JP2006003568A - Image forming apparatus, image forming method, program for making computer execute the method, image processing system and image processing apparatus - Google Patents

Image forming apparatus, image forming method, program for making computer execute the method, image processing system and image processing apparatus Download PDF

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Publication number
JP2006003568A
JP2006003568A JP2004178883A JP2004178883A JP2006003568A JP 2006003568 A JP2006003568 A JP 2006003568A JP 2004178883 A JP2004178883 A JP 2004178883A JP 2004178883 A JP2004178883 A JP 2004178883A JP 2006003568 A JP2006003568 A JP 2006003568A
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Prior art keywords
input
setting
finish
input screen
screen information
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JP2004178883A
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Japanese (ja)
Inventor
Yoshinaga Kato
Tetsuya Muroi
Akira Ro
Iwao Saeki
Tetsuya Sakayori
Yoshibumi Sakuramata
Junichi Takami
巌 佐伯
喜永 加藤
彬 呂
哲也 室井
義文 櫻又
哲也 酒寄
淳一 鷹見
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Ricoh Co Ltd
株式会社リコー
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Priority to JP2004178883A priority Critical patent/JP2006003568A/en
Priority claimed from US11/153,911 external-priority patent/US7528990B2/en
Publication of JP2006003568A publication Critical patent/JP2006003568A/en
Application status is Pending legal-status Critical

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Abstract

Before an operator performs printing in an image forming apparatus, a predicted finish state can be confirmed, and an accurate and simplified setting operation can be performed.
In an image processing unit, a finish information generation unit generates generation prediction information based on image data read by a scanner, and an input screen that an input screen information generation unit displays on a display unit is displayed. Create and display. When setting input by the operator is accepted from the input screen by looking at the predicted finish screen displayed, the setting unit 133 accepts and the finish information generation unit 131 generates a finish information screen based on the received setting. The input screen information generation unit 132 generates input screen information, and the display unit 15c displays a finish prediction and an input screen.
[Selection] Figure 1

Description

  The present invention relates to an image forming apparatus, an image forming method, a program for causing a computer to execute the method, an image processing system, and an image processing apparatus, and in particular, displays an expected finish state and a setting input screen from input image data, and operates. The present invention relates to an image forming apparatus that receives a setting input from a person, an image forming method, a program that causes a computer to execute the method, an image processing system, and an image processing apparatus.

  Conventionally, an image forming apparatus such as a scanner for reading an original image, a copying machine for printing an original image read by the scanner, a printer or a facsimile apparatus for printing image data input from the outside, or a multifunction machine having these functions Is used.

  In this type of image forming apparatus, settings relating to the state of the original such as the type and density of the original, settings relating to various image processing such as the enlargement / reduction ratio, single side / double side, or margin size, sorting, stapling, or The user needs to make settings related to various functions such as settings related to finishing processing such as punching. For this reason, the user has to find out a desired function from a very large number of menu items related to print settings and to perform accurate setting input.

  This is because the device does not know information about the content of the document, so it is necessary to have options related to functions that do not need to be set depending on the document in the menu item. As a result, the convenience of the operation was impaired.

  Therefore, an original is placed on the contact glass, and the pre-scan is executed at the same time as the original cover is closed. Based on the read image, a color image and a black and white image are discriminated, or a character portion and a photo portion are discriminated. By performing the above, there has been an image forming apparatus in which image processing according to a document image is automatically separated to improve operability (see Patent Document 1).

  Further, when the user arbitrarily sets the document reading conditions, the contents are grouped into one group and stored in correspondence with the reading condition buttons displayed on the image forming apparatus. There has been an image forming apparatus that can be called by specifying this reading condition button and can easily set document reading conditions by automatically updating a plurality of setting items to registered setting values (Patent Literature). 2).

JP-A-8-279844 JP 2001-285534 A

  However, in such a conventional technique, when a user performs print settings, it is necessary to search for a desired function from a large number of menu items and perform accurate setting input. There was a problem that work efficiency deteriorated.

  This trend is particularly high in the recent high-function image forming devices, such as those with abundant functions from those that are used frequently to those that are used infrequently, or multifunction devices that combine them. However, it has become a more serious problem when performing print settings.

  In Patent Document 1, an image type is determined based on an image read by pre-scanning a document, and the image is automatically separated based on the determined image. The scan result is displayed on the print setting screen. This is not directly reflected in the setting items to be set, so that there is a problem that the efficiency of the print setting work cannot be achieved.

  In Patent Document 2, the user arbitrarily sets document reading conditions, and the contents are stored as one group corresponding to the reading condition buttons. When a loading condition button is specified, the corresponding registration contents are called up, and multiple setting items are automatically updated to the registered setting values. However, it is normal for the user to specify the loading condition button. However, there is a problem that the efficiency of the setting work itself is not improved even if the reading conditions can be easily set.

  As described above, in the conventional image forming apparatus, when the image is formed by reading a document, the user cannot confirm what kind of finish is made according to his / her setting before executing the setting. However, the functions of image forming apparatuses in recent years have become multifunctional, and the setting operation itself has become complicated, and even if the setting is made as desired, the print result is the desired setting. The problem of being different was not solved.

  The present invention has been made in view of the above, and reads a document to display an expected finished state before setting various functions by a user, and narrows down the functions necessary for image formation of the document. By displaying a simplified menu consisting of setting items for executing a desired function from various menu items, an image forming apparatus, an image forming method, and a method for executing the method can be executed on a computer with high efficiency and convenience of setting work. An object of the present invention is to provide a program, an image processing system, and an image processing apparatus.

  In addition, when the user inputs various setting item values for image formation, the present invention displays a setting menu that is newly updated by inputting a predicted finished image and setting item values that reflect the setting input. Accordingly, an object of the present invention is to provide an image forming apparatus, an image forming method, a program for causing a computer to execute the method, an image processing system, and an image processing apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  Further, according to the present invention, when image data is inputted, the characteristic value of the original is detected, the expected finishing state and necessary setting items are displayed, and the setting input by the user is accepted, so that the setting work efficiency and convenience It is an object to provide an image forming apparatus, an image forming method, a program for causing a computer to execute the method, an image processing system, and an image processing apparatus.

  In order to solve the above-described problems and achieve the object, the invention according to claim 1 is an image forming apparatus that inputs image data and displays expected results of image data processing and print finishing processing, Finish information generation means for generating predicted finish screen information when the image data processing and the print finishing process are performed, and setting input by an operator based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation means Input screen information generating means for generating input screen information to be received; finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information; display means for displaying an input screen based on input screen information generated by the input screen information generating means; and the display means Setting means for accepting setting input including setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed on the screen , Characterized by comprising a.

  According to a second aspect of the present invention, in the image forming apparatus according to the first aspect, when the setting unit receives the setting input, the finish information generating unit is configured to perform the operation based on the received setting input. Finished predicted screen information is generated, and the input screen information generating means generates the input screen information based on the predicted finished screen information generated by the finished information generating means, and the display means , A finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information, and an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation means, and the setting means from the input screen displayed on the display means It is a feature that accepts a setting input including a setting input by the operator.

  The invention according to claim 3 is the image forming apparatus according to claim 1 or 2, further comprising image analysis means for analyzing the input image data and extracting document characteristic values, and generating the finish information The means generates the predicted finished screen information based on the original characteristic value extracted by the image analysis means, and the input screen information generation means is based on the original characteristic value extracted by the image analysis means. And generating the input screen information.

  According to a fourth aspect of the present invention, in the image forming apparatus according to any one of the first to third aspects, the display unit includes an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation unit. When the initial setting screen set as the initial value is different, the different setting input items are highlighted and displayed.

  According to a fifth aspect of the present invention, in the image forming apparatus according to any one of the second to fourth aspects, the setting unit receives an input of a setting item value by the operator, and the display unit includes: In the case where the input screen is updated and displayed by reflecting the received setting item value, the display means highlights and displays a portion different from that before the update on the input screen displayed by updating. It is characterized by being.

  According to a sixth aspect of the present invention, in the image forming apparatus according to any one of the first to fifth aspects, the finish information generating unit generates predicted finish screen information including an image, and the display unit includes: Further, the present invention is characterized by displaying a predicted finish including an image.

  According to a seventh aspect of the present invention, in the image forming apparatus according to the sixth aspect, the image included in the predicted finished screen information generated by the finished information generating unit is a plane image, a stereoscopic image, or an animation image. It includes at least one image, and the display means has the at least one image and displays the finished prediction.

  According to an eighth aspect of the present invention, in the image forming apparatus according to any one of the first to seventh aspects, the finish information generating unit generates finish information including text information, and the input screen information The generation means generates input screen information including text information based on the finish information including the text information, and the display means includes finish information including the text information and the input screen including the text information. Information is displayed, and the setting means receives a setting input including text information.

