JPH11212725A - Information display device and operation input device - Google Patents

Information display device and operation input device

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Publication number
JPH11212725A
JPH11212725A JP1276798A JP1276798A JPH11212725A JP H11212725 A JPH11212725 A JP H11212725A JP 1276798 A JP1276798 A JP 1276798A JP 1276798 A JP1276798 A JP 1276798A JP H11212725 A JPH11212725 A JP H11212725A
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JP
Japan
Prior art keywords
operation
information display
signal
unit
display device
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Granted
Application number
JP1276798A
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Japanese (ja)
Other versions
JP3987182B2 (en
Inventor
Koji Inada
Masahiko Kawakami
Takahito Miwa
Yoshitaka Tsuji
高仁 三輪
昌彦 川上
宏治 稲田
義孝 辻
Original Assignee
Idec Izumi Corp
和泉電気株式会社
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Application filed by Idec Izumi Corp, 和泉電気株式会社 filed Critical Idec Izumi Corp
Priority to JP01276798A priority Critical patent/JP3987182B2/en
Publication of JPH11212725A publication Critical patent/JPH11212725A/en
Application granted granted Critical
Publication of JP3987182B2 publication Critical patent/JP3987182B2/en
Anticipated expiration legal-status Critical
Expired - Fee Related legal-status Critical Current

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Abstract

(57) [Summary] [PROBLEMS] To provide an information display device which gives a reliable operation feeling without a pushing stroke, enables a tracing operation, and has a small number of parts around an operation surface and a display surface. An operation panel is provided on a liquid crystal display panel.
0, and the operation panel 10 has a piezoelectric element E
Supported by 1 to E4. When the operation surface 11 of the operation panel 10 is pressed with a finger, the piezoelectric elements E1 to
A voltage is generated at both ends of E4, and an operation force and an operation position are detected by detecting and calculating the voltage. When an operation force larger than a predetermined threshold is detected, a high frequency is applied to the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4, whereby the operation surface 11 vibrates. The operator can obtain a reliable operation feeling by the vibration. Since the detection of the operation force on the operation surface and the application of the vibration to the operation surface 11 are performed by the common piezoelectric elements E1 to E4, the number of components is small. In addition, since it does not respond to an operation force smaller than the predetermined threshold, a tracing operation can be performed.

Description

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0001]

[0001] The present invention relates to, for example, an FA
(Factory Automation) equipment, vending machines,
The present invention relates to an information display device and an operation input device used for an automatic ticket vending machine, an automatic teller machine, a home appliance, a medical operation device, an information device, a portable information terminal, a game machine, and the like.

[0002]

2. Description of the Related Art As one of information display devices having an operation input function, a device in which a touch panel is arranged on a display is widely used. The touch panel has an advantage that it is extremely thin and has a high degree of freedom in selecting a region that can be used as a switch.

However, on the other hand, the touch panel lacks the feeling (operation feeling) that an operation input has been performed because the pressing stroke is almost zero, and even the operator actually receives the operation input on the device side. They often have anxiety about whether or not they have been taken.

[0004] In response to such circumstances, when an operation input is actually received, a visual reaction such as changing the display color of the operation portion or flashing, or an auditory sound such as generation of an electronic sound. Some measures have been taken to cause a reaction.

[0005]

However, a device utilizing a visual reaction has a problem that it is difficult to see a change in display color because it is hidden by the operator's finger. In addition, when the change of the display color is subtle, it is difficult for a visually impaired person such as a weak eye to recognize.

[0006] Further, in a device utilizing an auditory response, an electronic sound may be missed due to surrounding noise. To prevent this, the electronic sound can be increased.However, in such a case, for example, in a place where a plurality of automatic ticket vending machines are arranged, it is not possible to determine which automatic ticket vending machine emits the electronic sound. Disappears. Further, in the case of a mobile phone, for example, if the electronic sound is excessive, the surroundings may be troubled. Also, hearing impaired persons cannot hear the reaction by the electronic sound.

Although the above description has been given of the case of the device using the touch panel, these problems are not limited to the information display device using the touch panel, but also to the information display device in which the operation unit does not have a substantial pressing stroke. It is a common issue.

[0008]

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention has been made to solve the above-mentioned problems of the prior art, and can provide a reliable operation feeling even if the operation section does not have a substantial pushing stroke. The first is to provide an information display device.
The purpose of.

A second object of the present invention is to realize a simple information display device in which the number of parts near the display surface and the operation surface is reduced.

A third object of the present invention is to allow an operation method (tracing operation) for allowing a finger to reach a target operation area while sliding the finger on a display screen. In such a tracing operation, a target operation is performed. The purpose is to prevent the device from giving an erroneous reaction until the pressing operation is actually performed in the area.

Further, a fourth object of the present invention is to make the reaction from the apparatus side different depending on the place where the pressing operation is performed and the operating force, thereby providing a variety of operational feelings.

A fifth object of the present invention is to provide a device in which the area of a display surface or an operation surface is increased.

Another object of the present invention is to provide an operation input device utilizing the principle of realizing the information display device as described above.

[0014]

Basic principle of the present invention In response to the above-mentioned first object, the present invention utilizes a mechanical response such as vibration or small displacement of an operation surface as a response from an apparatus to an operation input. For example, the operation surface can be vibrated by using a piezoelectric element (that is, a piezoelectric vibrator or a piezo element) or the like, thereby giving a reliable operation feeling to the operator.

As a basic requirement of an information display device having an operation input function, it is necessary to detect an operation input on an operation surface. Therefore, an apparatus configured to generate a mechanical response such as vibration on the operation surface must have both a function of detecting an operation input and a function of generating a mechanical response.

Here, the inventor of the present invention pays attention to the fact that the piezoelectric element or the like is a functional means capable of bidirectionally converting a mechanical action and an electric signal (hereinafter, "bidirectional functional means"). . That is, in such a bidirectional function means, when an electric signal is applied, a mechanical reaction such as vibration occurs, and when a pressing force is applied to the bidirectional function means, an electric reaction such as a voltage occurs.

Therefore, the operation detecting function and the dynamic response generating function are realized by one (or one set) of bidirectional function means, by positively utilizing the characteristics of such bidirectional function means. This is the basic principle of the present invention.

That is, in the present invention, the operation input is detected by the "conversion function from mechanical pressure to voltage (or current)" among various functions of the bidirectional function means, and "voltage (or current)" is detected. A mechanical response to the operating surface is generated by the function of converting from a mechanical response to a mechanical response.

Thus, a reliable operation feeling can be provided without increasing the number of parts.

[0020]

The information display device of the present invention according to claim 1, which is constructed according to the above principle, has (a) an information display surface, and (b) a predetermined operation surface. A transparent or translucent operation unit disposed on the display surface, (c) combined with the operation unit, bidirectional function means capable of bidirectionally converting a mechanical action and an electric signal, and (d) the Operation signal extraction means for extracting an electric signal generated from the bidirectional function means by an operation force given to an operation surface as an operation signal,
(e) drive control means for transmitting an electric drive signal to the bidirectional function means in response to the operation signal.

Then, the mechanical response generated by the bidirectional function means by the drive signal is transmitted to the operation surface, and is sensed as a tactile sensation of the operator.

According to a second aspect of the present invention, in the information display device of the first aspect, the drive control means compares (e-1) the operation signal with a predetermined threshold, and the operation signal exceeds the threshold. Operation signal determining means for sending the drive signal to the bidirectional function means at times.

According to a third aspect of the present invention, in the information display device of the second aspect, the operation signal determining means changes a mode of the drive signal according to a magnitude of the operation signal.

According to a fourth aspect of the present invention, in the information display device of any one of the first to third aspects, the bidirectional function means are (c-1) spatially separated from each other, and While having a plurality of unit function means capable of bidirectionally converting a mechanical action and an electric signal, the information display device further comprises: (f) the plurality of unit function means by an operation force given to the operation unit. And a position signal generating means for generating a position signal representing an operation position on the operation surface based on a plurality of electric signals generated from the operation surface.

According to a fifth aspect of the present invention, in the information display device of the fourth aspect, as the plurality of unit function units, three or more unit function units are two-dimensionally distributed and arranged.

According to a sixth aspect of the present invention, in the information display device of the fifth aspect, the operation surface is a substantially rectangular surface, and the plurality of unit function means are disposed at substantially four corners of the substantially rectangular surface. Unit function means.

According to a seventh aspect of the present invention, in the information display device according to any one of the first to third aspects, the operation means includes: (b-1) a position signal corresponding to an operation position on the operation surface. And a touch panel that generates

The invention according to claim 8 is the information display device according to any one of claims 4 to 7, wherein the drive control means changes the threshold value for the operation signal in accordance with the position signal. .

