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Method for Automatically Printing Variable Content Labels On-line

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000119297D
Original Publication Date: 1991-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Apr-01
Document File: 7 page(s) / 283K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Lentz, JW: AUTHOR [+6]

Abstract

Trends in product labeling produce labels that, within any one label family, have many similar characteristics, but which have one or more elements that make them unique (for example, a sequence number). The addition of graphics can provide yet more variation in the labels within a family. A label applied to logic assemblies (see Fig. 1) is an example of this label type. Label 1 is applied to logic assemblies 2 and 3 and others not shown. Referring to Fig. 2, each label in this label family contains: 1. A graphic symbol 25 -- to tell the user the position in the system where the logic assembly installs. 2. The logic assembly part number 26 -- which is EC sensitive to a limited degree. 3. The part number of the logic card within the logic assembly 27 -- which will change each time an EC is made to the card. 4.

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Method for Automatically Printing Variable Content Labels On-line

      Trends in product labeling produce labels that, within
any one label family, have many similar characteristics, but which
have one or more elements that make them unique (for example, a
sequence number).  The addition of graphics can provide yet more
variation in the labels within a family.  A label applied to logic
assemblies (see Fig. 1) is an example of this label type.  Label 1 is
applied to logic assemblies 2 and 3 and others not shown.  Referring
to Fig. 2, each label in this label family contains:
1.   A graphic symbol 25 -- to tell the user the position in the
system where the logic assembly installs.
2.   The logic assembly part number 26 -- which is EC sensitive to a
limited degree.
3.   The part number of the logic card within the logic assembly 27
-- which will change each time an EC is made to the card.
4.   A unique sequence number 28 -- comprised of the plant of
manufacture, the job number, the last digit of the year of
manufacture, and a three-digit unique sequence number.  The sequence
number must match that of the logic card.
5.   The assembly feature code number 29 -- which is keyed to the
type of logic assembly.
6.   Special text messages 30 -- which appear on some, but not all,
labels.

      Items 26, 27, 28, and 29 appear in both human- and
machine-readable form.

      It becomes clear after inspection of the required information
on these labels that preprinting is an impossibility.

      Labels of this type are most effectively printed on-line and on
demand at the assembly workstation on an all-points-addressable
printer capable of reproducing graphics.  An individualized logic
assembly label is printed when a "trigger", in this case a bar code
on the card in the logic assembly to be labeled, is scanned with a
bar code reader.  Printing begins automatically and immediately and
is completed within the build cycle of the logic assembly.

      Attributes of the print system used to create and print
multi-format labels of this and other types are:
1.   A menu-driven label design package for use by untrained
operators.
2    A menu-driven label package aimed at manufacturing.
3.   An automatic digitizing method that eliminates hand
      digitizing of graphic data including:
      a.   Program utilities which take any graphic from a
           graphic capable terminal and convert it to a
           bitmap.
      b.   Acceptance of input from sources other than
           graphic terminals (i.e., optical scanners).
      c.   The ability to automatically digitize graphics,
           alphabetic or numeric characters, or symbols
           either singly or in groups.
      d.   The ability to automatically digitize portions of
           or the entire field of a particular label or other
           electro...