(12) Unlted States Patent (10) Patent N0.: US 7,907,051 B2

(12) Unlted States Patent (10) Patent N0.: US 7,907,051 B2
USOO7907051B2
(12) Unlted States Patent
(10) Patent N0.:
Pall et a].
(45) Date of Patent:
‘54) TECHNIQUES FOR SETTING AND
2004/0127253 A1
(75) Inventors: Gurdeep S. Pall, Sammamish, WA
2004/0147261 A1
2004/0133638 A1
7/2004 D
t l.
9/2004 Blagsvedt et al.
2004/0201668 A1
10/2004 Matsubara et al.
2004/0248588 A1
12/2004
2005/0170847 A1
8/2005
’
.
.
Pell et al.
Karlsson et al.
zoos/0243019 A1
11/2005 Fuller et al‘
2005/0265296 A1
2005/0271187 A1
12/2005 Bohmer et al.
Subject to any disclaimer, the term of this
patent is extended or adjusted under 35
2005/0289470 A1
U'S'C' 154(b)by190days'
2008/0201438 A1*
12/2005 Zhang et a1.
12/2005 Pabla et a1.
53;? et al' ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~' 715/708
erry
..... ..
..
8/2008 Mandre ....................... .. 709/206
(21) Appl. N0.: 11/451,820
Filed:
709206
7/2004 Rgzlsaidi
2004/0193686 A1
(73) Assignee. I(\{Illsc?soft Corporatlon, Redmond, WA
(22)
................ ..
(US); Dawson Yee, Bellevue, WA (US);
_
Notice:
saacs et a .
7/2004 Hauptvogel et al.
Alex Riemann Redmond WA (Us)
’
(*)
Mar. 15, 2011
53393822313 21* 95885 ISM“ 6‘ 11'
INDICATING PRESENCE FOR A DEVICE
.
US 7,907,051 B2
(Continued)
Jun. 13, 2006
OTHER PUBLICATIONS
Vogiazou et al., “Wireless Presence and Instant Messaging”, Knowl
(65)
Pl‘iOl‘ PllblicatiOIl Data
US 2007/0287376 A1
(51)
edge Media Institute (KMi), Nov. 2002.
Dec. 13, 2007
(Continued)
Int- Cl-
Primary Examiner * Benjamin C Lee
0/‘36
Assistant Examiner * Sigmund Tang
(52)
US. Cl. ................................... .. 340/539.1; 709/201
(57)
(58)
Field of Classi?cation Search ............. .. 340/539.1;
Techni
_
S
1,
_ 7g?/2f01’ 204’1227’ 3451111173’ 156’ 157
ee app Icanon
(56)
e or comp ete seam
lstory'
ques are prOV1ded for specifying
a presence setting
selection and for displaying a presence indicator status of a
user With respect to a device associated With the user. The
References Cited
presence setting selection includes proV1d1ng an input selec
U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS
tion component on a surface of a ?rst component of the
device. A presence setting is received at the device in accor
dance With a manual presence selection made using the input
2 i
537933365 A *
6,065,138 A *
selection component. In connection With the presence indi
8/1998 Tang et al‘
5/2000 Gould er al,
M 75/75,;
714/47
6,147,608 A * 11/2000 Thacker
340/5731
g“an
,
ABSTRACT
-
,
6,611,281 B2
u
ye
~~
a.
~~~~~~
cator status, one or more indicators are pro~V1ded on a surface
portion of a ?rst component of the deV1ce. The presence
indicator status indicating the presence of the user With
respectto the device is received. One ormore indicators atthe
.................. ..
-
-
-
-
-
8/2003 Strubbe
deV1ce are set in accordance With the presence 1nd1cator sta
tus'
7,100,116 B1*
8/2006
7,348,967 B2 *
3/2008 Zadesky et al. ..
Shafrir et al. ............... .. 715/751
7,711,815 B2 *
5/2010 Garg et a1. .................. .. 709/224
20 Claims, 9 Drawing Sheets
10\
12
1
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Device
15 \
Communications
Sewer
_
US 7,907,051 B2
Page 2
U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS
2008/0242231 A1*
10/2008
Gray .......................... .. 455/66.l
OTHER PUBLICATIONS
Arabshian et al. “Enhancing Enterprise Communications Systems
With Wireless Devices and Presence Information”, Columbia Uni
versity Department of Computer Science, Aug. 2002.
