Plural Patents (Class 338/128)
  • Patent number: 10652971
    Abstract: A low-voltage controller (LVC) is configured to utilize a low-voltage signal to operate a high-voltage load, such as, for example, a lamp. The LVC is configured to receive a low-voltage step signal at a switch input. The LVC has a line input for connection to a source of power at a line voltage and a load output for connection to a first load, and a dimmer for setting an intensity of the first load. Subsequent step signals may alter the intensity of the load. A method for low-voltage control of a load is provided. A method includes the steps of receiving a first switch signal at a switch input of an LVC; setting a lamp to a first intensity; receiving a second switch signal at the switch input; and setting the lamp to a second intensity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 13, 2019
    Date of Patent: May 12, 2020
    Assignee: Curbell Medical Products, Inc.
    Inventor: Edward Wilkolaski
  • Patent number: 10596456
    Abstract: An example game controller includes a spherical housing, a joystick, an operation button, a vibrator, and an antenna. The housing includes a first hemispherical portion and a second hemispherical portion. The joystick is on a boundary between the first hemispherical portion and the second hemispherical portion. The vibrator is inside the second hemispherical portion and configured to generate a vibration to vibrate the housing. The antenna is inside the first hemispherical portion, the antenna configured to transmit, to outside, information regarding an operation on the joystick and information regarding an operation of the operation button.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 8, 2019
    Date of Patent: March 24, 2020
    Assignee: NINTENDO CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Masaya Takei, Shinta Minagawa, Kazuhiro Maruyama, Kohei Odanaka
  • Patent number: 10596457
    Abstract: An example game controller includes a spherical housing, a joystick, an operation button, a vibrator, and an antenna. The housing includes a first hemispherical portion and a second hemispherical portion. The joystick is on a boundary between the first hemispherical portion and the second hemispherical portion. The vibrator is inside the second hemispherical portion and configured to generate a vibration to vibrate the housing. The antenna is inside the first hemispherical portion, the antenna configured to transmit, to outside, information regarding an operation on the joystick and information regarding an operation of the operation button.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 2019
    Date of Patent: March 24, 2020
    Assignee: NINTENDO CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Masaya Takei, Shinta Minagawa, Kazuhiro Maruyama, Kohei Odanaka
  • Patent number: 10253870
    Abstract: In a shift lever device, a gate pin of a lever is guided by a gate groove of a gate plate, and a detent pin of the lever is abutted on a detent face of a detent block due to an urging force. A sensor mechanism detects a shift position of the lever. The gate plate, the detent block, and the sensor mechanism are disposed at a lower side of the lever, the gate plate and the detent block are disposed at a rear side of the lever, and the sensor mechanism is disposed at a front side of the gate plate and the detent block. This thereby enables a reduction in size of the shift lever device in an up-down direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 9, 2019
    Assignee: KABUSHIKI KAISHA TOKAI-RIKA-DENKI-DEISAKUSHO
    Inventors: Takehiro Niwa, Yohei Nakano, Naomi Asahina
  • Patent number: 10130876
    Abstract: A joystick module includes a base, a joystick body, a joystick cover and a second protruding edge. The base includes a casing and a first protruding edge. A top part of the casing has an opening. The first protruding edge is formed on a periphery of the opening of the casing. The joystick body is installed in the base. A first end of the joystick body is protruded through the opening so as to be rotated. The joystick cover is installed in the base and connected with the joystick body. In response to a rotation of the joystick body, the joystick cover is correspondingly rotated. During the rotation of the joystick body, a part of the second protruding edge is contacted with an inner surface of the casing. When the part of the second protruding edge is contacted with a part of the first protruding edge, the rotation of the joystick body is limited.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 20, 2018
    Assignee: PRIMAX ELECTRONCIS LTD.
