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US20050251016A1 - Image acquiring device and method or rotating images - Google Patents

Image acquiring device and method or rotating images Download PDF

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Publication number
US20050251016A1
US20050251016A1 US11107908 US10790805A US2005251016A1 US 20050251016 A1 US20050251016 A1 US 20050251016A1 US 11107908 US11107908 US 11107908 US 10790805 A US10790805 A US 10790805A US 2005251016 A1 US2005251016 A1 US 2005251016A1
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Prior art keywords
signal
digital
image
device
mark
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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.)
Abandoned
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US11107908
Inventor
Ya-Han Chuang
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Avision Inc
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Avision Inc
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    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04NPICTORIAL COMMUNICATION, e.g. TELEVISION
    • H04N1/00Scanning, transmission or reproduction of documents or the like, e.g. facsimile transmission; Details thereof
    • H04N1/387Composing, repositioning or otherwise geometrically modifying originals
    • H04N1/3877Image rotation

Abstract

An image acquiring device and method of rotating images includes a scanning module, a driving mechanism, a selecting module, a control-processing unit and a memory. The scanning module scans a plurality of originals in sequence in conjunction with the driving mechanism. The selecting module selects a specific mark of a first original as a basis for judging an orientation state of a second original. The control-processing unit generates a digital mark signal stored in the memory according to the signals output from the scanning module and the selecting module. The control-processing unit judges a position of the digital mark signal in a digital signal obtained after the second original is scanned, and thus generates a rotating signal and rotates the digital signal into a normal image signal according to the rotating signal. Thus, the document image may be automatically rotated into a normal state.