Kohno et a1. “TACT: Mobile Wireless Terminal for Digitally-Enabled
Environments”, The Sixth International Conference on Ubiquitous
Computing (UbiComp), Sep. 2004.
Milewski et al., “Providing Presence Cues to Telephone Users”,
Proceedings of the 2000 ACM Conference on Computer Supported
Cooperative Work (CSCW ’00), Dec. 2000.
* cited by examiner
US. Patent
Mar. 15, 2011
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US 7,907,051 B2
1
2
TECHNIQUES FOR SETTING AND
liZing the techniques described herein may be implemented.
INDICATING PRESENCE FORA DEVICE
The computing environment illustrated in FIG. 1 is only one
example of a suitable computing environment and is not
intended to suggest any limitation as to the scope of use or
BACKGROUND
functionality of the techniques described herein in connection
with specifying a presence setting and displaying a presence
indicator status. Those skilled in the art will appreciate that
the techniques described herein may be suitable for use with
Existing techniques indicating the presence of a user
include the user manually setting an indicator using a mouse
or keyboard, and using an application which may automati
cally determine the presence of a user. The resulting indicator
other general purpose and specialized purpose computing
environments and con?gurations. Examples of well known
computing systems, environments, and/ or con?gurations
representing the presence of a user may be displayed on the
computer screen. When the computer screen goes blank or
include, but are not limited to, personal computers, server
enters a locked state, such as when a screen saver is enabled
computers, hand-held or laptop devices, multiprocessor sys
tems, microprocessor-based systems, programmable con
sumer electronics, network PCs, minicomputers, mainframe
computers, distributed computing environments that include
and activated due to computer inactivity, a user is no longer
able to set or view his/her presence indicator. One drawback
of the foregoing is that in order to set or view the user’s
presence setting, the user has to activate the computer screen,
such as by logging on to the computer.
any of the above systems or devices, and the like.
The techniques set forth herein may be described in the
general context of computer-executable instructions, such as
SUMMARY
20
the Detailed Description. This Summary is not intended to
identify key features or essential features of the claimed sub
ject matter, nor is it intended to be used as an aid in determin
program modules, executed by one or more computers or
other devices. Generally, program modules include routines,
programs, objects, components, data structures, and the like,
that perform particular tasks or implement particular abstract
data types. Typically the functionality of the program mod
This summary is provided to introduce a selection of con
cepts in a simpli?ed form that are further described below in
25
ules may be combined or distributed as desired in various
ing the scope of the claimed subject matter.
Techniques are provided for specifying a presence setting
embodiments.
selection and for displaying a presence indicator status of a
user with respect to a device associated with the user. The
communications server 15. The device 12 may be, for
presence setting selection includes providing an input selec
Included in FIG. 1 are a device 12, a network 14, and a
example, a user computer, a phone, a PDA or other wireless
30
mobile communications device. The device 12 included in
FIG. 1 is exemplary for purposes of illustrating the techniques
described herein in connection with specifying a presence
setting and displaying a presence indicator status. Any device
tion component on a surface of a ?rst component of the
device. A presence setting is received at the device in accor
dance with a manual presence selection made using the input
selection component. In connection with the presence indi
that has connectivity to the server 15 and having the function
cator status, one or more indicators are provided on a surface 35 ality described herein may be included in an embodiment.
Additionally, although only a single device is illustrated, an
portion of a ?rst component of the device. The presence
indicator status indicating the presence of the user with
embodiment may use one or more devices. The device 12 may
include a processor used to execute code included in one or
more program modules. Described in more detail elsewhere
respect to the device is received. One or more indicators of the
device are set in accordance with said presence indicator
status.
40
herein are program modules that may be executed by the
45
The device 12 may operate in a networked environment and
communicate with the communications server 15 and other
computers not shown in FIG. 1.
The communications server 15 may be used in connection
devices in connection with the techniques described herein.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
Features and advantages of the present invention will
become more apparent from the following detailed descrip
tion of exemplary embodiments thereof taken in conjunction
with the accompanying drawings in which:
with processing and routing communications to devices such
as 12 connected to the network 14. As will be described in
following paragraphs, in one embodiment, a user may manu
FIG. 1 is an example of an embodiment illustrating an
environment that may be utilized in connection with the tech
niques described herein;
50
ally select a presence setting using a presence setting input
component of the device 12. The presence setting may be
communicated from device 12 to the communications server
FIG. 2 is an example of components that may be included
in an embodiment of a device for use in connection with
15. The communications server 15 may subsequently provide
performing the techniques described herein;
the device 12 with a presence indicator status. The device 12
may display the presence indicator status on a presence indi
FIG. 3 is an example of components that may be included
in an embodiment of a communications server for use in 55 cator display component of the device 12. A presence indica
tor status may be determined for each device. For example, as
will be described herein in more detail, when a user is deter
connection with performing the techniques described herein;
FIGS. 4-8 are examples illustrating different components
of input and display arrangements for use with presence set
ting and displaying a presence indicator status; and
FIG. 9 is a ?owchart of processing steps that may be per
formed in an embodiment in connection with the techniques
described herein.