    Inventors: Shu-An Huang, Tsu-Hui Yu
  • Patent number: 10086376
    Abstract: The invention relates to operating apparatus for the control of a movement apparatus, in particular the movement apparatus of a micromanipulator for the manipulation of biological cells, and a method for the control of the movement apparatus. The operating apparatus comprises an electrical control device and an input device with different input zones, by means of which the movement apparatus can be controlled according to different control rules.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 9, 2013
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2018
    Inventors: Dieter Knofe, Christian Flucke, Andreas Maass
  • Patent number: 9741478
    Abstract: An electrical assembly including a conductor arrangement and a multi-resolution potentiometer electrically connected to the conductor arrangement. The multi-resolution potentiometer includes a first resistive element having a first adjustment mechanism and a first wiper, and a second resistive element having a second adjustment mechanism and a second wiper. The first adjustment mechanism is coupled in a hysteresis arrangement to the second adjustment mechanism. A resistor network provides an electrical output for the potentiometer and electrically couples the first wiper with the second wiper.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 13, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2017
    Assignee: Emhiser Research Limited
    Inventor: Lloyd L. Lautzenhiser
  • Patent number: 9606570
    Abstract: A child unit (30) is configured to freely pivot about a first axial center (AX1) relative to a parent unit (10), and a grandchild unit (50) including a manipulator (56) is configured to freely pivot about a second axial center (AX2), which is orthogonal to the first axial center (AX1), relative to the child unit (30). A first rotary volume (32) is configured to detect a relative pivot amount of the parent unit (10) and the child unit (30) about the first axial center (AX1), and a second rotary volume (39) is configured to detect a relative pivot amount of the child unit (30) and the grandchild unit (50) about the second axial center (AX2). Both the first rotary volume (32) and the second rotary volume (39) are mounted to an electrical circuit board (43) of the child unit (30).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2017
    Assignee: YAMAHA CORPORATION
    Inventor: Shunsuke Ichiki
  • Patent number: 9436207
    Abstract: There is provided an operation device provided with: an operation member displaceable by an operator; a two-dimensional support mechanism in which a pair of one-dimensional support mechanisms that individually displaceably supports the operation member 11 in mutually crossing two directions are connected in series; and a pair of potentiometers that individually biases the operation member 11 toward a neutral position of displacement by the respective one-dimensional support mechanisms, in which biasing forces that the pair of potentiometers applies to the operation member against displacement of the operation member are different from each other, and in which a command signal according to the displacement of the operation member of the respective one-dimensional support mechanisms is output.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 6, 2016
    Assignee: WHILL Inc.
    Inventors: Muneaki Fukuoka, Naoto Sakakibara
  • Patent number: 9388898
    Abstract: In a shift device of the present invention, a shift range is switched to a drive range or a reverse range when a switch portion is operated additionally to moving of an operational member. Switching to a drive range is executed when the switch portion is operated further in a state in which the mount of move of the operational member tilted in a first direction from a home position exceeds a first threshold, and switching to a reverse range is executed when the switch portion is operated further in a state in which the mount of move of the operational member tilted in a second direction from the home position exceeds a second threshold which is greater than the first threshold. Accordingly, quick and easy selection of a traveling range can be conducted, ensuring the safety.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 15, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 12, 2016
    Assignee: Mazda Motor Corporation
    Inventor: Masayuki Tokumo
  • Patent number: 9323359
    Abstract: An embodiment of the present invention provides a direction indicating device for generating a 2D direction indicating signal, which includes a base board, a first rectangular conductive plane formed on the base board, including a first sliding slot, a second rectangular conductive plane formed on the base board, overlapping the first rectangular conductive plane, and including a first sliding slot, a positioning axle perpendicular to the base board, passing through a space corresponding to overlap portions of the first sliding slot and the second sliding slot, for moving the first conductive plane along a first direction, and moving the second conductive plane along a second direction, and a control signal generating module for outputting the 2D direction indicating signal according to electric information of the first conductive plane and the second conductive plane.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 17, 2014
    Date of Patent: April 26, 2016
    Assignee: Wistron Corporation
    Inventors: Hung-Ming Huang, Lin Lee
  • Patent number: 9174664
    Abstract: An operating device for steering a vehicle, in particular a motor vehicle, and a method for steering the vehicle by way of the operating device. The operating device comprises a control stick, in particular for operation by a human hand. The control stick has at least one degree of freedom. A steering angle can be specified by way of the control stick. The operating device comprises a control element. The specifiable steering angle can be determined as a function of a state of the control stick and as a function of a state of the control element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2013
    Date of Patent: November 3, 2015
    Assignee: Robert Bosch Automotive Steering GmbH
    Inventor: Alexander Gaedke
  • Patent number: 8925414
    Abstract: A device for inputting command signals to a marine vessel control system includes a lever that is selectively operable in a joystick mode and a lever mode. In the lever mode, the lever is confined to pivoting about a horizontal axis to thereby input throttle and shift commands to the control system. In the joystick mode, the lever is freely pivotable in all directions away from a vertical axis that is perpendicular to the horizontal axis to thereby input throttle, shift, and directional commands to the control system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 6, 2015
    Assignee: Brunswick Corporation
    Inventors: John I. S. Park, Steven J. Gonring
  • Patent number: 8872806
