US 3102685 A
Descripción (El texto procesado por OCR puede contener errores)
Sept. 3., 1 963 M. R. SPEISER ETAL 3,102,585
VOTING MACHINE Filed July 12, 1961 s Sheets-Sheet 1 FIG. i-
l J INVENTORS 82 MAXIMILLIAN R. SPEISER GARY WASHBURN ATTORNEYS P 1963 M. R. SPEISER ETAL 3,102,685
VOTING MACHINE Filed July 12, 1961 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTORS MAXIMILLIAN R. SPEISER CARY L. WASHBURN BY ATTORNEYS FIG. IO FIG. MM
Sept. 3, 1963 M. R. SPEISER ETAL VOTING MACHINE Filed July 12, 1961 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 INVENTORS MAXIMILLIAN R. SPEISER CARY L. WASHBURN Mod E M ATTORNEYS 3,102,685 VOTING MACHINE Maximilian Richard Speiser and Cary Langhorne Washburn, both of New York, N.Y., assignors, by mesne assignments, to A. C. Nielsen Company, Chicago, III., a corporation of Delaware Filed July 12, 1961, Ser. No. 123,524
Claims. (Cl. 235-55) This invention relates generally to opinion preference registering devices sometimes termed voting machines, and particularly toan improved device for counting and recording consumer preferences or opinions, and with the taking of polls or the making of public opinion surveys. This application is a continuation-in-part of copending Speiser and Washburn application Serial No. 47,754, filed August 5, 1960, now abandoned.
It, is becoming increasingly important for manufacturers, retailers and the like to gather information concerning the manufacture, distribution and sale of their goods and services. In recent years public opinion surveys have been used in this connection. Such surveys have generally been conducted by personal interviews and the results have been subject to human errors and influences, to say nothing of the expense involved in obtaining the services of interviews; It is, therefore, desirable to provide a compact voting or opinion gathering device which may be strategically located where many people pass so that opinion surveys or polls may be conducted in an inexpensive manner. It is particularly desirable that such devices require little attention, and particularly that the services of an operator or supervisor can be dispensed with. However, such opinion gathering mechanisms should be provided with means for inhibiting inaccuracies, such as might be termed plural voting by a single voter, so that the accuracy of the poll or opinion is *maintained.
Accordingly, it. is an object of the present invention to provide a device of the type referred to above for recording a vote or a preference with great accuracy and which can perform its [function rapidly even when operated by a'great many people while still inhibiting plural voting or the like.
Another object of the present invention resides in the provision'of an improved voting machine which requires little attention and which is capable of aifording long and trouble-free operation.
A still further object of the present invention is to provide an improved voting machine which although of coeds, and the features of novelty which characterize the invention will be pointed out with particularity in the claims annexed to and forming a part of this specification. For a better understanding of the present invention reference may be had to the accompanying drawings, in which: I i
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an improved device em- 3,l@2,585 Patented Sept. 3, 1963 away and showing in phantom an actuated condition of some of the parts;
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary view looking in the direction of the arrows 4-4 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary side view of the improved device of FIG. 1, with a side wall of the casing removed and certain other portions broken away more clearly to illustrate the invention;
FIG. "6 is an exploded perspective View illustrating certain portions of the device of FIG. 1;
FIG. 1 is a partial perspective view of the device of FIG. 1 illustrating one of the keys and associated counters in the neutral position also shown by solid lines in FIG. 3 of the drawings;
FIG. 8 is a view similar to FIG. 7, but illustrating said one key in the actuated position also shown in phantom in FIG. 3 of the drawings; and 7 FIGS. 9, 10 and 1.1 are fragmentary elevational views of the lockout mechanism for the device of FIG. 1 illustrating a sequence of different operating positions thereof.