60
DETAILED DESCRIPTION
65
Referring now to FIG. 1, illustrated is an example of a
suitable computing environment in which embodiments uti
mined to be “present” with respect to a registered device for
the user, the device may accordingly display a visual indicator
in accordance with the current “present” mode. When the user
is determined to be “away” with respect to a registered device
for the user, the device may accordingly display a different
visual indicator in accordance with the current “away” mode.
It will be appreciated by those skilled in the art that
although the device 12 is shown in the example as communi
cating in a networked environment, the device 12 may com
municate with other components utiliZing different commu
US 7,907,051 B2
3
4
nication mediums. For example, the device 12 may
other devices are well known in the art and need not be
discussed at length here. The one or more communications
connection(s) 24 are an example of communication media.
In one embodiment, the device 12 may operate in a net
communicate with one or more components utilizing a net
work connection, and/ or other type of link known in the art
including, but not limited to, the Internet, an intranet, or other
wireless and/or hardwired connection(s).
worked environment as illustrated in FIG. 1 using logical
connections to remote computers through a network. The
Referring now to FIG. 2, shown is an example of compo
nents that may be included in the device 12 as may be used in
connection with performing the various embodiments of the
techniques described herein. The device 12 may include one
or more processing units 20, memory 22, a network interface
device 12 may connect to the network 14 of FIG. 1 through a
network interface unit 26 connected to bus 32. The network
interface unit 26 may also be utilized in connection with other
types of networks and/or remote systems and components.
unit 26, storage 30, one or more other communication con
One or more program modules and/or data ?les may be
nections 24, and a system bus 32 used to facilitate communi
cations between the components of the device 12.
Depending on the con?guration and type of user device 12,
memory 22 may be volatile (such as RAM), non-volatile
(such as ROM, ?ash memory, etc.) or some combination of
the two. Additionally, the device 12 may also have additional
features/functionality. For example, the device 12 may also
include additional storage (removable and/or non-removable)
including, but not limited to, USB devices, magnetic or opti
cal disks, or tape. Such additional storage is illustrated in FIG.
included in storage 30. During operation of the device 12, one
or more of these elements included in the storage 30 may also
reside in a portion of memory 22, such as, for example, RAM
for controlling the operation of the user computer 12. The
example of FIG. 2 illustrates various components including
an operating system 40, a communications module 42, one or
20
The operating system 40 may be any one of a variety of
commercially available or proprietary operating systems. The
operating system 40, for example, may be loaded into
2 by storage 30. The storage 30 of FIG. 2 may include one or
more removable and non-removable storage devices having
associated computer-readable media that may be utilized by
the device 12. The storage 30 in one embodiment may be a
memory in connection with controlling operation of the user
25
mass-storage device with associated computer-readable
media providing non-volatile storage for the device 12.
Although the description of computer-readable media as
illustrated in this example may refer to a mass storage device,
such as a hard disk or CD-ROM drive, it will be appreciated
in the device 12 in connection with performing user tasks and
The communications module 42 may be used in connec
tion with processing a user’s presence setting as may be
30
communications module 42 may subsequently facilitate com
35
cation media. Memory 22, as well as storage 30, are examples
of computer storage media. Computer storage media includes
(DVD) or other optical storage, magnetic cassettes, magnetic
tape, magnetic disk storage or other magnetic storage devices,
manually input through a component of the device 12. The
municating the setting to the communication server 15. Addi
12.
volatile and nonvolatile, removable and non-removable
media implemented in any method or technology for storage
of information such as computer readable instructions, data
structures, program modules or other data. Computer storage
media includes, but is not limited to, RAM, ROM, EEPROM,
?ash memory or other memory technology, CD-ROM,
computer. One or more application programs 46 may execute
operations.
by those skilled in the art that the computer-readable media
can be any available media that can be accessed by the device
By way of example, and not limitation, computer readable
media may comprise computer storage media and communi
more application programs 46, and other components, inputs,
and/or outputs 48.
tionally, the communications module 42 may be used in con
nection with receiving a presence indicator status from the
communications server 15 and displaying a visual indicator
on the device 12 in accordance with the received status from
the server 15. In one embodiment, the received presence
indicator status may be characterized as a resultant or aggre
40
gate presence status that may be determined by the commu
nications server 15 in accordance with the user’s presence
setting as manually input on the device 12 and optionally one
or more other factors about the particular user with respect to
the device 12.
