Tactile Reading Aid (e.g., Braille, Etc.) Patents (Class 434/113)
  • Patent number: 9646469
    Abstract: A sensory display for experiencing rigidity and local shape in the display is provided. Rigidity and local shape of cells in an array of cells forming the display is controlled by three independent and different control mechanisms. Cell rigidity controllers control the rigidity of the cells. A shape array controller controls the shape of the array of cells. Cell pinning controllers controls the height of the cells. A computer control interface could control the respective control functionalities of each of the controllers. The display experience could be further enhanced with audio, images or video.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 7, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 9, 2017
    Assignee: The Board of Trustees of the Leland Stanford Junior University
    Inventors: James C Gwilliam, Allison M Okamura, Andrew A Stanley
  • Patent number: 9495055
    Abstract: One variation of a method for controlling a dynamic tactile user interface includes: sensing a capacitance value across a portion of a cavity, a tactile layer defining a deformable region and a peripheral region, the peripheral region adjacent the deformable region, and the deformable region cooperating with the substrate to define the cavity; estimating a vertical position of the tactile surface at the deformable region according to the sensed capacitance value across the portion of the cavity; manipulating a fluid pressure within the cavity to modify a vertical position of the tactile surface at the deformable region according to a difference between the estimated vertical position of the tactile surface at the deformable region and a target vertical position of the tactile surface at the deformable region; and sensing an input on the tactile surface according to a change in capacitance value across the portion of the cavity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 13, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 15, 2016
    Assignee: Tactus Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Micah B. Yairi, Todd A. Culver, Craig M. Ciesla
  • Patent number: 9405417
    Abstract: One variation of a dynamic tactile interface includes: a substrate including a first transparent material and defining an attachment surface, an open channel opposite the attachment surface, and a fluid conduit intersecting the open channel and passing through the attachment surface; a tactile layer including a second transparent material and defining a tactile surface, a peripheral region bonded to the attachment surface opposite the tactile surface, and a deformable region adjacent the fluid conduit and disconnected from the attachment surface; a closing panel bonded to the substrate opposite the attachment surface and enclosing the open channel to define a fluid channel; a working fluid; and a displacement device configured to displace the working fluid into the fluid channel and through the fluid conduit to transition the deformable region from a retracted setting to an expanded setting.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 2, 2016
    Assignee: Tactus Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Micah B Yairi, Craig Ciesla, Nathaniel Mark Saal, Curtis Ray, Michael Hammersley, Brandon Miller, Ben Calub, Carl Del Rosario, Mario Garcia, Ron Menigoz, David Krevor, Jonathan Jenkins
  • Patent number: 9349302
    Abstract: A device, computer program and method for outputting linguistic information. The voice output device, for example, includes an output information acquisition unit acquiring linguistic information and attribute information. Attribute information includes an attribute added to each linguistic element included in the linguistic information. A tactile pattern storage unit stores a predetermined tactile pattern corresponding to each linguistic element. A tactile pattern acquisition unit acquires the tactile pattern from the tactile pattern storage unit. A voice output unit reads aloud the linguistic elements and a tactile pattern output unit outputs, in parallel with reading aloud each linguistic element, the tactile pattern corresponding to the attribute added to the linguistic element, thereby allowing a user to sense the tactile pattern by the sense of touch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 24, 2016
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventors: Chieko Asakawa, Tohru Ifukube, Shuichi Ino, Hironobu Takagi
  • Patent number: 9298262
    Abstract: A dynamic tactile interface including a substrate including an attachment surface, a cavity, and a fluid channel fluidly coupled to the cavity; a pedestal arranged within the cavity, pivotable within the cavity, and including a mating surface and an exterior surface; a tactile layer including a peripheral region coupled to the attachment surface, a deformable region adjacent the peripheral region and arranged over the pedestal, and a tactile surface opposite the substrate; and a displacement device displacing fluid to transition the deformable region from a retracted setting into an expanded setting, the pedestal pivotable within the cavity between a first position and a second position in the retracted setting, the deformable region flush with the peripheral region in the first position and the pedestal partially elevated out of the cavity and the deformable region defining a second formation tactilely distinguishable from the peripheral region in the expanded setting.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2016
