US20030046693A1 - System and method for focused navigation within an interactive television user interface - Google Patents

System and method for focused navigation within an interactive television user interface Download PDF

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US20030046693A1
US20030046693A1 US10097174 US9717402A US2003046693A1 US 20030046693 A1 US20030046693 A1 US 20030046693A1 US 10097174 US10097174 US 10097174 US 9717402 A US9717402 A US 9717402A US 2003046693 A1 US2003046693 A1 US 2003046693A1
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visual
system
user
method
cards
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Abandoned
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US10097174
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James Billmaier
John Kellum
Dewey Reid
Philip Rogan
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Vulcan Ventures Inc
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Digeo Inc
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    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N21/00Selective content distribution, e.g. interactive television, VOD [Video On Demand]
    • H04N21/40Client devices specifically adapted for the reception of or interaction with content, e.g. set-top-box [STB]; Operations thereof
    • H04N21/47End-user applications
    • H04N21/482End-user interface for program selection
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06FELECTRIC DIGITAL DATA PROCESSING
    • G06F3/00Input arrangements for transferring data to be processed into a form capable of being handled by the computer; Output arrangements for transferring data from processing unit to output unit, e.g. interface arrangements
    • G06F3/01Input arrangements or combined input and output arrangements for interaction between user and computer
    • G06F3/048Interaction techniques based on graphical user interfaces [GUI]
    • G06F3/0481Interaction techniques based on graphical user interfaces [GUI] based on specific properties of the displayed interaction object or a metaphor-based environment, e.g. interaction with desktop elements like windows or icons, or assisted by a cursor's changing behaviour or appearance
    • G06F3/0482Interaction techniques based on graphical user interfaces [GUI] based on specific properties of the displayed interaction object or a metaphor-based environment, e.g. interaction with desktop elements like windows or icons, or assisted by a cursor's changing behaviour or appearance interaction with lists of selectable items, e.g. menus
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N21/00Selective content distribution, e.g. interactive television, VOD [Video On Demand]
    • H04N21/40Client devices specifically adapted for the reception of or interaction with content, e.g. set-top-box [STB]; Operations thereof
    • H04N21/43Processing of content or additional data, e.g. demultiplexing additional data from a digital video stream; Elementary client operations, e.g. monitoring of home network, synchronizing decoder's clock; Client middleware
    • H04N21/431Generation of visual interfaces for content selection or interaction; Content or additional data rendering
    • H04N21/4312Generation of visual interfaces for content selection or interaction; Content or additional data rendering involving specific graphical features, e.g. screen layout, special fonts or colors, blinking icons, highlights or animations
    • H04N21/4316Generation of visual interfaces for content selection or interaction; Content or additional data rendering involving specific graphical features, e.g. screen layout, special fonts or colors, blinking icons, highlights or animations for displaying supplemental content in a region of the screen, e.g. an advertisement in a separate window
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N21/00Selective content distribution, e.g. interactive television, VOD [Video On Demand]
    • H04N21/40Client devices specifically adapted for the reception of or interaction with content, e.g. set-top-box [STB]; Operations thereof
    • H04N21/43Processing of content or additional data, e.g. demultiplexing additional data from a digital video stream; Elementary client operations, e.g. monitoring of home network, synchronizing decoder's clock; Client middleware
    • H04N21/443OS processes, e.g. booting an STB, implementing a Java virtual machine in an STB, power management in an STB
    • H04N21/4438Window management, e.g. event handling following interaction with the user interface
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N5/00Details of television systems
    • H04N5/44Receiver circuitry
    • H04N5/445Receiver circuitry for displaying additional information
    • H04N5/44543Menu-type displays
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N5/00Details of television systems
    • H04N5/44Receiver circuitry
    • H04N5/445Receiver circuitry for displaying additional information
    • H04N5/44591Receiver circuitry for displaying additional information the additional information being displayed in a separate window, e.g. by using splitscreen display
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N21/00Selective content distribution, e.g. interactive television, VOD [Video On Demand]
    • H04N21/40Client devices specifically adapted for the reception of or interaction with content, e.g. set-top-box [STB]; Operations thereof
    • H04N21/47End-user applications

Abstract

An ITV system having a plurality of channels is provided. A visual card is created for each channel, each visual card including a graphical representation of the channel. The visual cards may be linked together or grouped in one or more sequences. One or more visual cards from one or more sequences may be displayed across the GUI, with one visual card being displayed within a focus area. In response to a single user action, the visual cards within a particular sequence may be successively displayed within the focus area. When the user sees a visual card representing a desired channel, the user takes some additional action and the successive display of visual cards is discontinued. The visual card representing the desired channel is then displayed in the focus area within the user interface, and may be visually enhanced. Once the successive display of visual cards has been discontinued, the user may select the channel represented by the visual card.