    Abstract: An embodiment of the present invention provides a direction indicating device for generating a 2D direction indicating signal, which includes a base board, a first rectangular conductive plane formed on the base board, including a first sliding slot, a second rectangular conductive plane formed on the base board, overlapping the first rectangular conductive plane, and including a second sliding slot, a positioning axle perpendicular to the base board, passing through a space corresponding to overlap portions of the first sliding slot and the second sliding slot, for moving the first conductive plane along a first direction, and moving the second conductive plane along a second direction, and a control signal generating module for outputting the 2D direction indicating signal according to electric information of the first conductive plane and the second conductive plane.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2014
    Assignee: Wistron Corporation
    Inventors: Hung-Ming Huang, Lin Lee
  • Patent number: 8400333
    Abstract: A multi-directional input apparatus includes an operating member including a shaft portion which extends to the outside, a housing having an opening through which the shaft portion extends and configured to support the operating member in a tiltable manner, interlocking members moved by the operating member when the shaft portion is tilted, and detectors which detect changes in the positions of the interlocking members. A sliding member is externally fitted to the shaft portion such that the sliding member is movable in an axial direction, and a coil spring is disposed between a flange provided on the shaft portion and the sliding member. A rubbing surface of the sliding member is in elastic contact with a receiving surface on an inner wall of an annular edge portion surrounding the opening. The rubbing surface and the receiving surface are spherical surfaces centered on a tilting center of the shaft portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 23, 2009
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2013
    Assignees: Alps Electric Co., Ltd., Denso Corporation
    Inventors: Shinji Ishikawa, Kuniharu Kutsuna, Yasuhiko Yamazaki
  • Patent number: 8396261
    Abstract: A method involving generating a pixel map of a digital image, scanning the pixel map and labeling a found red pixel, where each row of the pixel map is scanned for a red pixel, where a coordinate of each labeled red pixel is stored and compared to surrounding red pixels, arranging found labeled red pixels with previously found labeled red pixels that have a corresponding y-axis coordinate thereby creating a contiguous group, determining if the contiguous group is a red-eye artifact, and creating a list of coordinates that denote red-eye artifacts within the digital image.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 12, 2013
    Assignee: Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P.
    Inventors: Jonathan Deonarine, Matthew Gaubatz
  • Patent number: 8284015
    Abstract: A smooth surface of a control device is achieved by positioning the actual control devices within a sealed housing and having the operator touchable knobs proximity connected to the control devices through the surface of the housing. In one embodiment, the proximity connection is a magnetic connection between the handle mechanism detachably positioned on the outside of the housing and traditional slider potentiometers mounted within the housing. In another embodiment, longitudinal proximity sensors within the housing are used to emulate the physical layout of the slider potentiometers and the movement of handle mechanisms outside the housing create the changing proximity under control of the operator. In all embodiments, the outside handle mechanism easily separates from the housing leaving a relatively smooth outer housing surface which can be easily sanitized. The removed handle mechanism allows for easy cleaning and sanitizing as well as for easy substitution.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2012
    Inventors: Jerry J. Van Eyck, Richard A. Fine
  • Patent number: 7265304
    Abstract: A joystick for an electro-hydraulic control system is provided with a rotary potentiometer having a pivotable arm. This pivotable arm is integrally arranged on a rotary shaft and pivots responsive to pivotal control of a joystick in a predetermined direction or a direction opposite to the predetermined direction. The joystick is also provided with a torsion coil spring for normally holding the pivotable arm in a neutral position, a pin arranged on the pivotable arm and capable of expanding the torsion coil spring upon pivotal movement of the pivotable arm, a holding pin for holding the torsion coil spring at its coil portion, and a cover member having a pair of guide portions for limiting movements of the coil portion of the torsion coil spring in the predetermined direction and the opposition direction when the torsion coil spring is in its neutral position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 7, 2005
    Date of Patent: September 4, 2007
    Assignee: Hitachi Construction Machinery Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Nobuhiko Ichiki, Mitsuhisa Tougasaki, Kaoru Endo, Hiroyasu Masubuchi
  • Patent number: 7256679
    Abstract: A stick lever unit is provided that is capable of eliminating uncomfortable feeling during manipulation of the stick, as well as, minimizing breaking of a wiring conductor of the variable resistor. The stick lever unit includes a fixing member, a first variable resistor attached to the fixing member, a first rotational member rotatably journalled to the fixing member for rotationally controlling the first variable resistor, a second variable resistor attached to the first rotational member, and a second rotational member having a stick lever and being rotationally journalled to the first rotational member to rotationally control the second variable resistor. The wiring conductors of the second variable resistor are derived out from the lead-out hole in the rotational shaft of the first rotational member, which is attached to the second variable resistor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 2005
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2007
    Assignee: Futaba Corporation
    Inventors: Masahiro Arai, Masashi Tokita, Takahiro Isono
  • Patent number: 7213323
    Abstract: The cost and complexity of an electronic pressure sensitive transducer are decreased by constructing such a transducer directly on a printed circuit board containing support electronics. Conductive traces are formed on the printed circuit board to define a contact area. A flexible substrate having an inner surface is positioned over the contact area. An adhesive spacer, substantially surrounding the contact area, attaches the flexible substrate to the printed circuit board. At least one resistive layer is deposited on the flexible substrate inner surface. In use, the resistive layer contacts at least two conductive traces in response to pressure applied to the flexible substrate to produce an electrical signal indicative of applied pressure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 16, 2005
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2007
    Assignee: Interlink Electronics, Inc.