Briefly, the present invention is concerned with an improved voting or opinion preference registering machine provided with a plurality of counter elements for recording the votes or preferences on a particular subject. The
bodyin-g the present invention illustrated as being supported from the counter of a store or the like;
FIG. 2 is a front elevational view of FIG. 1, with a portion of the casing front broken away as well as certain other parts to more fully illustrate the invention, certain parts thereof being shown both in solid lines and in phantom; I
counter elements are actuated by counter actuating keys or buttons. This machine is also provided with a lock out device controlled by a timing mechanism operative to provide a predetermined time interval or delay after being set in motion by the actuation of a key. With this arrangement the keys are locked out or prevented from being actuated during the predetermined time interval of the timing mechanism.- Although the time delay interposed by the timing mechanism is of a relatively short interval, for example, a few seconds, it has been found that this time delay interval is sufficiently long to inhibit plural voting since, upon the record-ing of a first vote or preference, the same voter cannot again immediately depress the same or another key or button. However, the
time delay is short enough so that the voting machine is.
quickly conditioned for further voting on another issue or by another voter.
Referring now to thedrawings, there is illustrated in FIG. 1 an improved voting machine or device '10 according to the present invention. The voting machine 10 includes a casing 74 in the form of .a rectangular housing or box including a front panel or door 72 which is hin-gedly connected to \a side wall of the casing 74 by a strip hinge 73. Preferably, a lock 75 (FIGS. 1, 3 and 4) including an element 75a on door 72 and a cooperating element '75!) are provided so that a key 76 is required to open the door '72 and \altord access tothe interior of the casing. The lock 75 serves to maintain the door 72 closed yet provides for the opening of the door so that the totals of the vote may be read and recorded by authorized personnel who would be furnished with a key.
In order to support the voting machine 10 in. a desired location, preferably where many people must pass, it is provided at its rear with a plurality of angle clamps 77 which, together with an extension of the top wall designated as 74a, efiectively provide a shelf receiving recess 78 for receiving the edge of a shelf or counter 79. p The device can be firmly secured to such shelf or counter by virtue of a plurality of clamping screws or bolts 8% threadedly received in the angle clamps 77. It has been found desirable to support voting machine 10 at about shoulder height so that it is convenient to the patrons of the store or other voting personnel and the attention of the voter may be attracted by signs pointing to it, and additionally by descriptive material such, for example, as the sign 81 reading Vote Here secured thereto.
For the purpose of actuating the device 10, there are provided a plurality of buttons or keys collectively designated as 30, each being indicated in the drawings as a plunger type button 30a, 30b, 30c, 30d, 30:? and 30 accessible at the front of door 72. 'In order that the operator who will actuate these buttons 30 may know which button he is actuating, they are preferably provided with suitable indicia such as the numbers '1 to 6, clearly shown in FIG. 1 of the drawings. It will be appreciated that upon actuation of any one of the buttons 30, a voting operation, as will become apparent tuom the ensuing description, will be performed. To assist the voter in performing a voting operation, there preferably is provided a replaceable card 70, which is illustrated in the drawings as being removably secured to the door 72. This card have indicated thereon certain voting instructions, and opposite each of the buttons 30'there will be provided certain questions or other indicia pertinent to the particular opinion gathering survey involved. Obviously, the person actuating the device 10 will depress the particular button or buttons 30 determined by the instructions on the replaceable card 70 which are opposite and horizontally in line with particular ones of the buttons or keys 30. As will become apparent, by this arrangement a rapid and accurate tally or vote with respect to an opinion survey may be obtained.
For the purpose of removably securing the card 70 to the door 72, the latter is provided with a plurality (of triangularly shaped members 71 defining corner pockets whereby the corners of the card 70' may be inserted by temporarily bending them. In a device built in accordance with the present invention a panel 82 was secured to the cover or door 72 by screws 33. This panel was provided with openings aligned with corresponding openings in door 72 for receiving the depuessible buttons or keys 30. For supporting certain mechanism included in the device 10 within the casing 74, there is provided a chassis supporting plate 22 secured in spaced parallel relationship to the cover 72 by a plurality of posts 1 4 and associated screws 15. Thus, when the door 72 is opened,
the chassis plate secured thereto will move out of casing 74. a
In order to provide for counting and recording the vote, there are illustnated a plumality oat counter elements suitably mounted on the plate 22, collectively referred to as 12, and individually indicated as 12a, 12b, 12c, 12d, 12:: and 12 The counter elements 12 may be of any suitable type, as is well known, and, for example, may be those known as Veeder counters each having a series of numbered drums '13 (FIG. 4) indicating units, tens, hundreds, etc. which are advanced in a predetermined and well understood manner upon a partial rotation of an associated counter shaft 1 1.
