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1. (WO2019048824) Optically Readable Markers
Nota: O texto foi obtido por processos automáticos de reconhecimento ótico de caracteres.
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CLAIMS

1. An optically readable marker comprising:

data to be extracted; and

an identifier arranged to identify a location of the data to be extracted, wherein the identifier comprises a plurality of dots arranged in a set pattern, and wherein the dots are small compared to the size of the data to be extracted.

2. The optically readable marker of claim 1 wherein the identifier consists of the plurality of dots.

3. The optically readable marker of claim 1 or claim 2 wherein the data comprises alphanumeric characters.

4. The optically readable marker of any preceding claim wherein the data are arranged in a grid, and wherein optionally the plurality of dots are arranged to be adjacent to the grid.

5. The optically readable marker of any preceding claim wherein the data are text-based data and each dot of the plurality of dots is small compared to a character of the text-based data.

6. The optically readable marker of any preceding claim wherein the identifier comprises at least three dots.

7. The optically readable marker of any preceding claim wherein the set pattern of the plurality of dots is arranged to lack rotational symmetry, such that an orientation of the data can be uniquely established.

8. The optically readable marker of any preceding claim wherein the set pattern of the plurality of dots includes dots located near at least two sides of the data.

9. The optically readable marker of any preceding claim wherein the plurality of dots includes a first subset of dots arranged to indicate the presence of the identifier, the first subset of dots optionally comprising three collinear, equidistant dots .

10. The optically readable marker of claim 9 wherein the plurality of dots includes a second subset of dots arranged to indicate the presence of the identifier, the second subset of dots optionally comprising three collinear, equidistant dots.

1 1. The optically readable marker of claim 10 wherein a distance between the first and second subsets is within an expected range of distances relative to the spacing of dots in the first subset, and the optically readable marker optionally further comprising one or more further dots, wherein the further dots are located at positions determinable from the positions of the dots in the first and second subsets.

12. The optically readable marker of any preceding claim wherein the data to be extracted comprises at least one of the following:

(i) text-based data;

(ii) a barcode or QR code; and

(iii) encoded 2D binary data.

13. The optically readable marker of any preceding claim wherein the dots surround the data to be extracted.

14. A beverage container comprising an optically readable marker according to any preceding claim.

15. The beverage container of claim 14, wherein:

(i) the beverage container is a can and the optically readable marker is located on a ring pull of the can; or

(ii) the beverage container is a bottle and the optically readable marker is located on an inner surface of a lid of the bottle; or

(iii) the optically readable marker is located on a label of the beverage container.

16. The beverage container of claim 14 or claim 15, wherein the optically readable marker is provided by laser etched marks on a surface of the beverage container, and wherein optionally the surface is a surface of a closure of the beverage container, such as a lid, other closure, or ring pull.

17. A method of extracting data from an image, the method comprising:

acquiring a two-dimensional image;

identifying a plurality of dots arranged in a set pattern within the image, the plurality of dots being arranged to form an identifier;

determining a location of the data to be extracted based on the identifier wherein the dots are small compared to the size of the data to be extracted; and

optically scanning the determined location so as to extract the data.

18. The method of claim 17 wherein the acquiring a two-dimensional image comprises taking a photograph or using a live frame of a camera.

19. The method of claim 17 or 18 further comprising determining an orientation of the data to be extracted based on the identifier.

20. The method of any of claims 17 to 19 wherein the identifying an identifier within the image comprises:

detecting dots within the image;

identifying a first subset of dots which meet a first pre-set condition;

determining one or more expected positions of further dots based on the first subset of dots; and

searching for the further dots in the expected positions.

21. The method of claim 20 wherein the determining one or more expected positions of further dots comprises looking for a second subset of dots which meet a second preset condition with respect to the first subset of dots within an expected distance range of the first subset, the distance being determined relative to the spacing of dots in the first subset, and wherein optionally the determining one or more expected positions of further dots based on the first subset of dots comprises determining the one or more expected positions of the further dots based on the first and second subsets of dots.

22. The method of any of claims 17 to 21 wherein:

(i) identifying each dot of the plurality of dots comprises identifying a pixel that is either brighter or darker by more than a threshold than all of the n pixels in a ring around the identified pixel; and/or

(ii) the optical scanning comprises performing optical character recognition on the determined location.

23. A method of marking an image or object with an optically readable marker, the method comprising:

marking the image or object with data to be extracted; and

marking the image or object with an identifier arranged to identify a location of the data,

wherein the identifier comprises a plurality of dots arranged in a set pattern, and wherein the dots are small compared to the size of the data to be extracted.

24. The method of claim 23 wherein the marking the object with the data to be extracted and with the identifier comprises laser etching, and/or wherein the object is a beverage can ring pull or container lid.

25. Use of a marker as claimed in any of claim 1 to 13 for augmented reality applications.