Description

    RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • The present application is related to and claims priority from U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/315,731, filed Aug. 29, 2001, entitled “System and Method for Visual Channel Surfing”, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety. The present application is also related to and claims priority from U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/317,612, filed Sep. 6, 2001, entitled “System and Method for Visual Channel Surfing”, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety. The present application is further related to and claims priority from U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/324,997, filed Sep. 26, 2001, entitled “System and Method for Visual Channel Surfing Using Center-Focused Navigation”, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.[0001]
  • BACKGROUND
  • 1. Field of the Invention [0002]
  • The present invention relates generally to interactive television (ITV) systems. More specifically, the present invention relates to a system and method for focused navigation within a user interface of an ITV system. [0003]
  • 2. Description of Related Background Art [0004]
  • Recent advances in technology have vastly increased the number of available channels within ITV systems. As used herein, a “channel” refers to any capability of the ITV system that a user may selectively activate. For example, one type of channel may be a broadcast channel, such as NBC®, HBO®, ESPN®, etc. Another type of channel may be an interactive channel, such as a World Wide Web browser, an e-mail program, a videophone, a personal video recorder, a directory of contacts, various search functions or filters, and so forth. Many ITV systems now offer hundreds of broadcast channels and a variety of interactive channels. [0005]
  • Unfortunately, despite the rapid advances in ITV systems, user interfaces for these ITV systems remain largely unchanged. For example, a user of a modern ITV system must scan through user options and channels in much the same way as a user selected a TV channel twenty years ago, i.e., by repeatedly pressing channel up/down buttons on a remote control. Such an outdated approach is far too slow and inconvenient to facilitate effective navigation of a modern ITV system. [0006]
  • Accordingly, it would be an advancement in the art to provide a user interface for an ITV system that allows for rapid and efficient navigation of a plurality of channels without the drawbacks of conventional approaches. In particular, it would be an advancement in the art to provide a user interface in which a user need not repeatedly press a button to display each available option, as is often the case with a conventional television or ITV interface. [0007]
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • Non-exhaustive embodiments of the invention are described with reference to the figures, in which: [0008]
  • FIG. 1 is an illustration of an ITV system; [0009]
  • FIGS. [0010] 2-3 are illustrations of a method for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within an ITV user interface;
  • FIGS. [0011] 4-6 are timing diagrams for a successive display of visual cards representing channels available on the ITV system;
  • FIG. 7 is a block diagram of physical components of a set-top box (STB); [0012]
  • FIG. 8 is a block diagram of logical components of a system for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within an ITV user interface; and [0013]
  • FIG. 9 is a flowchart illustrating a method for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within an ITV user interface. [0014]
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
  • The present invention solves the foregoing problems and disadvantages by providing a system and method for focused navigation within a user interface of an ITV system. In one embodiment, an ITV system may include a television (TV) having a display screen, a set-top box (STB), and a remote control. A graphical user interface (GUI) for the ITV system may be displayed on the display screen. [0015]
  • The ITV system may provide access to a plurality of “channels.” As previously noted, a channel may refer to any capability of the ITV system or entertainment device that a user may selectively activate, such as a television broadcast channel, a Pay-Per-View (PPV) channel, or an Interactive Television (ITV) channel. In addition, as used herein, a channel may refer to other selectable options, such as databases, application programs, digital photographs, video clips, audio clips, MP3 files, and programs recorded by a Personal Video Recorder (PVR). [0016]
  • In one embodiment, a visual card is created to represent each channel that is available through the ITV system. Each visual card may include a graphical representation of the represented channel. The graphical representation may take the form of an icon (e.g., a drawing), an image (e.g., a photograph or video frame), a symbol, or the like. In certain configurations, the graphical representation may be combined with text for increased clarity. [0017]
  • The visual cards may be linked together or grouped in one or more sequences. In response to a single user action, the visual cards within a particular sequence may be successively displayed within a focus area of the GUI. As used herein, a “focus area” is a single location of the GUI at which the visual cards are displayed one at a time in sequence. The focus area may be located at a central or visually dominant location of the user interface, although the invention is not limited in this respect. [0018]
  • The single user action to initiate the successive display of visual cards may take many forms, such as pressing (or pressing and holding down) a button on a remote control. Once all of the visual cards within a particular sequence are displayed, the cycle may be repeated any number of times until halted by the user. [0019]
  • The visual cards may be successively displayed at a high rate of speed, preferably within the user's image recognition threshold. For instance, in one embodiment, the graphical representations may be shown at a rate between about six and eight per second (360-420 per minute). [0020]
  • When displayed within the focus area, the visual cards are preferably large enough to permit user recognition from a comfortable viewing distance. For instance, in one embodiment, a visual card occupies between about one-fifth and about one-fourth of the display screen. [0021]
  • When the user sees a visual card being displayed of a channel that he or she desires to select, the user may take some additional action and the successive display of visual cards is discontinued. For example, the additional action may be releasing the button on the remote control or pressing the same or a different button. [0022]
  • In certain embodiments, it may be desirable to display more than one visual card within a particular sequence in a first direction across the GUI, with one visual card being displayed within the focus area. This may provide the user with a better understanding of his or her navigational position within the sequence. For example, in one embodiment, a subset including three visual cards may be displayed vertically or horizontally across the GUI. Of course, a sequence including any number of visual cards may be displayed within the scope of the invention. [0023]
  • Additionally, it may be desirable to create different sequences of visual cards for each type of channel associated with the ITV system. For example, a first sequence may include visual cards that represent broadcast channels, and a second sequence may include visual cards that represent interactive channels. [0024]
  • A subset of visual cards from different sequences may be displayed in different directions across the GUI. For example, in one embodiment, a first subset including three visual cards from a first sequence may be displayed horizontally across the GUI, and a second subset including three visual cards from a second sequence may be displayed vertically across the GUI. These two subsets may intersect to define the focus area. As before, a single visual card may be displayed within the focus area. [0025]
  • Regardless of the number of visual cards displayed within the GUI at any given time, a particular visual card representing a desired channel may be displayed within the focus area once navigation has been discontinued. This remaining visual card may be enhanced to further distinguish it from previously displayed visual cards, and/or to provide the user with additional information about the represented channel. [0026]