According to a ninth aspect of the present invention, in the information display device according to any one of the fourth to seventh aspects, the drive control means changes a mode of the drive signal according to the position signal.

According to a tenth aspect of the present invention, there is provided the information display device according to any one of the second to ninth aspects, wherein (g) when the operation signal exceeds the threshold, generation of the position signal is determined by a predetermined information. Logic gate means for transmitting to the processing means is further provided.

An eleventh aspect of the present invention is the information display device according to any one of the first to tenth aspects, wherein the bidirectional function means includes a piezoelectric element.

According to the twelfth aspect of the present invention, the operation surface is housed in a portable housing having a predetermined main surface, and the operation surface is exposed to the main surface to be portable. An information display device is provided.

According to a thirteenth aspect of the present invention, there is provided the information display device according to the twelfth aspect, wherein the information display device is fixedly arranged on a surface other than the main surface of the housing, and receives an operation corresponding to display contents on the display surface. Or it further includes a plurality of operation switches.

[0034] The invention of claim 14 is the invention of claims 1 to 1
Of the three inventions, the present invention is configured by paying attention to specifying an operation position by detecting a pressing force.

That is, the information display device of the present invention has (a) an information display surface and (b) a predetermined operation surface,
A transparent or translucent operation unit disposed on the information display surface, and (c) a plurality of spatially distributed arrangements within a range coupled with the operation unit, each of which can convert a mechanical action into an electric signal. (D) operation signal extraction means for extracting electric signals generated from the plurality of unit function means by the operation force given to the operation surface as a plurality of operation signals, and (e) the plurality of operations Position signal generating means for generating a position signal representing an operation position on the operation surface based on the signal.

The invention according to claim 15 is the invention according to claims 1 to 13, which focuses on the detection of the pressing force and the mechanical reaction resulting therefrom, regardless of the presence or absence of the display surface. Have been.

That is, the operation input device according to the fifteenth aspect of the present invention provides: (a) an operation unit having a predetermined operation surface; and (b) a mechanical operation and an electric signal bidirectionally coupled to the operation unit. Convertible bidirectional function means, (c) operation signal extraction means for extracting an electric signal generated from the bidirectional function means by a pressing force applied to the operation surface as an operation signal, and (d) the operation signal Drive control means for transmitting a drive signal to the bidirectional function means in response.

Then, a mechanical response of the bidirectional function means by the drive signal is transmitted to the operation surface, and is sensed as a tactile sensation of the operator.

The sixteenth invention is obtained by adding the structure of the fourteenth invention to the fifteenth invention.
Specifically, the bidirectional function means are (b-1) a plurality of unit function means which are spatially distributed and arranged within a range coupled with the operation unit, each of which can convert a mechanical action into an electric signal. It has. Then, the operation signal is obtained as a plurality of unit operation signals generated from each of the plurality of unit function means, and (e) an operation position on the operation surface is expressed based on the plurality of unit operation signals. The operation input device further includes a position signal generating unit that generates the position signal.

[0040]

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS <1. First Embodiment><1-1. Outline of Apparatus> FIG. 1 shows an automatic cash dispenser as an example of a system incorporating an information display apparatus 100 according to a first embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the teller machine (ATM) 1. The automatic teller machine 1 includes a cash accounting unit 3 on the front of a housing 2,
And a card and passbook insertion unit 4. An information input / output unit 5 is provided, and the information display device 100 is used for the information input / output unit 5.

FIG. 2 is an external view of the information display device 100. In the example of use shown in FIG. 1, the information display device 100 is arranged with its main surface substantially upward, but in FIG. 2, the information display device 100 is shown standing up.

In FIG. 2, the information display device 100 includes a substantially box-shaped housing 101. The portion accommodated in the housing 101 includes a display operation unit DP facing the operator and a control unit on the back side. It is roughly divided into a circuit part CT.

A substantially rectangular operation surface 11 is exposed on the main surface MS of the housing 101. The operation surface 11 is transparent or translucent, and the information display surface 21
(See FIG. 3). Further, a fixed push button switch 102 can also be arranged on the main surface MS.

FIG. 3 is a partially omitted sectional view showing a portion corresponding to the display operation section DP in the section taken along the line III-III of FIG.
FIG. 4 is a perspective plan view seen from the IV direction in FIG.
In FIG. 3, the display operation unit DP houses a liquid crystal display panel 20 in a case 40 having a window 41, and a main surface of the liquid crystal display panel 20 is an information display surface 21.

As shown in FIG. 4, four piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 are arranged adjacent to the four corners of the liquid crystal display panel 20, respectively. The piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 are unit function means as elements of the bidirectional function means 30 capable of bidirectionally converting a mechanical action and an electric signal. These piezoelectric elements E1
E4 are fixed to the bottom of the case 40 of FIG. 3, and the transparent or translucent operation panel 10 is
The four corners are supported. The operation panel 10 is, for example, a glass plate, an acrylic plate, or the like, and has a substantially rectangular planar shape.

Various information can be variably displayed on the liquid crystal display panel 20. In the example of FIG. 4, a menu for automatic cash accounting at a bank is displayed. The areas R1 to R7 in which these menus are displayed are also operation areas by bank users. For example, the area R in which “deposit” is displayed
When the bank user presses the top of 1 with a finger at a predetermined force or more,
Through an operation described later, the information display device 100 detects that "deposit" has been selected, notifies the host computer of the bank to that effect, and enters a state in which cash can be accepted. In synchronization with this, the display on the information display surface 21 changes to a screen on which guidance for accepting cash and a new operation menu are displayed. The operation areas R1 to R7
Can be arbitrarily set in size and position. Further, the region R0 in FIG. 4 is the operation regions R1 to R7 on the information display surface 21.
The area which is not shown is shown.

In the apparatus of the first embodiment, a detecting means for detecting which of the operation areas R1 to R7 the bank user has pressed, and the operation panel 10 is finely vibrated according to the pressing. The piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 shown in FIG.

<1-2. Principle of Detecting Operation Position> Before describing the remaining configuration of this device, the principle of detecting which of the operation regions R1 to R7 has been pressed by using the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 will be described. Let me explain.

FIG. 5 is a model diagram for explaining this principle. FIG. 5 (a) shows an operation panel 10M having an arbitrary two-dimensional shape, and n piezoelectric panels arranged along the periphery of the operation panel 10M. Elements E1 to En are shown. FIG. 5B is an elevation view thereof. Here, the number n is an integer of 3 or more.

Further, a rectangular coordinate system XYZ is defined in which an arbitrary point is set as an origin O, and a plane parallel to the plate surface of the operation panel 10M is set as an XY plane. Then, the point P (x,
It is assumed that the operation panel 10M is pressed with the pressing force F downward at the position y). At this time, the principle of detecting (x, y) which is the XY coordinate value of the point P by the function of the piezoelectric elements E1 to En is as follows. It is obvious that the Z coordinate of the point P is on the plate surface of the operation panel 10M, and it is sufficient to know the operation position in the XY directions on the operation panel 10M. The coordinates need not be determined specifically.

First, the XY of the piezoelectric element Ek (k = 1 to n)
Assuming that the coordinates are (xk, yk), these are known values from the design. When pressure is applied to each of the piezoelectric elements E1 to En by applying a pressure due to its bidirectional conversion function, a voltage is generated at both ends of the piezoelectric elements. Thus, the force fk (k = 1 to n) applied to the piezoelectric elements E1 to En is increased. You can know. When viewed from the operation panel 10M, the forces f1 to fn become a reaction acting upward.

At this time, the operation panel 10 having its own weight W
For M, the pressing force F and the force f applied to the piezoelectric elements E1 to En
From the equilibrium of the force in the Z direction considering 1 to fn,

[0053]

## EQU1 ## F + W-Σfk = 0 holds. However, in this expression and the following expressions, the sum symbol 和 indicates the sum of 1 to n for the subscript k.

Next, from the equilibrium of the moments of the forces around the X axis and the Y axis,

[0055]

数 fk · xk + F · x + W · x0 = 0

[0056]

Σfk3yk + F ・ y + W ・ y0 = 0 holds. However, (x0, y0) is the operation panel 10M
Are the XY coordinates of the center of gravity of

By transforming equations (1) and (2),

[0058]

X = − (】 fk · xk + W · x0) / F

[0059]

## EQU5 ## y =-(kfk · yk + W · y0) / F.

[0060]

## EQU6 ## Since F = fk-W, this is substituted into Equations 4 and 5, and

[0061]

X = − (Σfk · xk + W · x0) / (Σfk−W)

[0062]

Y = − (Σfk · yk + W · y0) / (Σfk−W)

If the center of gravity of the operation panel 10M is set at the origin of the XYZ coordinate system, x0 = 0 and y0 = 0.