    Assignee: Tactus Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Micah Yairi, Roman Rak, Jonathon Jenkins, Craig Ciesla
  • Patent number: 9261961
    Abstract: A screen protector is provided with tactile aids for vision-impaired users. The screen protector can be placed on the display screen of a computing device to enhance the out-of-box experience for vision-impaired users and/or guide the user during subsequent use of the device. For example, the screen protector can be configured to be tactilely-informative about how to activate accessibility features of the device and/or how to proceed with initial set-up and configuration of the device. The screen protector may include, for example, braille instructions for activating the accessibility mode and/or a raised or embossed tactile aid that identifies the location of a UI control feature that can be engaged to initiate the accessibility mode or other desired function. Once the user has engaged the accessibility mode, the user may receive verbal instructions and cues going forward so as to allow the user to successfully use the device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 16, 2016
    Assignee: Nook Digital, LLC
    Inventor: Ian C. Smith
  • Patent number: 9230451
    Abstract: Actuators are disposed between a lower wiring substrate and an upper wiring substrate. The actuators, the lower wiring substrate, and the upper wiring substrate are interposed between a lower frame and an upper frame. The end of each actuator is held between pushing parts of the lower frame and upper frame. The free ends of the actuators move projections upward that are displayed in a tactile display.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2012
    Date of Patent: January 5, 2016
    Assignee: ALPS ELECTRIC CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Isao Takahashi, Seigo Yamazaki
  • Patent number: 9105198
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a device, system and apparatus for a visual and tactile display and in particular, to a tactile and visual display device system capable of displaying both alphanumeric and Braille characters in a manner suitable for individuals that are visually impaired, blind or having normal range vision.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 11, 2015
    Inventor: Noa Habas
  • Patent number: 9075525
    Abstract: The user interface system of one embodiment of the invention includes a sheet that defines a surface on one side and at least partially defines a first cavity and a second cavity on an opposite side; a fluid network coupled to the first and second cavities; a displacement device coupled to the fluid network that displaces fluid within the fluid network and expands both the first and second cavities concurrently, thereby deforming a first and a second particular region of the surface; and a touch sensor coupled to the sheet and adapted to sense a user touch proximate the first and second particular regions of the surface. The user interface system of another embodiment of the invention includes a displacement device coupled to the fluid network that displaces fluid within the fluid network and selectively expands one of the first and second cavities.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 25, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 7, 2015
    Assignee: Tactus Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Craig Michael Ciesla, Micah B. Yairi
  • Patent number: 9064426
    Abstract: A method for a tactile presentation of perceivable content. The method comprises receiving a data representing perceivable content, selecting a plurality of electric currents according to the data, each the electric current is associated with at least one of a plurality of regions of a solution having a plurality of macromolecules, and changing a level of acidity (pH) of at least one of the plurality of regions by applying a respective the electric current thereto. A proton concentration in the plurality of regions tactilely presents the perceivable content.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 25, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 23, 2015
    Assignee: Technion Research & Development Foundation Limited
    Inventors: Uri Sivan, Elad Brod
  • Publication number: 20150140522
    Abstract: Methods and systems (100) for tactile code interpretation are described herein. In an embodiment, a tactile code interpretation system (100) includes a tactile code device (102) having a plurality of tactile units (106). Each of the plurality of tactile units (106) includes a tactile code (108) for representing a notation and a corresponding acoustic code (110). The acoustic code (110) encodes information pertaining to a plurality of data blocks. The plurality of data bocks includes a start block corresponding to a start pattern, an end block corresponding to an end pattern, and one or more information blocks corresponding to information pertaining to the tactile code (108). Further, the acoustic code (110), when swiped, generates a unique sound wave to facilitate semantic interpretation of the corresponding tactile code (108).