  • The remaining visual card may be enhanced in a variety of ways. For example, the visual card may be enhanced by displaying information within the GUI that is descriptive of the represented channel. Alternatively, where the remaining visual card represents a broadcast channel, the visual card may be enhanced by displaying a reduced-size presentation of the broadcast channel in the focus area in place of the visual card. Alternatively still, the visual card may be enhanced by animating the graphical representation on the visual card. Additionally, the visual card may be enhanced by enlarging it with respect to other visual cards within the GUI and/or with respect to its original size. [0027]
  • The user may select the channel associated with the displayed visual card by taking a selection action. The selection action may be, for instance, activating a selection control on the remote control. In response to the selection action, the desired channel may be displayed in place of the GUI on the display screen. [0028]
  • If the user's reaction time is fast enough, the visual card representing the desired channel remains displayed in the focus area once navigation is discontinued. If not, one or more visual cards may be subsequently displayed. In such a case, the user may manually backtrack to the desired visual card by, for example, repeatedly activating a suitable control on a remote control. In an alternative embodiment, the user's delayed response may be automatically compensated for by reverting to a previously displayed visual card once the user halts the successive display. [0029]
  • The rate at which the visual cards are successively displayed may be increased in response to the user taking a suitable action. For example, the rate at which visual cards are successively displayed may increase gradually or according to a stepwise function. The user action to increase the display rate may take many forms, such as holding down a button on the remote control for a set amount of time or by repeatedly pressing a button on the remote control. [0030]
  • Reference throughout this specification to “one embodiment” or “an embodiment” means that a particular feature, structure, or characteristic described in connection with the embodiment is included in at least one embodiment of the present invention. Thus, appearances of the phrases “in one embodiment” or “in an embodiment” in various places throughout this specification are not necessarily all referring to the same embodiment. [0031]
  • Furthermore, the described features, structures, or characteristics may be combined in any suitable manner in one or more embodiments. In the following description, numerous specific details are provided, such as examples of programming, software modules, user selections, network transactions, database queries, database structures, etc., to provide a thorough understanding of embodiments of the invention. One skilled in the relevant art will recognize, however, that the invention can be practiced without one or more of the specific details, or with other methods, components, materials, etc. In other instances, well-known structures, materials, or operations are not shown or described in detail to avoid obscuring aspects of the invention. [0032]
  • Referring now to FIG. 1, there is shown an illustration of an ITV system [0033] 10. The ITV system 10 includes, in one embodiment, a television (TV) 12 having a display screen 14, a set-top box (STB) 16, and a remote control 18.
  • The STB [0034] 16 is a consumer electronics device that serves as a gateway between the TV 12 and a broadband network (not shown), such as a cable or satellite network. The STB 16 receives TV signals and other information from the broadband network and processes the same for display on the display screen 14. The STB 16 may also be responsible for displaying a graphical user interface (GUI) 20 on the display screen 14.
  • In alternative embodiments, the term “STB” may broadly encompass a personal computer (PC) that performs STB-like functions. In such an embodiment, a PC may be used to process TV signals and other data received from the broadband network. The PC may operate in the context of a home network to provide display signals to a variety of devices, including one or more television sets, computer monitors, personal digital assistants (PDAs), cellular phones, and the like. A variety of home networking systems and protocols may be used, such as Ethernet, 802.11b, Bluetooth, etc. [0035]
  • The remote control [0036] 18 is provided for convenient operation of the STB 16 and the TV 12. The remote control 18 may include a wireless transmitter 22 for transmitting control signals to a wireless receiver 24 within the STB 16. In addition, the remote control 18 may include a number of buttons or other similar controls. For instance, the remote control 18 may include a “Channel-Up” button 26, a “Channel-Down” button 28, a “Channel-Left” button 30, a “Channel-Right” button 32, and a “Select” button 34. Of course, a variety of other buttons or controls may be provided within the scope of the invention. In alternative implementations, the remote control 18 may be embodied as a keyboard, mouse, or other input device.
  • FIG. 2 illustrates one embodiment of a method for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within an ITV user interface. As previously noted, a channel refers to any capability of the ITV system [0037] 10 that a user may selectively activate. Examples of channels include broadcast channels and interactive channels.
  • In one embodiment, a visual card [0038] 36 is created to represent each channel that is available through the ITV system 10. Each visual card 36 may be stored as a graphics file in any suitable format in a memory, disk drive, or the like, within the ITV system 10.
  • Each visual card [0039] 36 may include a graphical representation 38 of the represented channel. The graphical representation 38 may take the form of an icon (e.g., a drawing), an image (e.g., a photograph or video frame), a symbol, or the like. Where the visual cards 36 represent broadcast channels, the graphical representation 38 may represent the broadcast channel generally or the particular TV program being shown on the broadcast channel. For example, each graphical representation 38 may take the form of a video frame taken from the current TV program being shown on the broadcast channel. In one embodiment, video frames may be captured at periodic intervals by a broadcast center and downloaded by an STB 16 for use in one or more visual cards 36. Alternatively, video frames may be captured by the STB 16, itself.
  • In the embodiment depicted in FIG. 2, the represented channels are broadcast channels, and the graphical representations [0040] 38 on the visual cards 36 take the form of icons 38 which represent the broadcast channel generally. For instance, a visual card 36 a may include a chef icon 38 a representing a broadcast channel related to cooking (e.g., the TV Food Network®); a visual card 36 b may include a lion icon 38 b representing a broadcast channel related to nature (e.g., The Discovery Channel®); a visual card 36 c may include a football player icon 38 c representing a broadcast channel related to sports (e.g., ESPN®); a visual card 36 d may include a music icon 38 d representing a broadcast channel related to music (e.g., MTV®); and a visual card 36 e may include an airplane icon 38 e representing a broadcast channel related to travel (e.g., The Travel Channel®). Of course, the visual cards 36 may also include other information (e.g., descriptive text, numerals, and so forth) in addition to the graphical representations 38.
  • The visual cards [0041] 36 may be linked together or grouped in a sequence 40, such as the sequence 40 a. The sequence 40 may take the form of a closed loop, as illustrated in FIG. 2. Alternatively, the sequence 40 may be linear. The ordering of the sequence 40 may be dictated, for example, by the numerical order of the represented channels, e.g., visual card 36 a may correspond to channel 2, visual card 36 b may correspond to channel 4, etc. Of course, the sequence 40 may be ordered in other ways or may be user-defined.
  • Within the sequence [0042] 40, one visual card 36 may be selected or active. As shown, the selected visual card 36 is displayed within a focus area 42 of the GUI 20 (e.g., brought into “focus”). As previously noted, a focus area 42 is a single location of the GUI 20 at which the visual cards 36 are successively displayed, e.g., displayed one at a time in sequence. The focus area 42 may be located at a central or visually dominant location of the user interface, although the invention is not limited in this respect. For example, the focus area may be located at the center of the GUI 20 (and/or display screen 14).