' From the above description it will be appreciated that each voting button 30 is intended to actuate a particular one of the counter elements 12 each time that such button is actuated. In order that this may be accomplished, there is provided a counter actuating assembly comprising a rear support plate 34 and a iiront support plate 35 held in spaced parallel relationship by a plurality of tubes or posts 36 and screws 39 (FIG. 5). The assembly comprising the elements 34, 35, 36 and 39 is secured to the and the plate 35 has a plurality of spaced slots 86. Similarly, the chassis plate 22 has a plurality of spaced openings '87. For each button 30 there are a plurality of aligned slots 'or openings 85, 86' and 87, and reciprocally movable in these aligned openings area plurality of push bars 29, one for each of the keys 30, these bars being specifically designated as 29a to 29), respectively. Each key or button is secured to the front end of a corresponding one of the push bars 29 in any suitable manner so that the button 30 is effectively a front projection of such push bar 29 projecting through the cover or door 72 of casing 74. The push bars 29 are narrow flat strips which are guided by the narrow slots 85 and 86.
To facilitate manufacture and assembly, the slots 85 and 86 extend to the edges of the respective plates 34 and 35, and the open ends of these slots are closed by elongated strips or members 37 and 38, respectively (FIGS. 3 and 5), which are held in position by the same screws 39 which hold plates 34 and in assembled relationship. The push bars 29 are biased outwardly to the position illustrated in FIGS. 3 and 5 of the drawings by compression coiled springs 31, one concentric with each push,
bar, and compressed between the rear support plate 34 and suitable pins 32 (FIGS. 2, 3, 5 and 7) secured to the respective push bars 29.
In order to interconnect the ends of the push bars 29 remote from buttons 30 with the counter elements 12, there are provided a plurality of levers 26, individually represented as 26a to 261, respectively. The levers 26 are all similar except for dimensional variations, and each is pivotally fulcrumed intermediate its ends about a pivot pin orscrcw 27 suitably supported in an L-shaped brack- ,et 89 secured to the chassis plate 22 by a screw 90'. Each of the push bars 29 is pivotally connected to one end of a corresponding one of the levers 26 by a pivot pin or screw 91. The other ends of the levers 26 are connected 7 to the shaft 11 of a corresponding counter element 12 through a resilient radial or crank arm 20 and a pivot pin or screw 92. The radial or crank arms 24 are specifically designated as 24a to 24,. Preferably, slotted connections are provided forpivot pins 91 and to prevent binding of the lever 26 relative to the push bars 29 or the arms 24. It will be appreciated that actuation of any. of the buttons 30 against the force of the particular return spring 31 will be effective to pivot the associated lever 26 and advance the numbered drums 13 on the as-- sociated counter element 12.
in accordance with an important aspect of the present invention, there is provided a timing means or mechanism 16 (FIGS. 2 and 3) which, in cooperation with other ele ments hereinafter described, upon actuation of any one of the voting buttons 30, is elfective to lock out all of the buttons against further actuation until the expiration of a predetermined time interval. As illustrated, a timing means 16, which might'be termed a time delay device, is secured to the front side of the chassis plate 22. Time delay device 16 may be of any suitable well known type,
and in a unit built in accordance with the present inven-' tion a clock timer was utilized having an output shaft 17 connected to a crank arm 43. When the crank arm 43 of such clock timer is actuated through a predetermined angle,- thus partially rotating shaft 17, a main spring such as 40 (FIG. 3) is wound and, upon removal of the winding force, the spring 40 becomes effective to return the shaft 1'7 to its original position. A well known escapement mechanism 41 can of course be provided to delay such return for a predetermined time interval. This timing structure is not described in detail since its specific construction forms no part of the present invention and, furthermore, it is well known in the art.
