Title:
Clearview computer workstation
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The invention is of an improved computer workstation, which provides a comfortable ergonomically correct height adjustable workstation that is stable, adjustable for computer equipment, easily maneuverable, visually unobtrusive, and cost effective. Applicant's workstation uses a telescoping vertical support for the monitor that eliminates the common unadjustable vertical supports of typical desks/workstations and thus provides greater space for user comfort. Additionally, the workstation uses expandable support shelves for additional storage space and stability as well as adjustable support mechanisms to improve keyboard location.



Inventors:
Song, Edward (Plano, TX, US)
Application Number:
10/421300
Publication Date:
10/28/2004
Filing Date:
04/23/2003
Assignee:
SONG EDWARD
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47B21/00; A47B21/03; (IPC1-7): A47B37/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
MCPARTLIN, SARAH BURNHAM
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DAVID G. HENRY (Waco, TX, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. A computer workstation comprising: A monitor platform; a workstation base support platform; variable distance mating means for mating said monitor platform and said workstation base support platform over distances varying between a minimal distance and a maximum distance.

2. The invention of claim 1 wherein said monitor platform includes a means for engaging equipment.

3. The invention of claim 1 further comprising: A keyboard tray; multi-directional variable distance mating means for mating said keyboard tray to said computer workstation over multidirectional distances varying between a minimal distance and a maximum distance from said computer workstation.

4. The invention of claim 1 further comprising: expandable support shelves expandably attached to said workstation base support platform being movable over horizontal distances varying between a minimal distance and a maximum distance from said base support platform.

5. The invention of claim 3 further comprising: one or more expandable keyboard support shelves slidably attached to said keyboard tray.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention relates to a space saving, ergonomic, adjustable, and visually unobstructive computer workstation.

[0003] 2. Background Information

[0004] Human factors and ergonomics design approaches to office equipment are a much needed and drastically overdue improvement to office equipment technology. For decades office workers have dealt with debilitating designs of desks and chairs. Designers and manufacturers of such equipment never envisioned the damaging physiological effects of poor posture or eyestrain caused by using ergonomically incorrect office equipment. During such times, priority was either placed on limiting the costs of equipment or maximizing the aesthetically pleasing aspects of the equipment. Whatever the reason, the comfort and usability of office equipment was always considered of secondary importance. In recent years the physiological and ergonomic design aspects of computer workstations have come to the forefront of office equipment design but with only limited improvements.

[0005] The problem has been to develop computer workstations that provide height adjustability to accommodate users of various sizes (specifically, legroom and knee clearance, thereby promoting correct posture and comfort), provide height adjustability for computer monitors (thereby eliminating eyestrain by placing the monitor at the proper eye level for each user), provide a range of multi-directional adjustability for keyboard placement (thereby providing a comfortable user position to promote correct posture and reduce the possibility of debilitating injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome), provide a stable and adjustable platform to accommodate computers and equipment of various shapes and sizes, provide a means of workstation maneuverability allowing for single user movement with minimal effort, provide minimalistic visual obstruction characteristics (thereby satisfying aesthetically pleasing concerns for workstations to blend in with the surrounding decor rather than workstations overtaking a room's decor), and are cost effective. Height adjustability for a workstation is indeed a perplexing problem. Typically, the problem has been circumvented by using height adjustable chairs which force the user to conform to the desk's dimensions rather than the desk conforming to the user's dimensions. This backward approach has led to poor posture, cramped legroom, and an overall uncomfortable fit with the workstation as one user's extremities may align with the given design, but another's may not. Furthermore, addressing the problem with adjustable chairs may somewhat satisfy legroom issues, but it fully ignores the fact that using a chair to address the legroom problem for a tall or short user creates other problems associated with hand-to-keyboard placement and eyestrain caused by viewing a computer monitor from an improper angle. There are a number of reasons why one would want to adjust a computer monitor's placement relative to keyboard placement. Primarily, one may want to adjust the relative placement to avoid physical discomfort associated with using a workstation built for a particular standard size user. We are all humans of various shapes and sizes with various personal preferences, and what fits and works for one does not always fit and work for another. In addition to physical discomfort and personal preferences associated with computer monitor viewing angles, it is widely known that certain viewing angles emit harmful radiation. Although for a typical user the risk of harmful effects from this type of radiation is low, users who spend significant periods of time in front of computer monitors and pregnant users have increased risks. Although there is a wide variety of workstations and computer desks on the market, all have ignored the fundamental problem of ergonomics and fit. Just as a size 6 shoe will not fit a size 11 foot, some computer workstations will not fit some users.

