adjacent the waterproof switch matrix portion. Depression of a key-tip portion will result in the deflection of the switch matrix portion thereby generating binary coded signals representing the key-tip portion depressed. The cover member secured to the jacket portion is constructed to expose a predetermined number of key-tip portions for operation. Means are provided to releasably secure the jacket portion to a position adjacent the matrix portion to allow the interchanging of jacket portions each having different numbers of key-tip portions available for depression to meet changing business conditions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 4, 1976
    Date of Patent: January 3, 1978
    Assignee: NCR Corporation
    Inventor: George Heys, Jr.
  • Patent number: 4065650
    Abstract: In a hand-operated electronic calculator, a switchboard having push-button switches for digits and symbols, every two or more switches combined into V, or U, or square shaped groups either above the surface or recessed for receiving fingertips and actuated along two or more directions. Switch groups are arranged at finger locations, each group of switches being assigned to a certain finger, two or more groups to active fingers, and a group can be at a perpendicular direction to the other four fingers for thumb operating.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 1976
    Date of Patent: December 27, 1977
    Inventor: Kwong-Li Lou
  • Patent number: 4060163
    Abstract: A guard for protecting the keys of a keyboard from being untimely depressed, the guard is formed of a rigid material, such as an acrylic plastic, and contains an aperture(s) therethrough for accommodating the positioning of the keys therein, so as to avoid their being depressed other than when acted upon intentionally by a machine operator. The apertures may be in the form of a pair of slots extending the length of the guard and which are designed for accommodating at least a pair of rows of keys therein, with the guard containing a vinyl decal that is imprinted with indicia to indicate the function of the proximate keys upon depressing. The guard contains either one or more holes provided there through and into each a pin projecting from the keyboard may be inserted for providing proper positioning of the guard, or alternatively, stick angles may be provided at the corners of the guard to insure its reasonably stationary positioning upon the keyboard.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 1976
    Date of Patent: November 29, 1977
    Inventor: James S. Willingham
  • Patent number: 4057710
    Abstract: A keyboard assembly comprising a plurality of actuating keys, and a sheet of flexible thin plastic film, the keys being bonded to the film. The keys have upper and lower portions, said lower portions being sandwiched between said upper portions and film and bonded to each.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 1976
    Date of Patent: November 8, 1977
    Inventor: Arthur S. Willmott
  • Patent number: 4055734
    Abstract: A keyboard switch assembly having an apertured plate, a plurality of pushbuttons supported in the apertures and a hinge for so supporting the pushbuttons that is integral with both the panel and the pushbuttons. The hinge has a web extending between the panel and the pushbutton, and the web is formed with a plurality of grooved portions at which the web deforms in response to the reciprocable movement of the pushbutton within its associated aperture to permit a degree of reciprocable and lateral movement of the pushbutton within the aperture. Switch contacts having operative portions secured to the pushbutton so that the contacts are moved to make or break an electric circuit in response to reciprocable movement of the pushbutton relative the panel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 1975
    Date of Patent: October 25, 1977
    Inventor: Thomas John Hayden
  • Patent number: 4042439
    Abstract: A keyboard assembly includes an insulative substrate upon which are carried a plurality of conductive paths. Respective portions of the paths are selectively bridged upon depression of a dome-shaped conductive resilient contact element. A pair of space-opposed regions of the dome's marginal portion are deformed downwardly away from its apex so as to constitute a pair of space-opposed feet. The feet have a complex shape which leads to high lifetime of the dome. Preferably, the feet rest on corresponding conductive pads, and the pad pairs for adjacent domes may be differently oriented so as better to accommodate the passage of leads between those domes. Leads on the substrate passing beneath dome edges desirably are depressed into the substrate. Overlying the domes in a completed assembly is a layer of deflectable insulating material that is adhesively affixed to the substrate and to the domes; the latter includes an aperture in registry with each dome but of a diameter smaller than the width of such dome.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 1976
    Date of Patent: August 16, 1977
    Assignee: KB-Denver, Inc.
    Inventor: Walter R. Pounds
  • Patent number: 4039068
    Abstract: In an office machine keyboard comprising a layer of elastic material provided with individually depressible reliefs representing the keys, each having a top fingering surface, the characters are composed of a second elastic material moulded in accordance with the shapes of the characters and superimposed on the fingering surface.The elastic keyboard is obtained pressing under heat a mould in which are inserted the two elastic materials.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 1975
    Date of Patent: August 2, 1977
    Assignee: Ing. C. Olivetti & C., S.p.A.