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 14, 2014
    Publication date: May 21, 2015
    Inventors: Sneha Bose, Shalin Garg, Annie Thomas
  • Patent number: 8992225
    Abstract: An interactive cooking preparation device is presented. The user places ingredients that the user wishes to use in a recipe. The interactive cooking preparation device detects the ingredients placed by the user in the detection area of the interactive cooking preparation device using sensors. The detection results in a set of ingredient identifiers that correspond to the placed ingredients. A recipes database is then searched for the detected set of ingredient identifiers. The database search results in one or more suggested recipes. The suggested recipes are displayed to the user on a display device that is included in the interactive cooking preparation device. The user then selects one of the suggested recipes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2015
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventors: Lydia Mai Do, Travis M. Grigsby, Pamela Ann Nesbitt, Lisa Anne Seacat
  • Patent number: 8970403
    Abstract: A method for actuating a tactile interface layer of a device that defines a surface with a deformable region, comprising the steps of deforming a deformable region of the surface into a formation tactilely distinguishable from the surface, detecting a force from the user on a deformed deformable region, interpreting the force as a command for the deformable region, and manipulating the deformable region of the surface based on the command.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 19, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2015
    Assignee: Tactus Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Craig Michael Ciesla, Micah B. Yairi, Nathaniel Mark Saal
  • Patent number: 8963842
    Abstract: An integrated user interface has a sensory surface operable to receive a selection signal from a user and send a corresponding command signal within a software system. The integrated user interface has a plurality of tactile features operable to provide a user with tactile feedback corresponding to the selection signal received by the sensory surface when simultaneously selected by the user. A method of integrating the hardware and software functionality for a user interface is also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 5, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Visteon Global Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael J. Andrews, Michael D. Tschirhart
  • Patent number: 8944823
    Abstract: A method of facilitating the identification of portable consumer articles at a point of purchase display, the method including the steps of: providing a plurality of portable consumer articles each with tactilely sensible information thereon that identifies at least one of: a) a general nature of the article and/or its contents; and b) a provider of the article; and displaying the plurality of articles at the point of purchase display in a manner that allows potential consumers to lift and handle each of the plurality of articles so as to thereby readily determine through tactile sensing of the information at least one of: a) the general nature of the handled article and/or its contents; and b) the provider of the handled article.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 6, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 3, 2015
    Inventor: George Kasboske
  • Publication number: 20150015025
    Abstract: To provide improved guidance for visually impaired passengers in lavatory situations on-board of vehicles, a vehicle guidance system for guiding visually impaired passengers on-board a vehicle is provided. The vehicle guidance system includes an interior space on-board the vehicle with at least one lavatory with enclosing cabin walls, and at least one guiding sanitary-handrail. The guiding sanitary-handrail is mounted along at least a part of the enclosing cabin walls inside the lavatory. The guiding sanitary-handrail is provided as a tactile guide. Further, the guiding handrail is provided with visually highlighted information and manually touchable information, both related to cabin information. Still further, a plurality of operating elements for controlling functions of the lavatory is provided inside the lavatory, and at least a part of the operating elements is arranged on the guiding sanitary-handrail.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 2, 2014
    Publication date: January 15, 2015
    Inventors: Christian Seibt, Jens Wiebalck
  • Publication number: 20150015024
    Abstract: To provide an improved guiding of visually impaired passengers on-board a vehicle, a vehicle guidance system for guiding visually impaired passengers on-board a vehicle includes an interior space on-board the vehicle with at least one cabin zone at least one movement area and at least one seating zone located in the cabin interior space, and at least one guiding handrail. The guiding handrail is mounted at least along a part of the cabin zone in the vicinity of the movement area. The guiding handrail is a tactile guide, along which a passenger can be guided for movement within the cabin zone by a touching contact with the guiding handrail. The guiding handrail is provided with visually highlighted information and manually touchable information, both related to cabin information. The guiding handrail is mounted above the seating zone, and within reach of a passenger present in the adjacent movement area.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 2, 2014
    Publication date: January 15, 2015
    Inventors: Joerg Cremers, Christian Seibt, Jens Wiebalck
  • Patent number: 8932061
    Abstract: The illustrative embodiments described herein provide an apparatus and method for facilitating tactile identification of a document attribute. In one embodiment, the apparatus includes a document. The document has a set of document attributes. The apparatus also includes a fluid incorporated within the document at a designated location associated with a document attribute in the set of document attributes. The fluid changes rigidity in the presence of an electric field to facilitate tactile identification of the document attribute.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 6, 2007
    Date of Patent: January 13, 2015
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventors: Michael Negley Abernethy, Jr., Bryan Eric Aupperle, Travis M. Grigsby
  • Patent number: 8920174
    Abstract: An electro-tactile display includes an electrode substrate provided with a plurality of stimulation electrodes, a conductive gel layer positioned between the stimulation electrodes and the skin of a wearer, a switching circuit section electrically connected to the stimulation electrodes, a stimulation pattern generating section electrically connected to the switching circuit, and means for alleviating a sensation experienced by the wearer as a result of the stimulation electrodes. In one aspect, the means for alleviating a sensation is configured from the conductive gel layer. The conductive gel layer has a resistance value equivalent to that of the horny layer of the skin. In another aspect, the means for alleviating a sensation is configured from the stimulation determination means and the threshold value adjustment means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 7, 2006
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2014
    Assignees: The University of Tokyo, Eye Plus Plus, Inc.
