News Column

"Method for Displaying User Interface in Accordance with User'S Intention" in Patent Application Approval Process

June 17, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Information Technology Newsweekly -- A patent application by the inventor Yoshida, Hiroyoshi (Ohta-ku, JP), filed on February 3, 2014, was made available online on June 5, 2014, according to news reporting originating from Washington, D.C., by VerticalNews correspondents.

This patent application is assigned to Canon Kabushiki Kaisha.

The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "The present invention relates to a display apparatus and a display method for displaying a user interface used for generating an instruction to an image processing apparatus which can perform a predetermined task on the basis of an operation by the user.

"In recent years, a multifunction peripheral device (MFP), which is based on, for example, a copying machine and can perform a plurality of functions, can implement not only a single function task such as copy, facsimile, print or box storage but also provide new functions in which these single functions are associated with each other. Further, these new functions can be remarkably complicated.

"With such complicated functions, there is a problem that a user needs a large amount of effort to find and select processing to be performed by the multifunction peripheral (hereinafter, the processing is referred to as a 'task').

"A supporting technique for performing such a task includes, for example, a technique discussed in Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. 10-240818. This technique can facilitate reducing an operation burden on a user for performing suitable processing such as a schedule management or the like corresponding to input information. More specifically, a required job can be processed by a suitable apparatus in accordance with time.

"In the above-described operation environment, the supporting technique for selecting a task further includes a searching method (1) and a classification indication method (2) which are performed via a user interface on a display apparatus.

"In the searching method (1), a user enters a character string corresponding to a desired task to cause the display apparatus to display an operation item for generating an instruction to perform the task. When a complicated task in which a plurality of tasks is combined is searched for, the needed task can be selected by gradually performing searching operations. Thus, the searching method is effective even for an inexperienced user. However, even when a simple task is searched for, a similar searching operation is required. Therefore, the operation is not always simple depending on tasks to be searched for.

"In the classification indication method (2), tasks are grouped for every type and hierarchized for every detailed function. A user proceeds with operations gradually in such a manner as to select a group and, then, select a detailed function. In this case, the user needs to assign a classification to each task in advance. Therefore, the user cannot easily use the interface until the user recognizes the classification. Thus, it is not an intuitive operation environment. As the number of functions is increased, the classification becomes more complicated."

In addition to the background information obtained for this patent application, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventor's summary information for this patent application: "An exemplary feature of the present invention is to provide a display apparatus and a display control method in which the above-described drawbacks are at least mitigated.

"Another exemplary feature of the present invention is to provide a display apparatus and a display control method which can facilitate easily performing an operation for executing a task.

"Still another exemplary feature of the present invention is to provide a display apparatus and a display control method which can estimate a task desired by a user and vary a display mode accordingly.

"The above-described features and further features of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description of exemplary embodiments with reference to the attached drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

"The accompanying drawings, which are incorporated in and constitute a part of the specification, illustrate embodiments of the invention and, together with the description, serve to explain the principles of the invention.

"FIG. 1 is a block diagram showing a configuration of main units of an MFP according to a first embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 2 is a side cross-sectional view illustrating a hardware configuration of a scanner and a printer of the MFP according to the first embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 3 is a view illustrating a detailed configuration of an operation unit of the MFP according to the first embodiment of the present invention.

"FIGS. 4, 5, and 7 to 9 are views illustrating examples of an operation screen displayed on an operation unit according to the first embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 6 is a table illustrating an example of a priority determination table according to the first embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 10 is a flowchart showing a display control processing according to the first embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 11 is a table showing an example of a priority determination table according to a second embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 12 is a table showing an example of schedule information according to the second embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 13 is a table showing an example of data information according to the second embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 14 is a view illustrating an example of an operation screen displayed on an operation unit according to the second embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 15 is a table showing an example of a priority determination table according to a third embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 16 is a table showing an example of a history information management table according to the third embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 17 is a view illustrating an example of an operation screen displayed on an operation unit according to the third embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 18 is a table showing an example of a priority determination table according to a fourth embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 19 is a table showing an example of an external association information management table according to the fourth embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 20 is a view illustrating an example of an operation screen displayed on an operation unit according to the fourth embodiment of the present invention.

"FIG. 21 is a view illustrating an example of an operation screen displayed on an operation unit according to a fifth embodiment of the present invention."

URL and more information on this patent application, see: Yoshida, Hiroyoshi. Method for Displaying User Interface in Accordance with User'S Intention. Filed February 3, 2014 and posted June 5, 2014. Patent URL: http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-adv.html&r=240&p=5&f=G&l=50&d=PG01&S1=20140529.PD.&OS=PD/20140529&RS=PD/20140529

Keywords for this news article include: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha, Information Technology, Information and Data Management.

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Source: Information Technology Newsweekly


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