    Inventors: Jeffrey R. Baker, Carlos S. Sanchez, Patrick H. Bair
  • Patent number: 7199314
    Abstract: A joystick includes a base and a cover mounted over the base. A stick has a first end that extends from the cover and a second end. An active yoke is mounted above the base and is coupled to second end of the stick. The active yoke has a first and second end. The active yoke is adapted to be moved by the stick. A passive yoke is mounted over the active yoke and has a third and fourth end. The passive yoke is adapted to be moved by the stick. A first contactor is mounted to the first end and a second contactor is mounted to the third end. A first resistor is positioned between the first contactor and the cover and a second resistor is positioned between the second contactor and the cover. The resistors are adapted to generate an electrical signal that is indicative of a position of the stick. A switch is positioned in the base below the active yoke. The switch is activated when the stick is sufficiently depressed so as to cause the active yoke to contact the switch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 10, 2005
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2007
    Assignee: CTS Corporation
    Inventors: Chiao-Pu Huang, Kao-Chang Chen, Cheng-Huan Chen
  • Patent number: 6937132
    Abstract: A high-voltage variable resistor includes an insulating-resin front case, and an insulating-resin rear case fitted to the front case. The front case further includes a circuit board having a circuit pattern including a resistive element, and a slider that is slidable on the resistive element. The rear case includes a capacitor housing for accommodating a capacitor, and a terminal guide for accommodating an external connection terminal. The capacitor housing and the terminal guides are integrally molded with the rear case.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 17, 2004
    Date of Patent: August 30, 2005
    Assignee: Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Shinji Kato, Yukihiko Yoshida
  • Patent number: 6909353
    Abstract: A multi-directional control device comprising a base (1) on which is mounted a stick (2) which is maintained in a non-active central position by elastic means (3) and which can be manually inclined to any orientation around said non-active central position against the force of said elastic means (3). Four hall effect sensors (4) are associated with said base (1) and one magnet (5) attached to said stick (2). The Hall effect sensors (4) are adapted to issue a signal in response to the variations in magnetic field produced by the movement of said magnet (5) when the stick (2) is inclined.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2002
    Date of Patent: June 21, 2005
    Assignee: Industrias Lorenzo, S.A.
    Inventors: Nuria Lorenzo Riera, Ricardo Romero Herrera
  • Patent number: 6909354
    Abstract: The cost and complexity of an electronic pressure sensitive transducer are decreased by constructing such a transducer directly on a printed circuit board containing support electronics. Conductive traces are formed on the printed circuit board to define a contact area. A flexible substrate having an inner surface is positioned over the contact area. An adhesive spacer, substantially surrounding the contact area, attaches the flexible substrate to the printed circuit board. At least one resistive layer is deposited on the flexible substrate inner surface. In use, the resistive layer contacts at least two conductive traces in response to pressure applied to the flexible substrate to produce an electrical signal indicative of applied pressure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 5, 2002
    Date of Patent: June 21, 2005
    Assignee: Interlink Electronics, Inc.