  • In response to a single user action, the visual cards [0043] 36 within a sequence 40 may be successively displayed within the focus area 42. For example, the visual cards 36 a-e within the sequence 40 a may be successively displayed within the focus area 42. Where the sequence 40 is a closed loop, the successive display may continue indefinitely until halted by the user.
  • The visual cards [0044] 36 may be successively displayed at a high rate of speed, preferably within the user's image recognition threshold. The image recognition threshold will vary somewhat from user to user depending on a number of factors, including age, eyesight, and so forth. Typically, however, the image recognition threshold for many users will range between 5 and 8 graphical representations per second. Of course, the display rate may be adjusted for users with unusually high or low image recognition thresholds. For instance, a user may cap the maximum display rate at a preferred value.
  • In one embodiment, the image recognition threshold may be determined or approximated by initially showing a user a test image and then displaying the test image at a point in a cycling sequence of graphical representations being displayed at a high rate of speed (e.g., >10 representations per second). Thereafter, the display rate may be decreased in steps until the user recognizes the test image and presses a button, such as the “Select” button [0045] 36. The display rate at which the user first recognizes the test image may be deemed the user's image recognition threshold.
  • The single user action to initiate navigation may be pressing (or pressing and holding down) a button on the remote control [0046] 18. For example, the user may press the “Channel-Up” button 26 to initiate the successive display in a first direction 44 within the sequence 40, and press the “Channel-Down” button 28 to initiate navigation in the opposite direction 46. Alternatively, the user may speak a command into a microphone (either within the STB 16 or remote control 18) to initiate navigation. Of course, the user may initiate navigation in a variety of other ways within the scope of the invention.
  • Preferably, the visual cards [0047] 36, when displayed within the focus area 42, are sufficiently large to permit user recognition from a comfortable viewing distance for the particular display screen 14. For instance, as shown in FIG. 2, the visual card 36 occupies between about one-fifth and about one-fourth of the display screen 14.
  • When the user sees a visual card [0048] 36 being displayed of a channel that he or she desires to select, the user may take some additional action and the successive display of visual cards 36 may be discontinued. For example, where the successive display was initiated by pressing and holding down the “Channel-Up” button 26, the user may release the “Channel-Up” button 26 to discontinue navigation. In an alternative embodiment, where the successive display was initiated simply by pressing a button, the user may press the same or a different button to halt the successive display. Of course, the user may discontinue navigation in a variety of other ways within the scope of the invention. Once navigation is discontinued, a visual card 36 representing a desired channel is displayed within the focus area 42.
  • In certain embodiments, it may be desirable to display a subset [0049] 48 of the visual cards 36 within a particular sequence 40 in a first direction across the GUI 20. This may provide the user with a better understanding of his or her navigational position within the sequence 40. For example, as shown in FIG. 3, a subset 48 a of the first sequence 40 a of visual cards 36 may be displayed vertically across the GUI 20. The subset 48 a includes the visual cards 36 c-e. In particular, a portion of the visual card 36 c may be displayed above the focus area 42, the entire visual card 36 d may be displayed within the focus area 42, and a portion of the visual card 36 e may be displayed below the focus area 42. Of course, in other embodiments the subset 48 a may be displayed horizontally or in other locations of the GUI 20.
  • As previously noted, an ITV system [0050] 10 in accordance with the invention may include different types of channels, such as broadcast channels and interactive channels. In one implementation, it may be desirable to create a different sequence 40 of visual cards 36 for each type of channel associated with the ITV system 10. For example, as previously described, a first sequence 40 a including visual cards 36 a-e that represent broadcast channels. A second sequence 40 b may be created including visual cards 36 f-j that represent interactive channels.
  • As in the first sequence [0051] 40 a, each visual card 36 f-j in the second sequence 40 b may include a graphical representation 38 of an available channel. The graphical representation 38 may take the form of an icon (e.g., a drawing), an image (e.g., a photograph or video frame), a symbol, or the like. In the embodiment depicted in FIG. 3, the graphical representations 38 on the visual cards 36 f-j take the form of icons 38. For instance, a visual card 36 f may include a computer icon 38 f representing a World Wide Web browser; a visual card 36 g may include an envelope icon 38 g representing an e-mail program; a visual card 36 h may include a videophone icon 38 h representing a videophone; a visual card 36 i may include a VCR icon 38 i representing a personal video recorder (PVR); and a visual card 36 j may include a rotary file icon 38 j representing a directory of contacts.
  • In certain embodiments, it may be desirable to display more than one subset [0052] 48 of visual cards 36 within a sequence 40 in different directions across the GUI 20. For example, in addition to displaying the subset 48 a vertically across the GUI 20, a subset 48 b of the second sequence 40 b of visual cards 36 is displayed horizontally across the GUI 20. The subset 48 b includes the visual cards 36 g-h. In particular, a portion of the visual card 36 g appears to the left of the focus area 42, and a portion of the visual card 36 h appears to the right of the focus area 42. Of course, in other embodiments the subset 48 b may be displayed vertically or in other locations of the GUI 20.
  • The subset [0053] 48 a of the first sequence 40 a and the subset 48 b of the second sequence 40 b may intersect to define the focus area 42. Such an arrangement further enhances the visual dominance of the focus area 42 within the GUI 20, because visual cards 36 are directed into the focus area 42 from multiple directions. The area of intersection, and thus the focus area 42, may be located at a center portion of the GUI 20, although the invention is not limited in this respect.
  • Navigation of the different sequences [0054] 40 may be accomplished by different user actions. For example, the user may utilize a first set of controls (e.g., the “Channel-Up” and “Channel-Down” buttons 26, 28 on the remote control 18) to navigate the sequence 40 a displayed vertically across the GUI 20, and a second set of controls (e.g., the “Channel-Left” and “Channel-Right” buttons 30, 32 on the remote control 18) to navigate the sequence 40 b displayed horizontally across the GUI 20.
  • Regardless of the number of visual cards [0055] 36 displayed within the GUI 20 at any given time, a particular visual card 36 representing a desired channel may be displayed within the focus area 42 once navigation has been discontinued. This remaining visual card 36 may be enhanced to further distinguish it from previously displayed visual cards 36, and/or to provide the user with additional information about the represented channel.
  • As shown in FIG. 3, the visual card [0056] 36 d may be enhanced by displaying information within the GUI 20 that is descriptive of the represented channel. This information may be displayed within “quadrants” that are formed by the intersection of the displayed subsets 48 a-b. The quadrants may be used to display context-sensitive information about a visual card 36 in the focus area 42. Alternatively, or in addition, the quadrants may be used to display advertising, additional options, and the like. The size of the quadrants may vary depending, for instance, on the location of the intersection of the displayed subsets 48 a-b. If the intersection is near the center of the GUI 20, the quadrants may be equal in size; otherwise, the relative sizes of the quadrants may vary.
  • As an example, because the visual card [0057] 36 d in FIG. 3 represents a broadcast channel, the information may include the name 50 of the broadcast channel, the channel number 52, the name 54 of the TV program currently being broadcast on the channel, and the program's start time 56 and end time 58, as well as other useful information.