[0064]

X = − (Σfk · xk) / (Σfk−W)

[0065]

## EQU10 ## y =-(Σfk · yk) / (Σfk-W)

When the operation panel 10M is inclined from the horizontal plane by an angle θ (not shown),

[0067]

## EQU11 ## F + W · cos θ−Σf k = 0, and accordingly, Equations 9 and 10 become

[0068]

X = − (Σfk · xk) / (Σfk−W · COSθ)

[0069]

Y = − (Σfk · yk) / (Σfk−W · COSθ)

Equations 12 and 13 (or Equations 7 and 8;
Expressions 9 and 10) are obtained by calculating the XY of the operation point (pressing point) P from the force detection values fk (k = 1 to n) of the forces at the piezoelectric elements E1 to En.
This is a general expression for obtaining coordinates (x, y).

These general formulas are embodied as follows for the operation panel 10 of the present embodiment. That is, since n = 4 in the case of the present embodiment, the side lengths of the rectangles defining the arrangement of the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 are 2a and 2b, respectively, as shown in FIG. Taking the coordinate origin O, from Equations 12 and 13,

[0072]

X = a · {(f1 + f3)-(f2 + f4)} / (f1 +
f3 + f2 + f4-W · COSθ)

[0073]

## EQU15 ## y = b. {(F1 + f2)-(f3 + f4)} / (f1 +
f3 + f2 + f4−W · COS θ).

Here, when the information display device 100 is spatially fixed and used as in this embodiment, the own weight component W · cos θ of the operation panel 10 can be measured or calculated in advance. When used in a portable information display device as in other examples described later, the inclination angle θ changes variously. In such a case, the weight component W · cos
is not constant, but in such a case, the pressing operation position by the operator can be specified. The reasons are as follows.

First, the control unit is configured to be effective only when the sum of the detected amounts f1 to f4 of the forces by the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 is equal to or larger than a predetermined threshold. At this time, if a value much larger than the own weight W of the operation panel 10 is set as such a threshold fh, the sum (f1 + f3 + f2 + f4) of the denominator on the right side of Expressions 14 and 15 is (-W.multidot.f). CO
Sθ), which is substantially larger than the sum (f1 + f3 + f2) of the denominators on the right side of Equations 14 and 15.
+ F4) is the main part. Therefore, as an approximate expression of Expressions 14 and 15,

[0076]

X = a · {(f1 + f3) − (f2 + f4)} / (f1 +
f3 + f2 + f4)

[0077]

## EQU17 ## y = b. {(F1 + f2)-(f3 + f4)} / (f1 +
f3 + f2 + f4), the error is small.
6, Equation 17 is available.

In an information display device in which a finger is used to operate the screen, very fine precision is often not required for specifying the pressing operation position. That is, in the example of FIG. 4, it is sufficient to specify which of the operation areas R1 to R7 is operated or whether none of them is operated. Therefore, the operation pressure is determined by the weight component or other factors. Even if a slight error occurs in the detection of the position, it is sufficiently practical.
Preferably, the operation areas R1 to R7 are not densely arranged, but are arranged with a certain distance therebetween. This can prevent erroneous detection in the vicinity of the outline of the operation area.

For the reasons described above, the above-described operation principle can be applied to a portable information display device. In addition,
Even if it is not a portable type, when a value larger than the own weight W of the operation panel 10 is set as the threshold value fh of the pressing force,
There is no problem in using Equation 9, Equation 10 or Equation 16, Equation 17 as an approximate expression.

<1-3. Configuration and Operation of Control Circuit Unit CT> Next, the configuration and operation of the control circuit unit CT (FIG. 7) of the information display device 100 will be described based on the above principle. Here, an example in which the control circuit unit CT is configured by a hardware circuit is described, but the control circuit unit CT may be realized by software using a microcomputer. In that case, the following circuit portions are functionally realized by the MPU and the memory of the microcomputer.

<1-4. Pressing Force Detection by Piezoelectric Elements E1 to E4> In FIG. 7, each terminal voltage e k (k = 1 to 4) of the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 coupled to the operation panel 10 is shown.
4) is provided to the calculation unit 51 in parallel.

FIG. 8 shows the internal configuration of the arithmetic unit 51. In the signal conversion unit 51a in the calculation unit 51, the numerical relationship between the force applied to the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 and the terminal voltage is set in advance. Each of the terminal voltage e k of the piezoelectric element E1~E4, the piezoelectric elements E1 by the signal converting unit 51a
Are converted into signals Sfk expressing the force fk (k = 1 to 4) applied to .about.E4, and these signals Sfk are given in parallel to the position calculation unit 51b and the operation force detection unit 51c.

The position calculating section 51b also has a constant storage section 5
The distance constants a and b (see FIG. 6) stored in advance in 1c are also given, and the position calculation unit 51b calculates the position coordinates (x, y) of the operation point by using the aforementioned equations (16) and (17).
Is calculated. Note that instead of Equations 15 and 16, Equation 14,
When using Equation 15, the weight component (W · cos θ)
Is stored in the constant storage unit 51c, and is also used.

On the other hand, in the operating force detecting section 51d, the force fk
The sum Σfk of (k = 1 to 4) is obtained. Operation panel 10
When the weight of the vehicle is also considered, the constant storage unit 51c
The operation force F is obtained from Expression 11 in consideration of the value of (W · cos θ). If the value of the operation force F obtained by the operation force calculation unit 51d is used as the value of the denominator of the calculation (for example, Equations 16 and 17) in the position calculation unit 51b, the position calculation unit and the operation force calculation unit It is not necessary to calculate the sum で fk on both sides.

As a result, the operation section 51 outputs an operation position signal SP indicating the operation position P (x, y) and an operation force signal SF indicating the operation force F. Operation position signal SP
Has two components (x, y).

<1-5. Determination of Operation Position (Operation Area)> Returning to FIG. 7, the operation position signal SP obtained by the arithmetic section 51 is supplied to the area determination section 52. The area determination unit 52 stores the operation areas R1 to R7 in FIG.
(X) representing the vertex coordinates (see FIG. 9) of each
i-, xi +, yi-, yi +: i = 1 to 7) are input. The information of these vertex coordinates is loaded from the information processing unit 60 (FIG. 7) described later according to the display content at that time.

The area determining section 52 compares the coordinate value (x, y) of the operating point P with the vertex coordinates of the operating areas R1 to R7 obtained as described above in the comparing and determining section 52a (FIG. 10). It is determined which of the operation areas R1 to R7 and the area R0 the operation point P is in. For example, in the portion relating to the region R2 in the comparison determination section 52a,

[0088]

X2-≤x≤x2 + and y2-≤y≤
A comparison operation is performed to determine whether or not y2 + is satisfied. If Expression 18 holds, it is determined that the current operation point P is within the operation region R2.

It is also determined whether or not the coordinate value (x, y) of the operation point P is in a region (non-operation region) R0 other than the operation regions R1 to R7 on the liquid crystal display screen.

Therefore, from the comparison / determination section 52a in FIG. 10, the operation area R1 to R6 division signal S representing which of the operation areas R1 to R7 or the non-operation area R0 is indicated.
R is output. When the operator does not touch any of the operation surfaces 11, the operation position signal SP is set to the inactive level, and accordingly, the area determination signal SR is set to the inactive level. In order to distinguish the plurality of regions R1 to R0 and the inactive level, the region determination signal SR is a multi-level signal having a plurality of bits.

<1-6. Determination of Operation Force> On the other hand, in FIG. 7, the operation force signal SF indicating the operation force F
Given to. A plurality of thresholds Fh1 to Fh4 that define the operation force divisions F0 to F4 in FIG. 11 are input from the operation force division storage unit 55 to the operation force determination unit 54. These thresholds F
The information of h1 to Fh4 is also loaded from the information processing unit 60 described later according to the display content at that time. Further, in this example, four operation force sections F0 to F4 are defined, but the number of force sections can be changed according to the display content at that time.

Further, the area judgment signal SR from the area judgment section 52 is also input to the area division storage section 55. Then, an area to which the operation position P at that time belongs (hereinafter, referred to as an area).
The threshold value Fh1 is determined according to the “operating region R”).
To Fh4 can be changed. Therefore, for example, the values of the thresholds Fh1 to Fh4 can be reduced for the operation regions R1 to R6, and the values of the thresholds Fh1 to Fh4 can be increased for the operation region R7. These correspondences are shown in FIG.
Are stored in a table format in advance in the information processing unit 60, and a specific method of changing these thresholds will be described later.