  The invention according to claim 9 is an image forming method for inputting image data and displaying expected results of image data processing and print finishing processing, wherein the image data processing and print finishing processing are performed. A finish information generating step for generating predicted finish screen information in the case, and an input screen information generating step for generating input screen information for accepting setting input by the operator based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating step And a display step for displaying a finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information and an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation step, and by the operator from the input screen displayed in the display step. And a setting step for receiving a setting input including the setting input.

  According to a tenth aspect of the present invention, in the image forming method according to the ninth aspect, when the setting step receives the setting input, the finish information generation step is based on the received setting input. Predicted finish screen information is generated, and the input screen information generation step generates the input screen information based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation step, and the display step , A finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information, and an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation step. The setting step is performed from the input screen displayed in the display step. It is a feature that accepts a setting input including a setting input by the operator.

  The invention according to claim 11 further includes an image analysis step of analyzing the input image data and extracting a document characteristic value in the image forming method according to claim 9 or 10, wherein the finish information generation is performed. The process generates the predicted finished screen information based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis process, and the input screen information generation step uses the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis process. Based on this, the input screen information is generated.

  According to a twelfth aspect of the present invention, in the image forming method according to any one of the ninth to eleventh aspects, the display step includes an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation step. When the initial setting screen set as the initial value is different, the different setting input items are highlighted and displayed.

  According to a thirteenth aspect of the present invention, in the image forming method according to any one of the tenth to twelfth aspects, the setting step accepts an input of a setting item value by the operator, and the display step includes: In the case where the input screen is updated and displayed by reflecting the received setting item value, the display step emphasizes and displays a portion different from that before the update in the input screen to be updated and displayed. It is characterized by being.

  According to a fourteenth aspect of the present invention, in the image forming method according to any one of the ninth to thirteenth aspects, the finish information generating step generates finish predicted screen information including an image, and the display step includes Further, the present invention is characterized by displaying a predicted finish including an image.

  According to a fifteenth aspect of the present invention, in the image forming method according to the fourteenth aspect, the image included in the predicted finished screen information generated by the finished information generation step is a planar image, a stereoscopic image, or an animation image. It includes at least one image, and the display step includes the at least one image and displays the finished prediction.

  The invention according to claim 16 is the image forming method according to any one of claims 9 to 15, wherein the finish information generation step generates finish information including text information, and the input screen information The generation step generates input screen information including text information based on the finish information including the text information, and the display step includes finish information including the text information and the input screen including the text information. Information is displayed, and the setting step receives a setting input including text information.

  The invention according to claim 17 is a program that causes a computer to execute the image forming method according to any one of claims 9 to 16.

  The invention according to claim 18 is an image processing system that is connected via a network and displays the expected results of image data processing and print finishing processing of input image data, and the image data Finished information generating device for generating predicted finished screen information when processing and print finishing processing are performed, and an input screen for accepting setting input by an operator based on predicted finished screen information generated by the finished information generating device An input screen information generating device for generating information, a finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information, and a display device for displaying an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generating device, and displayed on the display device Accepts setting input including setting input by the operator from the input screen Characterized by comprising a setting device.

  According to a nineteenth aspect of the present invention, in the image processing system according to the eighteenth aspect, when the setting device accepts the setting input, the finish information generating device, based on the accepted setting input, Predicted finish screen information is generated, and the input screen information generation device generates the input screen information based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation device, and the display device , A finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information, and an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation device, and the setting device from the input screen displayed on the display device It is a feature that accepts a setting input including a setting input by the operator.

  The invention according to claim 20 is the image processing system according to claim 18 or 19, further comprising an image analysis device that analyzes the input image data and extracts document characteristic values, and generates the finish information The apparatus generates the predicted finished screen information based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis apparatus, and the input screen information generation apparatus is based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis apparatus. And generating the input screen information.

  The invention according to claim 21 is the image processing system according to any one of claims 18 to 20, wherein the display device includes an input screen based on input screen information generated by the input screen information generation device. When the initial setting screen set as the initial value is different, the different setting input items are highlighted and displayed.

  According to a twenty-second aspect of the present invention, there is provided image formation including input means for inputting image data, displaying expected results of image data processing and print finishing processing on display means, and receiving setting input for the print finishing processing. An image processing apparatus in the apparatus, the finish information generating means for generating predicted finish screen information when the image data processing and the print finishing process are performed, and the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating means Based on the input screen information generating means for generating the input screen information for accepting the setting input by the operator, and displaying the input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generating means on the display means. At least a setting input from the operator and a setting input from the input means Characterized by comprising setting means for accepting either a.

  According to a twenty-third aspect of the present invention, in the image processing apparatus according to the twenty-second aspect, when the setting unit receives the setting input, the finish information generating unit is configured to perform the operation based on the received setting input. Predicted finish screen information is generated, and the input screen information generation means generates the input screen information based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation means, and the setting means The setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed on the display means based on the input screen information and the setting input including the setting input from the input means are received.

  The invention according to claim 24 is the image processing apparatus according to claim 22 or 23, further comprising image analysis means for analyzing the input image data and extracting document characteristic values, and generating the finish information The means generates the predicted finished screen information based on the original characteristic value extracted by the image analysis means, and the input screen information generation means is based on the original characteristic value extracted by the image analysis means. And generating the input screen information.

  According to the first aspect of the present invention, the image forming apparatus generates predicted finish screen information when the image data processing and the print finishing processing are performed, and based on the generated predicted finish screen information, by the operator Input screen information for accepting setting input is generated, a finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information, and an input screen based on the input screen information are displayed, and a setting input including setting input by the operator from the displayed input screen is accepted. With this configuration, expected screen information and setting screen information that can be input by the operator are generated from the input image data, and the print prediction and setting input screen are displayed. Efficient and convenient setting work because it allows you to select and display setting items for necessary functions from complicated menu items and presents an intuitive and easy-to-understand setting menu that is accurate and simplified. It is possible to provide an image forming apparatus having a high image quality.

  According to the second aspect of the present invention, when a setting input by the operator is received, predicted finish screen information is generated based on the received setting input, and input screen information is generated based on the predicted finish screen information. Then, an input screen based on the finish prediction and the input screen information is displayed, and setting input including setting input by the operator from the displayed input screen is accepted. With this configuration, when a setting input is received from the operator from the displayed setting input screen, a predicted finishing screen and a setting screen based on the predicted finishing screen are further displayed according to the received setting, so that the operator can perform image formation. When various settings are entered, the setting items for the required functions are selected from complicated menu items based on the settings entered by the operator and displayed again for more accurate settings. Since the menu can be presented, it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus that is highly efficient and convenient for setting work.

  According to the third aspect of the present invention, the input image data is analyzed to extract the document characteristic value, the predicted finish screen information is generated based on the extracted document characteristic value, and the extracted document characteristic value is extracted. The input screen information is generated based on the above. With this configuration, a predicted finish screen is displayed based on the original characteristic values of the input image data, so that the operator can display a predicted finish that is closer to the actual finish, and an expected screen that is closer to the actual finish. Since the setting screen with the setting items narrowed down by the information can be displayed, there is an effect that it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  According to the invention of claim 4, when the input screen based on the generated input screen information is different from the initial setting screen set as the initial value, the different setting input items are highlighted. . With this configuration, when image data is input and setting items other than the initial settings are displayed on the input screen, the different setting items are highlighted and displayed so that the operator can easily confirm the setting change portion. Therefore, there is an effect that it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  According to the fifth aspect of the present invention, when the input of the setting item value by the operator is received and the input screen is updated and reflected by the setting item value, the updated input screen is displayed. A portion different from that before the update is highlighted. With this configuration, when the operator inputs a setting and the setting item changes, the different setting item is highlighted and displayed so that the operator can easily confirm the setting change portion. It is possible to provide an image forming apparatus having high efficiency and convenience.

  According to the sixth aspect of the invention, predicted finish screen information including an image is generated and displayed. With this configuration, the operator can display the predicted screen in an easy-to-confirm manner using the display by an image, so that it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  According to the seventh aspect of the present invention, at least one of a plane image, a stereoscopic image, and an animation image is displayed as an image to be displayed. With this configuration, the display using at least one of a plane image, a stereoscopic image, and an animation image is displayed so that the operator can easily confirm the expected screen, so that image formation with high efficiency and convenience of setting work is achieved. There exists an effect that an apparatus can be provided.

