Title:
Set of postcards
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention relates to a kit to enable one to send a message with the help of a postcard or a similar postal item to visually impaired or blind persons who have the ability to read Braille characters produced with the help of a template which exhibits reversed dot-shaped holes corresponding to the characters in the Braille alphabet. Included in the kit are a sheet-shaped underlay consisting of cellular plastic or some other readily flexible material, a template of the aforementioned kind which exhibits reversed dot-shaped holes corresponding to the characters in the Braille alphabet, a number of sheet-shaped postcards consisting of a tough, plastic-containing material, and a hand-held pressure tool which is designed to execute the formation of the dots in the postcard, in conjunction with which the aforementioned pressure tool consist of a pointed impression part projecting from a holder.



Inventors:
Svensson, Sven-goran (Goteborg, SE)
Application Number:
10/168576
Publication Date:
06/26/2003
Filing Date:
10/07/2002
Assignee:
SVENSSON SVEN-GORAN
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
206/232
International Classes:
G09B21/02; (IPC1-7): B65D69/00
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
SUHOL, DMITRY
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Orum & Roth (53 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, IL, 60604, US)
Claims:
1. Kit (1) to enable one to send a message with the help of a postcard (2) or a similar postal item to visually impaired or blind persons who have the ability to read Braille characters (3) produced with the help of a template (4) which exhibits reversed dot-shaped holes (5) corresponding to the characters in the Braille alphabet, characterized in that there is included in the kit (1) a sheet-shaped underlay (6) consisting of cellular plastic or some other readily flexible material, a template (4) of the aforementioned kind which exhibits reversed dot-shaped holes (5) corresponding to the characters in the Braille alphabet, a number of sheet-shaped post cards (2) consisting of a tough, plastic-containing material, and a hand-held pressure tool (7) which is designed to execute the formation of the dots (3) in the post card (2), in conjunction with which the aforementioned pressure tool (7) consists of a pointed impression part (8) projecting from a holder (9).

2. Kit in accordance with patent claim 1, characterized in that the pointed impression part (8) of the aforementioned pressure tool (7) projects from a contact part (11) which is so arranged as to restrict the penetration by the impression part (8) into the post card (2).

3. Kit in accordance with patent claim 2, characterized in that the contact part (11) is formed by the front end edge face (11) of the holder (9).

4. Kit in accordance with one or other of patent claims 2-3, characterized in that the aforementioned impression part (8) exhibits a curved front form forming an impression stamp.

5. Kit in accordance with one or other of patent claims 1-4, characterized in that the aforementioned post card (2) is in the form of paper with a plastic content of ca. 20%.

6. Kit in accordance with one or other of patent claims 1-5, characterized in that the post card (2) exhibits on one side (A) a number of marked rows of squares (12) adapted to produce the intended character (14) in the respective square (13).

7. Kit in accordance with patent claim 6, characterized in that present in the aforementioned squares (13) are numerical markings (15), in conjunction which the numbering starts in reverse on the top row (12).

8. Kit in accordance with one or other of patent claims 6-7, characterized in that on the opposite side (8) of the post card is a picture (17), preferably a picture (17) produced by a famous artist.

9. Kit in accordance with one or other of patent claims 1-8, characterized in that the aforementioned sheet-shaped underlay (6) exhibits a thickness (X) of a few millimetres.

10. Kit in accordance with patent claim 9, characterized in that the thickness (X) of the sheet exceeds the effective length (Y) of the pressure tool (7).

11. Kit in accordance with one or other of the above patent claims, characterized in that the template (4) is formed from plastic film material with a thickness (Z) between 0.4 and 0.6 mm, and in that it is so arranged as to carry a number of removable stamps (18) provided with adhesive and functioning as postal franking.

12. Kit in accordance with one or other of the above patent claims, characterized in that all the component parts in the kit (1) are packed in a common pouch or in some other similar wrapper.

Description:
[0001] The present invention relates to a kit to enable one to send a message with the help of a postcard or a similar postal item to visually impaired or blind persons who have the ability to read Braille characters produced with the help of a template which exhibits reversed dot-shaped holes corresponding to the characters in the Braille alphabet.

[0002] Post cards for the visually impaired are previously disclosed in SE 9500941-1. A number of disadvantages are nevertheless associated with what is shown there to have been previously disclosed. Among other things, the post card itself is not is not specially adapted for the purpose of having clear impressions made in it and also of being able to withstand rough handling in today's postal sorting facilities, where large sorting machines present the risk of tearing postal items that are unable to withstand rough handling.

[0003] The execution of the impressions can take place using any available sharp object, for example a pen, which runs the risk of penetrating the post card with a poor reading result as a consequence. A special underlay specially adapted for the purpose was not provided previously, and it was necessary to use the nearest available soft underlay that was ready to hand, such as a newspaper.