However, in any case, the threshold values Fh1 to Fh
The minimum threshold Fh1 of h4 is a threshold for not deeming a pressing with an operating force F smaller than a menu selecting operation, and enables a tracing operation. That is, when the finger is simply moved on the operation surface 11 in the case of the tracing operation, almost no operation force is applied. Therefore, the operation force during the tracing can be prevented by discriminating the operation force by the minimum threshold value Fh1. is there. Since the minimum threshold value Fh1 has such a meaning, it is preferable to set the minimum threshold value Fh1 to a constant value irrespective of an operation area and display contents.

When the four operation force divisions F1 to F4 in the range equal to or more than the minimum threshold value Fh1 are referred to as "effective operation force divisions", the operation force judgment unit 54 operates the comparison judgment unit 54a (FIG. 12). The operation force F at that time indicated by the force signal SF is compared with the operation force thresholds Fh1 to Fh4, respectively, and it is determined which of the effective operation force categories F1 to F4 the operation force F at that time is in. . For example,

[0095]

If Fh1 ≦ F <Fh2, it is determined that the pressing is performed in the effective operating force section F1, and

[0096]

If Fh4 ≦ F, it is determined that the pressing is performed in the effective operating force section F4.

When the operating force F is not in any of the operating force categories F1 to F4, in other words,

[0098]

## EQU21 ## When F <Fh1, it is determined that the pressing operation is performed in the operation force section F0 ("there is no substantial pressing operation").

For the effective operating force divisions F1 to F4, a signal is generated which activates when the operating force F at that time belongs to those divisions. Effective operating force category F
When signals from any of 1 to F4 are inactive, it means that the operating force F is smaller than the minimum threshold Fh1.

Each signal from the determination section 54a of these effective operation force divisions F1 to F4 is applied to an OR circuit 54b, and an operation effective signal FC is generated as an OR signal of the signals. Therefore, when the operation force F at that time is equal to or greater than the minimum determination threshold value Fh1 and it is determined that the operator is substantially pressing the operation surface 11, the operation valid signal FC is activated. Will do. Conversely, when the operator does not press the operation surface 11 at all,
When the operation surface 11 is touched but the final selection operation has not been performed yet (such as during a tracing operation), the operation valid signal FC remains at the inactive level.

The signals from the determination units for the effective operation force categories F1 to F4 are output to the drive mode selection unit 72 in FIG. 7 as the operation force determination signal FB. This is because the operating surface 1 by the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 depends on which section the operating force F is in.
It is used as information for selecting one drive mode.

By the way, as shown in FIG. 7, the area determination signal SR from the area determination section 52 is
5 has been entered. This is because the values of the thresholds Fh1 to Fh4 can be changed according to the region R during operation as described above. Specifically, a plurality of sets of thresholds Fh1 to Fh4 are input from the information processing unit 60 to the operating force division storage 55 and stored in accordance with the screen displayed at that time, and one of the sets is set. A threshold value is selected according to the region division signal R.
Therefore, when the threshold value of the operating force F is changed for each of the operating regions R (or the operating position at that time), the operating force determination by the operating force determining unit 54 is performed by the region determining unit 52.
Is performed after the region determination signal SR is generated. This can be achieved, for example, by delaying the operation timing of the comparison / determination unit 54a in FIG. 12 by a minute time from the operation time of the region determination unit 52, or by inserting a delay circuit before the comparison / determination unit 54a. .

<1-7. Gate of Region Determination Signal R> In FIG. 7, the region determination signal S output from the region determination section 52 is shown.
R is output to the information processing unit 60, the gate circuit 56, and the AND circuit 57. The operation valid signal FC is also input to the AND circuit 57.

The logical product circuit 57 calculates the logical product of the area determination signal SR and the operation valid signal FC, and supplies the value of the logical product to the gate circuit 56 as the gate control signal G. The gate circuit 56 allows the region determination signal SR to pass only when the gate control signal G is active, that is, only when any part of the operation surface 11 is operated with a force greater than the minimum threshold Fh1.

The area determination signal SR that has passed through the gate circuit 56 is input to the first processing section 61 in the information processing section 60. The first processing unit 61 generates information control and control signals to each unit of the apparatus according to the menu item selected and operated by the operator by the area determination signal SR,
External equipment as needed (eg host computer)
Tell that. For example, when the “drawer” corresponding to the region R2 in FIG. 3 is selected, the liquid crystal display panel 20 is driven via the display driver 71 to switch to the input operation screen for the withdrawal amount.

On the other hand, the region determination signal SR input to the information processing unit 60 bypassing the gate circuit 56 is
Is input to the second processing unit 62. This second processing unit 62
In this case, even if the operator has not yet performed a substantial pressing operation with a force equal to or greater than the minimum threshold value Fh1, a predetermined process is performed when the operator's finger touches any area of the operation surface 11 with a certain force. I do. For example, by changing the display color of the area touched by the finger at that time, it is possible to inform the operator of "in which area, if pressed at that position, the operation is considered." Also, an audio guidance such as “There is a 'drawer'” may be provided.

<1-8. Driving Mode Selection> On the other hand, the vibration mode selection unit 72 of FIG. 7 which has received the region determination signal SR and the operation force determination signal FB has a function corresponding to the division of the operating region and the operation force F. Select the drive mode. This drive mode defines how the operation surface 11 is vibrated.

More specifically, as shown in FIG. 13, which of the regions R1 to R0 the region determination signal SR belongs to is used as a first index, and the section represented by the operation force determination signal FB is the operation force Which drive mode should be selected for the combination of the first and second indices is stored in advance in the table 72a, with which of the categories F1 to F4 as the second index. Symbols S11, S12,... In FIG. 13 are codes for selecting and specifying any of various drive modes as shown in FIG.

FIG. 14 schematically shows various drive modes stored in the drive mode storage section 73.
For example, FIG. 14A illustrates a mode in which continuous vibration is performed with a small amplitude, and FIG. 14B illustrates a vibration mode with a large amplitude. FIG. 14C shows a vibration mode having a different frequency from FIGS. 14A and 14B, and FIGS. 14D and 14E perform single-time vibration once or twice, respectively. An example is shown. Further FIG.
4 (f) is a vibration mode in which only one vibration (one-shot pulse) is given. Examples of other modes will be described later.

These drive modes can be identified by predetermined parameter codes. In the example of FIG. 14D, the vibration frequency VF, the vibration amplitude VD, the vibration duration VT, and the like are the parameters.

Returning to FIG. 13, by changing the storage contents of the table 72a, a variation can be given to the driving of the operation surface 11. For example, the operation area R1
When it is desired to apply a weak vibration to R6, FIG.
The codes in the range of S11 to S64 may be determined so as to specify the vibration mode of. Further, when it is desired to increase the vibration intensity as the operation force F increases, the operation force category F in FIG.
In F1 and F2, the vibration mode of FIG.
In F4, the vibration modes shown in FIG. Codes S01 to S04 for non-operation area R0
It is preferable to designate "no drive", but a weak vibration may be given.

When one drive mode is selected by the area determination signal SR and the operation force determination signal FB in this way, the parameter values defining the drive mode are changed as shown in FIG.
And is supplied to the piezoelectric element driving unit 75 in FIG. Accordingly, the piezoelectric elements E1 ~
When a vibration voltage is applied to E4, the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 vibrate or minutely deform, and the vibration or minute displacement propagates to the operation surface 11. This is because the operator operates the operation area R1.
When any one of R7 to R7 is pressed with a predetermined force or more, the operation surface 11 is vibrated or slightly slid to produce an effect of notifying the operator tactilely that the operation has been accepted.

By the way, in the table 72a of FIG.
There is no column specifying the drive mode when the operation force F is equal to or less than the minimum threshold Fh1. This is because in such a case, the operation surface 11 is not driven, and therefore, there is no need to select a drive mode.

With such a configuration, the operation force determination signal F
When B is active, the parameter signal V of the drive mode specified at the corresponding location in the table 72a is output to the piezoelectric element drive unit 75 in FIG.
When B is inactive, no drive mode information is output to the piezoelectric element drive unit 75. Therefore, only when the operation force F equal to or more than the minimum threshold Fh1 is applied to the operation surface 11, the operation surface 11 vibrates or slightly displaces.

When "no vibration" is set for the non-operation area R0 regardless of the magnitude of the operation force F, even if an operation force F equal to or more than the minimum threshold Fh1 is applied to the operation surface 11, the non-operation area R0 is not affected. If it is R0, no vibration occurs.