    Inventors: Jeffrey R. Baker, Carlos S. Sanchez
  • Patent number: 6879240
    Abstract: A ball-and-socket joint with integrated angle sensor for a motor vehicle, especially for the chassis of the motor vehicle is created. The ball-and-socket joint has a ball-and-socket joint housing (6) provided with a joint opening (7), a ball pivot (1) having a joint ball (2) and a pin (3), which is mounted, with its joint ball (2), rotatably and pivotably in a hollow-ball-shaped bearing surface in the ball-and-socket joint housing (6), and projects, with its pin (3), through the joint opening (7) out of the ball-and-socket joint housing (6). A two-pole field transducer (5) is provided at the end of the joint ball (2) facing away from the pin (3). The poles of the field transducer (5) are arranged on the ball surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2002
    Date of Patent: April 12, 2005
    Assignee: ZF Lenförder Metallwaren AG
    Inventor: Jochen Kruse
  • Patent number: 6796201
    Abstract: In an input device according to the invention, when a manipulating member slides, a sliding member slides in the same direction as the manipulating member, and respective engaging positions of first and second drive members are made changeable to enable each of the first and second drive members to shift linearly, the linear shifting of the first and second drive members enabling first and second detecting members to be operated. Accordingly, the drive members linearly shift along with the sliding of the sliding member, eliminating a need to rotate arc-shaped interlocked members in a conventional configuration and making it possible to reduce a required space in a longitudinal direction, resulting in an input device made more compact in a longitudinal dimension.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 9, 2002
    Date of Patent: September 28, 2004
    Assignee: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Mikio Onodera
  • Publication number: 20040100357
    Abstract: A ball-and-socket joint with integrated angle sensor for a motor vehicle, especially for the chassis of the motor vehicle is created. The ball-and-socket joint has a ball-and-socket joint housing (6) provided with a joint opening (7), a ball pivot (1) having a joint ball (2) and a pin (3), which is mounted, with its joint ball (2), rotatably and pivotably in a hollow-ball-shaped bearing surface in the ball-and-socket joint housing (6), and projects, with its pin (3), through the joint opening (7) out of the ball-and-socket joint housing (6). A two-pole field transducer (5) is provided at the end of the joint ball (2) facing away from the pin (3). The poles of the field transducer (5) are arranged on the ball surface.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 13, 2003
    Publication date: May 27, 2004
    Inventor: Jochen Kruse
  • Publication number: 20040027231
    Abstract: In a multiple-direction input device, when the operation body is tilted, a push portion having a substantially spherical shape at the bottom of a operation body pushes a resistor element and detects a tilting direction and a tilting angle of the operation body from a resistance at a pressing point. Thus, the input device may operate in multiple directions in entire directions of 360°. The device can detect the pressing point of the push portion pressing the resistor element in accordance with the tilting direction and the tilting angle. The multiple-direction input device using less number of parts is capable of continuously detecting the tilting directions and the tilting angles.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 4, 2003
    Publication date: February 12, 2004
    Inventors: Hiroto Inoue, Tamotsu Yamamoto
  • Patent number: 6617957
    Abstract: Disclosed is a multidirectional input device having a reduction in thickness and in which the inclination of the operating shaft can be smoothly effected. The device comprise first and second interlock members that are supported at both ends by support portions connected to the inside of the frame body, wherein the second interlock member has between the support portions a connecting portion having a second elongated hole, and wherein the connecting portion is arranged below the first interlock member so as to be astride the first interlock member, the connecting portion being positioned in the inner peripheral portion of a coil spring.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2001
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2003
    Assignee: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Shinji Ishikawa
  • Publication number: 20030137394
    Abstract: A multi-directional control device comprising a base (1) on which is mounted a stick (2) which is maintained in a non-active central position by elastic means (3) and which can be manually inclined to any orientation around said non-active central position against the force of said elastic means (3). Four hall effect sensors (4) are associated with said base (1) and one magnet (5) attached to said stick (2). The Hall effect sensors (4) are adapted to issue a signal in response to the variations in magnetic field produced by the movement of said magnet (5) when the stick (2) is inclined.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 21, 2002
    Publication date: July 24, 2003
    Inventors: Ricardo Romero Herrera, Nuria Lorenzo Riera
  • Publication number: 20030117255
    Abstract: On a printed wiring board (13), switch parts (21 to 24) are disposed so as to correspond to four positions of corner parts in the side parts of a rectangular form of a pusher (20). A switch circuit member is provided. The switch circuit member includes the first to fourth switch parts and a plurality of resistances connected together between a pair of terminals and a resistance value between the pair of terminals is changed for each of different switch operation patterns of the switch parts in accordance with the pressing operations of the side parts of the pusher.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 17, 2002
    Publication date: June 26, 2003
    Applicant: Kabushiki Kaisha Tokai Rika Denki Seisakusho
    Inventor: Keiji Minami
  • Patent number: 6437682
    Abstract: Pressure sensitive direction devices are provided which may facilitate assembly and provide higher tolerance for variation in alignment of components while still providing for pressure sensitive direction detection. The devices of the present invention may be particularly advantageous when integrated into devices, such as cellular radiotelephones, to provide a user interface to facilitate user navigation through increasingly complex menu structures. In various embodiments, the present invention may detect pressure in addition to two and, preferably, at least four directions. In particular embodiments, the devices of the present invention provides a switching device having a plurality of trace grid areas located, for example, on a printed circuit board and actuated responsive to pressure applied by a user through a poly-dome layer where increase pressure results in contact with a greater number of the traces in respective grids.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2002
    Assignee: Ericsson Inc.