It should be noted that any one of a variety of different
45
techniques may be used to communicate the presence setting
or any other medium which can be used to store the desired
to the communications server. For example, the presence
information and which can accessed by device 12. Commu
instructions, data structures, program modules or other data
setting may be pushed from the device 12 to the communica
tions server 15. It will be appreciated by those skilled in the art
that other techniques, such as pulling information from the
in a modulated data signal such as a carrier wave or other 50
device 12, polling, and the like, may also be used.
nication media typically embodies computer readable
transport mechanism and includes any information delivery
The application program 46 may be any one of a variety of
media. The term “modulated data signal” means a signal that
different application programs for the particular device. For
has one or more of its characteristics set or changed in such a
example, in one embodiment in which the device 12 is a user
manner as to encode information in the signal. By way of
example, and not limitation, communication media includes
55
wired media such as a wired network or direct-wired connec
tion, and wireless media such as acoustic, RF, infrared and
other wireless media. Combinations of the any of the above
should also be included within the scope of computer read
able media.
nents that may be included in the communications server 15
60
The device 12 may also contain communications connec
tion(s) 24 that allow the user computer to communicate with
other devices and components such as, by way of example,
input devices and output devices. Input devices may include,
for example, a keyboard, mouse, pen, voice input device,
touch input device, etc. Output device(s) may include, for
example, a display, speakers, printer, and the like. These and
computer, the application program 46 may be code which
monitors the activity on the computer causing display of a
screensaver when there is inactivity.
Referring now to FIG. 3, shown is an example of compo
and used in connection with performing the various embodi
ments of the techniques described herein. As illustrated in
FIG. 3, an embodiment of the communications server 15 may
include components similar to those described in connection
with FIG. 2. Additionally, the communications server 15 may
include a presence aggregation engine 150, and a registration
65
module 146. In one embodiment as described herein, the
communications server 15 may communicate with one or
more devices for registered users.
US 7,907,051 B2
5
6
The registration module 146 may be used in connection
with registration of a user. As part of the registration process,
ponent that may be used in connection with a user manually
selecting a presence setting will now be described.
Referring now to FIG. 4, shown is an example 200 of
components that may be included in an arrangement of a
device 12 for use in connection with the techniques for speci
fying a presence setting on a device and for displaying a
visual indicator in accordance with a presence indicator sta
the user may be assigned a user identi?er and register one or
more associated devices for the particular user identi?er. As
an example of device registration, a user may register one or
more devices which are associated with the user’s identi?er.
Each device, such as a phone, computer, mobile phone, or
PDA, may have its own IP address or associated location so
that the device may be identi?ed in the network in connection
tus.
The example 200 includes a selection button 204 and an
indicator 206. The component 210 may vary with the device
and is used to represent one arrangement of the components
204 and 206 with respect to another input component 210 of
the particular device. For example, in one embodiment in
which the device is a computer, the components 204, 206 and
210 may be included in a keyboard of the computer. The
with communications, such as for forwarding an incoming
transmission received at the server 15. Each registered device
may have an associated one or more modes of communica
tion. Modes of communication may include, for example,
voice, text, and/or video, indicating which types of commu
nication a particular device is capable. A device may also be
component 210 may represent that portion of the keyboard
including the keys such as alphabetic and numeric keys. Also
enabled/ disabled for a particular mode of communication
even though the device may be capable of the particular
included in the keyboard may be button 204 and indicator
mode. For example, a computer may be registered for a user.
The user may specify, either as part of registration or at a later
time using various techniques known in the art, that only a
206.