Further, in the examples of FIGS. 13 and 14, various vibration modes and selection rules therefrom are prepared in a table format. However, the operation region determination signal SR and the operation force determination signal FB are provided by two input variables. This selection rule may be stored as a function that has been described.

By the way, in these drive mode selection operations, another configuration can be adopted to drive the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 only when the operation force F equal to or more than the minimum threshold value Fh1 is applied to the operation surface 11. That is, FIG. 7 and FIG.
As indicated by a broken line 74 in FIG. 3, an AND signal G output from the AND circuit 57 is input as a gate control signal to a gate circuit 72b additionally provided in the drive mode selection unit 72 in FIG. The gate circuit 72b is connected to the table 7
The transmission of the selected output from 2a to the drive mode storage unit 73 or the transmission of the drive mode parameter signal V to the drive mode storage unit 73 is controlled. That is, if the operating force F is smaller than the minimum threshold value Fh1, the AND signal G is always inactive, so that the transmission of the drive mode can be prohibited using this signal. Such a deformation occurs when the table 72
a is defined only for the area determination signal SR, and is particularly effective when the apparatus is configured so as not to change the drive mode depending on the magnitude of the operation force F.

That is, in such a case, the operating force F
Is only a matter of whether or not it is greater than the minimum threshold Fh1, and it is not necessary to determine to which operating force section F1 to F4 it belongs in a range beyond that. Therefore, it is not necessary for the operation force determination unit 54 of FIG. 7 to generate the operation force determination signal FB.
The transmission of the operation force determination signal FB to the controller can also be omitted. Therefore, in such a case, in order to allow the generation of the vibration of the operation surface 11 only when the operation force F is larger than the minimum threshold value Fh1, an additional gate circuit 72b is used and the AND circuit 5 is used.
The benefit of using the logical product signal G, which is the output of 7, is increased.

Further, it is preferable that the table 72a of FIG. 13 be rewritten for each screen displayed on the liquid crystal display panel 20. That is, when the content displayed on the liquid crystal display panel 20 is switched, the drive mode to be selected is changed for each operation area in the new display content and for each operation force section to which the operation force F belongs. In addition, various drive modes of the operation surface 11 can be used in various ways. For example, when the menu item “withdraw” is selected and changed to a withdrawal amount input screen, the operation area is an area imitating a numeric keypad. The one-shot displacement as described above may be given. In the case of such a one-shot displacement, a so-called click feeling can be given to the operator.

As described above, the table rewriting information is input from the information processing section 60 to the drive mode selecting section 72 in order to rewrite the contents of the table 72a each time the screen is switched. That is, the liquid crystal display panel 2
In synchronization with the change of the screen displayed at 0, the information processing unit 60 of FIG. 7 sends the coordinate values defining the new operation area to the operation area division storage unit 53 to the operation force division storage unit 55. A set of thresholds that define the new operating force category; and
Drive mode selection table 72 to drive mode selection section 72
The new contents of b will be loaded.

<1-9. Drive Control> In FIG. 7, the drive mode parameter signal V output from the drive mode selector 72 is given to the piezoelectric element drive 75. The piezoelectric element driving section 75 has a high-frequency oscillation circuit 76, and transmits high-frequency waves in a mode specified by the parameter signal V to the piezoelectric elements E1 to
Send to E4. Thereby, the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4
Vibrates or slightly displaces at a specified amplitude and timing.

This mechanical response is transmitted to the operation panel 10 shown in FIG. 3, whereby the operation surface 11 is vibrated or slightly displaced. Then, this vibration is perceived by the operator in contact with the operation surface 11, and the operator recognizes that his / her own operation input has been normally received.

Incidentally, in FIG. 7, the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4
Is connected to both the arithmetic unit 51 and the piezoelectric element driving unit 75 by predetermined wiring. Therefore, the piezoelectric element driving unit 75
When the high frequency is output from the, the high frequency is also transmitted to the arithmetic unit 51. In order to separate the high frequency from the voltage generated by the operation force applied to the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4, for example, a low-pass filter can be provided in the signal converter 51a of FIG. By doing so, the high frequency of the vibration is cut by this low-pass filter, and only the DC component due to the operating force can be extracted and used for calculating the operating position P and the operating force F. Further, by setting the minimum threshold value Fh1 of the operation force F larger than the amplitude of the drive signal of the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4, it is possible to prevent such signal interference.

In the case of the information display in which the screen is switched in response to the operation input of the operator, the operation panel 10 is vibrated for a predetermined time and then stopped.
This is because the information processing unit 60 shown in FIG.
This can be achieved by forcing the parameter signal V of the drive mode to the inactive level using the signal transmission path to the drive mode 4. The operation unit 51 and the piezoelectric element driving unit 75
May be integrated to temporally switch between taking in signals from the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 and sending high frequency to the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 using a switching circuit. further,
A short-time vibration mode as shown in FIGS. 14D and 14E may be selected.

In the case of the vibration mode as shown in FIGS. 14A to 14C, the vibration continues as long as the operator applies the operation force F larger than the minimum threshold Fh1. When the operator weakens the operation force F or removes the finger from the operation surface 11, the operation force is detected by the operation force determination unit 54, and the operation force determination signal FB to the drive mode selection unit 72 is deactivated. As a result, the drive mode parameter signal V becomes the inactive level, and the vibration of the operation surface 11 stops.

<1-10. Main Advantages of Information Display Device 100>
As described above, in the information display device 100 of this embodiment, the piezoelectric elements E1 to
Since E4 is also used to detect the region selected by the operator, it is not necessary to prepare a large number of elements separately for these.

Therefore, it is possible to give an effective operation feeling while specifying which operation area has been operated without increasing the number of components near the operation surface 11 and the information display surface 21.

Since this operation feeling utilizes the sense of touch, a clear operation feeling can be obtained even when the surrounding noise is loud or the surroundings are dark. Further, it can be perceived not only by a hearing-impaired person but also by a person with a visual impairment such as amblyopia.

Further, the operation force F smaller than the minimum threshold value Fh1
Is not considered as an effective operation, so that a tracing operation or the like can be performed.

Further, since the drive mode applied to the operation surface 11 can be changed according to the difference in the operation force and the operation area, various operational feelings can be given to the operator.

Further, since the minimum threshold value Fh1 of the operating force F can be changed, an operation area that should be carefully selected (for example, an operation area for calling a clerk or an emergency call) is smaller than other operation areas. By setting the threshold value Fh1 to be relatively large, confusion due to erroneous selection can be prevented.

<2. Second Embodiment> FIG. 15 is a partially omitted sectional view showing a portion corresponding to a display operation section DP of an information display device according to a second embodiment of the present invention. Used as a replacement. An example of use and appearance of the information in the second embodiment are the same as those in FIGS. 1 and 2.

In FIG. 15, the display operation section DP of the second embodiment specifies the operation position by the operator using the touch panel 10T. This touch panel 10T is, for example, of a resistive film type, and has transparent electrodes arranged on a transparent substrate in a matrix of M rows and N columns in an XY plane. Each of those intersections is a switch part,
An operation position signal in the XY directions is output for each cell of the matrix.

The touch panel 10T is not limited to a resistive type, and (1) a photoelectric type that detects or attenuates the incidence of data light from a light emitting element to a light receiving element with a finger or the like to detect its operation position. Touch panel, (2) Ultrasonic touch panel that detects or attenuates the ultrasonic wave emitted from the ultrasonic oscillation element to enter the vibration receiving element with a finger or the like, and detects the operation position, (3) Due to the change in capacitance A capacitive touch panel that detects a position touched by a finger or the like may be used.

[0135] The touch panel support plate 42 is
This is for reinforcing 0T, and may be an opaque member when a portion corresponding to the touch panel 10T is hollowed out to have a frame shape as in the illustrated example. In the case of forming a flat plate instead of a frame shape, it is preferable to form a transparent or translucent member. If the touch panel 10T has such a strength that the touch panel 10T does not deform even by the pressing operation, the touch panel support plate 42 may not be provided.

The remaining configuration of the display operation unit DP of FIG. 15 is the same as that of FIG.
The touch panel 10T detects the operation position, and the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 are used for the purpose of detecting the operation force applied to the operation surface 11 and for mechanically driving the operation surface 11.

FIG. 16 is a block diagram of the control circuit section CT when the display operation section DP of FIG. 15 is used, and is described as a hardware circuit as in FIG. It can also be achieved. Many elements of the control circuit unit CT of FIG. 16 have the same configuration and functions as those of FIG. 7, and the following description will be made by comparing FIG. 16 with FIG.
A description will be given of different parts.

In FIG. 16, the operation position of touch panel 10T is specified by operation position specifying section 51T. However,
Since the touch panel 10T has a matrix arrangement of M rows and N columns, the operation position signal SP indicating the operation position is a value in units of the size of each cell of the touch panel 10T.