    Inventors: Susumu Tachi, Hiroyuki Kajimoto, Yonezo Kanno
  • Publication number: 20140317978
    Abstract: An Electric Wiring Device Marking System which allows attachment of labeled (or non labeled) inserts or stickers in the proper orientation. In some embodiments, a system which utilizes a Post-Installation-Visible Date Stamp. In some embodiments, utilizing labeling which communicate by visual and/or tactile means.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 2, 2014
    Publication date: October 30, 2014
    Inventor: Kyung Tae Kim
  • Patent number: 8851894
    Abstract: A double-sided, front-to-back aligned tactile learning aid is provided, which includes a substantially planar carrier medium with a protruding front tactile graphic aligned with a protruding back tactile graphic. The carrier medium may be one, two, or more sheets of standard paper, thicker Braille-type paper, a polymer material, or other generally planar material. The front graphic and the back graphic protrude from the front and back, respectively, of the carrier medium. At least a portion of the back tactile graphic is aligned with at least a portion of the front tactile graphic. The double-sided, front-to-back aligned tactile learning aid is clearly expressive of (and/or representational of) a physical structure, yet is embodied in a generally two-dimensional planar construction, so is easier to store. The double-sided, front-to-back aligned tactile learning aid may be used as a semi-concrete aid for sighted and visually-impaired students.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 8, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2014
    Inventor: Leslie Siegel
  • Patent number: 8839727
    Abstract: A textile includes a main material layer and an information carrier including haptically detectable information. The information carrier is arranged as an embroidery including Braille dots applied to the main material layer. The embroidery includes a first ply if the Braille dots arranged as a star-shaped stitching that is stitched onto the main material layer and a second ply of the Braille dots is arranged as a first cover stitching ply covering the first ply and stitched onto one or both of the main material layer and the first ply.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 23, 2014
    Assignee: Kampmann GmbH
    Inventor: Jürgen Kampmann
  • Publication number: 20140242555
    Abstract: Disclosed is a Braille display device. The device supports an array of individual Braille cells with corresponding tactile pins. The pins can be selectively lifted by way of reeds to generate Braille characters that can be felt by the user. The Braille characters can correspond to visible characters, such as characters on a computer screen. The display is refreshable to allow for the sequential display of lines, paragraphs, or pages. In accordance with the disclosure, the Braille cells are constructed in a manner that minimizes manufacturing costs and that also permits the size of the display to be greatly reduced.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 3, 2014
    Publication date: August 28, 2014
    Applicant: FREEDOM SCIENTIFIC, INC.
