Title:
Mirrored document holder with support stand and advertising vehicle
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention relates to a mirrored document holder including a support stand, whereby the invention functions as a document holder, a mounted mirror, and an advertising vehicle. The document holder includes a copyholder with spring biased plates and a mirror included on at least one of the plates. A plate may be sized to allow placement of advertising indicia in addition to supporting the document in place in a breezy environment. The present invention further includes a flexible support stand with joints that while flexible are capable of firmly supporting heavy documents. The document holder of the present invention may, for example, be mounted on a computer monitor or a dashboard.



Inventors:
Bhavnani, Dilip (Beverly Hills, CA, US)
Application Number:
10/783182
Publication Date:
08/25/2005
Filing Date:
02/19/2004
Assignee:
BHAVNANI DILIP
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47B19/00; B41J11/02; G09F1/10; (IPC1-7): A47B19/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
WUJCIAK, ALFRED J
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
THE SONI LAW FIRM (Pasadena, CA, US)
Claims:
1. A document holder comprising: a. a first plate and a second plate pivotally connected with each other, and biased against each other by at least one spring; b. a reflective surface on an exterior surface of at least one of said plates; and; c. a means of attachment of the document holder to an object comprising an arm and a pivoting attachment capable of rotating and locking the arm in one or more predetermined arcuate rotational positions with respect to said object; and, d. an attachment of said arm to the outer surface one of said plates such that the connected plates may fully rotate about the axis of said arm.

2. A document holder as in claim 1 wherein said reflective surface is a mirror.

3. A document holder as in claim 1 wherein said reflective surface is a parabolic mirror.

4. A document holder as in claim 1 wherein the means for attachment of the document holder to the object is chosen from the group consisting of clips, screws, rivets, snap fit connectors, magnets, or a base with an adhesive surface.

5. A document holder as in claim 1 wherein the spring is a coiled spring.

6. A document holder as in claim 1 wherein said second plate is larger than said first plate and there is advertising indicia upon at least one of said plates.

7. (canceled)

8. (canceled)

9. (canceled)

10. (canceled)

11. (canceled)

12. A document holder comprising: a. a first plate and a second plate biased against each other; b. a mirrored surface on an exterior surface of at least one of the plates; c. a first joint connecting a stand to a base and capable of rotating and locking the stand in one or more predetermined arcuate rotational positions with respect to said base, the base having means of attachment to an object; and d. a second joint connecting at least one of said plates to said stand such that the biased plates may fully rotate about the axis of said stand.

13. A document holder as in claim 12 wherein one of said plates is larger than other plate and there is advertising indicia upon at least one of said plates.

14. A document holder as in claim 12 wherein: a. said first plate and said second plate are pivotally connected by flanges and a hinge pin; and b. said first and second plates are biased against each other utilizing at least one spring;

15. A document holder as in claim 12 wherein the means of attachment to a desktop object is chosen from the group consisting of clips, screws, rivets, snap fit connectors, magnets, or a base with an adhesive surface.

16. A document holder as in claim 12 wherein the rotation of at least one of said first plate or said second plate around the central axis of said stand is frictionally restricted by said second joint.

17. A document holder as in claim 12 wherein said first joint is capable of limiting the motion of said stand to only a horizontal plane in relationship to said means of attachment to an object, wherein said stand will not move within said first joint with application of downward directed gravitational forces.

18. A document holder as in claim 12 wherein said first joint is capable of limiting the motion of said stand to only a horizontal plane in relationship to said means of attachment to an object, thereby restricting the movement of said stand within said first joint with application of downward gravity forces and wherein the rotation of at least one of said first plate or said second plate around the central axis of said stand is frictionally restricted by said second joint.

19. A document holder comprising: a. a first plate and a second plate biased against each other; b. a first joint connecting a stand to a base, wherein said first joint restricts the motion of said stand to only a horizontal plane in relationship to said means of attachment to an object, thereby restricting the movement of said stand within said first joint with application of downward gravity forces; and; c. said base having means of attachment to an object, and; d. a second joint connecting at least one of said plates to said stand, wherein the motion of at least one of said first plate or said second plate is limited to rotation around the central axis of said stand and whereby said rotation is frictionally restricted by said second joint.