20
selected mode of communication is to be used with the com
puter. The presence indicator status as described above may
be determined by the communications server as an aggregate
may perform such selection using button 204. When
depressed, button 204 may cycle through the different pres
ence settings for the device. For example, if the device 12 is a
or composite value in one embodiment using one or more
inputs. One input may be the user’s manually speci?ed pres
As described herein, the presence setting may be speci?ed
via manual selection by a user. In the example 200, the user
25
computer, each depression of the button 204 may cycle
ence setting as provided by a device. Other optional inputs
may include, for example, the modes of communication for
through a set of presence selections including available or
online, away, and do not disturb. Other selections may be
which a device is capable and/or enabled. The modes of
communication for a device may vary in accordance with the
particular device and associated user con?guration.
included in an embodiment for a computer or other device.
The indicator 206 may be a visual indicator, such as an LED,
30
particular device 12. For example, the device 12 may have a
?rst set of possible presence indicator status values if the
device is a computer. A second set of possible presence indi
example, the indicator 206 may be a tri-color LED displaying
one of a number of colors, such as three possible colors, in
accordance with the presence indicator status. If the user’s
35
presence indicator status changes with respect to the device,
the indicator 206 is accordingly updated.
Referring now to FIG. 5, shown is a second example 250 of
components that may be included in an arrangement of a
cator status values if the device is a phone, PDA, or other
device.
The presence aggregation engine 150 may aggregate the
manually entered user presence setting, optionally along with
which displays a color in accordance with the presence indi
cator status returned from the communications server. For
The particular values or statuses for a presence indicator
status as determined by the communications server and
accordingly displayed on a device 12 may vary with the
device 12 for use in connection with the techniques for speci
40
other information for the device of a registered user, to deter
mine a presence status indicator for the registered user with
fying a presence setting on a device and for displaying a
visual indicator in accordance with a presence indicator sta
tus. In the arrangement 250, the components 204 and 210 may
respect to the device. As described above and elsewhere
herein, the other information may include information about
be as described in connection with FIG. 4. Rather than have a
single indicator which can display one of variety of different
tion that may vary with an embodiment. For example, the
colors or other visual indicator states in accordance with the
presence indicator status, the embodiment of FIG. 5 includes
engine 150 may be aware that a user is not in the of?ce and
more than one indicator or instance of an indicator in 256 such
may appropriately set indicators for those devices in the of?ce
as, for example, one or more LEDs. The example 250 illus
trates any number of indicators. In one embodiment, a single
modes of communication for the device as well as informa
45
for the user. The one or more inputs and the way in which the
engine 150 determines the presence status indicator for each
device may vary with embodiment. The presence status indi
50
cator for each user with respect to a registered device may be
maintained by the engine 150 and may be made available to
registered users so that one registered user may be aware of
the presence status of a second registered user with respect to
a device associated with the second user.
55
Referring now to FIG. 6, shown is a third example 300 of
components that may be included in an arrangement of a
may visually view his/her presence status indicator for a
device on a physical visual display indicator of the device.
device 12 for use in connection with the techniques for speci
60
computer system. The techniques described herein for dis
playing a presence status and selecting a presence setting may
also be used in connection with a variety of different commu
nications devices having connectivity in the network 14. Par
ticular examples of the visual display indicator and the com
playing at any time. An embodiment may also uniquely rep
resent each possible presence indicator status value using a
combination of more than one indicator in area 256.
Using the techniques described herein, a registered user
Such observation may be made without using, for example, a
computer display device, and the selection of a presence
setting may be manually made without using a mouse of the
indicator included in 256 may be displayed in accordance
with each possible presence indicator status so that if there are
n possible presence indicator status values, element 256 may
include n visual indicators with only a single indicator dis
fying a presence setting on a device and for displaying a
visual indicator in accordance with a presence indicator sta
tus. In the arrangement 300, the component 210 may be as
described elsewhere herein in connection with other ?gures.
The elements 302 and 304 may comprise portions of a tactile
65
presence wheel. A user can scroll or roll through the possible
presence setting selections using 304. The element 304 may
be characterized as an outer circumferential portion of a
US 7,907,051 B2
7
8
physical wheel including components 302 and 304. The hub
presence selection and display of the presence status may be
included, for example, on a handset of the phone or next to the
number pad under a display.
As illustrated in FIGS. 4-8, in one embodiment, the com
ponent used to manually select a presence setting may be, for
302 of the wheel display may present a colored visual indi
cator in accordance with the presence indicator status as
returned from the communications server. In one embodi
ment, the component 304 may be depressed each time to
allow a user to cycle through the various presence setting
selections. In another embodiment, different portions of 304
may be associated with different presence setting selections
example, a physical button, wheel, and the like. The compo
nent used to facilitate the selection of the presence setting
may be a physical element of component of the device dedi
cated for use in selecting a presence setting. Similarly, an
embodiment may include a physical indicator for displaying
so that as different portions of 304 are depressed in different
areas, the user scrolls or rolls through the particular setting
selection associated with the currently depressed portion of
the presence status dedicated for such use.