  According to the eighth aspect of the invention, the finishing information including the text information and the input screen information including the text information are displayed, and the setting input including the text information is accepted. With this configuration, an expected screen display or setting screen based on text information can be displayed, and setting input can be performed using text information. Therefore, it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  According to a ninth aspect of the present invention, there is provided an image forming method for inputting image data and displaying expected results of the image data processing and the print finishing processing, wherein the image data processing and the print finishing processing are performed. A predicted finish screen information is generated, input screen information for accepting setting input by the operator is generated based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation step, a predicted finish based on the predicted finish screen information, and An input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation step is displayed, and setting input including setting input by the operator from the displayed input screen is received. With this configuration, expected screen information and setting screen information that can be input by the operator are generated from the input image data, and the print prediction and setting input screen are displayed. Efficient and convenient setting work because it allows you to select and display setting items for necessary functions from complicated menu items and presents an intuitive and easy-to-understand setting menu that is accurate and simplified. It is possible to provide an image forming apparatus having a high image quality.

  According to the invention of claim 10, when setting input is received, finish predicted screen information is generated based on the received setting input, and input screen information is generated based on the predicted finish screen information. A finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information and an input screen based on the input screen information are displayed, and setting input including setting input by the operator from the displayed input screen is accepted. With this configuration, when a setting input is received from the operator from the displayed setting input screen, a predicted finishing screen and a setting screen based on the predicted finishing screen are further displayed according to the received setting, so that the operator can perform image formation. When various settings are entered, the setting items for the required functions are selected from complicated menu items based on the settings entered by the operator and displayed again for more accurate settings. Since the menu can be presented, it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus that is highly efficient and convenient for setting work.

  According to the eleventh aspect of the present invention, the input image data is analyzed to extract the document characteristic value, the predicted finished screen information is generated based on the extracted document characteristic value, and the extracted document characteristic is extracted. Input screen information is generated based on the value. With this configuration, a predicted finish screen is displayed based on the original characteristic values of the input image data, so that the operator can display a predicted finish that is closer to the actual finish, and an expected screen that is closer to the actual finish. Since the setting screen with the setting items narrowed down by the information can be displayed, there is an effect that it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  According to the twelfth aspect of the present invention, when the input screen based on the generated input screen information is different from the initial setting screen set as the initial value, the different setting input items are highlighted. . With this configuration, when image data is input and setting items other than the initial settings are displayed on the input screen, the different setting items are highlighted and displayed so that the operator can easily confirm the setting change portion. Therefore, there is an effect that it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  According to the invention of claim 13, when an input of a setting item value is received and the input screen is updated and displayed by reflecting the received setting item value, the update is displayed on the updated input screen. Highlight different parts from the previous one. With this configuration, when the operator inputs a setting and the setting item changes, the different setting item is highlighted and displayed so that the operator can easily confirm the setting change portion. It is possible to provide an image forming apparatus having high efficiency and convenience.

  According to the fourteenth aspect of the present invention, the predicted finish screen information including the image is generated, and the predicted finish including the image is displayed. With this configuration, the operator can display the predicted screen in an easy-to-confirm manner using the display by an image, so that it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  According to the invention of claim 15, the image included in the predicted finished screen information includes at least one of a plane image, a three-dimensional image, and an animation image, and has at least one image and is predicted to be finished. Is displayed. With this configuration, the display using at least one of a plane image, a stereoscopic image, and an animation image is displayed so that the operator can easily confirm the expected screen, so that image formation with high efficiency and convenience of setting work is achieved. There exists an effect that an apparatus can be provided.

  According to the sixteenth aspect of the present invention, finish information including text information is generated, input screen information including text information is generated based on the finish information including text information, and the text information is included. The input screen information including the finished information and the text information is displayed, and the setting input including the text information is accepted. With this configuration, an expected screen display or setting screen based on text information can be displayed, and setting input can be performed using text information. Therefore, it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  The invention according to claim 17 is a program that causes a computer to execute the image forming method according to any one of claims 9 to 16. With this configuration, there is an effect that the computer can execute the image forming method according to any one of claims 9 to 16.

  According to the invention of claim 18, there is provided an image processing system that is connected via a network and displays the expected results of image data processing and print finishing processing of input image data. A finish information generating device that generates predicted finish screen information when data processing and print finishing processing are performed, and an input screen that accepts setting input by an operator based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating device An input screen information generating device that generates information, a finish prediction based on predicted finish screen information, a display device that displays an input screen based on input screen information generated by the input screen information generating device, and an input screen displayed on the display device A setting device for receiving setting input including setting input by an operator from It was. With this configuration, expected screen information and setting screen information that can be input by the operator are generated from the input image data, and the print prediction and setting input screen are displayed. Efficient and convenient setting work because it allows you to select and display setting items for necessary functions from complicated menu items and presents an intuitive and easy-to-understand setting menu that is accurate and simplified. However, it is possible to provide an image processing system that is expensive.

  According to the nineteenth aspect of the present invention, when the setting device receives a setting input, the finished information generating device generates finished predicted screen information based on the received setting input, and the input screen information The generating device generates input screen information based on the predicted finished screen information generated by the finished information generating device, and the display device is generated by the predicted finished screen information and the input screen information generating device. An input screen based on the input screen information is displayed, and the setting device receives a setting input including a setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed on the display device. With this configuration, when a setting input is received from the operator from the displayed setting input screen, a predicted finishing screen and a setting screen based on the predicted finishing screen are further displayed according to the received setting, so that the operator can perform image formation. When various settings are entered, the setting items for the required functions are selected from complicated menu items based on the settings entered by the operator and displayed again for more accurate settings. Since the menu can be presented, it is possible to provide an image processing system that is highly efficient and convenient for setting work.

  According to the twentieth aspect of the present invention, the image processing apparatus further includes an image analysis device that analyzes the input image data and extracts a document characteristic value, and the finish information generation device includes the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis device. The input screen information generation device generates the input screen information based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis device. With this configuration, a predicted finish screen is displayed based on the original characteristic values of the input image data, so that the operator can display a predicted finish that is closer to the actual finish, and an expected screen that is closer to the actual finish. Since the setting screen with the setting items narrowed down by the information can be displayed, it is possible to provide an image processing system that is highly efficient and convenient for setting work.

  According to the invention of claim 21, when the input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generating device is different from the initial setting screen set as the initial value, the display device is different. Highlight setting input items. With this configuration, when image data is input and setting items other than the initial settings are displayed on the input screen, the different setting items are highlighted and displayed so that the operator can easily confirm the setting change portion. Therefore, there is an effect that it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with high efficiency and convenience of setting work.

  According to the twenty-second aspect of the present invention, the image having the input means for inputting the image data, displaying the expected results of the image data processing and the print finishing process on the display means, and receiving the setting input for the print finishing process. An image processing apparatus in the forming apparatus, based on the finish information generation unit that generates predicted finish screen information when image data processing and print finishing processing are performed, and the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation unit The input screen information generating means for generating the input screen information for accepting the setting input by the operator, and the input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generating means is displayed on the display means and the operator from the input screen is displayed. Setting that accepts at least one of setting input by input and setting input from input means And the stage, with a. With this configuration, expected screen information and setting screen information that can be input by the operator are generated from the input image data, and the print prediction and setting input screen are displayed. Efficient and convenient setting work because it allows you to select and display setting items for necessary functions from complicated menu items and presents an intuitive and easy-to-understand setting menu that is accurate and simplified. There is an effect that it is possible to provide a high image processing apparatus.

  According to the invention of claim 23, when the setting means accepts the setting input, the finish information generating means generates the predicted finish screen information based on the accepted setting input, and the input screen information The generation means generates input screen information based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation means, and the setting means operates from the input screen displayed on the display means based on the input screen information. A setting input including a setting input by the user and a setting input from the input means is received. With this configuration, when a setting input is received from the operator from the displayed setting input screen, a predicted finishing screen and a setting screen based on the predicted finishing screen are further displayed according to the received setting, so that the operator can perform image formation. When various settings are entered, the setting items for the required functions are selected from complicated menu items based on the settings entered by the operator and displayed again for more accurate settings. Since the menu can be presented, it is possible to provide an image processing apparatus that is highly efficient and convenient for setting work.

  The invention according to claim 24 further comprises image analysis means for analyzing the input image data and extracting document characteristic values, and the finish information generating means is based on the document characteristic values extracted by the image analysis means. Thus, predicted finished screen information is generated, and the input screen information generating unit generates the input screen information based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analyzing unit. With this configuration, a predicted finish screen is displayed based on the original characteristic values of the input image data, so that the operator can display a predicted finish that is closer to the actual finish, and an expected screen that is closer to the actual finish. Since the setting screen with the setting items narrowed down by the information can be displayed, it is possible to provide an image processing apparatus that is highly efficient and convenient for setting work.

  DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Exemplary embodiments of an image forming apparatus, an image forming method, a program for causing a computer to execute the method, an image processing system, and an image processing apparatus according to the present invention will be described below in detail with reference to the drawings. The present invention is not limited to the embodiments.

(First embodiment)
FIG. 1 is a functional block diagram of an image forming apparatus according to Embodiment 1 of the present invention. An image forming apparatus 10 shown in FIG. 1 includes a scanner 11, an ADF (auto document feeder) 111, a scanner controller 112, an image storage unit 12, an image processing unit 13, a printer 14, a printer controller 142, a finishing processing unit 141, and an operation. A display unit 15, an operation display control unit 151, a system control unit 16, and a communication control unit 17 are provided. The image forming apparatus 10 is connected to the network 18 via the communication control unit 17. Then, the image forming apparatus 10 reads the image of the document 19 and performs image processing, and then outputs it as a printed matter 20.

  The scanner 11 converts the image of the document 19 into digital image data using the scanner. The scanner 11 is equipped with an ADF 111 that can automatically and continuously read out documents one by one at a reading position when a plurality of pages of documents are set. Further, the ADF 111 can automatically read not only a single-sided original printed on one side of a sheet but also a double-sided original printed on both sides. The scanner controller 112 receives a command from the system control unit 16 and controls the scanner.

  The image storage unit 12 is a buffer memory that temporarily stores image data read by the scanner 11, image data input from the outside, and the like.

  The image processing unit 13 performs gradation processing such as slice processing and dither processing after performing γ correction, MTF correction processing, and the like on multi-value data sent from the scanner and temporarily stored in the image storage unit 12. To give a binary (or multi-value) process. The image processing unit 13 also performs various image processing (enlargement / reduction, density / color adjustment, etc.) corresponding to the function set by the user and layout processing (double-sided / single-sided printing, aggregate printing, margin size adjustment). Etc.). The image processing unit 13 is a characteristic part of the present invention and will be described in detail later.

  Here, the printer 14 deflects and scans the light beam based on the image data processed by the image processing unit 13, develops the electrostatic latent image formed on the photoreceptor using toner, and generates the generated toner image. This is a printer using an electrophotographic technique for transferring to a transfer paper and performing a fixing process. The printer controller 142 receives a command from the system control unit 16 and controls the printer.

  The printer 14 includes a finishing processing unit 141. The finishing processing unit 141 performs sorting processing for sorting the printed matter 20 that has been subjected to printing processing by the number of copies or page units, stapling processing for aligning a plurality of print media and binding them with staples based on user settings, or a plurality of finishing processing units 141 A finishing process such as a punching process for punching holes for binding sheets of print media into a binder or file is performed.

  The operation display unit 15 includes a microphone 15a, an input unit 15b, a display unit 15c, and a speaker 15d. The operation display unit 15 inputs setting contents by voice from the microphone 15a or inputs setting contents using the input unit 15b such as a keyboard or a touch panel. Or a menu item of setting contents can be displayed on the display unit 15c. In addition to visual display, the display unit 15c performs audio output through the speaker 15d.

  The operation display unit 15 is used by the user to set a function desired to be executed by the image forming apparatus from menu items on the setting screen. For example, the operation display unit 15 sets and reads the reading conditions in the scanner 11 according to the state of the document. Settings in the image processing unit 13 that processes the processed image data, settings of the printing conditions in the printer 14, or settings of the finishing processing unit 141 that performs finishing processing such as sorting, stapling, punch holes, etc. on the printed matter after printing. Is what you do.

  Here, the operation display unit 15 can be configured as an operation panel of the image forming apparatus, for example. The display unit 15c presents the predicted finish information generated by the finish information generation unit 131 to the user. When the predicted finish information is an image or text, it is displayed on the display unit 15c. When the predicted finish information is sound, the sound is output from the speaker 15d. In the case of a display, the display unit 15c may be shared with a display existing in the image forming apparatus, or may be a dedicated display separately from the display existing in the image forming apparatus.

  The operation display control unit 151 controls input / output with the operation display unit 15, for example, controls output of data processed by the image processing unit 13 to the display unit 15 c and the speaker 15 d of the operation display unit 15. Alternatively, the operation display control unit 151 performs input control from the microphone 15 a and the input unit 15 b of the operation display unit 15.

  The system controller 16 is connected to each component and controls the entire image forming apparatus 10. The system control unit 16 includes a CPU, a ROM, a RAM, and the like (not shown), and the CPU performs various processes based on a basic program stored in the ROM while using a RAM work area. .

  The communication control unit 17 is connected to a network 18 such as a LAN (local area network) or the Internet, and exchanges image data, control data, and the like with other devices connected to the network according to a communication protocol. It is.

  Here, the image processing unit 13 characteristic of the present invention will be further described. The image processing unit 13 includes a finish information generation unit 131, an input screen information generation unit 132, and a setting unit 133.

  The finish information generation unit 131 generates predicted finish information representing the results of processing and finishing processing on the document image based on the read image data or various set input settings. The finish information generation unit 131 uses multi-value data temporarily stored in the image storage unit 12.

  Further, the finish information generation unit 131 outputs finish information to be output to the speaker 15d of the operation display unit 15 from multi-value data temporarily stored in the image storage unit 12 or image processing data subjected to image processing. Generate. The presentation of the predicted finish information may be an image or text display on the display unit 15c, or may be an audio output from the speaker 15d.

  The input screen information generation unit 132 generates input screen information that causes the display unit 15 c to display a setting screen including setting items recommended on the screen based on the finish information generated by the finish information generation unit 131.

  The setting unit 133 receives the input signal when the user inputs for setting from the input screen displayed on the display unit 15c, the input unit 15b including a keyboard, and the microphone 15a.

  Here, when the setting unit 133 receives the setting input signal, the finish information generating unit 131 updates and generates the finish information again according to the received setting input signal, and the display unit 15c updates and generates the generated finish. The updated finish prediction screen is displayed according to the information.

  Further, the input screen information generation unit 132 generates input screen information for generating a screen that accepts a setting input from the user again by the input signal received by the setting unit 133, and the display unit 15c generates the generated input screen information. The input screen is updated and displayed.

  The setting unit 133, the operation display control unit 151, the microphone 15a, and the input unit 15b constitute a setting unit of the present invention. In addition, the operation display control unit 151, the display unit 15c, and the speaker 15d constitute a display unit of the present invention.

  FIG. 2A is a schematic diagram illustrating an example of a predicted finish screen displayed in the initial setting when the image forming apparatus according to the first embodiment reads a document. FIG. 2B is a schematic diagram illustrating an example of an initial setting input screen displayed when a document is read. FIG. 3A is a diagram for explaining that a setting input by the operator is accepted from the input screen illustrated in FIG. FIG. 3B is a schematic diagram illustrating an example of a display of a predicted finish generated as a result of the setting input illustrated in FIG.

  In the default setting of the predicted finish screen shown in FIG. 2A, the type of document is “A4” and “same size” when the document type is A4 and the paper is A4 portrait. In the default setting, a boundary line of a print output expected to be finished and a character string to be printed are schematically displayed. Here, the expected screen information is basically represented by a graphic, but the portion that cannot be represented by the graphic is displayed by text information. For example, text display such as “A4” and “same size” in the figure. Here, it is possible to adopt a configuration in which images and items displayed with default settings are automatically changed according to the read original and input image data.

The input screen illustrated in FIG. 2-2 is a default input screen that accepts a setting input, and is displayed on the display unit 15c together with the prediction screen. Here, as setting items,
1. The document type is text / photo2. 2. Copy stapling position The position of the punching process of the copy is displayed, and the user inputs for setting from the displayed screen or from the input unit 15b. Here, for example, a method of checking the grid using a touch panel or a mouse is adopted.

FIG. 3A shows a check mark in the setting input screen in accordance with an input from the user.
1. The type of manuscript is text and photos. 2. Staple processing on the upper left of the copy It shows that punch hole processing settings have been accepted in the left two positions of the copy.

  The setting unit 133 accepts the setting shown in FIG. 3A, the finish information generating unit 131 generates finish information representing the finish state according to the setting, and the display unit 15c displays the predicted finish.

  The finish prediction screen illustrated in FIG. 3B schematically illustrates an example of a screen displayed according to the predicted finish information newly generated by the finish information generation unit 131. Here, the predicted finish screen displayed by the display unit 15c includes characters and photographs printed, is subjected to a stapling process on the upper left (shaded line 3-2a on the upper left), and is subjected to a punch hole process on the left side ( The left two circles 3-2b) are shown. Further, the setting input screen shown in FIG. 3A is similarly displayed on the display unit 15c, and the user can input the setting change via the input screen when the user wants to change the setting again.