    Inventors: Patrick Murphy, Todd Conard, Waldemar H. Tunkis, Michael Goldenberg
  • Publication number: 20140242554
    Abstract: System for enabling a visually impaired or blind person to use an input device having at least one key, comprising: at least one tactile sensor array, in particular a pressure sensor array, attachable to a fingertip of a visually impaired or blind person for acquiring a pressure distribution image of a key slightly touched by a finger of said person when attached to said finger, a pressure distribution image processing and character recognition unit that is connected to said tactile sensor array for processing said pressure distribution image and for recognizing the key label of the touched key and an audio output device that is connected to said unit for outputting and acoustic reproduction of said key label.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 30, 2014
    Publication date: August 28, 2014
    Applicant: KING SAUD UNIVERSITY
    Inventor: Abdelhamid Mohamed MOSTAFA
  • Patent number: 8786555
    Abstract: Computer-readable media, computerized methods, and a touchscreen device manipulating user-input elements are provided. Generally, manipulation includes identifying a predefined configuration associated with a request received from a user and/or application, deriving configuration settings from the predefined configuration, and transmitting the configuration settings to an electromechanical device that adjusts a portion of user-input elements to an extended orientation and activates a portion of user-input elements. In embodiments, the extended user-input elements positioned in the extended orientation are activated, while the remainder are set to an idle condition. Typically, the extended user-input elements produce outwardly-extending protrusions expressed at a flexible touchpad incorporated in the touchscreen device. These outwardly-extending protrusions may replicate keys of a standard keyboard and correspond with the presently-running application implemented on the touchscreen device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 22, 2014
    Assignee: Sprint Communications Company L.P.
    Inventors: Eric M. Bloomcamp, Shane R. Werner, Warren B. Cope
  • Patent number: 8770981
    Abstract: According to the present invention, there is provided an improved refreshable tactile display apparatus including a housing, bias compression springs, sliding blocks, pins, and a shape memory alloy wire. The sliding block is actuated by the interaction between the bias compression spring and the shape memory alloy wire. The shape memory alloy wire is then activated by current driven from a power supply in either a modulated or unmodulated fashion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 8, 2014
    Assignee: Board of Trustees of Northern Illinois University
    Inventors: David Schroeder, Graham Bogda, Brendan Vishoot
  • Publication number: 20140170605
    Abstract: Reusable, PSA labels and related methods. Some labels comprise a layer of PSA and an information layer. The PSA layer defines bond and exposed surfaces wherein the exposed surface is removable and bondable to contact surfaces. Additionally, the information layer defines exposed and bond surfaces wherein the exposed surface is able to receive a (removable) marking. The information layer is bonded to the layer of PSA. Labels can comprise Braille structures on the exposed surfaces of the information layer. Some reusable PSA labels comprise an intermediate adhesive layer so that the bonding is via the intermediate layer. If desired, the bond surfaces of the PSA layers can be on a sub-layer of the PSA layers and can have flow temperatures of no more than about 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Moreover, labels can have PSA layers that remain flexible at a temperature of about 20 degrees Fahrenheit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 4, 2013
    Publication date: June 19, 2014
    Applicant: Goodbrella, LLC
    Inventor: Gina M. Gatto-Weising
  • Patent number: 8748997
    Abstract: Provided are a contact-force sensor package and a method of fabricating the same. The contact-force sensor package includes an elastic layer comprising a side that contacts a source of a contact-force; and a substrate layer adhered to the opposing side of the elastic layer from the side that contacts the source of the contact-force and comprising a cantilever beam separated from the elastic layer and deformed due to the contact-force, a pillar extending from a free end portion of the cantilever beam to the elastic layer and transferring the contact-force from the elastic layer to the cantilever beam, and a deformation sensing element for generating an electrical signal that is proportional to a degree of deformation of the cantilever beam.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignees: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., Center for University-Industry Corporation
    Inventors: Jong-pal Kim, Byeung-leul Lee
  • Patent number: 8743072
    Abstract: A display device provides a user with tactile feedback using a tactile user interface. The display device includes a display unit, a tactile feedback unit, and a controller. The controller detects a first control input selecting a first object displayed on the display unit, detects a second control input controlling the first object that is consecutive to the first control input, controls the first object in response to the second control input, generates first tactile feedback according to properties of the first object in response to the second control input, detects a third control input controlling the first object that is consecutive to the second control input, the third control input being detected in a region of a second object displayed on the display unit, and maintains the first tactile feedback in response to the third control input while the first object is controlled by the third control input.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 5, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 3, 2014
    Assignee: LG Electronics Inc.