20. A document holder as in claim 19 wherein one of said plates is larger than other plate, thereby providing extra support to a document.

21. A document holder as in claim 19 wherein one of said plates is larger than other plate and there is advertising indicia upon at least one of said plates.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to document holders. More specifically, the present invention relates to the type of document holders that may be attached to a desktop computer monitor. More specifically yet, the present invention relates to a mirrored document holder including a support stand, whereby the invention functions as both a document holder, a mounted mirror, and an advertising vehicle.

2. Description of the Prior Art

Document holders that attach to a desktop computer monitor are well known in the prior art. These document holders are useful to support documents and papers in front of a user of a personal computer, for example a secretary or transcriptionist. These document holders are also used by students, attorneys, and accountants to place information up in front of the eyes of the person working on a keyboard.

Mirrors attachable by an adhesive backing, or mounted on a stand or arm, are also well known. Such mirrors are typically designed for use in a bathroom, to attach to tile or a vanity, for example to aid in application of cosmetic products. Another type of attachable mirror is that designed for mounting on bicycles, motorcycles, or trucks, permitting the user to view objects behind or to the side.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,385,327 to Hegarty discloses a document support monitor stand that may be positioned to one side of a monitor to support documents. The Hegarty device is bulky, unattractive, and likely expensive to produce, thus unlikely to be useful to a person looking to hold only a few pages at a time. The device is intending to accommodate heavy articles such as loose leaf binders. Finally, Hegarty does not disclose a mirror associated with the document holder.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,881,986 to Hegarty discloses a document support monitor stand. Mortises in the front side of the monitor accept a copyholder support arm adjacent to the monitor screen. A dual ball and socket assembly allows the copyholder to move to various angles in relation to the monitor. Hegarty does not describe a mirror associated with the document holder.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,902,078 to Judd discloses a document holder clip which comprises a right angle support bracket secured to the side of a monitor and a pivoting extending arm that has a spring biased document holder clip. Judd does not disclose a mirror integrated with the document holder. Furthermore, although the Judd device may serve the function of a copyholder, the device has no other function and is not particularly attractive to a female consumer.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,988,582 to Olivo discloses a device for organizing office paraphernalia, which uses a PC as a mounting surface. The device is comprised of a large shroud mountable around a PC monitor. A plurality of accessories may be mounted on the outer edges of the shroud members for holding office paraphernalia such as documents, business cards, pens, mirrors, and diskettes. This device is extremely large and bulky in appearance, and therefore not aesthetically pleasing.

U.S. Pat. No. 6,412,744 to Wollam discloses another display board for attachment around a monitor housing so that items such as notes, calendars, nameplates, pads, mirrors, writing implements, and keys can be mounted adjacent to a monitor screen. The disclosed device although an improvement over Olivo is still large, bulky, and unattractive. Furthermore, Wollam does not disclose any hinges or joints that would allow a copyholder to be adjusted to various angles in order to position a document for convenient and ergonomic viewing.

None of the above references disclose or encourage the use of a document holder as an advertising vehicle.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is accordingly an object of the present invention to provide a combination document holder, mirror, and advertising vehicle.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a document holder that is aesthetically pleasing and occupies a minimum amount of work space when not in use. The device provides a convenient mirror while not taking up any additional space. Such a document holder would allow the user to apply cosmetics and would appeal to the female buyer.

Still another object of this invention is to provide a document holder that additionally functions as a rear view mirror, enabling the user to see behind them. A worker may desire such a document holder to see if someone, for example the employer or supervisor, is watching from behind the worker.