In connection with a user’s selection of a presence setting
and/or displaying a presence indicator status, an embodiment
304.
In one embodiment using the arrangement of the example
300 of FIG. 6, touching the element 304 without cycling
through the various presence setting selections may result in
a default selection of “available”. In other words, by touching
the portion 304 without speci?cally selecting a presence set
may provide audio feedback to the user. For example, when a
user makes a presence selection indicating and “away” pres
ence setting, audio feedback may be provided indicating the
ting indicates that the user is physically present near the
device and may be viewed as a shortcut to setting the wheel to
20
“available” without having to cycle through to the appropriate
selection.
Referring now to FIG. 7, shown is a fourth example 400 of
components that may be included in an arrangement of a
device 12 for use in connection with the techniques for speci
fying a presence setting on a device and for displaying a
selection. Similarly, when an indicator of the device is set,
audio feedback may be provided in accordance with the dis
played indicator. It should be noted that the time delay
between when a selection is made and when an indicator
status is displayed may be a very small amount of time such
as fractions of a second. Accordingly, if an embodiment pro
vides audio feedback in connection with both selection and
25
display of the indicator, the audio feedback may overlap. An
embodiment may therefore provide for a time lag between
visual indicator in accordance with a presence indicator sta
any two audio feedbacks to ensure no overlap.
Referring now to FIG. 9, shown is a ?owchart 500 summa
tus. In the example 400, the button 404 is utilized and may
behave in a manner similar to button 204 as described herein.
rizing the processing steps just described in connection with
The indicator 406 may be utilized and behave in a manner 30 the techniques described herein. The steps of ?owchart 500
similar to indicator 206. In the example 400, there may be no
may be performed with respect to a user for a device regis
tered on the communications server 15 for the user. At step
502, a determination is made as to whether the user has made
his/her manual selection for the presence setting on the
input or keyboard as illustrated in the examples of FIGS. 4, 5,
and 6. In particular, the example 400 may illustrate an
arrangement of the elements 404 and 406 on a handset of a
phone. It should be noted that element 406 may also include
multiple indicators as described in connection with the
example 250 of FIG. 5.
Referring now to FIG. 8, shown is a ?fth example 450 of
35
step 504 where the presence setting input by the user is
components that may be included in an arrangement of a
device 12 for use in connection with the techniques for speci
device. If not, control returns to step 502 until step 502 evalu
ates to yes. If step 502 evaluates to yes, control proceeds to
40
fying a presence setting on a device and for displaying a
visual indicator in accordance with a presence indicator sta
tus. In the example 450, the button 454 is illustrated on the
face or surface portion of a device. Button 454 may be utilized
received as by the communications module of the device. At
step 506, optional audio feedback may be provided to the user
regarding the user’s selection. At step 508, the device com
municates the user’s presence setting selection to the com
munications server. At step 510, the communications server
determines a presence indicator status for the device in accor
dance with the user’s setting selection and optionally other
and may behave in a manner similar to button 204 as 45 information available to the communications server. The
described herein. Element 456 may represent one or more
presence indicator status is returned to the device. At step 512,
the device sets a visual indicator in accordance with the
presence indicator status value returned from the communi
indicators located on a side surface of the device. The indi
cators of 456 may behave in a manner similar to one or more
other indicators as described herein. If 456 includes a single
indicator, the indicator may be utilized and function as
described in connection with the example 200 of FIG. 4. If
50
cations server. At step 514, audio feedback may be optionally
provided by the device in accordance with the presence indi
cator status displayed with the visual indicator at step 512. It
should be noted that in an embodiment, the total time from
456 includes multiple indicators, the indicators may be uti
lized and function as described in connection with the
example 250 of FIG. 5. It should also be noted that the button
when the user manual makes a selection in step 504 to when
the visual indicator is displayed may be fractions of a second.
454 may also be located on the side of the device on a same 55 As a result, audio feedback provided in steps 506 and 514 may
surface as the one or more indicators of 456. In another
overlap with one another. As such, an embodiment may wait
a predetermined amount of time between the audio feedback
of steps 506 and 514 in order to avoid any such auditory
variation, the element 454 and 456 may be located on differ
ent side surfaces of a device.
overlap.