Description

    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0001]
    1. Field of the Invention
  • [0002]
    The invention relates to an image acquiring device and an image acquiring method of rotating images, and more particularly to an image acquiring device and an image acquiring method enabling a user to select a specific mark of an original as a basis for image rotation.
  • [0003]
    2. Description of the Related Art
  • [0004]
    In the prior art, the scanned image has to be transferred to a computer and processed by the application software so that the image can be rotated by 180 degrees. Typically, the user views the scanned image and determines whether the image has to be rotated or how the image has to be rotated, or an OCR (Optical Character Recognition) method using specific OCR software can be used to determine the rotation angle, as disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,011,877, 6,546,215, and 6,574,375. Alternatively, the conventional copier provides the user the function of selecting the orientation of the image of the to-be-copied document, as disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 6,314,213.
  • [0005]
    However, more and more scanners are designed as independent devices, which need not to be directly connected to the computer. For example, some scanners can be directly connected to a printer and directly process the scanned results into print signals that can be accepted by the printer. Alternatively, some scanners can be directly connected to the Internet or the fax network and directly process the scanned results into digital signals that can be transmitted through the Internet or fax network. When the user manually places the documents or when an automatic document feeder is used to feed a stack of documents, the images of some documents may have an orientation opposite to that of the other documents. In this case, it is very inconvenient to manually rotate the images using the application software on the computer or using the image rotating method on the copier. Using the OCR method to process the stack of documents requires a relatively large memory and the documents only having pictures as contents cannot be recognized.
  • [0006]
    Thus, it is an important object of the invention to simplify the judgement of the document orientation according to an initial setting.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0007]
    It is therefore an object of the invention to provide an image acquiring device capable of rotating images and a method therefor, wherein the judgement of the document orientation may be simplified according to an initial setting, and then the images may be rotated according to the judgement.
  • [0008]
    To achieve the above-mentioned object, the invention provides an image acquiring device including a scanning module, a driving mechanism, a selecting module, a control-processing unit and a memory. The scanning module scans a plurality of originals in sequence in conjunction with the driving mechanism. The selecting module selects a specific mark on a first original as a basis for judging an orientation state of a second original. The control-processing unit generates a digital mark signal stored in the memory according to signals output from the scanning module and the selecting module. The control-processing unit judges a position of the digital mark signal in a digital signal obtained after the second original is scanned, and thus generates a rotating signal and rotates the digital signal into a normal image signal according to the rotating signal. Thus, the document image may be automatically rotated into a normal state.
  • [0009]
    Alternatively, the rotating signal and the digital signal can be directly outputted to an image processing device, which performs the subsequent rotating process.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0010]
    FIG. 1 shows a first original and a second original to be scanned by an image acquiring device of the invention.
  • [0011]
    FIG. 2 is a block diagram showing an image acquiring device according to a first embodiment of the invention.
  • [0012]
    FIG. 3 shows an example of a selecting module of FIG. 2.
  • [0013]
    FIG. 4 shows another example of the selecting module of FIG. 2.
  • [0014]
    FIG. 5 is a block diagram showing an image acquiring device according to a second embodiment of the invention.
  • [0015]
    FIG. 6 is a flow chart showing an image acquiring method of the invention.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • [0016]
    FIG. 1 shows a first original and a second original to be scanned by an image acquiring device of the invention. FIG. 2 is a block diagram showing an image acquiring device according to a first embodiment of the invention. Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, the image acquiring device 10 of the invention includes a scanning module 12, a driving mechanism 14, a selecting module 16, a control-processing unit 18 and a memory 20. The scanning module 12 sequentially scans a first original D1 and a second original D2 to generate a first analog signal SA1 and a second analog signal SA2 respectively. Each original has a specific mark M at a specific position P. Usually, the specific mark M is located at one of the four long rectangles depicted by dashed lines of FIG. 1. In this embodiment, the two originals are illustrated as an example and the invention is not limited thereto. When the number of the originals is greater than 2, the originals after the second original are processed in the same manner as that for processing the second original.
  • [0017]
    The driving mechanism 14 moves the scanning module 12 with respect to each of the originals. Thus, the driving mechanism 14 can be a scanning module driving mechanism for moving the scanning module of the scanning module 12, or an automatic sheet-feeding mechanism for feeding the originals. The selecting module 16 selects the specific mark M on the first original D1 to generate a standard position signal SSP corresponding to a position SP of the specific mark M according to a reference coordinate system of the image acquiring device.
  • [0018]
    The control-processing unit 18 respectively processes the first analog signal SA1 and the second analog signal SA2 into a first digital signal DS1 and a second digital signal DS2, wherein the analog front end amplification, the analog-to-digital conversion and the gain processing may be applied to the signals. Then, the control-processing unit 18 generates a digital mark signal SDM of the specific mark M according to the first digital signal DS1. That is, the image signal of the specific mark M is selected.
  • [0019]
    The selecting module 16 can automatically determine the position SP of the specific mark M according to the first digital signal DS1, or can provide a selection interface for users such that the users can select the specific mark M by inputting instructions on the selection interface.
  • [0020]
    The memory 20 stores the digital mark signal SDM and the standard position signal SSP, based on which the control-processing unit 18 judges an orientation state of the second digital signal DS2. The control-processing unit 18 identifies a position of the digital mark signal SDM in the second digital signal DS2 and generates a rotating signal ST. That is, when it is judged that the digital mark signal SDM of the second digital signal DS2 is also positioned at the position SP, or the digital signal of the second digital signal DS2 at the position SP is the digital mark signal SDM, the second digital signal DS2 does not have to be rotated, or the rotating signal ST may be defined as 0 degrees. When it is judged that the digital mark signal SDM of the second digital signal DS2 is not positioned at the position SP, or the digital signal of the second digital signal DS2 at the position SP is not the digital mark signal SDM, the second digital signal DS2 has to be rotated by 180 degrees, or the rotating signal ST may be defined as 180 degrees. Of course, it is also possible to easily judge whether the second digital signal DS2 has to be rotated by 90 degrees or by 270 degrees. Thus, the rotating signal ST indicates that the second digital signal DS2 be rotated by 0, 90, 180 or 270 degrees. The control-processing unit 18 can identify the digital mark signal SDM in the second digital signal DS2 by comparing the digital signals which may include steps of calculating the ratio of the number of black pixels to the number of white pixels, calculating the gray-scale distribution and determining the matching rate between the digital signals.
