Title:
Method of supporting a computer keyboard
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A method of supporting a keyboard includes forming a support element and placing the support element on a substrate. The keyboard is then placed on the support element so that the support element absorbs forces associated with typing on the keyboard.



Inventors:
Anguiano, Randolph Z. (San Antonio, TX, US)
Application Number:
09/733208
Publication Date:
06/13/2002
Filing Date:
12/08/2000
Assignee:
ANGUIANO RANDOLPH Z.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
G06F3/02; (IPC1-7): B65D19/00; A47G29/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20040084588Display with replaceable standMay, 2004Liu et al.
20090308992Beer brewing standDecember, 2009Blichmann
20070170334Hanging device for supporting an article and associated hangerJuly, 2007Ambrose
20090045310APPARATUS FOR AFFIXING DECORATIONS TO HOMESFebruary, 2009Koesema Jr.
20030075963Automobile seat with folding seat backApril, 2003Oberbeck
20080078201Hanging Storage Container SystemApril, 2008Olefson
20010013304COMPUTER MONITOR APRONAugust, 2001Davis et al.
20030010873Low cost optomechanical mount for precisely steering/positioning a light beamJanuary, 2003Wayne
20070257181Adjustable projector mountNovember, 2007Dittmer et al.
20090261218Method of Manufacturing a Vacuum Cup MountOctober, 2009Dellach
20040065790Kitchen standApril, 2004Frey



Primary Examiner:
MARSH, STEVEN M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
LAW OFFICES OF CHRISTOPHER L. MAKAY (San Antonio, TX, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. A method of supporting a keyboard, comprising the steps of: forming a support element; placing the support element on a substrate; and placing the keyboard on the support element.

2. The method according to claim 1 further comprising the step of absorbing forces associated with typing on the keyboard via the support element.

3. The method according to claim 1 wherein the step of forming a support element comprises the step of: forming a body, the body including a first surface for engagedly contacting the keyboard and including a depth extending from the first surface.

4. The method according to claim 3 wherein the step of forming a body comprises the step of configuring the body so dimensioned as to accommodate the keyboard.

5. The method according to claim 3 wherein the step of forming a body comprises configuring the depth so dimensioned as to optimally absorb forces associated with typing on the keyboard.

6. The method according to claim 3 wherein the step of forming a body comprises the step of forming the body from shock absorbing material.

7. The method according to claim 6 wherein the body comprises neoprene.

8. The method according to claim 3 wherein the step of forming a body comprises the step of forming the first surface from non-slip material.

9. The method according to claim 1 wherein the step of forming the support element comprises the step of providing indicia on the body.

10. The method according to claim 3 wherein the step of forming a body further comprises the step of forming a second surface on the body for engagedly contacting the substrate.

11. The method according to claim 10 wherein the step of forming a body further comprises the step of forming the second surface from non-slip material.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention generally relates to computer equipment and, more particularly, but not by way of limitation, to a method of supporting a computer keyboard via a support element.

[0003] 2. Description of the Related Art

[0004] Typically, personal computer keyboards are placed on a flat surface, such as for example a desk or a stand, to support the keyboard while a computer user is typing on the keyboard. Personal computer keyboards are the primary means by which a personal computer receives computer user input and, thus, are often subjected to heavy use.

[0005] As such, keyboards tend to unfavorably move and slide about its supporting surface as the computer user types. In addition, support surfaces tend to be hard as well as flat. Thus, kinetic forces associated with typing on the keyboard are redirected from the support surface toward the computer user. Potential health problems, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, may arise from continuously absorbing kinetic forces associated with typing.

[0006] Accordingly, there is a long felt need for a method of fixedly and ergonomically supporting a computer keyboard.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] In accordance with the present invention, a method of supporting a keyboard, includes forming a support element, placing the support element preferably on a substrate, such as for example a desk top, shelf, or computer workstation, and placing the keyboard on the support element. The support element thus absorbs forces associated with typing on the keyboard.

[0008] Forming a support element includes forming a body. The body is dimensioned so as to accommodate the keyboard. Indicia, such as merchandising information or reference information useful to a computer user, may also be provided on the body.

[0009] The body includes a first surface for engagedly contacting the keyboard and a depth extending from the first surface. The first surface may be formed of non-slip material for fixedly holding the keyboard to the support element. The depth is configured to optimally absorb forces associated with typing on the keyboard. As such, the body is preferably composed of shock absorbing material, such as neoprene.

[0010] Similarly, the body includes a second surface for engagedly contacting the substrate. The second surface may be formed of non-slip material for fixedly holding the support element to the substrate

[0011] It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a method for supporting a keyboard so that the keyboard is fixedly held to a substrate.