It is yet another object of the present invention to provide a document holder with a mirror that permits a worker, while working on a computer monitor to see behind them. For example, a receptionist would find such a device useful to see when a client enters the office or is waiting at the front desk while the receptionist's back is turned to them. In addition, store clerks could watch customers behind them to see if a customer was waiting for assistance and to discourage shoplifters.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a document holder with sufficient surface area to allow advertising indicia to be placed upon the document holder. Furthermore, a support plate or a second plate is sized to support the document in place and prevent it from flapping in the breeze when subjected to a fan or air conditioning stream.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a flexible support stand for a document holder. The stand would allow positioning a document into an easily visible and ergonomic location. The stand would also have joints that while flexible are capable of firmly supporting heavy documents.

The objects of this invention are accomplished by providing a document holder comprising a copyholder with spring biased plates and a mirror included on at least one of the plates. The copyholder and mirror assembly is connected with an adjustable arm that allows the assembly to be moved into various positions and at various angles. The arm may be attached to a computer monitor or other object either by means of a base with an adhesive or by means of a clip. The adjustable arm preferably has at least two joints that cooperate to permit rotation and translation of the assembly throughout all planes of motion, therefore always keeping the document visible to the user. One joint, preferably the joint closest to the base, allows motion only in a horizontal plane. By permitting motion only in the horizontal plane, the joint stabilizes heavy documents from vertical movements. The other joint, preferably the joint closest to the document, allows for rotation around the stand.

The document holder of the present invention comprises a first plate and a second plate pivotally connected by flanges and a hinge pin; said first and second plates biased against each other by at least one spring; a mirrored surface on an exterior surface of at least one of the plates; a joint connecting at least one of said plates to a stand; another joint connecting the stand to a base having a means of attachment to an object. Furthermore, in at least one embodiment, the first joint restricts movement of the stand to a horizontal plane, whereas the second joint restricts motion of the document when grasped between the first plate and the second plate to rotation around the stand.

An advantage of the present invention is that the spring biased plates accommodate and hold various notes, papers, and documents between them, while the mirror allows the user to see behind or to look at themselves, for example to apply cosmetics. The combination should particularly appeal to a female consumer who desires to have a convenient mirror on the desktop while not occupying any additional work space. The combination device of the present invention also allows an employee to work on a computer, with their back facing a door or sales area, and to still be able to see customers or discourage shoplifters. The document holder of the present invention could even be mounted on the dash board of a car, providing a handy way to hold maps, directions, coupons, or other papers and providing a mirror that allows the driver to keep an eye on the occupant of the back seat, for example a child or infant. In at least one embodiment, one plate is larger than the other and provides a large surface for the placement of advertising indicia.

Still other objects and advantages of the present invention will become readily apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description, wherein only the preferred embodiment of the invention is shown and described, simply by way of illustration of the best mode contemplated of carrying out the invention. As will be realized, the invention is capable of other and different embodiments, and its several details are capable of modifications in various obvious respects, all without departing from the invention. Accordingly, the drawing and description are to be regarded as illustrative in nature, and not as restrictive.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The accompanying Figures depict embodiments of the present invention, and features and components thereof. Any references to front and back, right and left, top and bottom, superior and inferior, upper and lower, inner and outer, medial and lateral, and horizontal and vertical are intended for convenience of description, not to limit the present invention or its components to any one positional or spacial orientation.

The foregoing objects, features, advantages and preferred embodiments of the present invention will be better understood from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a front/right perspective view of an embodiment of this invention illustrating the mirrored surface of one of the plates;

FIG. 2 is a top perspective view of an embodiment of this invention illustrating the spring biasing mechanism;

FIG. 3 is a bottom perspective view of an embodiment of this invention illustrating how the plates of the copyholder meet in proximity to grasp onto documents and also showing the two joints that are included in the stand;

FIG. 4 is a right side elevational view of an embodiment of this invention;

FIG. 5 is a left side elevational view of an embodiment of this invention illustrating an adhesive base;

FIG. 6 is a rear perspective view of an embodiment of this invention showing the stand and joints connecting to the base and one of the plates;