  FIG. 4 is a flowchart showing an image forming procedure according to the first embodiment. The image forming apparatus is in a standby state to accept reading by a scanner or input of image data via the network 18 (step S101). When the input is accepted (Yes in step S101), the finish information generating unit 131 first performs Based on the initial setting information (default setting item value), predicted finish information representing the result of processing and finishing processing on the document image data is generated (step S102). Then, the input screen information generation unit 132 generates input screen information that accepts a setting input from the user according to the default setting (step S103). Here, the default setting information can be stored in the system control unit 16 as a default specification.

  The display unit 15c displays an input screen that accepts a finish prediction and a setting input in accordance with the predicted finish information generated by the finish information generation unit 131 and the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation unit 132 (step S104). .

  Here, the user performs setting input if necessary while viewing the displayed prediction screen and setting input screen. The setting unit 133 detects whether or not a setting input from the user is made via the input screen or via the input unit 15b or the microphone 15a (step S105), and detects that the setting input has been accepted (Yes in step S105), the finish information generation unit 131 generates again predicted finish information representing the results of processing and finishing processing on the document image data based on the received setting information (step S102). Then, the input screen information generation unit 132 generates again input screen information that accepts a setting input from the user according to the received setting information (step S103). Here, when the menu content is newly changed by the setting from the user, input screen information for displaying a new input screen including the changed content is generated.

  The display unit 15c displays again the input screen that accepts the finished prediction and the setting input according to the predicted finish information generated by the finished information generation unit 131 and the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation unit 132 (Step S15). S104).

  When the setting unit 133 does not accept the setting input, the operation display unit 15 is in a state of detecting a copy execution command due to pressing of the copy button or the like (step S106). When the copy execution command is received (Yes in step S106), Copy is executed (step S107).

(Example of finished screen)
It is desirable that the finished prediction screen is displayed by highlighting a specific part such as a part that changes depending on the setting. For example, an item set differently from the initial setting value is highlighted on the finished prediction screen. Alternatively, when the setting is input by the user from the input screen, and the finished state and the setting input screen are changed by the input setting, the changed portion is highlighted and displayed. With this configuration, it is easy to visually recognize that the finish and the setting input screen change depending on the user settings.

  A signal set and input from the input unit 15b of the operation display unit 15 is received and set by the setting unit 133 of the image processing unit 13, and the setting signal is received by the finish information generation unit 131 and represents a setting item. Finish information is generated according to the information. The generated finish information is displayed on the display unit 15c.

  FIG. 5 is a diagram for explaining an example in which, when a setting item or setting item value different from the initial setting value is set on the finished prediction screen, a different finished processing portion is highlighted. Here, the user: Staple on top left of copy, 2. This is a case where a setting input for performing punch hole processing on the left two portions of the copy is performed on the input screen (FIG. 3-1), and a setting portion different from the default setting is generated. Different parts of the predicted finished screen are displayed in different colors and backgrounds. For example, the punch hole 5d and the staple position 5c are indicated using red as a different color, and the background portion where the position is indicated can be displayed with a red diagonal line.

  Or you may emphasize by a different background color. For example, the settings 1 and 2 by the user are a red circle (punch hole) and a red diagonal line (staple), the background is displayed with an orange diagonal line, and the other default parts are displayed with a white background color. To do. Such highlighting makes it easy for the user to visually recognize the setting portion of the input screen that is different from the default, or the portion whose finish prediction has changed due to the setting.

  In addition, display of finishing processing using other different colors, background color of the finishing processing, or blinking display can also be applied. Furthermore, when displaying on the display part 15c with a text (character), a different font and a different font size can also be used. This is to make it easy for the operator to visually recognize.

  The signal input by setting is transmitted to the input image information generation unit 132 of the image processing unit 13 and generates input image information representing a menu to be newly displayed according to the set item. The display unit 15c receives input image information representing a menu to be newly displayed, and displays an input screen for displaying a new menu for accepting a new setting input. As a result, it is possible to present more accurate setting items to the operator.

  For example, when the setting for performing the stapling process is performed, an input screen as to whether or not to execute the bookbinding process can be displayed in response to the setting. Thereby, the setting item newly required for the operator can be accurately presented.

  Alternatively, when a screen for setting front side printing is displayed and double-sided printing is set, a menu for setting a binding margin may be displayed so that an operator can input a binding margin numerically from a keyboard. Thereby, the setting item newly required for the operator can be accurately presented.

  Alternatively, if there is no margin for the necessary binding margin when the binding margin is set, a setting screen for readjusting the overall margin can be displayed. Thereby, the setting item newly required for the operator can be accurately presented.

  FIG. 6A is a diagram for explaining an example in which a predicted print finish is displayed in three dimensions. FIG. 6B is a diagram for explaining an example in which a predicted print finish is displayed in a three-dimensional animation. FIG. 6C is another diagram for explaining an example in which a predicted print finish is displayed in a three-dimensional animation.

  For example, before performing various setting inputs from the setting screen, five originals are read and, as shown in FIG. Here, it is assumed that the operation display unit 15 that displays the predicted finish is a touch panel. When the operator touches the triangle displayed at the lower right of the screen with the finger or stylus pen on the display screen, the first page is dismissed as shown in FIG. 6-2. The predicted finish with the first page opened is displayed three-dimensionally. Further, when the operator touches the “next page” triangle, the pages are arranged in order in the three-dimensional animation display on the display unit 15c, and the three-dimensional finish prediction is performed in the state where the operator is brought. It can be visually recognized.

  Further, in the example illustrated in FIG. 6C, the printed material according to the predicted finish is rotated and displayed. When the operator touches the arrow marks displayed in the vicinity of “Back” and “Front” on the display screen, the predicted finished printed material displayed in 3D is parallel to the horizontal side of the display screen. It can be rotated around the axis with an animation display. In addition, when the operator touches the arrow marks displayed near “to the left” and “to the right” on the display screen, the expected printed matter is displayed in an animation around an axis parallel to the vertical side of the display screen. Rotates. Thus, the expected printed matter rotates and moves on the display screen, so that the predicted finished state can be viewed from different angles. The example in FIG. 6C illustrates an example in which the predicted finish information is rotated 90 degrees “backward” and 90 degrees “leftward” with animation display.

  In addition to a touch panel, a hard key can also be used as an input means for turning or rotating a page in the expected display state of a printed matter.

  In addition to the display on the display unit 15c, it is possible to notify the operator of the finish prediction and the setting items by outputting text information through the speaker 15d by voice conversion by a known technique, for example.

  As described above, in the image forming apparatus according to the first embodiment, a predicted finish screen is displayed before printing for read image data or image data input via a network, and an operator sets An input screen that can be entered is displayed, and if there is a setting input from the operator, a finish prediction screen that includes the setting contents is displayed, so that the operator can see the finish prediction before setting and the finish Since it is possible to present a setting menu in which setting items are narrowed down based on the prediction, it is possible to improve work efficiency and convenience in image forming work.

  In addition, when the predicted finish screen changes due to the user setting input, the portion that is different from the predicted finish screen in the initial setting is highlighted and displayed, so that the operator can easily understand the settings and can perform printing close to the desired finish. It becomes possible.

  Further, when the input screen for performing setting input is changed by the setting input by the user, the changed input screen is displayed and further the setting input by the user is accepted, so that the setting work is made asymptotically easier and closer to the desired finish. be able to.

  In addition, since the predicted finish screen is displayed as an image, a stereoscopic image, an animation image, and a text image, the finish can be easily recognized in advance for the operator.

(Second Embodiment)
FIG. 7 is a functional block diagram of an image forming apparatus according to Embodiment 2 of the present invention. The image forming apparatus 30 according to the second embodiment is different from the image forming apparatus 10 according to the first embodiment in that an image analysis unit 31, a related function search unit 32, and a related function correspondence table 321 are provided. The function of the image processing unit 33 is different from the image processing unit 13 in the first embodiment.

  In the image forming apparatus according to the second embodiment, the image analysis unit 31, the related function search unit 32, and the related function correspondence table 321 extract document characteristic values and select appropriate setting item information based on the document characteristic values. Then, the image processing unit 33 generates predicted finish screen information and input screen information from the input image data and the selected selection item information, and the display unit 15c displays the predicted finish and input screen.

  The image analysis unit 31 analyzes the document image data held by the image storage unit 12 and extracts a document characteristic value representing the characteristics of the document. The document characteristic value is, for example, a document size, orientation, and margin size.