The operation position signal SP is applied to the operation areas R1 to R7.
Is determined by the area determination unit 52, and the configuration and operation of the area determination unit 52 are basically the same as those in FIG.

On the other hand, the respective terminal voltages e k (k = 1 to 4) of the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 are given in parallel to the calculating section 51F. This calculating section 51F is different from the position calculating section 51b in FIG. Is equivalent to omitting. That is, the operation position in the second embodiment is specified by the touch panel 10.
Since this is performed using T, only the total operating force F needs to be calculated from the output voltages of the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4.

The operation force signal SF output from the calculation unit 51F
Is output to the operation force determination unit 54 to determine which of the operation force categories F0 to F4 (FIG. 11) the operation force F belongs to.

The subsequent configuration and operation are the same as in the first embodiment. In the second embodiment, in addition to the advantages of the device of the first embodiment, there is an advantage that errors in detecting the operation position are particularly small. That is, the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4
When the operation position is specified by the terminal voltage e k (k = 1 to 4), there is an influence of the own weight of the operation panel 10 as described above. When each of the operation regions R1 to R7 is relatively large, this error hardly causes a problem. However, when it is desired to particularly reduce the area of each of the operation regions, more accurate operation position detection is required. In such a case, as in the second embodiment, the touch panel 10T
It is preferred to use

When the touch panel 10T is used,
Since the position calculation from the terminal voltage e k (k = 1 to 4) becomes unnecessary, there is an advantage that the operation region can be specified at high speed.

<3. Third Embodiment> FIG. 17 is an external perspective view of an information display device 200 according to a third embodiment of the present invention, and FIG. 18 is a front view thereof. The information display device 200 is a liquid crystal display game machine as an example of a portable information display device. The operation surface 11 of the information display device 200 is exposed on the main surface MS of the box-shaped housing 201. This operation surface corresponds to the surface of operation panel 10 in FIG. 3 or touch panel 10T in FIG. The display operation unit and the control circuit unit at the back of the operation surface 11 are configured similarly to the display operation unit DP of the first or second embodiment.

On the operation surface 11 of FIG. 17, the operation areas R1 to R4 displayed on the liquid crystal display panel are seen through. These operation areas R1 to R4 are typically displayed along both sides. The operator holds both sides of the housing 201 in FIG.
As shown by a broken line, the user holds the camera with both hands and presses these operation areas R1 to R4 with his thumb to perform an operation. The position of this pressing operation is detected, and if the pressing force is larger than a predetermined threshold value, the operation input is received, the display object 210 (FIG. 18) on the screen changes, and the operation surface 1 is changed.
1 is vibrated or slightly displaced in a predetermined mode. The operation around this is the same as in the first and second embodiments.

On the other hand, in the information display device 200, a fixed operation button 203 is provided on a side surface of the housing 201. 19, fixed operation buttons 221 and 222 and a cross operation button 223 are also arranged on the back surface 220 of the housing 201, avoiding the battery case cover 224. These fixed buttons 20
3,221 to 223 are, for example, start / end of a game,
It can be assigned to switching of display contents of the screen, movement and operation of objects in the screen, and the like. Typically,
These fixed buttons 203, 221 to 223 are operated by fingers other than the thumb among the fingers holding the housing 201.

In this type of conventional device, the liquid crystal display screen has a function of displaying only, and the fixed button is provided on the main surface MS.
, The area of the liquid crystal display surface has been reduced. However, the information display device 20 of this embodiment
In the case of 0, since the operation input can be performed on the operation surface 11 on the liquid crystal display screen, a large area of the main surface MS can be used as the display operation surface by moving the fixing button to a surface other than the main surface of the housing 201.

Further, in the conventional apparatus, only the fixed button is provided. However, in the apparatus of this embodiment, since the display contents and positions of the operation areas R1 to R4 are variable,
Various operation inputs can be performed according to various situations.

It should be noted that, as shown in FIG.
A power switch 202 is provided on the ceiling surface of No. 1 and such a power switch 202 and an audio volume adjustment dial are arranged on a surface other than the main surface MS in a conventional apparatus. However, the fixed button 20 in the device of this embodiment
3, 221 to 223 are operation switches for receiving an operation corresponding to the display content of the information display surface, and are different from the power switch and the audio volume adjustment dial in properties. In the case of a game machine, these fixed buttons 203, 221-223 are buttons related to the game content.

When the present invention is applied to such a game machine or a portable information display terminal (a so-called mobile device), the vibration of the operation surface 11 not only gives an operational feeling but also enhances the realism of a game or the like. You can also. That is, the operation surface 11 can be vibrated in accordance with the movement of a display object (for example, a character) on the screen, or the operation surface 11 can be vibrated in synchronization with voice.

If the phases of the high-frequency waves applied to the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 are different, it is possible to apply vibration such as a traveling wave traveling from one end of the operation surface 11 to the other end. Interest in games and the like will further increase.

<4. Other Embodiments> FIG. 20 is a diagram showing another example usable as an information display device of the present invention.
The information display surface 21 and a part of the operation surface 11 overlaid thereon are shown. In this example, the volume control knob of the audio device is displayed on the LCD panel,
It is configured to operate it with the operator's finger.
Specifically, slide type volume knobs 3 for each range
01 is displayed, and the finger 303 is moved in the “H” or “L” direction along the volume adjustment line 302 while applying the pressing force by placing the finger 303 thereon, and the display of the volume knob 301 is displayed. The actual volume changes while moving. At the same time, the operation surface 11 is vibrated to inform the operator that the operation is being performed.

The vibration amplitude changes according to the position of the volume knob 301 which is being operated at that time. For example, a small amplitude when its volume knob 301 is in the interval Y L, a medium amplitude when in the interval Y M, to vibrate the operation surface 11 with a large amplitude when it is in the interval Y H. Thereby, the operator can obtain a tactile sensation according to the current volume. Further, the amplitude can be continuously increased according to the Y coordinate of the volume knob 301.

FIG. 22 shows a specific configuration example for realizing such a function. FIG. 22 shows a partially modified part of FIG. 7 of the first embodiment or FIG. 16 of the second embodiment, and the information processing unit 60 displays a volume knob 301 being operated at that time. Y coordinate interval Y L in, Y M, and Y data y D indicating one of whether belongs H come is transmitted to the drive mode selector 72.
Table 72a of the drive mode selection section 72, are stored in a table format relationship as to select the drive mode according to the Y coordinate identification value y D, Y coordinate identification value y
If D is large, the vibration mode with a large amplitude is selected from the drive mode storage unit 73, and if D is small, the vibration mode with a small amplitude is selected. The drive mode storage 73 has a large amplitude,
Each vibration mode of medium amplitude and small amplitude is stored.

[0155] Also, when you want continuously varying the amplitude gives the value itself of the Y coordinates in the display for the volume knob 301 on the drive mode selection section 72 as the Y-coordinate identification information y D, the Y-coordinate identification information y D May be used to determine the vibration amplitude.

In any case, a knob operation full of a sense of reality can be realized.

FIG. 21 is a diagram showing an example of use similar to that of FIG. In the example of FIG. 21, the finger 303 has a low-volume side push button display 304L and a high-volume side push button display 304L.
H can be pressed. For example, when the push button display 304H on the high volume side is pressed, the slide display 305 moves along the volume adjustment line 302 to increase the volume, and the vibration amplitude of the operation surface 11 also increases. In this case, as the information y D in FIG. 22, per volume knob 303 during operation at that time, the Y coordinate or itself slide display 301, or the Y coordinate interval Y L, Y M, and Y H Is used to indicate to which of the above.

Other configurations and operations are the same as those of the devices of the first and second embodiments.

<5. Modifications><5-1. Bi-directional function means> The bi-directional function means used in the present invention or a unit function means as a component thereof includes a piezoelectric element, an electromagnetic solenoid, and a plunger. Various things such as combinations, combinations of electromagnets and permanent magnets, and the like can be used. Among these, in the case of using an electromagnetic action like the above, the pressing force on the operation surface causes a change in the magnetic flux distribution and induces a voltage between the terminals of the coil. Then, by amplifying the voltage, the magnitude of the pressing force can be determined. In other words, they utilize the fact that they have the functions of both the displacement sensor and the electromagnetic driving means.

