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Patent Searching and Data


Title:
ILLUMINATING NOTIFICATION SYSTEM
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2018/039735
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
An illuminating notification system issues a notification concerning a time- sensitive action associated with a specific good, product or service. The system includes: a substrate; a light source attached to the substrate; a power source electrically connected to the light source; and a controller operatively connected to the power source, the controller including a timer; whereby an expiration of the timer causes the controller to activate the light source.

Inventors:
WILLIS, David John (16 Shirley Street, Byron Bay, New South Wales 2481, 2481, AU)
Application Number:
AU2017/050942
Publication Date:
March 08, 2018
Filing Date:
September 01, 2017
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
BYRON TOURS PTY LTD (16 Shirley Street, Brisbane, New South Wales 2481, 2481, AU)
International Classes:
G04F3/00; G06F9/00; G08B5/00
Domestic Patent References:
WO2010032888A12010-03-25
Foreign References:
US20050278519A12005-12-15
US6812825B12004-11-02
US20050207282A12005-09-22
US20080013407A12008-01-17
US20050094786A12005-05-05
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
FISHER ADAMS KELLY CALLINANS (Level 6, 175 Eagle StreetBrisbane, Queensland 4000, 4000, AU)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1 An illuminating notification system, comprising: a substrate; a light source attached to the substrate; a power source electrically connected to the light source; and a controller operatively connected to the power source, the controller including a timer; whereby an expiration of the timer causes the controller to activate the light source.

2. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the substrate comprises a flexible adhesive substrate.

3. The illuminating notification system of claim 2, wherein the flexible adhesive substrate comprises a permanent, removable, or repositionable adhesive.

4. The illuminating notification system of claim 2, wherein the flexible adhesive substrate comprises a permanent, peelable, ultra-peelable, high tack, freezer or frost fix, or static cling adhesive.

5. The illuminating notification system of claim 2, wherein an adhesive of the adhesive substrate is an acrylic, rubber or water-based adhesive.

6. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the substrate comprises a magnet for adhering the substrate to a metal surface.

7. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the system is waterproof.

8. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the system is programmable, reprogrammable, or nonprogrammable.

9. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the controller comprises a wireless transceiver.

10. The illuminating notification system of claim 9, wherein the wireless transceiver is adapted to transmit and receive Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or near-field communication (NFC) signals.

1 1 . The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the system further comprises a radio frequency identification (RFID) chip.

12. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the substrate defines an area of less than 0.01 m2.

13. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the substrate defines an area of less than .0025 m2.

14. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the system has a maximum depth of less than .01 m.

15. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the system has a maximum depth of less than .005 m.

16. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the light source comprises a light emitting diode (LED) or chemiluminescence source.

17. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the light source emits a plurality of colours.

18. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the light source is a flashing light source.

19. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the light source illuminates a word or phrase.

20. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the power source comprises a battery or a solar cell.

21 . The illuminating notification system of claim 20, wherein the battery comprises a nickel cadmium, lithium or membrane battery.

22. The illuminating notification system of claim 1 , wherein the system further comprises a sound generator operatively connected to the controller.

23. The illuminating notification system of claim 22, wherein the sound generator comprises a speaker, buzzer or bell.

Description:
TITLE

ILLUMINATING NOTIFICATION SYSTEM

BACKGROUND TO THE INVENTION As the very fast pace of modern lifestyles only continues to increase, people are often expected to accomplish more and more during each day. Pressures of work, family, travel and even recreation increasingly challenge a person's abilities to stay organised and to keep their lives running smoothly.

New technology continues to assist in improving the management of information and helps people stay organised. For example, the integration of personal digital assistant (PDA) features such as digital calendars, reminder systems and notation systems into the now ubiquitous smart phone means that most people almost always have within easy reach access to powerful digital tools for scheduling events and setting reminders. Smart phones thus enable atomic clock accuracy and always-present convenience for organising a person's time and ensuring that deadlines are not missed.

However, in many instances the simple chore of scheduling a reminder to complete a particular task can become unduly burdensome. For example, many people do not want to be troubled with taking the time required to schedule in their smartphone replacement or inspection dates for various home and office products such as smoke alarms or fire extinguishers.

In other environments such as office environments, people responsible for checking or inspecting various good or apparatus may move, and thus a reminder entered into one employee's digital reminder system may be unhelpful if that employee is no longer responsible for the good or apparatus when the reminder expires.

In still other environments such as commercial outlets selling perishable goods, the effective scheduling and clear marking of use or "sell by" dates on every product, including for example small bottles and containers, can be burdensome.