For the purpose of moving the crank arm 43 to actuate the timedelay device 16 to perform its delaying function, there is provided a lever 46 pivotally mounted at an intermediate point between its ends by a pivot pin 47 to a post 48 secured to the chassis plate 22 and projecting forwardly therefrom. One end of thelever 46 is con- 1 nected to the end of crank arm -43 by a link 44. In order to provide for selective adjustmentofthe predetermined time interval or time delay, the load arm of the lever 46 (the portion between pivot 47 and link 44) and the crank arm 43 are each provided with a plurality of apertures. As illustrated, the lever 46 is provided with apertures 94a, 94b and 940, and the crank arm 43 is provided with apertures 95a, 95b and 950, respectively (FIGS. 7 and 8),. By selectively positioning the pivot pins of the link 44 in corresponding ones of the apertures 94a,'94b, 94c and 95a, 95b, 95c, respectively, the angular rotation of the time shaft 17 connected to crank arm'43 withrespect to the pivotal or angular rotation of the lever 46 may be selectively varied thereby to provide for selective adjustment of the time delay interval. A pivoted somewhat L-shaped latch member 96 is secured to the lever 46 by a pivot screw 97 and holds link 44 in whatever apertures the pivot pins of the link 44 are inserted. For changing the position of link 44, the latch member 96 is pivoted out of its latching position shown in the drawings.
To render effective the timing means 16 in response to the aotuation of any push button 30, there is provided a multiple cam plate 50 operatively connected to the end of lever 46 remote from link 44. To this end there is provided a connecting member 98 of somewhat angle shape having one arm pinned to lever 46 as indicated at 99, and the other arm connected to the upper end of multiple cam plate 50 by means 100* (FIG. 7). To prevent binding, slotted connections as indicated in FIG. 2 are provided between lever 46 and member 98. Cam plate 50 is mounted forvertical sliding or reciprocating movement relative to the chassis plate 22 between plates 34 and 35. Accordingly, plate 50 is provided adjacent the upper and lower ends thereof with elongated slots 10-1 for receiving screws 51 threadedly engaging blocks 52 (FIG. 3) secured to rear support 34as by screws 102. The cam plate 50 is provided along the front edge thereof with a plurality of generally V-shaped camming grooves 103, one for each of the pushbuttons 30* and designated as lllSa, 10 3b, 103C, 103d, 103a and 1031', re spectively. Each of the grooves 103 is defined by a generally horizontal lower edge or surface lll4and an angularly disposed upper camming surface 54 inclined down-.
wardly from front to rear. Each of the push bars 29' has laterally projecting therefrom in a generally horizontal direction intermediate its. length a camming pin 53' posito ride upwardly on pin53- and, hence, is effective to move the cam plate 50 vertically upwardly, thereby pivoting lever 46 and, consequently, winding the spring 40 of timing mechanism 16. This uppermost position of plate 50. is shown in FIG. 11 of the drawings. Since the spring 40 can unwind only in dependenceupon escapetinuously biased upwardly relative to the multiple cam plate by a tension spring 66 having its upper end con nected to a screw 67 threaded into the cam plate 50 and having its lower end connected to a screw 68 threaded into the latch plate 60. The normal position of larch .plate 69 relative to cam plate 61 is best shown in FIGS. '9 and 11 of the drawings.