  When the related function search unit 32 receives information about various document characteristic values calculated by the image analysis unit 31, the related function search unit 32 searches for related functions that need to be set when copying the document. The related function search unit 32 has a related function correspondence table 321. The related function correspondence table 321 is a file describing function list information related to individual document characteristic values. The related function search unit 32 searches the related function correspondence table 321 for a related function corresponding to the input document characteristic value, and transmits the further narrowed down related function information to the image processing unit 33.

  Next, the image processing unit 33 of the image forming apparatus 30 according to the second embodiment will be described. As shown in FIG. 7, the image processing unit 33 includes a finish information generation unit 331, an input screen information generation unit 332, and a setting unit 333.

  The finishing information generation unit 331 of the image processing unit 33 according to the second embodiment is different from the finishing information generation unit 131 of the image processing unit 13 according to the first embodiment in that the original characteristic value based on the image analysis of the image analysis unit 31, In addition, finished information is generated using the related function information extracted and narrowed down by the related function search unit 32 using the document characteristic value.

  The difference between the input screen information generation unit 332 of the image processing unit 33 according to the second embodiment and the input screen information generation unit 132 of the image processing unit 13 according to the first embodiment is based on the image analysis of the image analysis unit 31. The input screen information is generated using the document characteristic value and the related function information extracted and narrowed down by the related function search unit 32 using the document characteristic value.

  The setting unit 333 of the image processing unit 33 according to the second embodiment is different from the setting unit 133 of the image processing unit 13 according to the first embodiment in that the original characteristic value based on the image analysis of the image analysis unit 31 and The point is that the setting input from the input screen by the screen information generated using the related function information extracted and narrowed down by the related function search unit 32 using the document characteristic value is received.

  In this way, an input screen that accepts an expected finish and setting input from the user including the characteristic value of the document image analyzed by the image analysis unit 31 is displayed. Accept setting input. With this configuration, it is possible to accurately narrow down items to be predicted and items to be set and input based on the document characteristic value representing the document characteristics, and thus it is possible to provide an image forming apparatus with higher operational efficiency and convenience.

  Here, the presentation of the predicted finish information may be an image or text on the display unit 15c, or may be an audio output by the speaker 15d, as in the case of the first embodiment.

  Here, the image analysis unit 31, the related function search unit 32, and the related function correspondence table 321 constitute the image analysis means of the present invention.

  FIG. 8A is a diagram illustrating an example of displaying a predicted finish screen from a document read by the image forming apparatus according to the second embodiment. FIG. 8-2 is a diagram for explaining another finish prediction screen displayed by the image forming apparatus according to the second embodiment.

The finish information generation unit 331 reflects the input document image data and the document characteristic value analyzed by the image analysis unit 31 on the input screen based on the initial setting information (default setting item value), and the result of the data processing and finishing process. The predicted finish information is generated and displayed on the display unit 15c. As shown in FIG. 8A, the original image data 8-1a, the original characteristic value 8-1b analyzed by the image analysis unit 31, and the predicted finish in which the original image data and the original characteristic value are reflected on the default setting screen. Information is generated and a predicted finish screen 8-1c is displayed. Here, the document characteristic value 8-1b analyzed by the image analysis unit 31 is:
1. The document size is A3
2. 2. Document orientation is horizontal. The margin dimensions are: Top: 20mm Bottom: 15mm Left: 20mm Right: 20mm
It is. An image such as a margin size that cannot be explicitly presented to the user is displayed as text information on the screen.

  The user inputs a new setting if necessary while visually confirming the predicted finish on the screen. Here, the setting input screen is, for example, the same screen as shown in FIG. When the user performs setting input, the finishing information generation unit 331 newly generates finishing prediction information reflecting the setting by the user, and the display unit 15c displays it. For example, the same setting as shown in FIG. Staple on top left of copy, 2. When the user sets punching at the left two positions of the copy, the predicted finish is a predicted finish screen 8-2c shown in FIG. In the illustrated finishing screen 8-2c, an upper left diagonal line 8-2d and two left circles 8-2e are set 2, (staple processing) and set 3, respectively. This shows a reflection of (punch processing).

FIG. 9 is a diagram for explaining an example of emphasizing a portion where the display of the predicted finished screen is changed by a setting different from the initial setting on the predicted finished screen. Here, the user: Staple on top left of copy, 2. A setting such as punching was made in the left two places of the copy. Further, the following document characteristic values are extracted from the document image.
3. The document size is A3
4). 4. Document orientation is horizontal. The margin dimensions are: Top: 20mm Bottom: 15mm Left: 20mm Right: 20mm

  As shown in FIG. 9, for example, portions different from the initial setting are highlighted with different colors (the hatched portion labeled “A3” in the figure). The part that remains the default setting is the normal display. 2. Original document characteristic value ~ 5. For example, the part reflecting the color is displayed in blue with a different color. Setting by user And 2. The diagonal lines and circles representing staples and punch holes are displayed in red, for example.

  FIG. 10A is a schematic diagram illustrating an example of setting input from the input screen for generating the predicted finished screen illustrated in FIG. 9. FIG. 10B is a schematic diagram illustrating an example in which the user further performs setting input from the input screen. FIG. 10C is a schematic diagram illustrating an example of the display of the predicted finish screen that reflects the new setting by the user.

The input screen information generation unit 132 is operated by the above-described 1. And 2. The input screen information reflecting the setting is generated, and the display unit 15c displays the input screen according to the input screen information (FIG. 10-1). Here, it is assumed that the user further inputs a different setting. That is,
6). 6. Change the staple to the upper right. A setting to change the punch hole to the right was input (FIG. 10-2).

  In the image forming apparatus according to the second embodiment, when a setting input by a new user is received, the finishing information generation unit 331 generates predicted finishing screen information based on the received setting, and generates input screen information. The unit 332 generates input screen information. The display unit 15c displays a new predicted finish screen and input screen according to the generated predicted finish screen information and input screen information. Here, for the sake of convenience, the newly generated input screen is the same as the previous one, but the setting item to be presented can be newly displayed by changing the right margin, for example, by moving the punch hole to the right.

  Further, in the example of FIG. 10C, when the predicted finish screen varies depending on the setting, it is desirable to highlight the different portions using different background colors. For example, in the figure, the setting by the user is presented with a red or purple background color (shaded area).

  Other than that, in the case of different background painting effects, blinking display, or text display, the use of different fonts and sizes is the same as in the first embodiment.

  FIG. 11 is a flowchart illustrating an image forming procedure according to the second embodiment. When the image forming apparatus is in a standby state for reading by the scanner or accepting image data via the network 18 (step S201) and accepting input of image data (Yes in step S201), the image analyzing unit 31 performs image data reception. And the original function value is extracted (step S202), and the related function search unit 32 searches the related function correspondence table 321 using the original characteristic value and selects a setting item for receiving a user input (step S203). .

  The finish information generating unit 331 first generates predicted finish information representing the result of processing and finishing processing on document image data based on the initial setting information (default setting item value) and the document characteristic value (step S204). Then, the input screen information generation unit 332 generates input screen information that accepts a setting input from the user according to the setting item selected by the default setting and related function search unit 32. Here, in the case of default setting, the system controller 16 can be configured to store default specifications (step S205).

  The display unit 15c displays an input screen that accepts a finish prediction and a setting input according to the predicted finish information generated by the finish information generation unit 331 and the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation unit 332 (step S206). .

  Here, the user performs setting input if necessary while viewing the displayed prediction screen and setting input screen. The setting unit 333 detects whether or not a setting input from the user is made via the input screen or via the input unit 15b or the microphone 15a (step S207), and when the setting input is received (in step S207) Yes), the finishing information generation unit 331 generates again the predicted finishing information representing the result of the processing and finishing processing on the document image data based on the received setting information (step S204). Then, the input screen information generation unit 332 generates again input screen information that accepts a setting input from the user in accordance with the accepted setting information (step S205). Here, when the menu content is newly changed by the setting from the user, input screen information for displaying a new input screen including the changed content is generated.

  The display unit 15c again displays the input screen that accepts the finished prediction and the setting input according to the predicted finish information generated by the finished information generation unit 331 and the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation unit 332 (step S206).

  When the setting unit 333 does not accept the setting input, the operation display unit 15 enters a state of detecting a copy execution command due to pressing of the copy button or the like (step S208), and when the copy execution command is received (Yes in step S208). Copy is executed (step S209).

  Here, for example, when the document characteristic value is read and the margin size setting screen is displayed, if punch holes are set, and it is better to increase the margin portion, a screen for inputting margins on the setting screen ( It is desirable to display (not shown).

  Also, here, when a setting for changing the position of the punch hole to the left or right is input, the predicted finished state is displayed in a three-dimensional manner that the place to be bound is changed by the change of the punch hole.