[0004] The principal object of the present invention is thus, in the first instance, to make available a kit of the indicated kind which solves the aforementioned problems among others.

[0005] The aforementioned object is achieved by means of a kit in accordance with the present invention, which is characterized essentially in that there is included in the kit a sheet-shaped underlay consisting of cellular plastic or some other readily flexible material, a template of the aforementioned kind which exhibits reversed dot-shaped holes corresponding to the characters in the Braille alphabet, a number of sheet-shaped post cards consisting of a tough, plastic-containing material, and a hand-held pressure tool which is designed to execute the formation of the dots in the post card, in conjunction with which the aforementioned pressure tool consists of a pointed impression part projecting from a holder.

[0006] The invention is described below as a preferred illustrative embodiment with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

[0007] FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of the different components included in a kit;

[0008] FIG. 2 shows one side of a post card in accordance with the invention;

[0009] FIG. 3 shows the other side of such a post card;

[0010] FIG. 4 shows a pressure tool viewed from one of its long sides;

[0011] FIG. 4A shows the tip of such a pressure tool;

[0012] FIGS. 5 and 6 show two examples of a marking template;

[0013] FIG. 7 shows an example of an envelope intended to accommodate a letter card; and

[0014] FIG. 8 shows an example of a letter card.

[0015] A kit 1, which is so arranged as to make it possible for everyone, including those with no knowledge of Braille, to send a message with the help of a postcard 2 or a similar postal item to visually impaired or blind persons who have the ability to read Braille characters 3 produced with the help of a template 4 which exhibits reversed dot-shaped holes 5 which are so arranged as to correspond to the characters in the Braille alphabet.

[0016] Included in the kit 1 are the followings items, which are preferably packed in a common transparent pouch or in some other similar wrapper: a sheet-shaped underlay 6, a template 4, a number of sheet-shaped post cards 2 and a hand-held pressure tool 7 for forming dots. More specifically, the underlay 6 is sheet-shaped and consists of cellular plastic or some other readily flexible material. The template 4 exhibits in a previously disclosed fashion a number of reversed dot-shaped holes 5, which are so arranged as to correspond to characters in the Braille alphabet. The aforementioned holes 5 can be enclosed within a circular ring to make them easier to find.

[0017] The aforementioned post cards 2, which can be of any appropriate number, consist of a tough, plastic-containing material which enables the post card 2 to withstand rough handling, for example in conjunction with postal sorting, but still permits impressions to be made in the material to form easily readable raised dots in the aforementioned post card 2.

[0018] The hand-held pressure tool 7 is executed so that it is able to produce the right formation of dots in the post card 2 with the correct impression 3 without damaging the material in the post card 2. The aforementioned pressure tool 7 consists of a pointed impression part 8 projecting from a holder 9 for the aforementioned pressure tool 7.

[0019] The pointed impression part 8 of the aforementioned pressure tool projects in a direction 10 from a front contact part 11 of the tool, namely the front end edge face 11 of the holder 9, which is so arranged as to restrict the depth D of the impression made by the impression part 8 in reverse form in the post card 2 on one side A, so that the visually impaired person can subsequently read the character facing the correct way on the other side B of the post card.

[0020] The aforementioned impression part 8 exhibits a curved front form on the front part 8A forming an impression stamp.

[0021] The aforementioned post card 2 is in the form of paper with a plastic content of ca. 20%. A paper known as SIC-offset 0.20 mm with a PVC material content of 300 g supplied by Svenskt Papper should preferably be selected.

[0022] In order to make it easier for users to write straight and with the correct line spacing, the aforementioned post card 2 exhibits marked rows of squares 12 distributed at the right vertical distance L from one another and adapted to ensure that the template 4 is guided so that the right row of squares 13 is aligned directly with the intended character 14 in the aforementioned square 13.

[0023] Present in the aforementioned squares 13 are numerical markings 15, for example 1, 2, 3, etc., running in a direction 16 from right to left and starting in reverse on the top row 12.

[0024] On the opposite side B of the post card is a picture 17, for example a photograph, although preferably a picture produced by a famous artist.

[0025] The aforementioned sheet-shaped underlay 6 exhibits a thickness X of a few millimetres and is of sufficient density to permit the pressure tool 7 to be pressed with its tip part 8 into the material in the sheet 6 without major difficulty. The thickness X of the sheet will then exceed the effective length L of the pressure tool 7.

[0026] The aforementioned template 4 is formed from a plastic material, preferably a film material, which has a thickness Z between 0.4 and 0.6 mm. The template 4 is also so arranged as to carry a number, for example two, of stamps 18 provided with adhesive and functioning as the approved level of postage, which are removable from the template 4, for example by being punched from the template 4 in one of its corner areas.