In accordance with the present invention, latch plate is provided on the surface thereof adjacent plate 50 with a plurality of triangularly shaped detents 65, specifically designated as a, 65b, 65c, 65d, 65a and 65f, respectively, receivable in the corresponding camming grooves 103 in cam plate 50 hearing the same letter subscript. The detents 65 each have an upper inclined face 167 complementary to the cam surface 54 of the corresponding groove 103. When none of the keys of device 10 have been actuated, then the latch plate 60 is positioned as shown in FIG. 9 with the cam surfaces 107 of detents 65 in engagement with cam surfaces 54 of camrning'grooves 103. Spring 66 holds the parts in these positions. However, the cam surfaces 107 are each provided with a forwardly disposed beveled portion 107a defining, as best illustrated in FIG. 9, a small V notch between the detent 65 and the cam surface 54 which permits the camrning pin 53 to enter between the carnming surfaces 54 and 107. The entry of the camming pin 53 between these camming surfaces is effective to move the surfaces apart, thus moving the latch plate 60 downwarclly relative to the cam plate 50 against the bias of the spring 66. Since the detents 65 are smaller than the camming grooves 163, after the pin 53 clears the rear edge of the particular detent 65, the latch plate' 60 will snap upwardly relative to plate 50 and pin 53 moves be-- the cam plate 50 and likewise associated latch plate 60, to
its initial position, it will be understood that the weight of these parts further biases them to their initial positions. Moreover, other external spring means may be used to bias the cam plate 56' downwardly, if desired.
As soon as pin 53 moves from the solid line position of FIG. 11 to the dotted line position there shown, the
, plates 50 and 60, including the detents 65, all move ment 41, the timing mechanism 16 delays the return of the cam plate 50 to its lowermost position shown in FIG.
9 until the expiration of a predetermined time interval.
For the purpose of preventing quick successive actuations of the push buttons 3t! with the possibility of false or plural voting by the same individual, a lockout mechanism is provided for locking the keys or buttons 30 against actuation for a predetermined time after one push button has been actuated. To this end there .is provided a latch plate 60, best illustrated in FIG. 6 of the 'draw- Y ings and secured to the cam plate 50- for slidable move- 1.
ment relative thereto. IAs illustrated in the drawings,
latch plate 60 is'provided with a pair of vertically disposedelongated slots 62 adjacent the top and bottom thereof for receiving a pair of headed pins 63 threadedly engaged with cooperating threaded openings 64 in the downwardly due to play in the linkage, etc., thereby blocking pins 53, whereby'any other or the same button cannot again be actuated until plates 5t and 61 have lowered to. the position of FIG. 9 of the drawings.
In view of the detailed description included above, the operation of the "opinion gathering device It) of the present invention will readily be understood by those skilled in the art. The device will, of course, bet set up in a suitable location withappropriate instructions applied to the thereof indicated in phantom. Figs. 7 and 8, of course, 1 also show the unactuated and actuated positions of the key or button 3%. Movement of the key 30a from the position shown in FIG. 7 to the position shown in FIG. 8 causes several things to occur.v first of all, the counter 12a is actuated to record a vote upon pivotal movement of lever 2611. Also, rearward movement of plunger 29a causes laterally projecting pin 53 to enter between the cam surface 54 of the camming groove ltlBa and the detent 65 .to assume the successive positions shown in FIGS. 9, l and 11 with the resultant raising of cam .plate St to the position shown in FIG. 11 and in phantom in FIG. 2 of the drawings. Upward movement of cam plate 5t) furthermore causes the lever 46 to move from the solid position shown in FIG. 2 of the drawings to the phantom position there indicated thereby conditioning the timing. mechanism 16 with the resultant delay in permitting certain parts to be restored to their initial positions.
Upon the release of the completely depressed key or button 30a, the spring 3-1 returns it to the position shown in FIG. 7 of the drawings, and the pin 53 moves from the solid line position of FIG. 11 to the dotted line position thereof. Moreover, the spring 66, which permitted relative movement between cam plate 50* and latch plate 60 when pin 53 was forced between the cam surfaces 54 and 107, restores these plates to their original position when pin 53 moves beyond the rear end of the detent 65. As soon as pin 53- has moved to the dotted line position of FIG. 11, the timing interval begins to run and, of course, as soon as pin 53' clears the underside of detent 6:; the cam plate 50 and associated latch plate 60* will drop downwardly due to their own weight and because of play in the linkages interconnecting these plates to the timing mechanism. Such downward movement will, of course, place the detents 65 in positions to prevent any of the pins 53 from entering the space between the cam surfaces 54 and 107 until the predetermined time delay has elapsed and plate 50 returns to its initial position. Thus, plural voting or quick successive voting by the same person will effectively be prevented.