[0006] Current workstation designs have also ignored the functionality of small space saving workstations. The benefits of workstations that take up minimal space, are visually unobstructive, and are compact and collapsible are evident in regards to small offices and small consumer apartments and living spaces. While compact collapsible and foldable designs have flourished for other products such as home exercise equipment, rollaway trundle beds, futons, etc., they have not existed for computer workstations. Consumers have long been waiting for a design that satisfies the age-old saying of “out of sight, out of mind.”

[0007] Achieving all of the desired aspects in one computer workstation is a difficult task at best. Thus, current solutions typically tradeoff some requirements in favor of others. However, the need for a design that encompasses height adjustability for user comfort, monitor placement, and keyboard placement as well as provide an adjustable platform for equipment placement and stability, provide a means for ease of manueverabilty, possess minimalistic visual obstruction characteristics, and be cost effective has largely gone unfulfilled.

[0008] The present invention, as will be described below, recognizes and incorporates the essential health necessity for a workstation that is ergonomically correct for users of various shapes and sizes. Additionally, the present invention provides an adjustable platform for equipment storage and stability as well as providing a means for easy maneuverability. Furthermore, the present invention recognizes that compact, collapsible features, visual aesthetics and cost play a major role in a consumer's choice of a workstation. Thus, the present invention possesses minimalistic visual obstruction characteristics and is cost effective.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0009] In view of the foregoing, it is an object of the present invention to provide an improved computer workstation.

[0010] It is another object of the present invention to provide an improved method of workstation height adjustability.

[0011] It is another object of the present invention to provide an improved method of height adjustability for computer monitors.

[0012] It is another object of the present invention to provide an improved method of adjustability for computer keyboard placement.

[0013] It is another object of the present invention to provide an improved method of adjustability and stability for computer equipment platforms.

[0014] It is another object of the present invention to provide an improved method of maneuverability for a computer workstation.

[0015] It is another object of the present invention to provide an improved method for minimizing dimensions of a computer workstation.

[0016] In satisfaction of these and other related objectives, Applicant's present invention provides for an improved computer workstation. Applicant's workstation, in its preferred embodiment, exhibits a workstation base support platform with four sliding support brackets for expandable base support shelves attached to the underside of the base platform. Two expandable support shelves attach on to the underside of the base platform by means of the sliding support brackets. The shelves lock or unlock into position by means of a pin mechanism attached via the base platform. Wheels are positioned on the underside of the expandable support shelves. The base platform coupled with the expandable shelves and wheels provide a stable, adjustable, and mobile workstation platform. The expandable support arm for the monitor platform attaches to the top center of the base platform. This provides increased user space by eliminating the need for vertical support members associated with typical desks and workstations. The monitor platform attaches to the vertical top end of the expandable support arm. Attached vertically to rear (non-keyboard side) of the monitor platform is the adjustable rear monitor support. Attached vertically on each side of the monitor platform is a side stability monitor bracket. Attached to the front of the monitor platform is the adjustable monitor and keyboard support arm. Attached to the end of the monitor and keyboard support arm is the extendable keyboard support arm. Horizontally attached to the extendable keyboard support arm is the keyboard tray. Attached to the underside of the keyboard tray are sliding support brackets for expandable keyboard shelves. These sliding support brackets allow expandable keyboard shelves to attach to the underside of the keyboard tray and lock or unlock into open or closed position by means of a locking mechanism.

[0017] Applicant's approach to the problem described above is certainly simple, but is equally unobvious. Applicant's informal surveys of professional and amateur computer workstation users reveal a long but unsatisfied need for a comfortable ergonomically correct height adjustable workstation that is stable, adjustable for computer equipment, easily maneuverable, visually unobtrusive, and cost effective. Despite this well known and long existing problem, no one has presented a viable, cost effective solution such as Applicant here provides.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0018] FIG. 1 is a top plain view of workstation base and compact support shelves.

[0019] FIG. 2 is a top plain view of workstation base and expanded support shelves.

[0020] FIG. 3 is compact side view of workstation base.

[0021] FIG. 4 is an expanded side view of workstation base.

[0022] FIG. 5 is a top plain view of assembled.

[0023] FIG. 6 is side view of assembled workstation.

[0024] FIG. 7 is a front plain view of assembled workstation.

[0025] FIG. 8 is a plain view of monitor platform and support mechanisms.

[0026] FIG. 9 is a plain view of the sliding keyboard bracket.

[0027] FIG. 10 is a plain view of the sliding base support bracket.

[0028] FIG. 11 is a top plain view of keyboard tray.

