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United States Patent 115) Burgess et al, [54] METHOD OF ENCODING AN E-MAIL ADDRESS IN A FAX MESSAGE AND. ROUTING THE FAX MESSAGE TO A DESTINATION ON A NETWORK 175] Inventors: Ken L. Burgess; John S, Marvin, both of Fort Collins, Colo. (73] Assignee: Hewlett Packard Company, Palo Alto, Calif. [21] Appl. No: $43,998 {22} Filed: Jun, 26, 1990 (51) Int. cus HOsM 11/00 [32] Usa. ns 388/480 [58] Field of Search 338/440, 467, 402-403; 382/61 (56) References Cited U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS 4350012 9/1982 Verderber eta 338/403 41622592 11/1986. Ikehata ota 388/440 $1654728 3/1987 Sueyosti 358/440 3/1987 Kamada eta 382/61 1/1980 Herbst 3857440 SO01S72 3/1991 Hashimoro eta. 386/440 Primary Examiner—Stephen Brinich Attorney, Agent, or Firm—Edward L. Miller 61 ABSTRACT A fax message transmitted by a facsi ile transmitter TANTO ‘USO051153264 Patent Number: 5,115,326 May 19, 1992 Date of Patent: fy) [45] includes bar coded headers in its first page. At least one of these headers contains the name of an addressee that is also a user on a network. A fax server receiving the incoming fax message inspects the first page of the in- ‘coming facsimile to locate the bar coded headers. If a TO: header is found it is used to determine the corre- sponding E-mail address, and the fax is automatically routed as E-mail on the network to the addressee, Any other headers, such as a FROM: or SUBJECT: header have their bar coded content converted to ASCII and attached as ASII strings to the first page for easy inspec tion. An asymmetrical nature of the bar code used al- lows the fax server to determine which of a left-to-right of right-to-left scanning direction produces valid bar code. This in turn indicates whether the headers for the first page are right side up or upside down. By implica- tion, this determines the orientation for the entire fax document. If the document is found to be upside down the fax server erects the document before mailing it to the addressee. The fax server or some other application running on a computer served by the network may be the addressee, and if the incoming fax is a request for information (whether by further bar code or check marks in predefined fields) the information may simply be sent by return fax to the sender, perhaps as part of the same phone call. 9 Claims, 15 Drawing Sheets USS. Patent May 19, 1992 Sheet 1 of 15 SUBSCRBER’S LOOPS WITH LOCAL PHONE C0. “ ™s + 5,115,326 g----b-- a Lad \ Veanouer F Fat Sig) USER'S FACLTY . capt CHPARL ODEN D, Moe |) § COMPUTER COMMUNICATION usr] HeTWORK 97 |— 6 USR Jt t~ er — FIG 1 U.S. Patent May 19, 1992 NEW INCOMING wOOEM, ACTIMITY 1S NEW INCOMING ACTIVITY INITIATE QUIGONG ACTIITY No SOMETHING ELSE OF INTEREST 20 Sheet 2 of 15 5,115,326 So FAX SERVER MANN IDLE LOOP YES SCHEDULE [sm *DENTFY” Y 8 _ SCHEDULE Ll RECEIVE FAX * sereoue Lt ROUTE FAX ” AN UNLOCKED FLE 'S THERE AN UNLOCKED FILE IN A DIRECTORY FOR INCOMING 17 FAX MESSAGES SCHEDULE AN APPROPTIATE SCHEDULE APPROPRIATE AN PROCESS — a FIG 2