When a piezoelectric element is used, a piezoelectric film or the like may be used in addition to a ceramic piezoelectric element. FIG. 23 is a partial view showing an example in which the piezoelectric film 310 is used. In this example, the piezoelectric films 310 are arranged below four corners of the operation panel 10 or the touch panel 10T, and these piezoelectric films 310 are supported by an elastic body 311 such as a spring or rubber. The screen is displayed on the operation panel 10 or the touch panel 1 as in each of the above-described embodiments.
This is performed by a liquid crystal display panel (not shown) arranged below 0T. When the operator presses a desired portion of the operation panel 10 or the touch panel 10T, the elastic body 311 contracts in accordance with the pressing force and the pressing position, and a voltage is generated on each of the front and back sides of the piezoelectric film 310. Thus, the pressing force and the pressing position can be detected.

<5-2. Extension to Operation Input Device> FIG. 24 is a cross-sectional view showing a switch as an example of an operation input device which realizes the basic principle of the present invention most simply. In this switch, a piezoelectric element ES is arranged at the bottom of the case 321.
A name plate 322 and a transparent or translucent operation plate 32 are further placed thereon.
3 are arranged. The upper surface of the operation plate 323 is the operation surface 324
Becomes

A wiring 327 extends from the piezoelectric element ES, and the wiring 327 is connected to the pressing detection unit 325 and the driving unit 326.
And connected to. The pressure detection unit 325 is a piezoelectric element ES
Of the operation surface 234 by the operator is detected by detecting the terminal voltage through the low-pass filter or the like. When the terminal voltage of the piezoelectric element ES is higher than a predetermined threshold value, the pressing detecting section 325 sends a switching signal to an external device and also sends a detection command signal to the piezoelectric element driving section 326, whereby the piezoelectric element driving section 326 Generates a high frequency having a predetermined vibration pattern and sends it to the piezoelectric element ES to vibrate the piezoelectric element ES. As a result, the operation surface 324 vibrates via the name plate 322, and gives the operator a tactile sensation indicating that the operation input has been accepted.

As described above, according to the principle of the present invention, even for a switch having no variable display surface, there is no need to prepare another means for detecting a pressing operation and applying vibration to the operation surface. It can be realized with only one piezoelectric element ES or one set of piezoelectric elements.

The name plate 322 in the switch shown in FIG. 24 may not be provided. In this case, the display may be fixed on the surface of the operation plate 324 itself, or may be displayed outside the switch. That is, the present invention can be extended to an operation input device having no display surface.

<6. Other Modifications> In addition to the configurations described as the embodiments and the modifications of the present invention, the following modifications are possible.

When the operation position of the operation panel is detected by a plurality of unit function means (such as piezoelectric elements) as in the first embodiment, it is preferable that three or more unit function means are two-dimensionally dispersed. This is because an operation position in a two-dimensional plane can be accurately specified by detecting the pressing force at three or more points.

On the other hand, if the operation area is only used one-dimensionally, the piezoelectric element is disposed on each of the two opposing sides, so that the operation position can be one-dimensionally arranged. Can be specified. Therefore, the unit function means is typically arranged at three or more points, preferably at four or more positions in a rectangular operation panel. However, the unit function means may be arranged in accordance with the shape of the operation panel or the like and the mode of use. The number can be increased or decreased.

As a mode for giving a dynamic response to the operation surface, the operation panel is slid horizontally by one shot.
The operation panel is suddenly slid horizontally to hold the operation surface 11 while the operation panel 11 is pressed, the operation panel is lowered by one shot, and the operation panel 11 is held down while the operation panel 11 is suddenly lowered and the operation surface 11 is pressed. The operation panel is raised by one shot (equivalent to FIG. 14 (f)), and while the operation panel is suddenly raised and the operation surface 11 is pressed, this is held.
These can be stored in the drive mode storage unit 73 in FIG.

Among these, it is only necessary to generate a pulse-like drive signal, but since is a DC drive signal, the terminal voltage generated on the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4 when the operation surface 11 is pressed. In detecting ek (direct current), it is necessary to prevent a drive signal from being picked up. Among above, since the displacement direction of the piezoelectric element is different from the displacement due to the operating force direction (downward from the operating surface) in the case of the wiring supplies a drive signal and a terminal position to take out the terminal position and the signal e k while in different locations If a different one is used, the drive signal for the piezoelectric element and the terminal voltage due to the operation force can be separated from each other.

In this case, since the voltage based on the driving signal and the terminal voltage based on the operating force appear in the same portion of the piezoelectric element, they need to be distinguished from each other. This can be solved by, for example, setting the minimum threshold value Fh1 for the operating force to be larger than the value of the DC drive voltage.

In the present invention, another member may be interposed between the operation panel 10 or the touch panel 10T and the piezoelectric elements E1 to E4. That is, it does not matter whether the connection between the operation unit and the bidirectional conversion function unit is direct or indirect.

The variable information display means is not limited to a liquid crystal display panel, but may be an EL (electroluminescent) display, a plasma display, a thin CRT, an LED array, a combination of a liquid crystal shutter and a luminous body or reflector illuminating the same, Etc. can also be used.

When the fixed display means is used, paper or a sheet may be attached instead of the nameplate.

In the case where the present invention is embodied as an operation input device having no information display surface, a plurality of unit function means are two-dimensionally dispersed as in the first embodiment, and based on each output from them. A function for detecting the operation position may be provided. Such an operation input device can be used, for example, as a sliding pad which is a kind of pointing device of a portable personal computer (so-called notebook personal computer). In such a case, the movement of the finger on the operation surface can be visually recognized as the movement of a cursor on a screen such as a liquid crystal display of a personal computer. Therefore, the operation input device itself does not need to have a display function.

In such a case, a plurality of operating force thresholds are set, and if the operating force is within the range from the minimum threshold to the maximum threshold, the operation force is captured as a cursor movement command. In that case, it can be taken as the same operation as a mouse click. By doing so, there is no need to separately provide a click button on the main body of the notebook computer, and even when a separate click button is provided, the click operation can be easily performed only with the sliding pad. .

Further, as the functional means when the present invention is used only for detecting the presence or absence of an operation, and as the unit functional means when applied only to the detection of the operation position, a conductive rubber or a load cell can be used. It is.

[0177]

As described above, according to the first to twelfth aspects of the present invention, the operation surface can be improved by utilizing the bidirectional function means capable of bidirectionally converting a mechanical action and an electric signal. In addition to detecting the operation force exerted on the bidirectional function means in response to the operation signal, the operation surface dynamically operates to give the operator a sense of operation.

For this reason, a reliable operation feeling can be given even if the operating means does not have a substantial pushing stroke. Since this operation feeling is tactile and does not use sight or hearing, it can be perceived even when there is noise around or when the surroundings are dark. Even visually impaired and hearing impaired persons can clearly perceive the dynamic response of the operation surface.

Further, since the detection of the operation force and the mechanical action of the operation surface can be realized by one means, a simple information display device in which the number of parts near the information display surface and the operation surface is reduced is obtained.

According to the second aspect of the present invention, when the operation signal exceeds the predetermined threshold value, the drive signal is given to the bidirectional function means. Therefore, the drive signal is not generated only by a small pressing force. The tracing operation can be performed, and the apparatus does not respond erroneously until the pressing operation is actually performed in the target operation area.

According to the third aspect of the present invention, the mode of the drive signal is changed according to the magnitude of the operation signal, so that the operation feeling can be varied.

According to the fourth aspect of the present invention, it is possible to generate a position signal representing an operation position on the operation surface by a plurality of unit function units constituting the bidirectional function unit.
It is not necessary to add another means for specifying the operation position on the operation surface.

According to the fifth aspect of the present invention, an operation position on a planar operation surface can be detected by three or more unit function means.

In particular, according to the invention of claim 6, it is possible to detect an operation position on the operation surface using a rectangular operation surface having a wide use range.

According to the invention of claim 7, since the operation position is specified by the touch panel, the operation position specification accuracy is high and the time required for position specification is short.

According to the eighth aspect of the invention, since the threshold value of the operation force is changed depending on the operation position, the sensitivity can be changed in accordance with the position where the pressing operation is performed, and the operation feeling can be varied. it can.

According to the ninth aspect of the present invention, since the mode of the drive signal is changed depending on the operation position, the operation feeling can also be varied.

According to the tenth aspect, when the operating force exceeds the predetermined threshold value, the position signal is made substantially effective, so that an erroneous input is not made by the tracing operation.

According to the eleventh aspect of the present invention, since the functional means for detecting the operation force and giving a mechanical action to the operation surface is constituted by the piezoelectric element, the device can be easily miniaturized, and the operation force can be precisely controlled. Detection becomes possible.

According to the twelfth aspect of the present invention, since the information display device is housed in a housing and is portable,
A sufficient operational feeling can be given while effectively using the information display surface.