  • [0021]
    Then, the control-processing unit 18 rotates the second digital signal DS2 according to the rotating signal ST and generates a normal image signal SN. The normal image signal SN can be outputted to an image processing device 30 through an input/output port 22. The image acquiring device can be connected to an image processing device 30 through an input/output port 22 and outputs the normal image signal SN to the image processing device 30. In another embodiment, the image acquiring device can be connected to an image processing device 30 through an input/output port 22 and outputs the second digital signal DS2 and the rotating signal ST to the image processing device 30. Then, the image processing device 30 performs a rotation process on the second digital signal DS2 according to the rotating signal. The image processing device 30 includes, without limitation to, one of the Internet, the fax network, the personal computer, the notebook computer, the workstation and the like.
  • [0022]
    In an modified embodiment, the control-processing unit 18 may further process the normal image signal SN into a print signal and output the print signal to a printing device connected to the image acquiring device through the input/output port 22.
  • [0023]
    FIG. 3 shows an example of a selecting module of FIG. 2. Referring to FIG. 3, the selecting module 16 includes a display 16A and an input device, such as a mouse, a track ball, etc, or a keyboard device 16B. A user can view an image of the first original D1 on the display 16A. The input device 16B can be operated by the user to select the specific mark M on the display 16A or to input a set of parameters to select the position SP.
  • [0024]
    FIG. 4 shows another example of the selecting module of FIG. 2. Referring to FIG. 4, the selecting module 16 includes a plurality of buttons (an input device) 16C operated by the user to select the specific mark M on the display 16A. Each button 16C corresponds to a default position on the original, so it is useful to simplify the procedure of inputting the positions of the specific marks because any specific mark on a document is typically positioned on one of these default positions. Thus, in this embodiment, the user can directly select from the default positions the position of the specific mark before the first original is scanned. That is, the user can select the position of the specific mark on the provided sheet layout of the known sheet size. Alternatively, the position of the specific mark can be inputted by the user through the keyboard without the image of the first original being viewed. Furthermore, the position of the specific mark may also be inputted by the user through the buttons according to the display. In this condition, the buttons can be disposed around the display. Alternatively, the display may be a touch panel having a plurality of buttons to be directly pressed by the user to make the selection.
  • [0025]
    Compared to the prior art using the OCR (Optical Character Recognition) method to judge the original orientation, the structure of the first embodiment requires a smaller memory, and the judging method of the first embodiment is simpler.
  • [0026]
    FIG. 5 is a block diagram showing an image acquiring device according to a second embodiment of the invention. Referring to FIG. 5, the image acquiring device of this embodiment includes a scanning module 12, a driving mechanism 14, a selecting module 16, a control-processing unit 18′, a memory 20 and an input/output port 22′. The scanning module 12, the driving mechanism 14, the selecting module 16 and the memory 20 are the same as those of the first embodiment, and detailed descriptions thereof will be omitted. The control-processing unit 18′ respectively processes the first analog signal SA1 and the second analog signal SA2 into a first digital signal DS1 and a second digital signal DS2, and generates a digital mark signal SDM of the specific mark M according to the first digital signal DS1. The control-processing unit 18′ determines a position of the digital mark signal SDM in the second digital signal DS2, and thus generates a rotating signal ST. The input/output port 22′ outputs the second digital signal DS2 and the rotating signal ST to an image processing device 30′ such that the image processing device 30′ rotates the second digital signal DS2 according to the rotating signal ST.
  • [0027]
    Compared to the first embodiment, the second embodiment has a simpler structure and requires a smaller memory, and the image acquiring device can perform the procedures more efficiently.
  • [0028]
    FIG. 6 is a flow chart showing an image acquiring method of the invention. As shown in FIG. 6, the image acquiring method of the invention capable of rotating images sequentially scans a first original D1 and a second original D2 and generates a first analog signal SA1 and a second analog signal SA2. A specific mark M is located at a specific position P of each original. The image acquiring method of the invention includes the following steps.
  • [0029]
    In step 51, the first original D1 is scanned to obtain the first analog signal SA1.
  • [0030]
    In step 52, the first analog signal SA1 is processed in to the first digital signal DS1.
  • [0031]
    In step 53, the specific mark M on the first original D1 is selected and a standard position signal SSP is generated corresponding to a position of the specific mark M according to a reference coordinate system of the image acquiring device.
  • [0032]
    In step 54, a digital mark signal SDM of the specific mark M is generated according to the first digital signal DS1.
  • [0033]
    In step 55, the digital mark signal SDM and the standard position signal SSP, based on which an orientation state of the second original D2 is judged, are stored.
  • [0034]
    In step 56, the second original D2 is scanned to obtain a second analog signal SA2.
  • [0035]
    In step 57, the second analog signal SA2 is processed into a second digital signal DS2.
  • [0036]
    In step 58, a position of the digital mark signal SDM in the second digital signal DS2 is identified to generate a rotating signal ST.
  • [0037]
    In step 59, the second digital signal DS2 is rotated to generate a normal image signal SN according to the rotating signal ST; or in step 60, the rotating signal ST and the second digital signal DS2 are outputted to an image processing device 30. It is to be noted that the first digital signal DS1 in step 52 is also outputted to the image processing device 30 together with the rotating signal ST indicating a rotation of zero degrees.
  • [0038]
    Step 53 can include the sub-steps of: providing a user a selection interface, which may be similar to the display 16A, the keyboard device 16B and the button 16C of FIGS. 3 and 4 or any proper combination thereof, and receiving an input by a user through the selection interface and selecting the specific mark M. Alternatively, step 53 can be made by a selecting unit, which automatically determines the position SP of the specific mark M according to first digital signal DS1.
  • [0039]
    Similarly, the above-mentioned rotating signal ST indicates that the second digital signal DS2 be rotated by 0 or 180 degrees. However, the rotating signal ST can also indicate that the second digital signal DS2 be rotated by 90 or 270 degrees.
  • [0040]
    According to the image acquiring device and method of the invention, the user only has to make a simple setting before or after the first original is scanned in order to enable the image acquiring device to automatically rotate the subsequent scanned images into the normal state, such that all the scanned images have the same orientation. The required memory capacity of this invention can be effectively reduced from that of the prior art using the OCR technology. Alternatively, if the scanned signal is converted into a digital signal and a rotating signal, which are outputted to the computer system for processing the signals, the required memory capacity may be further reduced, and the user can operate this device more effectively.
  • [0041]
    While the invention has been described by way of examples and in terms of preferred embodiments, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiments. To the contrary, it is intended to cover various modifications. Therefore, the scope of the appended claims should be accorded the broadest interpretation so as to encompass all such modifications.