    Inventor: Scott LaDell Vance
  • Patent number: 6433778
    Abstract: The invention is to provide a finger operating apparatus by which operations of a robot apparatus can be easily carried out comfortably, wherein the finger operating joystick includes a joystick shaft 11 rotatably attached to the signal reaction generator 2; a roughly cylindrical body 12 attached onto the upper part of the joystick shaft; a tongue-shaped thumb flexing instruction portion 13, which rotatably attached to the side of the cylinder body; a rectangular projection forefinger flexing instruction portion 14, which attached at the front upper part of the cylindrical body so as to freely advance and retreat; and a rectangular projection middle finger flexing instruction portion 15, attached at the front lower part of the cylindrical body so as to freely advance and retreat; and wherein the signal reaction generator includes the first, second and third detectors which detect movements of the first, second and third wires in line with rotation of the thumb flexing instruction portion, advance and retreat
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 22, 2000
    Date of Patent: August 13, 2002
    Assignee: TMSUK Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Katsuyuki Baba, Shigeaki Ino, Yoichi Takamoto
  • Patent number: 6429767
    Abstract: In a multidirectional input device, a control shaft and an operating member are spline-connected so that when the control shaft is turned in the tilted state, the operating member spline-connected to the control shaft also turns even if there is friction between the bottom portion thereof and a bottom plate due to elastic pressing by an urging member. The operating member turns in a rolling manner without slipping on the bottom plate, Thereby improving the manipulation feeling of the control shaft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 2000
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2002
    Assignee: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Hisato Shimomura
  • Patent number: 6405432
    Abstract: A mounting clip for a rotary potentiometer. In a preferred embodiment, the mounting clip comprises front and back generally vertical opposing side segments elastically deformable relative to each other between a naturally biased position and an outward flexed position. The back side segment defines a pair of legs sized to accommodate a shaft of the potentiometer. The mounting clip is useful for mounting the rotary potentiometer relative to a support wall of a joystick assembly in a position wherein a body portion of the potentiometer is adjacent to the support wall and the shaft of the potentiometer projects through an opening in the support wall. When the potentiometer is so positioned, the mounting clip may be slid downward over the potentiometer and support wall such that the front side segment overlies an outer flat surface of the potentiometer and the legs straddle the shaft of the potentiometer on the other side of the support wall.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 15, 1999
    Date of Patent: June 18, 2002
    Assignee: Midway Games Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas M. Sedor, Theodore Valavanis
  • Patent number: 6396386
    Abstract: An angle sensor in which, when a biasing member is used, a biasing force in the &bgr;2 direction acts on a driving gear, and a biasing force in the &bgr;1 direction acts on an auxiliary gear. This prevents backlash from occurring between a rotary member and the driving member, making it possible to reduce rattling between the rotary member and the driving member. A fitting member is provided at the free end side of a resilient supporting member in order to resiliently press a screw shaft in the Z1 direction. Therefore, internal threads of inside surfaces of corresponding fitting portions of the fitting member and thread grooves of the screw shaft can be made to uniformly closely contact each other, making it possible reduce rattling caused by backlash therebetween. Consequently, the angle of rotation of a steering wheel which is mounted to the rotary member is detected with high precision.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 4, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2002
    Assignee: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Hirofumi Okumura
  • Publication number: 20020056621
    Abstract: A multidirectional input device comprising a frame having an upper wall, a printed wiring board having a fixed electrode portion, and an operating shaft adapted to be tilted, wherein a movable electrode portion is attached to the operating shaft in an opposed relation to the fixed electrode portion, an opposition area between the movable electrode portion and the fixed electrode portion is changed by operation of the operating shaft, and a change in capacitance between the movable electrode portion and the fixed electrode portion is detected to obtain an operational direction of the operating shaft.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 7, 2001
    Publication date: May 16, 2002
    Applicant: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Takashi Nakai
  • Publication number: 20020053968
    Abstract: Disclosed is a multidirectional input device having a reduction in thickness and in which the inclination of the operating shaft can be smoothly effected. The device comprise first and second interlock members that are supported at both ends by support portions connected to the inside of the frame body, wherein the second interlock member has between the support portions a connecting portion having a second elongated hole, and wherein the connecting portion is arranged below the first interlock member so as to be astride the first interlock member, the connecting portion being positioned in the inner peripheral portion of a coil spring.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 15, 2001