    Inventors: Virgilio Giorza, Piero Giovanetti
  • Patent number: 4036128
    Abstract: A marking device in the form of a branding iron having a plurality of sets of marking elements in the form of line segments mutually positioned and oriented to comprise line elements common to a plurality of recognizably different characters, together with a releasable latching arrangement for positioning selected ones of said elements in a working plane for application to an animal to be identified.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 1976
    Date of Patent: July 19, 1977
    Inventor: Harlan Easton
  • Patent number: 4032729
    Abstract: A low profile keyboard switch with tactile feel and short key travel is disclosed. The keyboard may be a matrix connected keyboard and includes a lower, fixed contact and an upper, concave contact. The concave contact is supported at one end and operates as a cantilever beam. When pressure is applied by a key, at the unsupported end to cause buckling of the concave contact at its supported end, electrical contact is made with the lower fixed contact. The concave contacts possess the key return force and the snap action desirable for tactile feel and short key travel for a low-profile, low-cost keyboard switch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 1973
    Date of Patent: June 28, 1977
    Assignee: Rockwell International Corporation
    Inventor: Clayton W. Koistinen
  • Patent number: 4030094
    Abstract: The device is a translucent plastic mask or overlay which fits over the keyboard of the computer input/output station to label the keys with their functions according to the selected mode of operation. A projecting portion along one of the edges of the mask extends into a slot adjacent the keyboard where a series of code segments forms an optical code which is read by a corresponding series of lamp and photocell pairs to provide the computer with the information to cause its mode of operation to correspond with the keyboard legends.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 1975
    Date of Patent: June 14, 1977
    Assignee: Varian Associates
    Inventor: Richard C. Anderson
  • Patent number: 3974496
    Abstract: This invention relates to the presentation of at least two different sets of information to an observer simultaneously and in the same location, one superposed upon the other, one set of information concerning characters inscribed on a source carrier or document, the other set produced by a data processing machine.The invention concerns a data entry system in which data read by an operator from a source information carrier is fed by signals from a keyboard by the operator into a data processing machine and in which operator instructions concerning the keying of the source data are produced by the data processing machine and are visually displayed to the operator on a visual display device.According to the invention the visual display device is located in juxtaposition with the source information carrier and the visually displayed operator instructions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 1974
    Date of Patent: August 10, 1976
    Inventor: Bernard Aptroot-Soloway
  • Patent number: 3964593
    Abstract: A key for an electronic keyboard comprises a plunger in a body which is mounted on the keyboard chassis and striker, with a helical spring within the plunger for engaging the striker. To provide required tactile characteristics, a further spring means, e.g., a bowed diaphragm, is arranged between the plunger and the striker and also a snap-action spring is arranged between the plunger and the body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 1974
    Date of Patent: June 22, 1976
    Assignee: Alphameric Keyboards Limited
    Inventor: Peter Pointon
  • Patent number: 3962556
    Abstract: A keyboard has contact pairs on a substrate and has a support with openings therein secured over and spaced from the substrate with the support openings aligned with respective contact pairs on the substrate. Switch mechanisms disposed in the support openings each have a contact member which is movable in a switch housing by a plunger between a depressed position and a retracted position and each switch housing has stop and detent means mounting the mechanism on a support opening so that the contact element bridges a substrate contact pair when the contact element is in depressed position. Some switch mechanisms have a cam on the housing and a cam follower on the plunger for holding the contact element in depressed position until released by manual movement of the plunger and other mechanisms cooperate with guide means mounted in adjacent support openings to mount bar-type key cap means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 1975
    Date of Patent: June 8, 1976
    Assignee: Texas Instruments Incorporated
    Inventor: Robert T. Kravchuck
  • Patent number: 3954085
    Abstract: A changeable exhibitor, with or without keyboard structure, is rendered self-restoring by use of a flexible strip arranged to lie in a selectable looped position indicative of the data being exhibited or being entered into an associated data processing system. The strip is fixed adjacent its ends and overlies a series of aligned apertures in a base. The strip is longer than the distance between its fixed ends so that it will loop into one of the apertures, one being provided for each data bit. As a different part of the strip is looped by a stylus, depressible key, or the like, into a different one of the apertures to exhibit or enter a different data bit, the first loop is concurrently and automatically recalled. A plurality of parallel independently flexible strips are arranged as a matrix exhibitor/keyboard, and bands of alternate colors aid in visually distinguishing the entered data from the unentered data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 1974
    Date of Patent: May 4, 1976
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventor: Ernie George Nassimbene
  • Patent number: 3955074
    Abstract: A battery-powered, hand-held calculator employs MOS/LSI calculator circuits to perform arithmetic and financial calculations. Data and commands are input to the calculator from a keyboard having a prefix key to double the functions of selected keys. A 15-digit, seven-segment light emitting diode (LED) display serves as the output for the calculator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 10, 1974
    Date of Patent: May 4, 1976
    Assignee: Hewlett-Packard Company
    Inventors: France Rode, William L. Crowley, Jr., Alexander D. R. Walker
  • Patent number: RE30435
    Abstract: A keyboard switch arrangement mounted on a base plate and having a plurality of key stem holder blocks, each of which protects a key stem from slipping out and has coupling portions of ridges and grooves on the outer side walls coupled in contiguous relation to one another in a manner that one ridge in one block is fitted in one groove of the adjacent block.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 15, 1977
    Date of Patent: November 11, 1980
    Assignee: Brother Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Satoshi Fukao