Claims (17)

  1. 1. An image acquiring device, comprising:
    a scanning module for sequentially scanning a first original and a second original to respectively generate a first analog signal and a second analog signal, wherein a specific mark is located at a specific position of each of the originals;
    a driving mechanism for moving the scanning module with respect to each of the originals;
    a selecting module for selecting the specific mark on the first original and generating a standard position signal corresponding to a position of the specific mark according to a reference coordinate system of the image acquiring device;
    a control-processing unit for processing the first analog signal and the second analog signal into a first digital signal and a second digital signal respectively, and generating a digital mark signal of the specific mark;
    a memory for storing the digital mark signal and the standard position signal, based on which the control-processing unit judges an orientation state of the second digital signal, wherein the control-processing unit identifies a position of the digital mark signal in the second digital signal and generates a rotating signal.
  2. 2. The device according to claim 1, wherein the control-processing unit further rotates the second digital signal according to the rotating signal and generates a normal image signal.
  3. 3. The device according to claim 1, wherein the selecting module comprises:
    a display on which a user views an image of the first original; and
    an input device through which the user selects the specific mark on the display.
  4. 4. The device according to claim 1, wherein the selecting module comprises:
    an input device through which a user selects the specific mark.
  5. 5. The device according to claim 1, wherein the selecting module automatically determines the position of the specific mark according to the first digital signal.
  6. 6. The device according to claim 1, wherein the image acquiring device is connected to an image processing device through an input/output port and outputs the second digital signal and the rotating signal to the image processing device, such that the image processing device performs a rotation process on the second digital signal according to the rotating signal.
  7. 7. The device according to claim 2, wherein the image acquiring device is connected to an image processing device through an input/output port and outputs the normal image signal to the image processing device.
  8. 8. The device according to claim 2, wherein the image acquiring device is connected to an printing device through an input/output port and the control-processing unit further processes the normal image signal into a print signal and outputs the print signal to the printing device.
  9. 9. The device according to claim 1, wherein the rotating signal indicates that the second digital signal be rotated by 0 or 180 degrees.
  10. 10. The device according to claim 1, wherein the rotating signal indicates that the second digital signal be rotated by 0, 90, 180 or 270 degrees.
  11. 11. An image acquiring method for scanning a first original and a second original, a specific mark being located at a specific position of each of the originals, the method comprising the steps of:
    scanning the first original to obtain a first analog signal;
    processing the first analog signal into a first digital signal;
    selecting the specific mark on the first original and generating a standard position signal corresponding to a position of the specific mark according to a reference coordinate system;
    generating a digital mark signal of the specific mark;
    storing the digital mark signal and the standard position signal, for judging an orientation state of the second original;
    scanning the second original to obtain a second analog signal;
    processing the second analog signal into a second digital signal; and
    identifying a position of the digital mark signal in the second digital signal to generate a rotating signal.
  12. 12. The method according to claim 11, further comprising the step of:
    rotating the second digital signal according to the rotating signal and generating a normal image signal.
  13. 13. The method according to claim 11, wherein the step of generating the standard position signal comprises:
    providing a selection interface for a user; and
    receiving an input from the user who operates the selection interface to select the specific mark.
  14. 14. The method according to claim 11, wherein the step of generating the standard position signal is performed by a selecting unit which automatically determines the position of the specific mark according to the first digital signal.
  15. 15. The method according to claim 11, further comprising the step of:
    outputting the rotating signal and the second digital signal to an image processing device.
  16. 16. The method according to claim 11, wherein the rotating signal indicates that the second digital signal be rotated by 0 or 180 degrees.
  17. 17. The method according to claim 11, wherein the rotating signal indicates that the second digital signal be rotated by 0, 90, 180 or 270 degrees.
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