    Publication date: May 9, 2002
    Applicant: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Shinji Ishikawa
  • Patent number: 6344620
    Abstract: A multidirectional input device with a built-in push-down switch, capable of reducing the number of parts, eliminating soldering for connection with a mounting substrate, and reducing an assembly cost of devices using the multidirectional input device, wherein a key top (70) provided under an operating member (30) operating a set of upper and lower rotating members (40a) and (40b) is installed through the bottom plate part (11) of a case (10) and pushed down by the operating member (30), and a switch main body (110) operated by the key top (70) and provided on a substrate (100), on which the case (10) is installed, comprises a fixed contact formed on the substrate (100) and a dome-shaped moving contact covering the fixed contact and fixed onto the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2002
    Assignee: Hosiden Corporation
    Inventor: Masahiko Nakamura
  • Patent number: 6313731
    Abstract: Pressure sensitive direction devices are provided which may facilitate assembly and provide higher tolerance for variation in alignment of components while still providing for pressure sensitive direction detection. The devices of the present invention may be particularly advantageous when integrated into devices, such as cellular radiotelephones, to provide a user interface to facilitate user navigation through increasingly complex menu structures. In various embodiments, the present invention may detect pressure in addition to two and, preferably, at least four directions. In particular embodiments, the devices of the present invention provides a switching device having a plurality of trace grid areas located, for example, on a printed circuit board and actuated responsive to pressure applied by a user through a poly-dome layer where increase pressure results in contact with a greater number of the traces in respective grids.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 2000
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2001
    Assignee: Telefonaktiebolaget L.M. Ericsson
    Inventor: Scott LaDell Vance
  • Patent number: 6292090
    Abstract: A switch circuit including voltage dividing elements for dividing a reference voltage inputted from an external source through a reference voltage input terminal, a fixed contact having metallic patterns formed on a board, and a movable contact coming in contact with the metallic patterns so as to slide thereon. The switch circuit not only divides the reference voltage at a voltage dividing ratio corresponding to a currently selected position of an object whose position is to be detected, but also outputs the divided voltage as an analog signal. Some of the voltage dividing elements that serve to switch the voltage dividing ratios are connected in parallel to one another through the fixed contact and the movable contact.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 1997
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2001
    Assignee: Funai Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Yoshio Higuchi
  • Patent number: 6275139
    Abstract: In a multidirectional input device, a surface of a bottom plate facing the bottom of an operating member is provided with a projection having a taper portion that gradually rises from the outer periphery toward the center, wherein the operating member is tilted with the tilting operation of a control shaft and contacts the projection to regulate the motion of the operating member. Therefore, the operating member does not slip, and a tactile feel is not produced in the tilting operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 2000
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2001
    Assignee: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Hisato Shimomura, Seiji Aizawa
  • Patent number: 6275138
    Abstract: The conventional variable resistor has a problem in that, because a pressure-sensitive member made of a pressure-sensitive conductive rubber is used, a serious scattering is caused in the characteristic (change curve), and scattering of thickness in the manufacture of the pressure-sensitive member results in a large scatter of the characteristic (change curve). The variable resistor of the invention uses the first resistor pattern forming the variable resistor. It is therefore possible to provide a variable resistor which scattering in the manufacture is smaller, can achieve a uniform resistance change characteristic, and gives a high accuracy.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 2000
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2001
    Assignee: ALPS Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Ryoichi Maeda
  • Patent number: 6239688
    Abstract: There is provided a variable resistor comprised of a resistor formed at a movable member arranged to be reciprocatable, and a slider element attached to a fixing member fixed in opposition to the movable member, slidingly contacted with the resistor. The resistor has the first resistor, the second resistor and the third resistor extending in a reciprocating direction of the movable member and electrically independent from each other, a first resistor pattern having one end of each of the first resistor and the second resistor connected to each other, a second resistor pattern having the other ends of the second resistor and the third resistor. The slider element is comprised of the first slider element, the second slider element and the third slider element slidingly contacted with the first resistor, the second resistor and the third resistor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 19, 2000