    Inventor: Jihwan Kim
  • Patent number: 8740618
    Abstract: A refreshable tactile reader apparatus for Braille text and graphics, utilizing a plurality of compressible tactile pins that can absorb strong downward forces. Such strong forces transmitted through tactile pins can damage pin actuation mechanisms. The physical enclosure of the reader provides open channels that allow the apparatus to be more easily cleaned than prior art enablements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 20, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 3, 2014
    Inventor: Keith N. Shaw
  • Patent number: 8727778
    Abstract: Systems and methods provide tactile assistance to a consumer completing a transaction at a point of sale terminal. A tactile overlay, either permanent or removable, couples with a consumer interface such as a touch screen of the point of sale terminal. The tactile overlay includes one or more overlay inputs that provide a distinct tactile impression in comparison with the remainder of the overlay. For example, the overlay inputs can be depressions, apertures, protrusions, dimples, or the like, or provide a different texture such as a rougher or smoother texture than the surrounding overlay. The overlay inputs are configured to correspond with underlying touch screen inputs such that the consumer using the tactile overlay can discern the proper location on the touch screen for providing the desired input.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Bank of America Corporation
    Inventors: Maile George, Jason Michael Ackiss, Robert Fleetwood Armstrong
  • Patent number: 8730065
    Abstract: A system for tactile presentation of information to a pilot of an aircraft. The system comprises a pilot seat, a plurality of tactors, and a controller configured to control the plurality of tactors to tactually present the threat information to the pilot by producing one or more tactile stimuli based on situational awareness information. The tactors in the plurality of tactors are physically coupled to the pilot seat and the threat information is indicative of a threat to the aircraft. In some embodiments, at least one pressure sensor may be physically coupled to the pilot seat and the plurality of tactors may be configured to tactually present the threat information to the pilot based at least in part on data obtained by the at least one pressure sensor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 22, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Lockheed Martin Corporation
    Inventors: Carl R. Herman, Jason C. Twedt, Jean-Francois Darcy, Steven D. Colby
  • Patent number: 8672680
    Abstract: A system and method of tactile relief stickers, decals or moldings to indicate object characteristics, for example to indicate object color. The system can include a plurality of stickers. Each sticker can have a first surface with a relief texture and a second surface opposite the first surface. Each sticker can also have a relief texture corresponding to a color according to a predetermined correspondence of one texture to one color. The second surface can have an adhesive applied thereto.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 3, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Inventor: Dmitry Baklanov
  • Patent number: 8633891
    Abstract: A protrusion pattern forming device with a display function includes a transparent elastic sheet having an internal layer including colored liquid, and an actuator including a plurality of actuator elements disposed along one surface of the elastic sheet, each of the actuator elements changing its own shape in response to an application of a voltage, thereby allowing the surface of the elastic sheet to protrude. A protrusion pattern is formed on the elastic sheet, and a dot pattern corresponding to the protrusion pattern is displayed on the elastic sheet by selectively driving the plurality of actuator elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2014
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventors: Nobuyuki Nagai, Masahiro Sawaguchi
  • Patent number: 8619031
    Abstract: Systems and methods for low power consumption haptic feedback are described. In one described system, a device comprises a manipulandum and a haptic effect generator in communication with the manipulandum. The actuator is operable to provide a first haptic profile associated with a first mechanical configuration and a second haptic profile associated with a second mechanical configuration. The device also comprises an actuator in communication with the haptic effect generator, which is operable to switch the haptic effect generator between the first haptic profile and the second haptic profile.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 27, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 31, 2013
    Assignee: Immersion Corporation
    Inventor: Vincent Hayward
  • Patent number: 8616888
    Abstract: Methods and apparatuses to define an insertion indicator on a Braille device are described. Information about an insertion indicator at a location on a display device is received. An output associated with the insertion indicator is provided to a Braille device. The output to the Braille device reproduces the location of the insertion indicator on the display device. The output associated with the insertion indicator may be provided to at least two cells of the Braille device. The output to the Braille device may be provided to raise a first dot of a first Braille cell on the Braille device, wherein the first Braille cell corresponds to a second location that precedes the first location on the display device. A Braille caption panel may be displayed on a display device, the Braille caption panel includes a simulation of the output associated with the insertion indicator on the Braille device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 31, 2013
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Richard W. Fabrick, II, Reginald Dean Hudson
  • Publication number: 20130330692
    Abstract: A tactile display includes a base; movable pins having free ends for tactile sensing by a user, the pins arranged in rows and columns and movable between an extended position and retracted position with respect to the base so as to selectively display tactilely sensible data; a resilient element for supporting each pin in the extended position when at rest, and further operative to urge the pin from the retracted position to the extended position in the presence of an opposing force; one or more reset elements for lowering the pins from the extended position to the retracted position; row stoppers for lockably engaging rows of pins when in the second position.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 4, 2012
    Publication date: December 12, 2013
    Applicant: TACTILE WORLD LTD.