It will be understood that the time delay can be adjusted by the adjusting means described above in accordance with the dictates of the particular situation. Upon the elapse of the predetermined time delay, the device will be conditioned for another voting operation. It will be appreciated that the above described device will minimize plural voting by a single voter and, consequently, an accurate and reliable vote may be obtained by an unattended voting machine which is placed in locations where it is likely to be seen by a great number of people. Au-
many inodifications may be made, and it is therefore,
contemplated by the appended claims to cover all such modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope of the present invention.
What is claimed as new and desired to be secured by Letters Patent of the United States is:
1. An opinion preference registering device comprising a counter element, a preference actuatable member operatively associated with said counter element, a clock timer operative for a predetermined time interval after being set, timer initiating means interconnecting said preference actuatable. member and said clock timer for setting said clock timer to begin said time interval, and means associated with said timer initiating means for locking said preference actuatable member against actuation during said time interval. r
. 2. An opinion preference registering device comprising a plurality of counter elements, a plurality of preference actuatable members each including a push bar, means interconnecting said push bars and said counter elements for registering a preference indication on an associated counter element in response to actuation of a respective one of saidpre'ference rarctuatable members, a cam plate mounted for vertical sliding movement between first and second positions and provided with a plurality of spaced 8 V-shaped camming notches, said notches each having an inclined cam'ming surface, camming members carried by each of said push bars engageable with a corresponding one of said cramming surfaces to move said cam plate from said first position to said second position upon actuation of any one of said preference aotuatable members, a latch plate slidably mounted relative to said cam plate and pro vided with a plurality of detents positioned in said camming notches each detent having an inclined carnrning surface conforming to the camming surface of a corresponding one of said notches, said detents being effective to block movement of said c'amming members into said camming notches whenever said cam plate is moved from said first position, said camming members being movable between the corresponding ones of said camming surfaces upon actuation of the corresponding one of said preference actuatablemembers when'sa-id cam plate is in said first position, means biasing said camming surfaces toward each other, and time delay means operativelyconnected with said carn plate retarding the return of said cam plate fromsaid second position to said first position. 3. The opinion preference registering device of claim 2 wherein said push bars are mounted for horizontal movement. r i 4. The opinion preference registering device of claim 6 wherein said preference actuatable members include ence actuatable members being biased to said first position, each of said cam-ming members passing under said detents in said camming notches when returning from said second positions to their said first positions upon release of the corresponding one of said preference actuatable members.
5. An opinion preference registering device compris I ing a plurality of counter elements, a plurality of preferonce actuatable keys each secured to a push bar movable between a first and a second position, means interconnecting said push bars and said counter elements for registering a preference on a particular counter element in response to actuation of a corresponding one of said keys, a cam plate mounted for sliding'movement between a first and a second position and provided with a plurality of V-shaped camming notches, said notcheseach having an inclined camming surface, a camming member on each of said push bars engageable with a corresponding one of said camming surfaces to move said cam plate from its first position to its second position, a' latch plate slidably mounted relative to said cam plate and provided with a plurality of detents positioned in said camming notches each having an inclined camming surface con forming to the inclined camming surfaces of said camming notches, said detents being effective to block move ment of said camming members into said camming notches whenever said cam plate is moved from its said first position, said camming members being movable between said inclined camming surfaces upon actuation of the associated one of said keys when said cam plate is in, said first positionthereby to pass between said inclined carnming surfaces, means biasing said inclined surfaces References Cited in the file of this patent V UNITED STATES PATENTS Heacock et al. July 21, 1925 2,581,218
Thompson Jan. 1, 1952
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