[0012] It is a further object of the present invention to provide a method for supporting a keyboard that is ergonomically beneficial.

[0013] Still other objects, features, and advantages of the present invention will become evident to those skilled in the art in light of the following.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0014] FIG. 1 is an isometric view illustrating a support element according to the preferred embodiment for supporting a computer keyboard.

[0015] FIG. 2 is a side view illustrating a method for supporting a computer keyboard via the support element of FIG. 1.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0016] As required, detailed embodiments of the present invention are disclosed herein, however, it is to be understood that the disclosed embodiments are merely exemplary of the invention, which may be embodied in various forms, the figures are not necessarily to scale, and some features may be exaggerated to show details of particular components or steps.

[0017] FIGS. 1 and 2 illustrate a support element 1 according to the preferred embodiment. In general, as shown in FIG. 2, the support element 1 is placed on a substrate 50, such as for example a desktop, shelf, or computer workstation. A keyboard 40 is then placed on the support element 1 so that the support element 1 is positioned between the keyboard 40 and the substrate 50.

[0018] The substrate 50 is essentially flat, thereby allowing the keyboard 40 to rest thereon, while a computer user types on the keyboard 40. In particular, the substrate 50 includes a support surface 55 along the top of the substrate 50 to ultimately support the keyboard 40.

[0019] In the preferred embodiment, the keyboard 40 comprises a keyboard of a type well known in the industry. The keyboard 40 includes a keyboard body 43 and keyboard keys 45 disposed on the keyboard body 43 for receiving computer user input, via typing thereon. The keyboard 40 further includes a resting surface 47, formed along the keyboard body 43, to ultimately rest on the substrate 50.

[0020] Referring to FIG. 1, the support element 1 includes a body 5. The body 5 is so dimensioned as to accommodate the keyboard 40.

[0021] The body 5, in turn, includes a first surface 10 for engagedly contacting the keyboard 40. In particular, the resting surface 47 of the keyboard 40 contacts the first surface 10 of the support element 1. As shown in FIG. 1, the first surface 10 may include indicia 20 thereon, such as for example merchandising information or reference information useful to a computer user.

[0022] Similarly, the body 5 includes a second surface 14 for engagedly contacting the substrate 50. Inasmuch, the supporting surface 55 of the substrate 50 contacts the second surface 14 of the support element.

[0023] The body 5 further includes a depth 12 formed along the body 5 between the first surface 10 and the second surface 14. In the preferred embodiment, the depth 12 is so dimensioned as to favorably absorb kinetic forces associated with typing on the keyboard 40. Kinetic forces, such as compressive forces, are directed from the keyboard 40 through the depth 12 to the substrate 50. Kinetic forces associated with typing are then redirected from the support surface toward the computer user.

[0024] In addition to absorbing forces traveling from the keyboard 40 to the substrate 50, the support element 1, along the depth 12, absorbs forces redirected from the substrate 50 to the keyboard 40 and ultimately to the computer user. By continuously absorbing kinetic forces associated with typing, the support element 1 favorably reduces the risk of health problems associated with using computer keyboards.

[0025] It should be added that the body 5 is preferably composed of a resilient, shock absorbing material, such as neoprene or any soft material suitable to provide a shock absorbing effect. Furthermore, the first surface 10 and the second surface 14 may each be composed of a non-slip material, such as neoprene, to fixedly hold the keyboard 40 to the substrate 50 while typing. The preferred embodiment contemplates both the first surface 10 and the second surface 14 composed of non-slip material.

[0026] Inasmuch, FIG. 2 depicts the preferred method for supporting the keyboard 40 via the support element 1. The second surface 14 of the support element 1 is positioned on the supporting surface 55 of the substrate 50, thereby contactedly engaging the supporting surface 55. The resting surface 47 of the keyboard 40 is positioned on the first surface 10 of the support element 1, thereby contactedly engaging the first surface 10. The keyboard 40 thus rests on the substrate 50 while supported by the support element 1.

[0027] The support element 1 absorbs forces associated with typing. The support element 1 may be configured to fixedly hold the keyboard 40 to the substrate 50 while typing. Moreover, the support element 1 may display indicia 20 along the first surface 10.

[0028] Although the present invention has been described in terms of the foregoing embodiment, such description has been for exemplary purposes only and, as will be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art, many alternatives, equivalents, and variations of varying degrees will fall within the scope of the present invention. That scope, accordingly, is not to be limited in any respect by the foregoing description, rather, it is defined only by the claims that follow.