    Inventors: Igor Karasin, Gavriel Karasin
  • Patent number: 8602786
    Abstract: A dot unit includes an opening formed in a housing and a protruding member disposed in the opening. The protruding member is rotatably supported by a support shaft. The protruding member is rotated by a polymer actuator in a direction that follows a reading direction in which a unit of information is read, and the protruding member is stabilized in a protruding position by contacting a restricting portion. When a finger is moved in the reading direction and contacts the protruding member, the protruding member is likely to be stabilized in the protruding position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2013
    Assignee: Alps Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Isao Takahashi, Nobuaki Haga
  • Patent number: 8573979
    Abstract: A tactile display may comprise an array of pins that may be raised in height relative to one another to represent contours of objects in a graphic image or picture when touched. Various physical attributes may be given to individual pins to represent color or brightness. For example, pins may be heated or cooled to represent cool or warm colors in the original image. Pins may also be vibrated or otherwise enhanced to represent color or brightness information in the original image.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 21, 2007
    Date of Patent: November 5, 2013
    Assignee: Intel-GE Care Innovations LLC
    Inventor: Michael Skinner
  • Publication number: 20130203022
    Abstract: A refreshable Braille display created by movable actuators having discrete surfaces bearing protrusions. In a particularly preferred embodiment, a pair of actuators has discrete surfaces bearing portions of Braille characters, so that when the pair is read together, the entire Braille characters may be read. Movement of the actuators, which may be rotating discs, may be controlled by electromechanical and/or electronic devices.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 3, 2012
    Publication date: August 8, 2013
    Inventor: Mahmoud Al-Qudsi
  • Publication number: 20130183641
    Abstract: A braille reading-writing device includes a body and a plurality of braille buttons. The body has a first surface and a second surface. The braille buttons are disposed through the body. Each of the braille buttons includes a pressing portion located at the same side with the first surface and a touching portion located at the same side with the second surface. The touching portion protrudes from the second surface when the pressing portion is pressed. The braille reading-writing device allows the blind people to write braille on the first surface and to touch to read the written braille on the second surface, thereby integrating the functions of writing and reading braille.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 3, 2013
    Publication date: July 18, 2013
    Applicants: PEGATRON CORPORATION, PROTEK (SHANGHAI) LIMITED
    Inventors: PROTEK (SHANGHAI) LIMITED, PEGATRON CORPORATION
  • Patent number: 8451248
    Abstract: Disclosed is a display device that provides a user with tactile feedback using a tactile user interface. The display device includes a touch sensitive display unit to display an object, a tactile feedback unit to generate tactile feedback, and a controller. The controller detects a first touch that is in contact with a region of a first object displayed on the display unit, detects a second touch controlling the first object that is consecutive to the first touch, controls the first object in response to the second touch, generates first tactile feedback according to properties of the first object in response to the second touch, detects a third touch controlling the first object that is consecutive to the second touch, the third touch being detected in a region of a second object displayed on the display unit, and generates the first tactile feedback in response to the third touch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2013
    Assignee: LG Electronics Inc.