  Here, it is desirable that the setting unit 333 determines that the set content is inappropriate, such as when the set margin is too large or too small, and displays a warning on the predicted finished screen.

  Here, when the margin portion is too small, it is desirable that the input screen information generation unit 332 displays items to reduce other than the margin portion of the document on the input screen, and accepts an input of reduction setting by the operator.

  Here, when the margin portion is too large, it is desirable that the input screen information generation unit 332 displays an item for enlarging the portion other than the margin portion of the document on the input screen, and accepts the input of the enlargement setting by the operator.

  If the image processing unit 33 determines that the document density is in an inappropriate range, the input screen information generation unit 332 displays an item for specifying the density on the input screen, and the density setting by the operator is performed. It is desirable to accept input.

  As described above, in the image forming apparatus according to the second embodiment, document characteristics are extracted from scanned image data or image data input via a network, and printing is performed by reflecting the extracted document characteristics. The finish prediction screen and the input screen that allows the operator to input settings are displayed in advance, and if there is a setting input from the operator, a finish prediction screen that includes the settings is displayed. In the image forming operation, you can see the finished forecast that reflects the automatically extracted document characteristics and display the setting menu that narrows down the setting items that reflect the document characteristics based on the finished forecast. Work efficiency and convenience can be improved.

(Embodiment 3)
In the image processing apparatus according to the third embodiment, the part that executes the image processing function in the image forming apparatuses according to the first and second embodiments is configured as an image processing apparatus.

  FIG. 12 is a functional block diagram of the image processing apparatus according to the third embodiment. The image processing apparatus 50 according to the third embodiment is a part that executes an image processing function in the image forming apparatus 60. Here, the image forming apparatus 60 will be described as having the same configuration as that of the second embodiment. However, when the portion that executes the image analysis function is removed, the same configuration as that of the first embodiment may be employed.

  The image processing apparatus 50 according to the third embodiment includes an image processing unit 53, an image analysis unit 51, a related function search unit 52, and a related function correspondence table 521. The image processing unit 53 includes a finish information generation unit 531, an input screen information generation unit 532, and a setting unit 533.

  Here, the image processing unit 53, the finish information generation unit 531, the input screen information generation unit 532, the setting unit 533, the image analysis unit 51, the related function search unit 52, and the related function support provided in the image processing apparatus 50 according to the third embodiment. The configuration and operation of the table 521 are as follows. The image processing unit 33, the finish information generation unit 331, the input screen information generation unit 332, the setting unit 333, the image analysis unit 31, and the related function search unit included in the image forming apparatus 30 according to the second embodiment. 32 and the related function correspondence table 321 are the same as the configuration and operation, and thus the description thereof is omitted.

  In the image processing apparatus according to the third embodiment, for the read image data or image data input via the network, a predicted finish screen and an input screen on which the operator can set and input are displayed before printing. If there is a setting input from, the finish prediction screen will be displayed with the settings, so that the operator can see the finished prediction reflecting the original characteristics before setting, and the original characteristics based on the finished prediction Therefore, it is possible to present a setting menu that narrows down setting items that reflect the above, so that the efficiency and convenience of the work can be improved in the image forming work.

  Further, in the image processing apparatus according to the third embodiment, document characteristics are extracted from the read image data or image data input via a network, and the predicted finish before printing reflects the extracted document characteristics. The screen and the input screen that allows the operator to enter settings are displayed, and if there is a setting input from the operator, a predicted finish screen that includes the settings is displayed, so that the operator is automatically extracted before setting. The finished menu reflecting the original characteristics can be viewed, and the setting menu that narrows down the setting items reflecting the original characteristics based on the finished forecast can be displayed again. Convenience can be improved.

(Embodiment 4)
FIG. 13 is a functional block diagram of an image processing system according to the fourth embodiment. The image processing system according to the fourth embodiment is configured by connecting the image processing apparatus according to the third embodiment and each functional part that executes other image forming functions via a network. Each device itself in the image processing system 70 according to the fourth embodiment has the same configuration as each unit of the image processing device 60 except that each device is connected via a network.

  The image processing system 70 according to the fourth embodiment includes a document reading device 71, an image processing device 73, an image analysis device 74, an operation display device 75, and a printing device 76, each of which is connected via the network 18. Yes.

  The document reading device 71, the image processing device 73, the image analysis device 74, the operation display device 75, and the printing device 76 of the image processing system 70 according to the fourth embodiment are the same as the document reading function portion and the image processing device shown in FIG. 53, the image analysis function part, the operation display function part, and the print function part, so that the description is omitted here. In the image processing system 70, each device that executes each function is connected via the network 18 to transmit and receive information. With this configuration, for example, even if all functional parts are not collected in one place, it is possible to execute the same image processing function by distributing devices that execute each function in a distributed manner.

  In the image processing system according to the fourth embodiment, for the image data input via the network, a predicted finish screen and an input screen on which the operator can set and input are displayed before printing, and setting input from the operator can be performed. If there is, a finish prediction screen that includes the settings is displayed, so that the operator can see the finish prediction that reflects the document characteristics before setting, and the setting item that reflects the document characteristics based on the finish prediction Since the setting menu narrowing down can be presented, the image processing system can improve the work efficiency and convenience in the image forming work.

  Also, in the image processing system according to the fourth embodiment, document characteristics are extracted from image data input via a network, and a predicted finish screen and operator before printing reflect the extracted document characteristics. An input screen that allows setting input is displayed, and if there is a setting input from the operator, a finish prediction screen that includes the setting content is displayed, so that the operator automatically reflects the original characteristics extracted before setting The setting menu that narrows down the setting items that reflect the document characteristics based on the finished prediction can be displayed again, thereby improving work efficiency and convenience in image forming work. An image processing system capable of

(Hardware configuration etc.)
FIG. 14 is a hardware configuration diagram of the image forming apparatus according to the embodiment. The image forming apparatus 1000 according to the present embodiment includes a control device such as a CPU (Central Processing Unit) 1010, a storage device such as a ROM (Read Only Memory) 1020 and a RAM 1030, and an external storage device such as an HDD 1040 and a CD drive device. , A display device such as a monitor 1110, an input device such as a keyboard 1120, a mouse 1130, and an input interface 1060, a reading device 1140 such as a scanner, and a printing device 1150 such as a laser printer, and a hardware using a normal computer The hardware configuration.

  An image forming program executed by the image forming apparatus of the present embodiment is a file in an installable or executable format, such as a CD-ROM, a flexible disk (FD), a CD-R, a DVD (Digital Versatile Disk), or the like. The program is provided by being recorded on a computer-readable recording medium.

  Further, the image forming program executed by the image forming apparatus of the present embodiment may be provided by being stored on a computer connected to a network such as the Internet and downloaded via the network. The image forming program executed by the image forming apparatus according to the present embodiment may be provided or distributed via a network such as the Internet.

  Further, the image forming program of the present embodiment may be provided by being incorporated in advance in a ROM or the like.

  The image forming program executed by the image forming apparatus according to the present embodiment includes the above-described units (image processing unit 13, operation display control unit 151, system control unit 16, communication control unit 17, image analysis unit 31, and related functions). The module is configured to include the search unit 32. As actual hardware, the CPU 1010 reads out and executes the image forming program from the storage medium, so that the respective units are loaded onto the main storage device, and the image processing unit 13, An operation display control unit 151, a system control unit 16, a communication control unit 17, an image analysis unit 31, and a related function search unit 32 are generated on the main storage device.

  An image forming program executed by the image forming apparatus of the present embodiment is a file in an installable or executable format, such as a CD-ROM, a flexible disk (FD), a CD-R, a DVD (Digital Versatile Disk), or the like. You may comprise so that it may record and provide on a computer-readable recording medium.

  Furthermore, the image forming program executed by the image forming apparatus of the present embodiment may be provided by being stored on a computer connected to a network such as the Internet and downloaded via the network. The image forming program executed by the image forming apparatus according to the present embodiment may be provided or distributed via a network such as the Internet.

  The present invention is useful for an image forming technique and an image processing technique, and particularly useful for an image forming technique and an image processing technique in a multi-function multifunction peripheral.