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2001
    Assignee: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kisaburo Takahashi, Junichi Kurantani, Toshio Ogawa
  • Patent number: 6172594
    Abstract: A focus unit of an FBT (fly back transformer) is disclosed. Particularly a focus volume slider of the focus unit is disclosed. A ceramic substrate 150 is installed within and on the bottom of a cover 130 through which an actuation knob 120 passes. A variable contact 172 of a slider 170 contacts with a resistor pattern 140 of the ceramic substrate 150, so that the voltage volume can be controlled. Since the ceramic substrate is disposed separated from an FBT case which accommodates bobbins for generating a high voltage, the insulation of the focus unit by filling and curing an insulating resin is not required, and therefore, the manufacturing process is simplified.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 19, 1999
    Date of Patent: January 9, 2001
    Assignee: Samsung Electro-Mechanics Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Tae Woo Goo
  • Patent number: 6150919
    Abstract: In the multi-way input device of the present invention, pivot shaft portions of an operating shaft and engaging portions of a second interlocking member are engaged with each other by snap-fitting to support the operating shaft in the second interlocking member. Thus, the operating shaft can be supported in the second interlocking member easily even by manual operation without requiring any special jig or the like.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 14, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 21, 2000
    Assignee: Alps Electric Co., LTD
    Inventor: Hisato Shimomura
  • Patent number: 6100786
    Abstract: A focus unit of an FBT (fly back transformer) is described, which is installed on a side of the FBT, for adjusting the focus and screen voltages of a cathode ray tube. Focus and screen voltage adjusting round resistor patterns 130 are respectively formed on volume boards 120 of the focus unit, and a supporting shaft 160 is received into a central through hole 140 of the round resistor pattern 120. A connecting pin 170 is inserted into the supporting shaft 160, and a cable 210 is inserted into each of holes of a volume case so as for the cable to be connected to the lower end of the connecting pin 170. A pair of actuation knobs are inserted into a cover, and a slider spring is installed within each of volume bars, while the lower end of the slider spring 230 is movably connected to the round resistor pattern 130. Thus the slider spring for adjusting the focus volume can be easily installed on a volume bar, and the focus and screen voltages can be controlled in a sure manner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 1999
    Date of Patent: August 8, 2000
    Assignee: Samsung Electro-Mechanics Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Jae Mun Ryu
  • Patent number: 6040758
    Abstract: A mounting clip for a rotary potentiometer. In a preferred embodiment, the mounting clip comprises front and back generally vertical opposing side segments elastically deformable relative to each other between a naturally biased position and an outward flexed position. The back side segment defines a pair of legs sized to accommodate a shaft of the potentiometer. The mounting clip is useful for mounting the rotary potentiometer relative to a support wall of a joystick assembly in a position wherein a body portion of the potentiometer is adjacent to the support wall and the shaft of the potentiometer projects through an opening in the support wall. When the potentiometer is so positioned, the mounting clip may be slid downward over the potentiometer and support wall such that the front side segment overlies an outer flat surface of the potentiometer and the legs straddle the shaft of the potentiometer on the other side of the support wall.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 21, 2000
    Assignee: Midway Games Inc.
    Inventors: Thomas M. Sedor, Theodore Valavanis
  • Patent number: 5949325
    Abstract: A curved disc joystick or pad with improved performance, reliability and durability can be used as a cursor pointing device for computers, remote controls, video games, consumer electronics, industrial controllers, automotive and other applications. A conductive spring or sheath connects to a conductive curved rubber transducer which can be deflected to make contact with conductors on a printed circuit board, providing electrical outputs to a microprocessor or other device. A ribbed locking extension may be added to automate the assembly process. In addition, a collar may be provided to produce a controllable product, both in terms of manufacturing and performance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 1997
    Date of Patent: September 7, 1999
    Assignee: Varatouch Technology Inc.
    Inventor: Dean Devolpi
  • Patent number: 5812048
    Abstract: Use is made of thermoplastic materials in layered configurations as a thermally stable, rigid but not brittle strip of lengths of six inches to ten feet or more. The layered strip contains layers of conductive fibers in a resin matrix, which, through use of appropriate contact mechanisms and wiring, provide an assembly with an infinite potentiometer scale. The strips are especially useful in linear positioning indicators such as pneumatic and hydraulic cylinder and liquid level gauges.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 28, 1996
    Date of Patent: September 22, 1998
    Assignee: Rochester Gauges, Inc.
    Inventors: Herbert G. Ross, Jr., Carl A. Taylor, Cecil M. Williamson