FIG. 7 is an exploded view of an embodiment of this invention showing the joint connected to one of the plates in more detail; and;

FIG. 8 is a cross sectional view through the joint connected to one of the plates

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The accompanying Figures depict embodiments of the present invention, and features and components thereof. With regard to means for fastening, mounting, attaching or connecting the components of the present invention to form the apparatus as a whole, unless specifically described otherwise, such means are intended to at least encompass conventional fasteners such as machine screws, machine threads, snap rings, hose clamps such as screw clamps and the like, rivets, nuts and bolts, toggles, pins and the like. Components may also be connected by friction fitting, snap fitting, adhesives, or by welding or deformation, if appropriate. Unless specifically otherwise disclosed or taught, materials for making components of the present invention are selected from appropriate materials such as metal, metallic alloys, natural or synthetic fibers, glass, plastics and the like, and appropriate manufacturing or production methods including casting, extruding, molding and machining may be used.

Any references to front and back, right and left, top and bottom, upper and lower, and horizontal and vertical are intended for convenience of description, not to limit the present invention or its components to any one positional or spacial orientation.

Referring more specifically to the drawings, there is shown in FIG. 1 an embodiment of the document holder of the present invention. As illustrated, the preferred embodiment comprises a first plate 100 and a second plate 110 pivotally connected to each other, and biased against each other, together forming a copy holder. This embodiment as illustrated further comprises a stand 200 with a double bend, a first pivoting joint 300, and a base 500 with an adhesive surface 510 for attachment of the present invention to objects such as a computer monitor, a wall, or furniture.

On at least a portion of an exterior surface of the first plate 100 is a reflective surface 120. In the preferred embodiment, the reflective surface is a glass mirror 120, although in alternative embodiments other reflective materials may be substituted, for example a reflective metal. A parabolic mirror may be utilized on some embodiments.

The means of attachment of the document holder to objects, in this preferred embodiment, is a base 500 with an adhesive surface 510. Other means of attachment or connection that are well known in the art may be substituted for the base 500 with an adhesive surface 510. Various clips and clamps, screws or rivets, snap fit connections, or magnets are examples of some other means of attachment that are well known in the art. This list is not meant to be exhaustive nor restrictive, but by example only.

The first joint 300, in the preferred embodiment, is located proximal the base 500, and may be hinged with rachet stops. The base 500 can have two extensions 310 with serrated medial surfaces which rotatably engage a cylinder 320, with corresponding lateral serrations, on one end of the stand 200. This allows the stand 200 to rotate in only one plane, preferably a horizontal plane, relative to the base 500. By restricting motion to the horizontal plane, the stand will not move within said first joint with application of downward directed forces. This is very advantages when heavy documents are being supported by the document holder. However, movement will be permitted in the horizontal plane, allowing the held documents to be positioned so that indicia on the documents can be easily viewed by the user. Those skilled in the art will recognize this type of joint and it need not be described in further detail herein. In alternative embodiments, the first joint 300 may not restrict rotation within one plane only and, for example, a multi-planar joint such as a ball and socket joint could be utilized. Those skill in the art will recognize a wide variety of other joints that could be utilized.

Referring now to FIG. 2, the first plate 100 and a second plate 110 are illustrated as they pivotally connect with each other. On the rear surface of each of the plates are a double pair of flanges 120 with axially aligned holes. A hinge pin 140 passes through the axially aligned holes in the flanges 120, pivotally connecting the first plate 100 to the second plate 110. A pair of helical coiled springs 130 surrounding the hinge pin 140, and between each set of flanges 120, forcibly bias the first plate 100 against the second plate 110. The biasing force is sufficient to securely hold documents and papers, even heavy one, yet capable of being overcome with finger pressure in order to separate the plates when intentionally inserting or removing documents. Alternative and equally effective methods of biasing one object against another may be substituted. For example, first plate 100 and second plate 110 may be biased against each other by a leaf spring. Alternatively, a single piece of metal or plastic may be fashioned so that one side is biased against the other side by intrinsic forces.

