OTOUSA, INC. (Rowland Heights, CA)

A distributed hearing system includes a plurality of near audio probe modules distributed at a plurality of specified locations in a specified area for recording audio information at the specified locations in the specified area, respectively; and a central data collecting/analysis/control module in communication with the plurality of near audio probe modules for collecting and analyzing the audio information from the plurality of near audio probe modules. A vehicle is the source of audio data and has an unique feature. The distributed hearing system uses a traffic control method.

Because of dense population and frequent activities, it is necessary to collect information associated with the activities of residents and make judgments and decisions based on the collected information for good urban governance.Conventionally, video information has been collected and analyzed in a variety of urban governance applications. However, there should be audio information, along with video data which is closely linked to the everyday activities of residents. Video information is not utilized in urban governance, and is not sufficient for the creation of a fully functioning system. It is therefore recommended to utilize audio information.

Generally, audio information may originate from fixed audio signal sources and mobile audio signal sources. If there is the fixed source of audio signals that continuously or infrequently makes too much noise, it is not difficult to find the source of the audio signal, and then find evidences of violating law or rules. It is possible to minimize noise pollution rapidly and effectively. However, for a mobile audio signal source that produces loud sound at random places and time, such as a illegally modified vehicle or old vehicle, or a speeding motorcycle, it is difficult to provide evidence, or a lot of human resources would be required to collect evidence.

The aim of this invention is to create a distributed hearing system for use with traffic signals which provides audio information feasible for urban management, as well as a traffic control method for use in conjunction with the distributed hearing system.

An aspect of the present invention relates to a distributed hearing system, which includes a plurality of near audio probe modules distributed at a plurality of specified locations in a specified area for recording audio information at thespecified locations in the specified area, respectively; and a central data collecting/analysis/control module in communication with the plurality of near audio probe modules for collecting and analyzing the audio information from the plurality of nearaudio probe modules. The audio information is generated by a vehicle and includes particular features that is unique to the vehicle. Traffic control is a method used to control the distributed hearing system.

In an embodiment the distributed hearing system is employed with traffic signals.

It is recommended that the near audio probes should be placed in traffic signal devices at the designated locations or locations.

Preferably, the central data collecting/analysis/control module further issues a decision command to one or more of the traffic signal devices to execute a specific operation according to the analyzing result of the audio information. For example, the particular operation is to force the traffic signal device to change its color or to cause the device to change color.

In an embodiment, the audio data is produced by an audio recognition transmitter that is plugged to the vehicle.

In an embodiment, the correlation of the characteristic feature to the vehicle is previously recorded in a database of the central data collecting/analysis/control module. In another embodiment, the correlation of the characteristic feature tothe vehicle is dynamically recorded and inputted into the central data collecting/analysis/control module.

Click here to view the patent on USPTO website.

Get Patents with PatentPC

What is a patent?

A patent is granted by the government to safeguard an invention. It grants the inventor the right to develop, utilize and sell the invention. Society benefits when new technologies are introduced to the market. Benefits can be realized in direct terms, as it allows people to do previously impossible things, or indirectly by the economic benefits (business growth and employment) that innovation provides.

Patent protection is demanded out by many pharmaceutical companies and university researchers for research and development. Patents can be granted for products, processes, or method for making new materials. Patent protection must be granted to any invention that is beneficial unique, innovative, and not previously known to others in the same area.

Patents are awarded to inventors who have commercially successful inventions. They provide a motivation for inventors to invent. Small-scale businesses and inventors can rest assured that they will get a return on their investment in technology development through patents. They can earn money through their work.

Companies that are able to:

Secure your products and services

Improve the value, the appearance, and visibility of your product on the market

Differentiate yourself and your products from the competition.

Find out about business and technical information.

Beware of accidentally using content from third parties or losing valuable information, original outputs, or any other creative output.

Patents can transform an inventor’s knowledge into a marketable asset, which creates new opportunities for employment creation and business growth by licensing or joint ventures.

Small businesses that have patent protection are more attractive to investors involved in the commercialization and development of technology.

Patenting may lead to fresh ideas and innovative inventions. These information may be eligible for patent protection.

Patents can be used to stop untrustworthy third parties from profiting from the invention’s efforts.

The profits from technology patents that are successful and commercially viable can be used to finance technological research and development (R&D), which will boost the likelihood of improved technology in the coming years.

Intellectual property ownership can be used to convince lenders and investors that there are genuine chances to commercialize your product. A single patent could lead to numerous financing options. Patents as well as other IP assets are able to be used as collateral or security for financing debt. You may also present investors with the patents you own to increase the value of your business. Forbes and others have stated that each patent can increase the value of a company by anything from $500,000 to $1 Million.

A well-constructed business plan is crucial for new businesses. It must be founded on IP and explain the way your product or service stands out. Investors will also be impressed if your IP rights are secured or are on the verge of being secured, and they are in line with your business plan.