[0027] The function of the invention should have been appreciated from the above description, although in brief terms it functions in a special embodiment as follows:

[0028] The aim of the products is to make it possible for the public, without being in possession of prior knowledge, to write “post cards” to visually impaired persons who read Braille (also referred to incorrectly as writing in blind characters).

[0029] The products can be packed in a plastic envelope containing:

[0030] A sheet of cellular plastic as a writing underlay.

[0031] Two “post cards” made of a PVC-containing paper (or a paper of equivalent quality with characteristics which make the paper tough), measuring 122×167 mm.

[0032] A punching template made of plastic film with holes punched in accordance with the Braille alphabet.

[0033] A punching pin made of plastic with a tip suitable for creating “bumps” or points in the post card.

[0034] An A4 sheet of paper with printed instructions in 8-16 languages.

[0035] More detailed description of the product

[0036] A 2.5 mm thick sheet of cellular plastic. The use of this soft material as the underlay for the “post card” allows the tip of the punching pin to produce an indentation in the “post card”. Format 122×167 mm. Naturally, the thickness of the underlay sheet can vary from only a few millimetres up to several millimetres, for example ca. 1.7 mm, which is another appropriate thickness.

[0037] The format, 122×167 mm, is the standard format for post cards and means that the products will fit in existing post card display stands. The paper is characterized by the fact that it is tough and does not puncture easily when it is subjected to the pressure applied by the tip of the punching pin. A properly executed punching pin will also produce a properly executed point on the paper. The format of the post card can thus also be varied from larger than or smaller than the indicated size, for example in order to conform to the standard for letters and other postal items in a particular country.

[0038] The punching template contains 36 characters in a system of squares. The characters consist of 30 letters, five punctuation marks and one so-called numeral character. The punching template has punched-out holes for every single character in accordance with the internationally used Braille alphabet. The punching template can also exhibit more of the characters indicated above, for example 40 characters, i.e. 30 letters, seven punctuation marks and three further characters to occupy all the squares with characters. The punching template can also be executed on a thinner film than indicated, for example ca. 0.2 mm.

[0039] The alphabet on this punching template is reversed, because the points must be read on the rear of the paper that is embossed with the help of the template, where the points appear in the right order. The Braille characters are similarly written from right to left. The punching template is preferably executed in 0.42 mm thick plastic film (similar to overhead film, but about twice the thickness). The right-hand corner of the punching template is provided with perforations. With the help of these, the writer of the post card can tear off two “stamps”, which provide evidence of postage for the post card.

[0040] The aforementioned stamps 18 can also be discarded and, instead of using perforated tear-off stamps, which could pose problems in the automatic mail sorting operation, it is possible to cause information 118 to be printed on the item 2, 102, for example on an envelope 150, to the effect that the item can he posted free of charge.

[0041] The punching pin is executed in plastic with a tip of ca. 2 mm in length and with a rounded end. This rounding is in accordance with the standard used on so-called styluses. A stylus is used by the visually impaired to write Braille characters when they do not have access to special typewriters for the purpose. The diameter of the tip allows it to be pushed through the holes stamped in the punching template. The “handle” of the punching pin is 2.5 mm thick.

[0042] The aforementioned envelope 150 made of plastic or cardboard, in which the products are packed, can preferably also function as an envelope or wrapper for the item 2, 102 when it is sent for delivery by post. This also facilitates automatic postal sorting, so that nothing becomes trapped in the sorting machines. To this case, the post card item could be designated as a letter card.

[0043] The sheet of instructions provides a brief description of the Braille alphabet and, in particular, serves as a guide to the use of the Braille writing equipment. See below.

[0044] Proceed as follows:

[0045] Place the post card on the soft underlay.

[0046] Begin by practising in the squares marked T S E T to perfect your pressure technique.

[0047] Place the letter on the punching template that you wish to write over the square at the top right of the post card. (The Braille characters will be read from the other side of the card. You should thus write from right to left. The T S E T which you practiced will be read as T E S T by the visually impaired person).

[0048] Push the punching pin into the indicated holes.

[0049] Move the next desired letter on the punching template to the next square on the post card (moving the left!).

[0050] Push the punching pin into the indicated holes.

[0051] Continue like this. Good luck!

[0052] The characters 1-9 are so-called numeral characters.

[0053] To write 1: numeral character followed by the letter A.

[0054] To write 2: numeral character followed by the letter B.

[0055] To write 0: numeral character followed by the letter J.

[0056] The envelope can be embossed on one side with Braille characters with the wording “Touch Card” or similar, so that visually impaired persons will understand that the item contains a Braille message.

[0057] The invention is not restricted to what is described above and shown in the drawings, however, but can be varied within the scope of the patent claims without departing from the idea of invention.