According to the thirteenth aspect of the present invention, in the portable information display device, one or a plurality of operation switches for receiving an operation corresponding to the display contents of the information display surface are provided on a surface other than the main surface of the housing. Many parts of the main surface of the housing can be used for the information display surface and the operation surface overlapping therewith.

Since the operation input can be performed on the operation surface, various operation inputs can be performed together with operation switches other than the main surface while effectively using the main surface of the housing.

According to the fourteenth aspect, since the operation position is specified by the output signals of the plurality of unit function means, the operation position can be specified without using the touch panel. The touch panel may malfunction due to dirt on the surface, but in the present invention, since the pressing force is converted into an electric signal, such a malfunction is less likely to occur.

According to the fifteenth aspect of the present invention, the operation input device is constructed by extending the basic principle of the above-mentioned invention, and a reliable operation feeling can be obtained without a stroke and the number of parts is small. It has become.

Further, the invention of claim 16 is the invention of claim 14
The present invention has the advantages of the invention of claim 15 and the advantages of the invention of claim 15.

[Brief description of the drawings]

FIG. 1 is an information display device 100 according to a first embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a diagram illustrating an example of a system in which is incorporated.

FIG. 2 is an external view of the information display device 100 of FIG.

FIG. 3 is a partially omitted cross-sectional view showing a portion corresponding to a display operation unit DP in the cross section taken along the line III-III of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a perspective plan view seen from a direction IV in FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a general model diagram for explaining a principle of detecting a pressed operation region using a piezoelectric element.

FIG. 6 is a model diagram for describing a principle of detecting a pressed operation area using a piezoelectric element in the first embodiment.

FIG. 7 is a block diagram of a control circuit unit CT according to the first embodiment.

FIG. 8 is an internal block diagram of a calculation unit 51.

FIG. 9 is an explanatory diagram of vertex coordinates of an operation area.

FIG. 10 is an internal block diagram of a comparison / determination unit 52a.

FIG. 11 is an explanatory diagram of operation force divisions F0 to F4.

FIG. 12 is an internal block diagram of the operation force determination unit 54.

FIG. 13 is an internal block diagram of a drive mode selection unit 72.

14 is a diagram schematically showing various vibration modes stored in a drive mode storage unit 73. FIG.

FIG. 15 is a partially omitted cross-sectional view showing a portion corresponding to a display operation unit DP of the information display device according to the second embodiment of the present invention.

16 is a configuration diagram of a control circuit unit CT when the display operation unit DP of FIG. 15 is used.

FIG. 17 is an external perspective view of an information display device 200 according to a third embodiment of the present invention.

18 is a front view of the information display device 200. FIG.

19 is a rear view of the information display device 200. FIG.

FIG. 20 is a diagram showing another example usable as the information display device of the present invention.

FIG. 21 is a diagram showing a usage example similar to that of FIG. 20;

FIG. 22 is a partial block diagram for realizing the functions of the device of FIG. 20;

FIG. 23 is a partial view showing an example using a piezoelectric film 310.

FIG. 24 is a sectional view showing a switch as an example of the operation input device of the present invention.

[Explanation of symbols]

E1~E4 piezoelectric element (unit function unit) e k k-th terminal voltage R1~R7 operation area P (x, y) of the piezoelectric element operating position region in the R operation F operating force SF operation force signal SP operation position signal FC Operation valid signal FD Operation force determination signal G Gate signal V Drive mode parameter signal F1 to F4 Operation force section Fh1 to Fh4 Operation force threshold Fh1 Minimum threshold of operation force DP Display / operation unit CT Control circuit unit MS Main surface of housing 10 Operation Panel 10T Touch panel 11 Operation surface 20 Liquid crystal display panel 21 Display surface (information display surface) 30 Bidirectional conversion function means 51 Operation unit 52 Area determination unit 54 Operation force determination unit (operation signal determination unit) 56 Gate circuit 57 Logical product circuit 60 Information processing unit 72 Vibration mode selection unit 73 Vibration mode storage unit 75 Piezoelectric element driving unit 100, 200 Information display device 10 1,201 housing

Continuation of front page (72) Inventor Takahito Miwa 1-7-131 Nishimiyahara, Yodogawa-ku, Osaka City Izumi Electric Co., Ltd.

Claims (16)

[Claims]
1. An information display device, comprising: (a) an information display surface; and (b) a transparent or translucent operation portion having a predetermined operation surface and disposed on the information display surface. c) a bidirectional function unit coupled to the operation unit and capable of bidirectionally converting a mechanical action and an electric signal; and (d) generated from the bidirectional function unit by an operation force applied to the operation surface. An operation signal extraction unit that extracts an electric signal as an operation signal; and (e) a drive control unit that sends an electric drive signal to the bidirectional function unit in response to the operation signal. An information display device, wherein a mechanical reaction generated by the bidirectional function means is transmitted to the operation surface and sensed as a tactile sensation of the operator.
2. The information display device according to claim 1, wherein the drive control means compares (e-1) the operation signal with a predetermined threshold value, and when the operation signal exceeds the threshold value, An information display device, comprising: operation signal determination means for transmitting a drive signal to the bidirectional function means.
3. The information display device according to claim 2, wherein the operation signal determination unit changes a mode of the drive signal according to a magnitude of the operation signal.
4. The information display device according to claim 1, wherein said bidirectional function means are (c-1) spatially separated from each other, and each of said two-way function means has a dynamic action. And a plurality of unit function means capable of bidirectionally converting the signal and the electric signal, and the information display device further comprises: (f) generating from the plurality of unit function means by an operation force applied to the operation unit. An information display device, comprising: a position signal generating unit that generates a position signal representing an operation position on the operation surface based on a plurality of electric signals to be performed.
5. The information display device according to claim 4, wherein the plurality of unit function units include three or more unit function units that are two-dimensionally distributed.
6. The information display device according to claim 5, wherein the operation surface is a substantially rectangular surface, and the plurality of unit function units are substantially four of the substantially rectangular surface.
An information display device comprising four unit function means arranged at corners.
7. The information display device according to claim 1, wherein the operation unit includes: (b-1) a touch panel that generates a position signal corresponding to an operation position on the operation surface; An information display device comprising:
8. The information display device according to claim 4, wherein said drive control means changes said threshold value for said operation signal according to said position signal. Information display device.
9. The information display device according to claim 4, wherein the drive control means changes a mode of the drive signal in accordance with the position signal. apparatus.
10. The information display device according to claim 2, wherein (g) transmitting the generation of the position signal to a predetermined information processing means when the operation signal exceeds the threshold value. An information display device, further comprising logic gate means.
11. The information display device according to claim 1, wherein the bidirectional function unit includes a piezoelectric element.
12. The information display device according to claim 1, wherein the information display device is housed in a portable housing having a predetermined main surface, and the operation surface is exposed to the main surface to be portable.
13. The information display device according to claim 12, wherein the information display device is fixedly arranged on a surface other than the main surface of the housing, and receives an operation according to display contents on the display surface.
Alternatively, an information display device further comprising a plurality of operation switches.
14. An information display device, comprising: (a) an information display surface; and (b) a transparent or translucent operation unit having a predetermined operation surface and disposed on the information display surface. c) a plurality of unit function means that are spatially distributed and arranged within a range coupled with the operation unit, each of which can convert a mechanical action into an electric signal, and (d) an operation force given to the operation surface. Operation signal extracting means for extracting electric signals generated from the plurality of unit function means as a plurality of operation signals; and (e) generating a position signal representing an operation position on the operation surface based on the plurality of operation signals. An information display device comprising:
15. An operation input device, comprising: (a) an operation unit having a predetermined operation surface; and (b) both coupled to the operation unit and capable of bidirectionally converting a mechanical action and an electric signal. Operation signal extracting means for extracting an electric signal generated from the bidirectional function means by a pressing force applied to the operation surface as an operation signal; and (d) responding to the operation signal. And a drive control means for sending a drive signal to the bidirectional function means, wherein a dynamic reaction of the bidirectional function means by the drive signal is transmitted to the operation surface to be sensed as a tactile sensation of the operator. Operation input device characterized.
16. The operation input device according to claim 15, wherein the bidirectional function means is (b-1) spatially distributed and arranged within a range where the two-way function means is coupled to the operation unit, and each of the two-way function means has a dynamic action. A plurality of unit function means that can be converted to an electric signal, and the operation signal is obtained as a plurality of unit operation signals generated from each of the plurality of unit function means, and the operation input device includes: An operation input device, further comprising: a position signal generating unit that generates a position signal representing an operation position on the operation surface based on the plurality of unit operation signals.
JP01276798A 1998-01-26 1998-01-26 Information display device and operation input device Expired - Fee Related JP3987182B2 (en)

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