Referring now also to FIG. 3 and FIG. 4, the second joint 400 is illustrated connected with the second plate 110. In the preferred embodiment, the second joint 400 frictionally restricts the rotation of the plates around the central axis of the stand 200. Further details of the second joint 400 are discussed below. An end of the stand 200 connects into the central axis of the second joint 400, permitting the copy holder to rotatably pivot around the stand 200. In alternative embodiments, the second joint 400 could permit movement of the copy holder in more than one plane. Those skill in the art will readily recognize a wide variety of alternative types of joints, for example hinges or ball and socket joints, that could be utilized in other embodiments.

Together, the first joint 300 and the second joint 400, cooperate to permit rotation and translation of the assembly throughout all planes of motion, therefore always allowing contents of a document to be visible to the user. The second joint 400, in the preferred embodiment, allows motion only around the central axis of the stand 200. The first joint 300, in the preferred embodiment, permits motion only in a horizontal plane, permitting the document to be moved forward and backward, while not allowing downward motion of the stand when loaded under the weight of heavier documents. The first joint 300 and the second joint 400 working together permit the first plate 100 and a second plate 110 to have a very flexible range of motion, while providing maximum stability for support of heavy documents.

As illustrated in FIG. 7 and FIG. 8, the second joint 400 comprises a first part 410 and a second part 420. The first part 410 includes an essentially vertically bisected cylinder with an axial channel 402 for engagement of the stand 200. The stand 200 has an expanded radius 210 where it interacts with the second joint 400. The rotation of the stand 200 within the second joint 400 is frictionally restrained by a rubber semicircular ring 404 that provides friction against the stand. Alternative materials and frictional means are well known in the art and may be substituted. The rubber ring 410, by frictionally engaging the stand 200, encumbers the rotation of the second plate 110 around the central axis of the stand 200. The second part 420 of the second joint 400 is preferably incorporated into the second plate 110. The second part 420 has an axial channel 422 for engagement of the stand 200. The first part 410 and the second part 420, when connected with each other, capture the expanded radius 210 of the stand 200 within the axial channels of the second joint 400. In the preferred embodiment, the first part 410 and the second part 420 connect together by means of tabs 406 on the first part 410 that insert into slots 424 in the second part 420. Alternative means of connecting these parts would be well known to those in the art.

The copy holder accommodates various notes, papers, and documents while the mirror 120 allows the user to see behind them or to look at themselves, for example to apply cosmetics. The combination should particularly appeal to a female consumer who desires to have a convenient and attractive mirror 120 on the desktop while not occupying any additional desk top space. The combination device of the present invention also allows an employee to work on a computer, with their back facing a door or sales area, and to still be able to see customers, improving service and discouraging shoplifters.

In yet another embodiment of the invention, one of said plates is larger than the other plate. For example the second plate 110 may be larger than the first plate 100. This provides a copy holder similar to a well known clipboard. For example, the second plate 110 may measure approximately 8 inches by 11 inches in size, or other sizes that accommodate standard commercially produced papers. The advantage of a larger plate is that a larger plate allows for imprinting of more indicia. This would be very useful for placing advertising upon at least one of the plates. The larger plate also gives a document more support in a breezy location.

The document holder of the present invention may be attached to the side of a monitor or any other object. For example, the document holder may also be attached to a wall or file cabinet. The document holder could also be mounted directly upon a desk top. The document holder may be used outside of the work place, for example in a bathroom or bedroom of a residence. The document holder of the present invention could even be mounted on the dash board of a car, providing a handy way to hold maps, directions, coupons, or other papers while providing a mirror that allows the driver to keep an eye on the occupant of the back seat, for example a child or infant. A parabolic shaped mirror would be particularly suited for such a use.

The present invention may be embodied in other specific forms without departing from the essential spirit or attributes thereof. It is desired that the embodiments described herein be considered in all respects as illustrative, not restrictive, and that reference be made to the appended claims for determining the scope of the invention.





 
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