There is therefore a need for an improved notification system for various types of reminders for use on various types of products.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

According to one aspect, the present invention is an illuminating notification system, comprising: a substrate; a light source attached to the substrate; a power source electrically connected to the light source; and a controller operatively connected to the power source, the controller including a timer; whereby an expiration of the timer causes the controller to activate the light source.

Preferably, the substrate comprises a flexible adhesive substrate.

Preferably, the flexible adhesive substrate comprises a permanent, removable, or repositionable adhesive.

Preferably, the flexible adhesive substrate comprises a permanent, peelable, ultra-peelable, high tack, freezer or frost fix, or static cling adhesive.

Preferably, an adhesive of the adhesive substrate is an acrylic, rubber or water-based adhesive.

Preferably, the substrate comprises a magnet for adhering the substrate to a metal surface.

Preferably, the system is waterproof. Preferably, the system is programmable, reprogrammable, or nonprogrammable.

Preferably, the controller comprises a wireless transceiver.

Preferably, the wireless transceiver is adapted to transmit and receive Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or near-field communication (NFC) signals.

Preferably, the system further comprises a radio frequency identification (RFID) chip.

Preferably, the substrate defines an area of less than 0.01 m 2 .

Preferably, the substrate defines an area of less than .0025 m 2 .

Preferably, the system has a maximum depth of less than .01 m.

Preferably, the system has a maximum depth of less than .005 m.

Preferably, the light source comprises a light emitting diode (LED) or chemiluminescence source.

Preferably, the light source emits a plurality of colours.

Preferably, the light source is a flashing light source.

Preferably, the light source illuminates a word or phrase.

Preferably, the power source comprises a battery or a solar cell.

Preferably, the battery comprises a nickel cadmium, lithium or membrane battery.

Preferably, the system further comprises a sound generator.

Preferably, the sound generator comprises a speaker, buzzer or bell. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

To assist in understanding the invention and to enable a person skilled in the art to put the invention into practical effect, preferred embodiments of the invention are described below by way of example only with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a block diagram illustrating components of an illuminating notification system, according to some embodiments of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a partial and basic schematic electrical diagram of the illuminating notification system of FIG. 1 ; and FIG. 3 is a diagram illustrating the visual appearance of one example of the illuminating notification system of FIG. 1 .

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

The present invention relates to an illuminating notification system. Elements of the invention are illustrated in concise outline form in the drawings, showing only those specific details that are necessary to understanding the embodiments of the present invention, but so as not to clutter the disclosure with excessive detail that will be obvious to those of ordinary skill in the art in light of the present description. In this patent specification, adjectives such as first and second, left and right, top and bottom, upper and lower, rear, front and side, etc., are used solely to define one element or method step from another element or method step without necessarily requiring a specific relative position or sequence that is described by the adjectives. Words such as "comprises" or "includes" are not used to define an exclusive set of elements or method steps. Rather, such words merely define a minimum set of elements or method steps included in a particular embodiment of the present invention. According to one aspect, the present invention is defined as an illuminating notification system, comprising: a substrate; a light source attached to the substrate; a power source electrically connected to the light source; and a controller operatively connected to the power source, the controller including a timer; whereby an expiration of the timer causes the controller to activate the light source.

Advantages of some embodiments of the present invention include an illuminating notification apparatus that effectively, conveniently and precisely issues a notification concerning a time-sensitive action associated with a specific good, product or service. Apparatuses incorporating a system of the present invention can, for example, be low cost and small enough to be placed directly on or near a product that requires attention at a particular time. A light source on the apparatus can then effectively alert someone at the appropriate time. For example, such alerts can concern deadlines regarding replacing, expiring, buying, using, inspecting, activating, cancelling, starting or stopping of a product or service associated with the illuminating notification apparatus.

For example, illuminating notification apparatuses of some embodiments of the present invention can be applied to the following: · household, office or industrial safety products such a smoke alarms and fire extinguishers to ensure that the products are timely inspected or replaced;

• appliances, engines or motors to ensure that lubricants, filters or other elements are timely inspected, replaced, cleaned or otherwise serviced;

• registered products such vehicles, trailers, campers and boats to ensure that all registrations and insurances are timely updated;

• perishable products such beer, wine or produce to ensure that they are timely purchased, used or consumed;

· industrial or agricultural operations to ensure that processes such as cooking, heating, curing, drying, watering or soaking are timely performed; and • office operations to ensure that files are timely reviewed and actioned.