  • The remaining visual card [0058] 36 may be enhanced in a variety of other ways. For example, where the remaining visual card 36 represents a broadcast channel, the visual card 36 may be enhanced by displaying a reduced-size presentation of the broadcast channel in the focus area 42 in place of the visual card 36. Other visual cards 36 and/or information may remain displayed outside the focus area 42 during this reduced-size presentation. Such an approach enables the user to view a portion of a TV program without losing his or her navigational position within the GUI 20. Alternatively, the visual card 36 may be enhanced by animating the graphical representation 38 on the visual card 36. Additionally, the visual card 36 may be enhanced by enlarging it with respect to other visual cards 36 within the GUI 20 and/or with respect to its original size. The enlargement may be accomplished through pixel duplication and/or interpolation. Alternatively, a higher-resolution image may be used. Of course, the remaining visual card 36 may be enhanced in a number of other ways within the scope of the invention.
  • The user may select the channel associated with the displayed visual card [0059] 36 by taking a selection action. The selection action may be activating a selection control on the remote control 18, such as the “Select” button 34. Alternatively, the selection action may simply be waiting a set amount of time without activating any controls on the remote control 18. In response to the selection action, the desired channel may be displayed in place of the GUI 20 on the display screen 14, e.g., “maximized” to fill the entire display screen 14.
  • Referring now to FIG. 4, there is shown a timing diagram illustrating the successive display of visual cards [0060] 36 in accordance with the invention. Each vertical line within the timing diagram represents a moment in time at which a particular visual card 36 is displayed. In particular, in response to a single user action, visual cards 36 are successively displayed at moments 60, 62, 64, and so on. When the user takes some additional action to discontinue navigation, the successive display of visual cards 36 is halted at moment 66.
  • If the user's reaction time is fast enough, the visual card [0061] 36 representing the desired channel remains displayed in the focus area 42 once navigation is discontinued. However, the user's reaction time may not be fast enough and one or more visual cards 36 may be subsequently displayed. In such a case, the user may manually backtrack to the desired visual card 36 by, for example, repeatedly activating a suitable control on the remote control 18. For example, briefly pressing the “Channel-Up” or “Channel-Down” buttons 26, 28 may result in the previous or next visual card 36, respectively, being displayed.
  • In alternative embodiments, the user's delayed response may be automatically compensated for by reverting to a previously displayed visual card [0062] 36 once the user halts the successive display. For example, if a visual card 36 representing a desired channel is displayed within the GUI 20 at moment 68, but the user takes the additional action to discontinue navigation at moment 66, the ITV system 10 may be configured to automatically revert to the visual card 36 displayed a set amount of time before the action was taken. The time difference 70 between moments 68 and 66 corresponds to an anticipated time delay between the user's recognition of a desired visual card 36 and the user's additional action. Because the actual time delay between recognition and release will vary depending on a number of factors such as age, reaction time, agility, and so forth, it may be desirable to allow a user to adjust the time difference 70. In addition, the time difference 70 may vary depending on the rate at which the visual cards 36 are being displayed, e.g., a faster rate may require a greater time difference 70.
  • The rate at which the visual cards [0063] 36 are successively displayed may be increased in response to the user taking a suitable action. For example, as shown in FIG. 5, the rate at which visual cards 36 are successively displayed may gradually increase from a minimum rate 72 to a maximum rate 74 (preferably at or below the user's recognition threshold). Alternatively, as shown in FIG. 6, the display rate may increase from a minimum rate 76 to an intermediate rate 78 to a maximum rate 80 according to a stepwise function. The user action to increase the display rate may take many forms, such as holding down a button on the remote control 18 for a set amount of time. In such case, the rate may be increased based on how long the button is held down. Alternatively, the user may increase the display rate by repeatedly pressing a button on the remote control 18, in which case the rate may be increased each time the button is pressed.
  • Referring now to FIG. 7, a block diagram of physical components within the STB [0064] 16 is shown. In one implementation, the STB 16 includes a wireless receiver 24 for receiving control signals sent by the wireless transmitter 22 in the remote control 18. The STB 16 may also include a network interface/tuner 82 for receiving an ITV signal (which may include both TV signals and other information) from a broadcast center (not shown) over a transmission medium, such as a broadband network. The interface/tuner 82 may include conventional tuning circuitry for receiving, demodulating, and demultiplexing the ITV signal, which may be encoded using MPEG or the like.
  • The STB [0065] 16 may also include a codec (encoder/decoder) 84, which serves to decode a data stream received from the broadcast center over the transmission medium. The codec 84 may be implemented in hardware and/or software.
  • In certain embodiments, the STB [0066] 16 includes a memory device 86. The memory device 86 may include a random access memory (RAM) for storing temporary data. Alternatively, or in addition, the memory device 86 may include a read-only memory (ROM) for storing more permanent data, such as fixed code and configuration data. For instance, the memory device 86 may include an operating system (OS) for the STB 16, such as Linuxe® or Windows CE® or XP®. The memory device 86 may also be embodied as a magnetic storage device, such as a hard disk drive.
  • An audio/video (A/V) controller [0067] 88 may be provided for converting digital audio/video signals into analog signals for playback/display on the TV 12. The A/V controller 88 may be implemented using one or more physical devices, such as separate graphics and sound controllers. The A/V controller 88 may also include graphics hardware for performing bit-block transfers (bit-blits) and other graphical operations for displaying the visual cards 36 on the display screen 14.
  • In certain implementations, a CPU [0068] 90 is provided to control the operation of the STB 16, including the other components thereof, which are coupled to the CPU 90 via a bus 92. The CPU 90 may be embodied as a microprocessor, microcontroller, digital signal processor or other device known in the art. For instance, the CPU 90 may be embodied as an Intel® ×86 microprocessor. The CPU 90 performs logical and arithmetic operations based on program code stored within the memory device 86.
  • Of course, FIG. 7 illustrates only one possible configuration of an STB [0069] 16. Those skilled in the art will recognize that various other architectures and components may be provided. In addition, various standard components are not illustrated in order to avoid obscuring aspects of the invention.
  • Referring now to FIG. 8, a block diagram of logical components within the STB [0070] 16 is shown. The depicted logical components may be implemented using one or more of the physical components shown in FIG. 7. Of course, various logical components may be implemented as software modules stored in the memory device 86 and executed by the CPU 90. Those skilled in the art will recognize that various illustrated components may be combined together or integrated with standard components in various configurations without departing from the scope or spirit of the invention.
  • An ITV signal [0071] 94 containing compressed TV signals and other information is received by a signal detector 96. The signal detector 96 decompresses the ITV signal 94 and separates the TV signals from the other information. The TV signals are then conveyed to a display unit 98, which performs further processing to convert the TV signals into a suitable format for the TV 12. The other information is routed to a storage device 100.