1 is a functional block diagram of an image forming apparatus according to Embodiment 1 of the present invention. FIG. 5 is a schematic diagram illustrating an example of a predicted finishing screen displayed when the image forming apparatus according to the first embodiment reads a document. FIG. 6 is a schematic diagram illustrating an example of an initial setting input screen displayed when a document is read. It is a figure explaining having received the setting input by the operator from the input screen shown to FIGS. It is a schematic diagram which shows an example of the display of the finish prediction produced | generated as a result of the setting input shown by FIGS. 3 is a flowchart illustrating an image forming procedure according to the first embodiment. FIG. 10 is a diagram for explaining an example in which, when a setting item or setting item value different from an initial setting value is set on a predicted finishing screen, a different finished processing portion is highlighted. It is a figure explaining the example which displayed the finishing expectation of printing in solid. It is a figure explaining the example which displayed the finishing expectation of printing with the three-dimensional animation. It is another figure explaining the example which displayed the finishing expectation of printing with the three-dimensional animation. FIG. 6 is a functional block diagram of an image forming apparatus according to Embodiment 2 of the present invention. FIG. 10 is a diagram illustrating an example of displaying a predicted finish screen from a document read by the image forming apparatus according to the second embodiment. FIG. 10 is a diagram illustrating another predicted finish screen displayed by the image forming apparatus according to the second embodiment. It is a figure explaining an example which emphasized the part of the finish prediction screen in which the display changed by the setting different from an initial setting in a finish prediction screen. It is a schematic diagram which shows an example which the user set and input from the input screen. It is a schematic diagram which shows an example which the user further set and input from the input screen. It is a schematic diagram which shows an example of the display of a finishing prediction screen which reflected the new setting by a user. 10 is a flowchart illustrating an image forming procedure according to the second embodiment. 6 is a functional block diagram of an image processing apparatus according to Embodiment 3. FIG. FIG. 10 is a functional block diagram of an image processing system according to a fourth embodiment. 1 is a hardware configuration diagram of an image forming apparatus according to an embodiment.

Explanation of symbols

11 Scanner 111 ADF
112 Scanner Controller 12 Image Storage Unit 13 33 Image Processing Unit 131 331 Finish Information Generation Unit 132 332 Input Screen Information Generation Unit 133 333 Setting Unit 31 Image Analysis Unit 32 Related Function Search Unit 321 Related Function Correspondence Table 14 Printer 141 Finishing Processing Unit 142 Printer controller 15 Operation display unit 15a Microphone 15b Input unit 15c Display unit 15d Speaker 151 Operation display control unit 18 Network

Claims (24)

  1. An image forming apparatus for inputting image data and displaying expected results of image data processing and print finishing processing,
    Finished information generating means for generating predicted finish screen information when the image data processing and print finishing processing are performed;
    Input screen information generating means for generating input screen information for accepting a setting input by an operator based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating means;
    Display means for displaying a finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information and an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation means;
    Setting means for receiving a setting input including a setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed on the display means;
    An image forming apparatus comprising:
  2. When the setting means receives the setting input,
    The finish information generating means generates the predicted finish screen information based on the received setting input,
    The input screen information generating means generates the input screen information based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating means.
    The display means displays an input screen based on a predicted finish based on the predicted finished screen information and input screen information generated by the input screen information generating means,
    The image forming apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the setting unit receives a setting input including a setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed on the display unit.
  3. Image analysis means for analyzing the input image data and extracting document characteristic values;
    The finish information generation means generates the predicted finish screen information based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis means,
    The image forming apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the input screen information generation unit generates the input screen information based on a document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis unit.
  4.   When the input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generating unit is different from the initial setting screen set as an initial value, the display unit highlights and displays the different setting input items. The image forming apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the image forming apparatus is an image forming apparatus.
  5. When the setting means accepts input of setting item values by the operator and the display means updates and displays the input screen reflecting the accepted setting item values,
    The image according to any one of claims 2 to 4, wherein the display means emphasizes and displays a portion that is different from that before the update on the input screen that is updated and displayed. Forming equipment.
  6. The finish information generating means generates finish predicted screen information including an image,
    The image forming apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the display unit displays a predicted finish including an image.
  7. The image included in the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating unit includes at least one of a plane image, a stereoscopic image, and an animation image,
    The image forming apparatus according to claim 6, wherein the display unit has the at least one image and displays the predicted finish.
  8. The finish information generating means generates finish information including text information,
    The input screen information generating means generates input screen information including text information based on finished information including the text information,
    The display means displays finish information including the text information and input screen information including the text information,
    The image forming apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the setting unit receives a setting input including text information.
  9. An image forming method for inputting image data and displaying expected results of image data processing and print finishing processing,
    A finish information generation step for generating predicted finish screen information when the image data processing and print finishing processing are performed;
    An input screen information generating step for generating input screen information for accepting a setting input by an operator based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating step;
    A display step of displaying an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation step,
    A setting step for receiving a setting input including a setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed in the display step;
    An image forming method comprising:
  10. When the setting process accepts the setting input,
    The finish information generation step generates the predicted finish screen information based on the received setting input.
    The input screen information generation step generates the input screen information based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation step.
    The display step is to display a finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information and an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation step.
    The image forming method according to claim 9, wherein the setting step receives a setting input including a setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed in the display step.
  11. An image analysis step of analyzing the input image data and extracting a document characteristic value;
    The finish information generation step generates the predicted finish screen information based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis step,
    11. The image forming method according to claim 9, wherein the input screen information generation step generates the input screen information based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis step.
  12.   In the display step, when the input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation step is different from the initial setting screen set as an initial value, the item of the different setting input is highlighted and displayed. The image forming method according to claim 9, wherein the image forming method is one.
  13. When the setting step accepts input of setting item values by the operator, and the display step updates and displays the input screen reflecting the accepted setting item values,
    The image forming according to any one of claims 10 to 12, wherein the display step highlights and displays a portion different from that before the update on the input screen to be updated and displayed. Method.
  14. The finish information generation step generates finish prediction screen information including an image,
    The image forming method according to claim 9, wherein the display step displays a predicted finish including an image.
  15. The image included in the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation step includes at least one of a plane image, a stereoscopic image, and an animation image,
    The image forming method according to claim 14, wherein the display step includes the at least one image and displays the predicted finish.
  16. The finish information generation step generates finish information including text information,
    The input screen information generation step generates input screen information including text information based on the finished information including the text information,
    The display step displays finish information including the text information and input screen information including the text information,
    16. The image forming method according to claim 9, wherein the setting step receives a setting input including text information.
  17.   A program for causing a computer to execute the image forming method according to any one of claims 9 to 16.
  18. An image processing system, each connected via a network, for displaying the expected results of image data processing and print finishing processing of input image data,
    A finish information generating device for generating predicted finish screen information when the image data processing and the print finishing processing are performed;
    An input screen information generating device for generating input screen information for accepting a setting input by an operator based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating device;
    A display device that displays a finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information and an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation device;
    A setting device that accepts a setting input including a setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed on the display device;
    An image processing system comprising:
  19. When the setting device receives the setting input,
    The finish information generation device generates the predicted finish screen information based on the received setting input,
    The input screen information generation device generates the input screen information based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generation device,
    The display device displays a finish prediction based on the predicted finish screen information and an input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation device.
    The image processing system according to claim 18, wherein the setting device receives a setting input including a setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed on the display device.
  20. An image analysis device that analyzes the input image data and extracts document characteristic values;
    The finish information generation device generates the predicted finish screen information based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis device,
    20. The image processing system according to claim 18, wherein the input screen information generation device generates the input screen information based on a document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis device.
  21.   When the input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation device is different from the initial setting screen set as an initial value, the display device highlights and displays the different setting input items. The image processing system according to claim 18, wherein the image processing system is one.
  22. An image processing apparatus in an image forming apparatus having input means for inputting image data, displaying expected results of image data processing and print finishing processing on display means, and receiving setting input for the print finishing processing,
    Finished information generating means for generating predicted finish screen information when the image data processing and print finishing processing are performed;
    Input screen information generating means for generating input screen information for accepting a setting input by an operator based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating means;
    An input screen based on the input screen information generated by the input screen information generation unit is displayed on the display unit, and at least one of setting input by the operator from the input screen and setting input from the input unit is received. Setting means;
    An image processing apparatus comprising:
  23. When the setting means receives the setting input,
    The finish information generating means generates the predicted finish screen information based on the received setting input,
    The input screen information generating means generates the input screen information based on the predicted finish screen information generated by the finish information generating means.
    The setting means accepts a setting input including the setting input by the operator from the input screen displayed on the display means based on the input screen information and the setting input from the input means. The image processing apparatus according to claim 22, characterized in that:
  24. Image analysis means for analyzing the input image data and extracting document characteristic values;
    The finish information generation means generates the predicted finish screen information based on the document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis means,
    24. The image processing apparatus according to claim 22, wherein the input screen information generation unit generates the input screen information based on a document characteristic value extracted by the image analysis unit.
JP2004178883A 2004-06-16 2004-06-16 Image forming apparatus, image forming method, program for making computer execute the method, image processing system and image processing apparatus Pending JP2006003568A (en)

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