[0029] FIG. 12 is a side view of keyboard support arm and tray.

[0030] FIG. 13 is a top plain view of keyboard tray and expanded support shelves.

[0031] FIG. 14 is a front view of the workstation base wheels.

[0032] FIG. 15 is side view of the workstation base wheels.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0033] FIG. 1 illustrates the computer workstation base of the present invention generally at 16; the main workstation base support platform is about 26″ wide by 20″ length by 1″ high. The workstation base includes two expandable support shelves 18; the expandable support shelves are about 12″ wide by 18″ length by 1″ high. The workstation base includes the base wheels 19 that will be joined to the expandable support shelves. The details of the wheel and support shelves will be described below. The wheels will be attached to the bottom corners of the expandable support shelves to provide mobility and support.

[0034] The basic structure of the workstation base is completed by a monitor support arm 17 extending vertically from the center of the workstation base 16. The details of the monitor support arm will be described below. The monitor support base will be mounted by a series of four bolts to the top center of the main platform base 16. The monitor support base will expand vertically to provide height adjustment for the monitor support platform. Adjustment will be provided by pneumatics provided by the monitor support base.

[0035] FIG. 2 shows the computer workstation base of the present invention illustrating the expandable support shelf mechanism 16 and 18. The base platform 16 will be fitted with holes 20 to provide a locking mechanism for the expandable support shelves. The base support shelves include six support holes 21 creating an expandable locking mechanism for the horizontally expanding support shelves 18. The details of the expandable shelve locking mechanism will be described below. Four holes about ½″ in diameter are located at the top corners of the workstation base platform 16. The expandable base support shelves will provide horizontal locking support with the base platform. Six holes about {fraction (1/2)}″ in diameter 21 are located at the top and bottom edges of the support shelves. A locking pin about {fraction (1/2)}″ in diameter and about 3″ in length 22 provide locking support for the shelves. The monitor support arm 17 extending vertically from the center of the workstation base 16 completes the base structure of the workstation base. The horizontal expansion of the support shelves is mobile by the eight workstation base wheels (4 pair) 19.

[0036] FIGS. 3 and 4 shows a compact and expanded side view of the workstation's base support platform and expanding support shelves 16 and 18. The expandable support shelves slide under the base platform. The length of the support shelves may be adjusted by selecting the appropriate locking holes 20 and 21. The expandable shelves will be flush with the outside edge of the main support platform when fully compact. The locking stabilizing pin 22 will provide for horizontal adjustment of the support shelves. The base wheels 19 provide horizontal mobility for the support shelves and full 360-degree mobility for the workstation. The expandable support shelves will provide about 8″ additional length at each side of the workstation base. The total width of the workstation base is about 42″ when fully extended and about 26″ when fully retracted.

[0037] FIG. 5 shows a top view of the computer workstation. The support base and expandable support shelves 16 and 18 give expanding support for the computer equipment. The base wheels 19 provide mobility and convenience of adjustment for the workstation. The vertically expanding monitor support arm 17 provides support for the monitor support platform 26. The monitor support platform is about 16″ wide by 16″ length and 1″ height. The monitor support platform expands vertically to provide adjustment. The rear adjustable monitor support 23 provides vertically adjustable support for the computer monitor. Located on both sides of the monitor platform are side monitor stability brackets 25 to provide horizontal support. Wire access for the computer equipment is provided by an access hole 24 in the monitor platform. This access hole is about 3″ wide by 2″ in length. Located at the front of the monitor platform are the front extendable keyboard support arms 27 and 28. The front support arm 27 adjusts vertically and horizontally to provide height and length adjustment for the extendable keyboard support arm 28. The extendable keyboard support arm 28 attaches to the front support arm 27 with a 360-degree adjustable pivoting joint. The extendable keyboard support arm 28 provides vertical adjustment for the keyboard tray 30. The keyboard support arm attaches to the bottom of the keyboard support tray 30. Hinge joints and an adjustable pivoting joint provide the attachment. The keyboard tray will be adjustable to provide tilt support and ergonomic wrist support. The keyboard support tray 30 will provide keyboard support and the expandable keyboard support shelves 31 provide support for additional computer peripheral equipment.