  • The other information may include a channel database [0072] 102. In one embodiment, the channel database 102 includes records 104 containing information about the various channels available within the ITV system 10. Each record 104 may be uniquely associated with a particular channel, and may include a visual card 36 representing that channel. Other information 106 about the channel may also be provided. For example, a record 104 of a broadcast channel may include information 106 such as the channel number, the name of the program being (or to be) broadcast, the start time, the end time, and so forth. For an interactive channel, the information 106 may include a text description, memory location, and the like.
  • Each record [0073] 104 within the database 102 may also include one or more pointers 108 to other records 104. This allows the records 104 to be grouped together into one or more sequences 40, such as the sequences 40 a-b described previously. Of course, records 104 may be grouped in sequences 40 using other mechanisms within the scope of the invention.
  • In one embodiment, a user action to initiate and/or discontinue navigation causes a navigational control signal to be detected by a user input detector [0074] 110. The control signal may be delivered to a controller 112 which is driven by a clock signal 114 having a periodic clock cycle.
  • In response to a control signal to initiate navigation, the controller [0075] 112 may retrieve one or more records 104 from the channel database 102 and deliver them to the display unit 98 for processing. To implement the successive display of visual cards 36 described previously, this action may be repeated every N clock cycles (where N is any integral value). Additionally, the records 104 may be retrieved in a particular sequence 40, as described previously. The display unit 98 may be configured to prepare data from the records 104, such as the visual cards 36, for display on the display screen 14 in the manner illustrated in FIGS. 2-3. In response to a control signal to discontinue navigation, the controller 112 may halt retrieval of the records 104 from the channel database 102.
  • As described previously, the rate at which the visual cards [0076] 36 are successively displayed may be increased. This may be accomplished by initiating a counter 116 when the control signal to initiate navigation is detected by the user input detector 110. The counter 116 may increment every M clock cycles (where M may be any integral value), for as long as the control signal is detected by the user input detector 110. After the counter 116 has reached a set value, the value of N may be decreased, which has the effect of accelerating the rate of successive display of visual cards 36. In one implementation, the value of N may not decrease below a certain value corresponding to a typical user's image recognition threshold.
  • The values of M and N may be adjusted to implement the gradual and stepwise acceleration discussed previously. For example, high values of M and N correspond to stepwise acceleration as illustrated in FIG. 6, whereas low values of M and N correspond to gradual acceleration as illustrated in FIG. 5. Of course, a wide variety of other techniques may be used to implement the successive display of visual cards [0077] 36.
  • As discussed previously, a user's delayed response may be automatically compensated for by reverting to a previously displayed visual card [0078] 36 once the user takes action to discontinue navigation. This may be accomplished in a variety of ways. For example, the controller 112 may retrieve the record 104 X positions behind the last-retrieved record 104 within a particular sequence 40 once navigation has been discontinued. Alternatively, the display unit 98 may include a memory for storing the X visual cards 36 most recently displayed within the focus area 42, and may be configured to display the visual card 36 in the Xth position once navigation is discontinued. In either implementation, the value of X (which may be any integral value) may correspond to an anticipated time delay between a user's recognition of a desired visual card 36 and the time that the user takes action to discontinue navigation.
  • In certain embodiments, as discussed previously, a particular visual card [0079] 36 representing a desired channel may be displayed within the focus area 42 once navigation has been discontinued. This remaining visual card 36 may be enhanced to further distinguish it from previously displayed visual cards 36, and/or to provide the user with additional information about the represented channel. This, too, may be accomplished in a variety of ways. For example, some or all of the information 106 within each database record 104 may be displayed within the GUI 20. Alternatively, where the remaining visual card 36 represents a broadcast channel, the controller 112 may be configured to tune the signal detector 96 to the represented channel, and the display unit 98 may be configured to replace the remaining visual card 36 with a reduced-size presentation of the broadcast channel (while leaving the remainder of the GUI 20 in place). Alternatively still, the graphical representation 38 included within the visual card 36 may be an animation file, and the storage device 100 may include software configured to animate the graphical representation 38.
  • Finally, as discussed previously, the user may select the channel associated with a displayed visual card [0080] 36 by taking a selection action. When a visual card 36 is selected, the corresponding channel may be executed by the controller 112. For instance, where a user selects a visual card 36 corresponding to a broadcast channel, the controller 112 may tune the signal detector 96 to the selected channel. Where a user selects a visual card 36 corresponding to an interactive channel, the controller 112 may execute an application within the storage device 100 corresponding to the selected channel.
  • Of course, FIG. 8 illustrates only one implementation of the above-described techniques. Various other implementations, using various combinations of hardware and software, may be known to those skilled in the art based on the teachings contained herein. [0081]
  • Referring now to FIG. 9, there is shown a flowchart illustrating a method for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within an ITV user interface. A plurality of visual cards [0082] 36 representing channels available within the ITV system 10 is created and stored 118. As discussed previously, the visual cards 36 may be linked together or grouped in one or more sequences 40. One or more visual cards 36 from one or more sequences 40 may be displayed across the GUI 20, with one visual card 36 being displayed within a focus area 42.
  • In one configuration, the ITV system [0083] 10 waits 120 for user input. When a single user action is detected 122 as previously discussed, the visual cards 36 from a particular sequence are successively displayed 124 in a focus area 42 of the GUI 20. This successive display continues until an additional user action is detected 126, at which point the successive display is discontinued and a single visual card 36 is displayed within the focus area 42. As discussed previously, this remaining visual card 36 may be enhanced. In addition, the user may select the channel associated with the displayed visual card 36 by taking a selection action.
  • In view of the foregoing, the present invention offers a number of advantages not available in conventional approaches. In accordance with the invention, visual cards representing channels available in an ITV system may be successively and rapidly displayed within a focus area. [0084]
  • Because navigation is initiated by a single user action, the user need not repeatedly press a button to display each channel, as is often the case with conventional television or ITV interfaces. This greatly increases navigation speed, reduces wear on the remote control, and reduces the likelihood of repetitive stress injury of the user's hand. [0085]
  • Likewise, because the visual cards are all displayed within a single area of the user interface (the focus area), the visual cards may be displayed at a relatively high rate of speed, while still being within the user's image recognition threshold. Typically, the focused navigation technique of the claimed invention allows a user to more quickly and efficiently locate and select a desired channel than conventional approaches. [0086]
  • While specific embodiments and applications of the present invention have been illustrated and described, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited to the precise configuration and components disclosed herein. Various modifications, changes, and variations apparent to those skilled in the art may be made in the arrangement, operation, and details of the methods and systems of the present invention disclosed herein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.[0087]