As described herein, the particular location and type of
components used in connection with selecting a presence
setting by a user and displaying a presence indicator status, as
60
may be returned from the communications server or other
component in an embodiment herein, may vary with the
device. If the device is a computer, the forgoing components
for presence selection and display of the presence status may
be included, for example, on one or more surfaces of a key
board. If the device is a phone, the foregoing components for
The techniques described herein for specifying a presence
setting and/or displaying a presence status indicator for a
computer device may be used independent of the state of a
computer display device. Additionally, the techniques
65
described herein may be used in connection with other
devices, such as phones, PDAs and other wired or wireless
devices having connectivity to the communications server in
the network.
US 7,907,051 B2
10
said presence setting input component re?ects the manual
Although the subject matter has been described in lan
guage speci?c to structural features and/or methodological
acts, it is to be understood that the subject matter de?ned in
the appended claims is not necessarily limited to the speci?c
features or acts described above. Rather, the speci?c features
presence setting selection made by the user.
6. The method of claim 1, Wherein said device is a phone.
7. The method of claim 6, Wherein said presence setting
input component is provided on a handset of said phone.
8. The method of claim 1, Wherein said device is a mobile
communications device.
9. The method of claim 1, Wherein said hub portion of said
and acts described above are disclosed as example forms of
implementing the claims.
What is claimed is:
1. A method for specifying a presence setting selection for
a device comprising:
providing a physical Wheel for use in connection With
Wheel is a single indicator Which is set to one of a plurality of
colors in accordance With said updated presence indicator
status.
making a manual presence setting selection on a device
of a user, Wherein an outer circumferential portion of
10. The method of claim 1, Wherein touching different
areas of said outer circumferential portion scrolls through a
said Wheel comprises a presence setting input compo
plurality of presence settings.
nent and a hub portion of said Wheel comprises one or
more indicators for indicating a presence indicator status
of the user, said device having connectivity to a commu
nications server that determines the presence indicator
status of the user in accordance With a presence setting
selection made by the user, said device comprising one
or more other input components for receiving manual
input from the user and a display screen for displaying
the presence indicator status of the user;
receiving a current presence indicator status of the user at
said device from the communications server;
displaying the current presence indicator status of the user
on the display screen of said device for alloWing the user
to vieW the current presence indicator status and select a
presence setting using said one or more other input com
ponents of said device;
11. The method of claim 10, Wherein touching said outer
circumferential portion Without cycling through one or more
presence setting options results in a default presence setting
selection indicating that the user is available.
20
presence setting of the user.
13. A method for displaying a presence indicator status of
a user With respect to a mobile communications device asso
25
ciated With the user, the method comprising:
providing a physical Wheel for use in connection With
making a manual presence setting selection on a surface
portion of a mobile communications device associated
With the user, said Wheel comprising an outer circum
30
monitoring activity of said device;
in response to inactivity of said device, causing the display
screen of said device to no longer display the current
presence indicator status of the user;
receiving a manual presence setting selection made by the
user using said presence setting input component of said
12. The method of claim 1, further comprising:
providing audio feedback in accordance With the selected
35
ferential portion for alloWing the user to scroll through a
plurality of presence settings and a hub portion includ
ing one or more indicators for indicating a presence
indicator status of the user, said mobile communications
device having connectivity to a communications server
that determines the presence indicator status of the user
in accordance With a presence setting selection made by
Wheel, said manual presences setting selection being
the user, said surface portion comprising one or more
made When the current presence indicator status of the
input components for receiving manual input from the
user is not being displayed by the display screen and
user and a display screen for displaying the presence
indicator status of the user;
Without using said one or more other input components
of said device used to select a presence setting When the
current presence indicator status of the user is being
40
communicating a presence setting selection made by the
displayed on the display screen;
communicating the manual presence setting selection
made by the user using said presence setting input com
45
ponent of said Wheel from said device to the communi
communications device in accordance With the presence
setting selection made by the user;
cations server;
receiving an updated presence indicator status at said
device from the communications server; and
setting said one or more indicators of said hub portion of
said Wheel in accordance With the updated presence
indicator status received from the communications
50
device;
55
3. The method of claim 1, Wherein, subsequent depressions
of a particular area of said outer circumferential portion
scrolls through a plurality of presence settings.
nications device, indicating the presence indicator status
60
puter.
indicator status received from the communications
said one or more other input components used to select a
server.