It is essential to protect an invention before submitting a patent application. The public disclosure of an invention prior to filing can often destroy its novelty and make it ineligible for patent protection. Thus, disclosures that are filed prior to filing (e.g. for testing marketing, investors, or other business partners) must only be done following the signing of a confidentiality agreement.

There are many kinds of patents and knowing the different types is crucial to protect your invention. Utility patents protect new processes and machine creations. Design patents cover ornamental designs. Patents for utility are the most effective as they protect the owner from copycats as well as other competitors. Utility patents are often issued to improve or modify existing inventions. Patents issued under utility can be used to enhance or alter existing inventions. A process patent could cover the acts or methods to perform a particular action. However, a chemical composition would include the combination of ingredients.

What is the typical length of patents? Utility patents are valid for 20 years from the earliest filing dates, but their expiration dates can be extended because of patent office delays, for example.

Are you thinking of the patenting of your idea? Patents are granted only for first-to-file applicants and you must start filing quickly. Call PatentPC to speak with a patent attorney PatentPC to file your invention today!

When you are writing a patent application it is recommended to conduct an internet search for patents, since it will provide you with some insights into other people’s concepts. This allows you to restrict the extent of your invention. Also, you can discover the current technological advancements in your area of invention. You’ll be able to get a better idea of what your invention should be and be more prepared for writing the patent application.

How to Search for Patents

Patent searches are the very first step towards obtaining your patent. You can do a google patent search or do a USPTO search. Once the patent application has been filed, the product subject to the patent can be called patent-pending, and you will be able to locate the patent application on public pair. After the patent office has approved the application, you are able to perform a patent search to find the issued patent, and your product has now been granted a patent. In addition to the USPTO search engine, you can also utilize other search engines, such as espacenet as described below. For assistance, consult an attorney for patents. In the US patents are granted through the US patent and trademark office or the United States patent and trademark office, which also examines trademark applications.

Interested in finding more similar patents? Here are the steps to follow:

1. Create a list of terms for your invention according to its function, composition, or use.

Write down a brief and precise description of your idea. Don’t use generic terms such as “device”, “process,” or “system”. Instead, consider synonyms to the terms you selected initially. Also, make note of key technical terms as well as keywords.

To help you find the key words and concepts, try the questions below.

  • What is the purpose of the invention? Is it a utilitarian device or an ornamental design?
  • Invention is a method to make something or carry out an action? Is it a product or process?
  • What is the purpose and composition of the invention? What is the physical composition of the invention?
  • What’s the objective of this invention?
  • What are the technical terms and phrases that define the nature of an invention? A technical dictionary can assist you to find the appropriate words.

2. Utilize these terms to locate relevant Cooperative Patent Classifications at the Classification Text Search Tool. If you’re not able to find the right classification to describe your invention, scan through the classification’s Schemas of classes (class schedules). If you don’t get any results using the Classification Text Search, you might consider substituting your words to describe your invention using synonyms.

3. Check 3. Check the CPC Classification Definition for confirmation of the CPC classification you’ve found. The hyperlink to the CPC classification definition will be given in the event that the title of the classification has a blue box that includes “D” on its left. CPC classification definitions can help you determine the applicable classification’s scope so that you can choose the most relevant. The definitions could also contain some search tips or other recommendations that can be useful for further investigation.

4. The Patents Full-Text Database and the Image Database allow you to find patent documents that are accompanied by the CPC classification. By focusing your search on abstracts and drawings that are representative you can narrow your search for the relevant patent documents.

5. Use this selection of the most relevant patent publications to examine each in detail for similarity to your own invention. Be sure to read the specification and claims. It is possible to find additional patents by referring to the patent examiner and the applicant.

6. Retrieve published patent applications with the CPC classification you picked in Step 3 from the Applications Full-Text and Image Database. You can also use the same method of search that you employed in step 4 to limit down your results to the most relevant patents by reading the abstracts and representative drawings on each page. After that, take a close look at the patent applications published and pay particular attention to the claims as well as additional drawings.

7. Find additional US patent publications using keywords searching in the PatFT and AppFT databases, searching for classification of non-U.S. patents per below, and searching non-patent patent disclosures in the literature of inventions using web search engines. Here are some examples:

  • Add keywords to your search. Keyword searches may turn up documents that are not well-categorized or have missed classifications during Step 2. For example, US patent examiners often supplement their classification searches with keyword searches. Think about the use of technical engineering terminology rather than everyday words.
  • Search for foreign patents using the CPC classification. Then, re-run the search using international patent office search engines such as Espacenet, the European Patent Office’s worldwide patent publication database of over 130 million patent publications. Other national databases include:
  • Search non-patent literature. Inventions can be made public in many non-patent publications. It is recommended that you search journals, books, websites, technical catalogs, conference proceedings, and other print and electronic publications.

To review your search, you can hire a registered patent attorney to assist. A preliminary search will help one better prepare to talk about their invention and other related inventions with a professional patent attorney. In addition, the attorney will not spend too much time or money on patenting basics.