Claims (67)

    What is claimed is:
  1. 1. A method for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within a user interface of an interactive television (ITV) system, the method comprising:
    storing a plurality of visual cards, each visual card graphically representing a channel associated with the ITV system;
    in response to a single user action, successively displaying the visual cards in a focus area of the user interface; and
    in response to an additional user action, discontinuing the successive display of visual cards to show a particular visual card representing a desired channel.
  2. 2. The method of claim 1, wherein the channels represented by the visual cards comprise broadcast television channels.
  3. 3. The method of claim 1, wherein the channels represented by the visual cards comprise interactive channels.
  4. 4. The method of claim 3, wherein the interactive channels are selected from the group consisting of a World Wide Web browser, an e-mail program, a videophone, a personal video recorder, and a directory of contacts.
  5. 5. The method of claim 1, wherein the channels represented by the visual cards comprise broadcast channels, and wherein at least one broadcast channel is graphically represented on a visual card by a video frame taken from a television program.
  6. 6. The method of claim 1, wherein a displayed visual card occupies between about one-fifth and about one-fourth of a television screen.
  7. 7. The method of claim 1, wherein the focus area comprises a center portion of the ITV user interface.
  8. 8. The method of claim 1, wherein the single user action comprises pressing and holding down a control on a remote control.
  9. 9. The method of claim 8, wherein the additional user action comprises releasing the control on the remote control.
  10. 10. The method of claim 1, wherein the single user action comprises activating a first control on a remote control.
  11. 11. The method of claim 10, wherein the additional user action comprises re-activating the first control.
  12. 12. The method of claim 10, wherein the additional user action comprises activating a second control on the remote control.
  13. 13. The method of claim 1, further comprising:
    enhancing the visual card shown in the focus area in response to the additional user action.
  14. 14. The method of claim 13, wherein the channels represented by the visual cards comprise broadcast channels, and wherein enhancing the visual card comprises displaying a reduced-size presentation of the broadcast channel in place of the visual card.
  15. 15. The method of claim 13, wherein enhancing the visual card comprises displaying information within the user interface that is descriptive of the represented channel.
  16. 16. The method of claim 13, wherein the channels represented by the visual cards comprise interactive channels, and wherein enhancing the visual card comprises animating a graphical representation on the visual card.
  17. 17. The method of claim 1, wherein discontinuing comprises reverting to a previously-displayed visual card in response to the additional user action.
  18. 18. The method of claim 1, further comprising:
    displaying the desired channel in place of the user interface in response to a selection action by the user.
  19. 19. The method of claim 18, wherein the selection action comprises activating a selection control on a remote control.
  20. 20. The method of claim 18, wherein the selection action comprises not activating a control on a remote control for a set amount of time.
  21. 21. The method of claim 1, wherein the visual cards are successively displayed at a maximum rate approximating a user's image recognition threshold.
  22. 22. The method of claim 21, wherein the visual cards are successively displayed at a user-selected rate between about five representations per second and about eight representations per second.
  23. 23. The method of claim 21, further comprising:
    determining a user's image recognition threshold.
  24. 24. The method of claim 1, further comprising:
    increasing a rate at which the visual cards are successively displayed in response to a user command.
  25. 25. The method of claim 24, wherein the user command comprises holding down a button on a remote control.
  26. 26. The method of claim 25, wherein the rate is increased based on how long the button is held down.
  27. 27. The method of claim 24, wherein the user command comprises pressing a button on a remote control.
  28. 28. The method of claim 27, wherein the rate is increased each time the button is pressed.
  29. 29. A method for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within a user interface of an interactive television (ITV) system, the method comprising:
    storing a plurality of visual cards, each visual card graphically representing a channel associated with the ITV system;
    displaying the visual cards in rapid succession in a same location of the display screen; and
    in response to a user action, discontinuing the successive display of visual cards to show a particular visual card representing a desired channel.
  30. 30. A method for focused navigation of a plurality of options within a user interface of an interactive television (ITV) system, the method comprising:
    storing a first plurality of visual cards, each visual card representing a channel associated with the ITV system, each visual card comprising a graphical representation of the represented channel;
    linking the first plurality of visual cards in a first sequence;
    displaying a subset of the first sequence of visual cards in a first direction across the user interface, a single visual card in the sequence being displayed within a focus area of the user interface;
    in response to a single user action, cyclically displaying the visual cards across the user interface in the first sequence to progressively change the visual card within the focus area; and
    in response to an additional user action, halting the cyclic display to show a particular visual card within the focus area corresponding to a desired channel.
  31. 31. The method of claim 30, further comprising:
    storing a second plurality of visual cards, each visual card representing a channel associated with the ITV system, each visual card comprising a graphical representation of the represented channel;
    linking the second plurality of visual cards in a second sequence; and
    displaying a subset of the second sequence of visual cards in a second direction across the user interface.
  32. 32. The method of claim 31, wherein the subset of the first sequence and the subset of the second sequence intersect to define the focus area.
  33. 33. The method of claim 32, wherein the focus area comprises a center portion of the ITV user interface.
  34. 34. A system for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within a user interface, the system comprising:
    a storage device configured to store a plurality of visual cards, each visual card representing a channel associated with the system, each visual card comprising a graphical representation of the represented channel;
    a user input detector configured to detect user actions; and
    a display unit configured to successively display the visual cards in a focus area of the user interface in response to a single user action being detected, and to discontinue the successive display of visual cards to show a particular visual card of a desired channel in response to an additional user action being detected.
  35. 35. The system of claim 34, wherein the channels represented by the visual cards comprise broadcast channels.
  36. 36. The system of claim 34, wherein the channels represented by the visual cards comprise interactive channels.
  37. 37. The system of claim 36, wherein the interactive channels are selected from the group consisting of a World Wide Web browser, an e-mail program, a videophone, a personal video recorder, and a directory of contacts.
  38. 38. The system of claim 34, wherein the channels represented by the visual cards comprise broadcast channels, and wherein at least one broadcast channel is graphically represented on a visual card by a video frame taken from a television program.
  39. 39. The system of claim 34, wherein a displayed visual card occupies between about one-fifth and about one-fourth of a television screen.
  40. 40. The system of claim 34, wherein the focus area comprises a center portion of the user interface.
  41. 41. The system of claim 34, wherein the single user action comprises pressing and holding down a control on a remote control.
  42. 42. The system of claim 41, wherein the additional user action comprises releasing the control on the remote control.
  43. 43. The system of claim 34, wherein the single user action comprises activating a first control on a remote control.
  44. 44. The system of claim 43, wherein the additional user action comprises re-activating the first control.
  45. 45. The system of claim 43, wherein the additional user action comprises activating a second control on the remote control.
  46. 46. The system of claim 34, wherein the display unit is further configured to enhance the visual card shown in the focus area in response to the additional user action.
  47. 47. The system of claim 46, wherein the channels represented by the visual cards comprise broadcast channels, and wherein the visual card is enhanced by displaying a reduced-size presentation of the broadcast channel in place of the visual card.
  48. 48. The system of claim 47, wherein the visual card is enhanced by displaying information within the user interface that is descriptive of the represented channel.
  49. 49. The system of claim 47, wherein the visual card is enhanced by animating a graphical representation on the visual card.
  50. 50. The system of claim 34, wherein the display unit is further configured to revert to a previously-displayed visual card in response to the additional user action.
  51. 51. The system of claim 34, wherein the display unit is further configured to display the desired channel in place of the user interface in response to a user selection action being detected.
  52. 52. The system of claim 51, wherein the user selection action comprises activating a selection control on a remote control.
  53. 53. The system of claim 51, wherein the user selection action comprises not activating a control on a remote control for a set amount of time.
  54. 54. The system of claim 34, wherein the visual cards are successively displayed at a maximum rate approximating a user's image recognition threshold.
  55. 55. The system of claim 54, wherein the visual cards are successively displayed at a user-selected rate between about five representations per second and about eight representations per second.
  56. 56. The system of claim 54, wherein the display unit is further configured to determine a user's image recognition threshold.
  57. 57. The system of claim 34, wherein the display unit is further configured to increase a rate at which the visual cards are successively displayed in response to a user command.
  58. 58. The system of claim 57, wherein the user command comprises holding down a button on a remote control.
  59. 59. The system of claim 57, wherein the rate is increased based on how long the button is held down.
  60. 60. The system of claim 57, wherein the user command comprises pressing a button on a remote control.
  61. 61. The system of claim 57, wherein the rate is increased each time the button is pressed.
  62. 62. A system for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within a user interface, the system comprising:
    a storage device configured to store a plurality of visual cards, each visual card graphically representing a channel associated with the system;
    a user input detector configured to detect user actions; and
    a display unit configured to display the visual cards in rapid succession in a focus area of the user interface and to discontinue the successive display of visual cards to show a particular visual card of a desired channel in response to a user action being detected.
  63. 63. A system for focused navigation of a plurality of channels within a user interface, the system comprising:
    a computer-readable medium configured to store a first linked sequence of visual cards, each visual card representing a channel associated with the system, each visual card comprising a graphical representation of the represented channel;
    a user input detector configured to detect user actions; and
    a display unit configured to:
    display a subset of the first linked sequence of visual cards in a first direction across the user interface, a single visual card in the sequence being displayed within a focus area of the user interface;
    cyclically display the visual cards across the user interface in the first linked sequence to progressively change the visual card within the focus area in response to a single user action being detected; and
    halt the cyclic display to show a particular visual card within the focus area corresponding to a desired channel in response to an additional user action being detected.
  64. 64. The system of claim 63, further comprising:
    a computer-readable medium configured to store a second linked sequence of visual cards, each visual card representing a channel associated with the system, each visual card comprising a graphical representation of the represented channel; and
  65. 65. The system of claim 64, wherein the subset of the first linked sequence and the subset of the second linked sequence intersect to define the focus area.
  66. 66. The system of claim 65, wherein the focus area comprises a center portion of the user interface.
  67. 67. A system for focused navigation of a plurality of channels, the system comprising:
    means for storing a plurality of visual cards, each visual card graphically representing a channel associated with the system;
    means for successively displaying the visual cards in a focus area of the user interface in response to a single user action; and
    means for discontinuing the successive display of visual cards to show a particular visual card representing a desired channel in response to an additional user action.
US10097174 2001-08-29 2002-03-12 System and method for focused navigation within an interactive television user interface Abandoned US20030046693A1 (en)