[0038] FIGS. 6 and 7 shows a front and side view of the computer workstation. The extendable monitor support base 17 gives vertical support to the monitor platform 26. Details of the extendable monitor support base are below. The extendable monitor support base attaches to the top center of the workstation base platform 16. The monitor support base extends vertically through an adjustable gas strut system adjustable through the adjustment lever on the monitor support base. The monitor support base attaches to the bottom center of the monitor platform 26. The total extended height of the monitor support arm is about 12″. The rear adjustable monitor support 23 extends vertically. The rear adjustable monitor support is about 2″ wide by 2″ length by 6″ height. The extended support extends fully to about 10″ height to provide vertically adjustable support. The side stability brackets 25 are about ½″ wide by ½″ length by 4″ height. Side stability brackets provide horizontal stability support. The front support bar attaches to the top of the monitor support platform. The swivel base of the front support bar 27 provides horizontal adjustment, and vertical adjustment is provided for by the keyboard support arm 28. Two adjustment handles allow for vertical and horizontal adjustment. The front support arm is about 2″ wide by 2″ length by 12″ height. The extended support extends fully to about 18″ height to provide vertically adjustable support. The keyboard support arm 28 is about 2″ wide by 2″ length by 10″ height. The keyboard support arm attaches to the front support arm and the base of the keyboard tray. Swivel joints allowing almost 360-degree adjustment provide the attachments. The keyboard support tray 30 is about 20″ wide by 10″ length by 1″ height. The keyboard support tray 30 attaches to the extendable support bar 28.

[0039] FIG. 8 is a detailed view of the monitor support mechanism. The rear monitor support bar 23 is attached to the back center edge of the monitor platform 26 by four stabilizing bolts. The rear monitor support is topped with a rubber support cap. The support has a vertical height adjustment allowing support for various sizes and models of computer monitors. The extended support bar reaches about 10″ vertical inches. There is an adjustment wheel on side of the support bar that allows for selected height. The stabilizing bars will be attached by two screws each at the center of the left and right edges of the monitor platform. The height of the stabilizing brackets will extend vertically for 6″ and will provide additional needed support for the computer monitors. The front support bar 27 attaches to the front center of the monitor support platform by four stabilizing bolts. Inside the base of the front support arm is a mechanism that allows 180-degree front and back tilt adjustment. An adjustment knob maintains the front and back tilt adjustment. The front support arm 27 allows vertical height adjustment with an adjustment knob giving added 6″ extension to the 12″ support arm. The top of the front support arm attaches by a 360-degree joint mechanism providing height adjustment for the keyboard support arm 28.

[0040] FIGS. 9 and 10 illustrate the sliding support brackets 32 and 33 for the keyboard support tray 30 and the workstation base 16. The details of the support brackets for the keyboard tray and workstation base will be described below. The sliding brackets 32 for the keyboard expandable shelves 31 will attach to the bottom of the keyboard support tray 30. The corresponding brackets for the sliding mechanism will attach to the outside edges of each keyboard expansion shelves 31. Once in place the shelves will slide horizontally into the brackets at the bottom of the keyboard tray. This will provide adjustable support for the keyboard tray by providing additional surface area and expansion of the keyboard tray. The sliding brackets 33 for the workstation base 16 will attach to the bottom of the workstation base 16. The corresponding brackets for the sliding mechanism will attach to the outside edges of each base support expansion shelves 18. Once in place, the shelves will slide horizontally into the brackets at the bottom of the workstation base. This will provide for additional support by increasing the surface area of the workstation base. The workstation base will be mobile by the attached base support wheels 19.

[0041] FIGS. 11 and 13 shows the keyboard support tray 30 and the expandable keyboard support shelves 31. The keyboard support tray is about 20″ wide by 10″ length and 1″ height. Attached to the bottom of the keyboard support tray are the support shelves 31. These two support shelves are about 10″ wide by 9″ length by 1″ height. The support shelves 31 attach to the keyboard support tray the sliding support brackets.

[0042] FIG. 12 shows the side view of the keyboard support arm 28 and keyboard support tray 30. The keyboard support tray attaches to the support arm allowing tilt adjustment for the keyboard. This side view illustrates the expandable keyboard support shelves 31 that fit flush against the outside edges of the keyboard tray.

[0043] FIGS. 14 and 15 show the workstation base wheels. The details of the workstation base wheels will be described below. The wheels 19 will attach to the bottom outside edges of the expandable support shelves 18. Wheels will fit into brackets providing 360-degree swivel support. The wheels are about 1{fraction (1/4)}″ wide by 2″ length by 2″ height. These support wheels will provide horizontal expansion of the base support shelves and 360-degree mobility for the workstation.

[0044] Although the invention has been described with references to specific embodiments, this description is not meant to be construed in a limited sense. Various modifications of the disclosed embodiments, as well as alternative embodiments of the inventions will become apparent to persons skilled in the art upon references to the description of the invention. It is, therefore, contemplated that the appended claims will cover such modifications that fall within the scope of the invention.