14. The method of claim 13, Wherein said hub portion of
presence setting When the presence indicator status of
prise one or more of a mouse and a keyboard used With
said computer, and
of the user using said one or more indicators of said hub
portion of said Wheel in accordance With the presence
5. The method of claim 4, Wherein:
the user is being displayed on the display screen com
in response to inactivity of said mobile communications
device, causing the display screen of said mobile com
munications device to no longer display the presence
indicator status of the user; and
When the presence indicator status of the user is not being
displayed by the display screen on said mobile commu
presence indicator status.
4. The method of claim 1, Wherein said device is a com
displaying the presence indicator status of the user With
respect to the mobile communications device on the
display screen of said mobile communications device
monitoring activity of said mobile communications
server.
2. The method of claim 1, Wherein said hub portion of said
Wheel presents a colored visual indication of said updated
user from said mobile communications device to the
communications server;
receiving, from the communications server, a presence
indicator status of the user With respect to the mobile
65
said Wheel includes a single indicator Which is set to one of a
plurality of colors in accordance With a current value of said
presence indicator status.
US 7,907,051 B2
11
12
15. The method of claim 13, wherein:
said hub portion of said Wheel includes a plurality of color
munications server and for receiving a presence indica
tor status at the device from the communications server;
memory storing computer-executable instructions; and
indicators, and
a current value of said presence indicator status is repre
sented by a single unique one of said color indicators at
a single point in time.
16. The method of claim 13, Wherein:
said hub portion of said Wheel includes a plurality of color
5
receive a current presence indicator status of the user at
said device from the communications server;
display the current presence indicator status of the user
on the display screen for alloWing the user to vieW the
indicators, and
current presence indicator status and select a presence
a current value of said presence indicator status is repre
sented by more than one of said color indicators at a
setting using said one or more input components of
said device;
monitor activity of said device;
single point in time.
17. The method of claim 14, Wherein touching different
areas of said outer circumferential portion scrolls through the
plurality of presence settings.
in response to inactivity of said device, cause the display
15
18. The method of claim 13, further comprising:
providing audio feedback in accordance With saidpresence
indicator status displayed by said hub portion of said
Wheel.
19. An apparatus for specifying a presence setting and
displaying a presence indicator status comprising:
user using said presence setting input component of
said Wheel, said manual presences setting selection
20
user, said device having connectivity to a communica
being displayed on the display screen;
communicate the manual presence setting selection
made by the user using said presence setting input
component of said Wheel from said device to the
of the user in accordance With a presence setting selec
tion made by the user, said one or more input compo
nents for receiving manual input from the user;
30
connection With making a manual presence setting
selection, Wherein an outer circumferential portion of
said Wheel comprises a presence setting input compo
status of the user;
a network interface for communicating a presence setting
selection made by the user from the device to the com
being made When the current presence indicator status
of the user is not being displayed by the display screen
and Without using said one or more input components
of said device used to select a presence setting When
the current presence indicator status of the user is
tions server that determines a presence indicator status
nent and a hub portion of said Wheel comprises one or
more indicators for indicating the presence indicator
screen to no longer display the current presence indica
tor status of the user;
receive a manual presence setting selection made by the
one or more input components on a surface of a device of a
a display screen for displaying the presence indicator status
of the user;
physical Wheel on said surface of said device for use in
a processor for executing said computer-executable
instructions causing said device to:
communications server;
receive an updated presence indicator status at said
device from the communications server; and
set said one or more indicators of said hub of said Wheel
in accordance With the updated presence indicator
status received from the communications server.
35
20. The method of claim 13, wherein-subsequent depres
sions of a particular area of said outer circumferential portion
scrolls through the plurality of presence settings.
*
*
*
*
*
UNITED STATES PATENT AND TRADEMARK OFFICE
CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION
PATENT NO.
2 7,907,051 B2
APPLICATION NO.
DATED
: 1 1/451820
: March 15, 2011
: Gurdeep S. Pall et a1.
INVENTOR(S)
Page 1 ofl
It is certified that error appears in the above-identi?ed patent and that said Letters Patent is hereby corrected as shown below:
In column 9, line 57, in Claim 3, delete “wherein,” and insert -- wherein --, therefor.
In column 10, line 50, in Claim 13, delete “device” and insert -- device; --, therefor.
Signed and Sealed this
Twenty-sixth Day of July, 201 1
David J. Kappos
Director 0fthe United States Patent and Trademark O?ice
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