The assignee for this patent, patent number 8618959, is
Reporters obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "The present invention relates to a system where there is a requirement to identify from a bank of switches which switch or combination of switches has been actuated. One example is decoding front panel key switches of a set top box. Set top boxes include a front panel which has a number of different switches which can be separately actuated by a user. Currently, each switch has an input to a microprocessor for determining which switch has been actuated. The value at that input changes between zero and one depending on whether the switch is actuated or not. This requires a plurality of input signals into a microprocessor, with their corresponding package balls/pins."
In addition to obtaining background information on this patent, VerticalNews editors also obtained the inventor's summary information for this patent: "It is an aim of the present invention to reduce the number of input/output signals and corresponding package requirements for decoding which of a plurality of switches have been actuated.
"According to one aspect of the present invention there is provided switching circuitry comprising a bank of actuatable switches connected in parallel between a supply terminal and a decoding terminal, each switch being connected in series with a component which, when the switch is actuated, applies to the decoding terminal an analog signal having a value unique to that switch.
"In the described embodiment, the component is a resistor and the analog signal is a voltage.
"Another aspect of the invention provides a switching system comprising: switching circuitry as defined above; means for monitoring the value of the analog signal at the decoding terminal; and means for decoding the value to indicate a combination of actuated switches wherein each combination of actuated switches applies a unique value to the decoding terminal.
"It will be appreciated that the word 'combination' though commonly used to denote more than one switch herein includes the case where a single switch is actuated and identified by a unique value.
"Other technical features may be readily apparent to one skilled in the art from the following figures, descriptions and claims."
For more information, see this patent: Griffin, Ian. Switching Circuitry and Switching System. U.S. Patent Number 8618959, filed
Keywords for this news article include: Microprocessors,
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