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US31573101 true 2001-08-29 2001-08-29
US31761201 true 2001-09-06 2001-09-06
US32499701 true 2001-09-26 2001-09-26
US10097174 US20030046693A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-03-12 System and method for focused navigation within an interactive television user interface

Applications Claiming Priority (29)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US10097174 US20030046693A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-03-12 System and method for focused navigation within an interactive television user interface
US10108178 US7594246B1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-03-27 System and method for focused navigation within a user interface
US10113889 US7735102B1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-03-29 System and method for focused navigation within a user interface
US10186209 US20030046694A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-06-27 System and method for displaying option representations with multiple levels of specificity
US10186210 US20030046695A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-06-27 System and method for enabling focused navigation using filtering and direct-tune buttons
PCT/US2002/027167 WO2003021947A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-26 System and method for displaying option representations with multiple levels of specificity
EP20020797757 EP1433072A4 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-27 System and method for focused navigation within a user interface including context-sensitive areas
EP20020797758 EP1433313B1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-27 System and method for focused navigation within an interactive television user interface
PCT/US2002/027286 WO2003021949A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-27 User interface with scrolling cards navigation
EP20020766131 EP1435171A4 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-27 User interface with scrolling cards navigation
PCT/US2002/027382 WO2003021950A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-27 Epg card navigation and caching of tv programs
PCT/US2002/027381 WO2003021414A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-27 System and method for focused navigation within an interactive television user interface
PCT/US2002/027287 WO2003021459A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-27 System and method for focused navigation within a user interface including context-sensitive areas
PCT/US2002/027289 WO2003021915A3 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-27 System and method for focused navigation within an interactive television user interface
PCT/US2002/027405 WO2003021951A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-28 Navigation using filtering and direct-tune buttons
US10230964 US7080394B2 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-29 System and method for capturing video frames for focused navigation within a user interface
PCT/US2002/027688 WO2003021916A3 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-29 System and method for capturing video frames for focused navigation within a user interface
US10260700 US7380260B1 (en) 2002-03-12 2002-09-30 Focused navigation interface for a PC media center and extension device
US10328754 US7757253B2 (en) 2002-03-12 2002-12-23 System and method for capturing video clips for focused navigation within a user interface
US10328514 US8099680B1 (en) 2002-03-12 2002-12-23 System and method of contextual pre-tuning
PCT/US2003/005931 WO2003079661A3 (en) 2002-03-12 2003-02-27 Focused navigation interface for a home media center with multiple television support
PCT/US2003/006082 WO2003079686A1 (en) 2002-03-12 2003-02-27 Focused navigation interface for a pc media center and extension device
US11442926 US7487459B2 (en) 2001-08-29 2006-05-30 System and method for focused navigation using option type filters
US11426183 US20060236362A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2006-06-23 System and method for focused navigation within a user interface
US12127677 US8601507B2 (en) 2002-03-12 2008-05-27 System and method for focused navigation in a media center/extension device architecture
US12356486 US7752564B2 (en) 2001-08-29 2009-01-20 System and method for focused navigation using option type filters
US12561893 US7954125B2 (en) 2001-08-29 2009-09-17 System and method for focused navigation within a user interface
US12731956 US20100242068A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2010-03-25 System and Method for Capturing Video Clips for Focused Navigation within a User Interface
US13351955 US8677276B1 (en) 2002-03-12 2012-01-17 System and method of contextual pre-tuning

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US10113820 Continuation-In-Part US7055104B1 (en) 2002-03-29 2002-03-29 System and method for focused navigation using filters

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US10108178 Continuation-In-Part US7594246B1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-03-27 System and method for focused navigation within a user interface
US10113820 Continuation-In-Part US7055104B1 (en) 2002-03-29 2002-03-29 System and method for focused navigation using filters
US10113889 Continuation-In-Part US7735102B1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-03-29 System and method for focused navigation within a user interface
US10186210 Continuation-In-Part US20030046695A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-06-27 System and method for enabling focused navigation using filtering and direct-tune buttons
US10186209 Continuation-In-Part US20030046694A1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-06-27 System and method for displaying option representations with multiple levels of specificity
US10230964 Continuation-In-Part US7080394B2 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-08-29 System and method for capturing video frames for focused navigation within a user interface
US10260700 Continuation-In-Part US7380260B1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-09-30 Focused navigation interface for a PC media center and extension device
US10328514 Continuation-In-Part US8099680B1 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-12-23 System and method of contextual pre-tuning
US10328754 Continuation-In-Part US7757253B2 (en) 2001-08-29 2002-12-23 System and method for capturing video clips for focused navigation within a user interface

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US20030046693A1 true true US20030046693A1 (en) 2003-03-06

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US12127677 Active 2025-06-10 US8601507B2 (en) 2001-08-29 2008-05-27 System and method for focused navigation in a media center/extension device architecture
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US7380260B1 (en) 2008-05-27 grant
US20100242068A1 (en) 2010-09-23 application
US20080276273A1 (en) 2008-11-06 application
WO2003079661A2 (en) 2003-09-25 application
US8601507B2 (en) 2013-12-03 grant
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US20030221192A1 (en) 2003-11-27 application
US7757253B2 (en) 2010-07-13 grant

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