    Inventor: Jihwan Kim
  • Publication number: 20130115579
    Abstract: A device 10 comprised of a plurality of evenly spaced tactile actuators 11 arranged in the form of a generally C-shaped structure and worn snug around the neck 20 by a subject 30 to apply tactile stimuli to the subject's neck skin. An electronic controller operated by a computer program controls the actuators 11 of the device 10 based on signals received from an external source. The device impresses sequences of tactile stimuli around the subject's neck to provide intelligible information, cues and warnings or certain game-related sensations.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 25, 2011
    Publication date: May 9, 2013
    Inventor: Reza Taghavi
  • Patent number: 8425232
    Abstract: A Braille-character display device includes a movable pin array, a plurality of movable pin pressing parts, a Braille-character generating part and a movable pin controlling part. The movable pin array has a plurality of movable pins arranged in a matrix form. The plurality of movable pin pressing parts presses the plurality of movable pins, respectively. The Braille-character generating part generates Braille characters. The movable pin controlling part allows the movable pin pressing parts to press the movable pins corresponding to a pattern of the generated Braille characters.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2008
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2013
    Assignee: KYOCERA Corporation
    Inventor: Satoshi Fukami
  • Patent number: 8427429
    Abstract: An active interface control shiftable between deployed and stowed configurations, and including an active material actuator employing a bi-stable mechanism configured to increase the actuator stroke length, and/or presenting intrinsic or external sensing capability, and reconfigurable displays comprising separately shiftable sets of controls.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 2010
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2013
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Alan L. Browne, Nancy L. Johnson, Andrew C. Keefe, Geoffrey P. McKnight
  • Publication number: 20130095454
    Abstract: An apparatus and method are provided for inputting braille in a portable terminal. The apparatus includes an input unit including an input button for receiving an input from a user; and a control unit for determining a dot position of a braille input unit based on the input from the user.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 16, 2012
    Publication date: April 18, 2013
    Applicant: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
  • Patent number: 8419432
    Abstract: The Tactile Sudoku Game Display for the Blind has 4 control buttons used by the blind game player to manually direct the attached computer to change the current game square up and down and left and right. The Game Display has 27 electromechanically raised and lowered dots similar to Braille dots arranged in 3 squares each with 9 dots arranged in 3 rows and 3 columns. The raised dots in the Game Display's lower-right square communicate the current status of 1 of the 81 Sudoku game squares to the blind game player by touch. And 1 raised dot in each of the Game Display's other 2 squares communicates the column number and row number of the current game square to the blind game player by touch. The game author's given starting game squares have only 1 of the 9 dots raised; and, the blind game player touches and depresses all but 1 of the 9 dots in each remaining game square to complete the game.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 8, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 16, 2013
    Inventor: William Lewis Duke
  • Patent number: 8411058
    Abstract: A system and method for a touch display system. The a touch display system includes: a flat touch display assembly including a matrix of flat Braille pixels, wherein each flat Braille pixel is operable to be placed in one of two states. A heating source is selectively connected to each flat Braille pixel. A cooling source selectively connected to each flat Braille pixel. The flat Braille pixels are configured to represent images to touch by selective heating and cooling thereof. In one embodiment, the above described display can be used in combination with software that automatically converts text to Braille which is displayed using the flat touch display assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2013
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventors: Ling Jun Wong, True Xiong
  • Publication number: 20130071817
    Abstract: An apparatus, system and method are presented for improving the accessibility to self-service terminals by the visually impaired. An apparatus is provided that when attached to a touch-screen display improves accessibility. The apparatus includes touch identifiable symbols. A user operates a self-service terminal by selecting the appropriate symbol on the apparatus in response to audible instructions from the terminal.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 20, 2011
    Publication date: March 21, 2013
    Applicant: NCR CORPORATION
    Inventors: Daniel Frederick White, Peter Robert Charpentier, Jennie Psihogios Johnson
  • Patent number: 8388346
    Abstract: For providing a tactile feedback to a user of a device, textual or graphical information is converted into instructions for a sequence of pulses representing the information. An actuator is then caused to move at least a part of a display according to the obtained instructions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 5, 2013
    Assignee: Nokia Corporation
    Inventors: Jussi Rantala, Roope Raisamo, Jani Lylykangas, Toni Pakkanen, Arto Hippula, Jukka Raisamo, Veikko Surakka, Katri Salminen, Roope Takala