FIG. 1 is a block diagram illustrating components of an illuminating notification system 100, according to some embodiments of the present invention. The system 100 includes a substrate 105, such as a flexible substrate with adhesive backing, to which a controller 1 10 is attached. The controller 1 10 is connected to a light source 1 15 such as an LED light.

The controller 1 10 can also include an on/off button 120, an internal timer, and a reset button 125, and be connected to a display screen 130. The display screen 130 can assist a user in setting the timer or displaying a time left until expiration of the timer, or by displaying a message associated with expiration of the timer. For example, if the system 100 is in the form of a small adhesive sticker placed on a fire extinguisher, and the timer has expired, the display screen 130 could read "INSPECTION OVERDUE". A solar panel 135 connected to the battery 140 is used to power the controller 1 10 and also can be used to power the light source 1 15. Further, the controller 1 10 can be adapted to connect to one or more remote devices 145, 150, such as smart phones, computers or servers. Communications between the controller 1 10 and the remote devices 145, 150 can be performed wirelessly or by wired connections, and can operate through various types of networks such as local area networks (LANs), or the Internet. For example, both the controller 1 10 and the remote devices 145, 150 can include wireless transceivers, as are known in the art, and which are adapted to transmit and receive Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or near-field communication (NFC) signals using antennas 155.

One or more of the remote devices 145, 150 can be used to conveniently program one or many of the illuminating notification systems 100 to set the timer and display a particular message on the display screen 130 at the expiration of the timer. For example, according to various embodiments of the system 100, a remote device 145, 150 can automatically program all notification systems 100 within wireless range of the device 145, 150. As will be understood by someone having ordinary skill in the art, according to various embodiments the system 100 can include various other physical features such as a buzzer 160, or speaker or bell (not shown).

The system 100 is generally adapted to be small enough to be conveniently attached to a wide range of products or goods, without adding substantially to the weight, size, packaging or cost of the products or goods. Thus, for example and according to some specific embodiments, the system 100 can be in the form of a "sticker" or adhesive label where the substrate defines an area between about .0025 m 2 and 0.01 m 2 , and components of the system 100 (such as the light source 1 15) include a maximum depth (i.e., a dimension projecting out of the plane of the substrate 105) between about .005 m and .01 m.

The substrate 105 can comprise a flexible adhesive substrate that includes for example a permanent, removable, or repositionable adhesive. The adhesive can be of various types such as acrylic, rubber or water-based adhesives as understood by those having ordinary skill in the art. Thus the substrate can be a permanent, peelable, ultra-peelable, high tack, freezer or frost fix, or static cling adhesive. Alternatively, the substrate can include a magnet for magnetically adhering to a metal surface. FIG. 2 is a partial and basic schematic electrical circuit diagram of the system 100. The reference numbers of the elements shown in FIG. 2 correspond with the reference numbers shown in FIG. 1 , with the addition of a resistor 205 and a resistor 210 positioned in the circuit as shown, and a battery replacement indicator 215 attached to the battery 1 40. FIG. 3 is a diagram illustrating a plan-view appearance of one example of the illuminating notification system 100 of the present invention. As shown, the light source 1 15 comprises a series of LED status lights, including a green light 1 15a, an amber light 1 15b, and a red light 1 15c. Thus for example, as the internal timer of the controller 1 10 counts down toward an expiration time, the LED status lights will change from having the green light 1 15a illuminated, to an illumination of the amber light 1 15b, and finally to illumination of the red light 1 15c upon expiration of the timer. Further, the display screen 130 can display an appropriate message relevant to both an application of the system and a status of the timer. For example, in applications intended for use on appliances that require regular inspection, the display screen 130 may display the text "READY" before the timer expires and when the green light 1 15a is illuminated, and then the text may change to "INSPECTION DUE" after the timer expires and the red light 1 15c is illuminated.

In summary, advantages of some embodiments of the present invention include an illuminating notification system that provides a convenient and unobtrusive reminder relevant to a particular product or good to which the system is adhered.

The above description of various embodiments of the present invention is provided for purposes of description to one of ordinary skill in the related art. It is not intended to be exhaustive or to limit the invention to a single disclosed embodiment. Numerous alternatives and variations to the present invention will be apparent to those skilled in the art of the above teaching. Accordingly, while some alternative embodiments have been discussed specifically, other embodiments will be apparent or relatively easily developed by those of ordinary skill in the art. Accordingly, this patent specification is intended to embrace all alternatives, modifications and variations of the present invention that have been discussed herein, and other embodiments that fall within the spirit and scope of the above described invention.