Browse Prior Art Database

Method to Optimize Communication of Selected Hard Disk Storage Resources Information within a Computer System Graphical User Interface

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000012948D
Original Publication Date: 2000-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-11
Document File: 4 page(s) / 51K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Method to Optimize Communication of Selected Hard Disk Storage Resources Information within a Computer System Graphical User Interface Disclosed is a method to clearly communicate information regarding hard disk partition status to a computer user by using appropriate channels or modes of communication to encode the information most effectively. The overall problem is that displaying information about the hard disk storage resources on a computer system is difficult to show in one, easy to read view. Some of the attributes of such hard disk storage resources include: Capacity/size;

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Method to Optimize Communication of Selected Hard Disk Storage Resources

Information within a Computer System Graphical User Interface

Disclosed is a method to clearly communicate information regarding hard disk
partition status to a computer user by using appropriate channels or modes of
communication to encode the information most effectively.

The overall problem is that displaying information
about the hard disk storage resources on a computer
system is difficult to show in one, easy to read
view. Some of the attributes of such hard disk
storage resources include:
Capacity/size;

Name/label assigned to physical device;
partitions, partition sizes and partition names;
Volumes, drive letter assignments;

Free space that is not assigned to a partition or
volume;
size of contiguous block;

File system format used for a partition;
Boot manager status of a partition or volume
(bootable, startable, installable).

The invention solves the problem by breaking down
the problem into components and then displaying the
information in the modes that are most appropriate
to conveying that information so that it is easy to
read and use. Within a visual channel of
communication, the invention employs visual icons
(representational visuals), visual symbols (e.g.
text or color coding), and visual metaphors
(analogous visuals) to deliver the information to
the user. Each mode is selected based on an
analysis of the goals and tasks of the user, the
types of information required, and the effectiveness
and efficiency (appropriateness) of that mode to
convey the information to the user.

The physical hard disk capacity is listed
immediately following the name of the hard disk, as
an alphanumeric string. Positioned at the beginning
of the line of text and graphics, this is perhaps
the most important overall general information about
the device, and thus appears in a location which the
eye of the viewer gravitates toward naturally.
Because the capacity or size in megabytes of storage
is a symbolic attribute, the information is
presented in symbolic form.

As an example, a hard disk of 5.25 inches diameter
could originally contain 5, 10, 20, or more
megabytes of data. Currently, a hard disk with a
diameter of about 1 inch can be formatted to contain
350 megabytes of data.

Clearly, the more modern technology is not
physically larger than the older technology. Thus
the information to be conveyed is one of symbolic or
abstract capacity, and the alphanumeric values
provide the clearest communication of this

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information.

The name of the device is a symbolic label. Any
string of text may be applied. In order to provide
ease of use to the end user, the default name
assigned to each hard disk is "hard disk #" where #
is the sequential order (1, 2, 3) in which the
device is attached to the system.

Each hard disk's capacity is represented as a
rectangular graphic that fills the screen width.
Thus a 500 MB hard disk is represented in the same
physical size across the screen asa5GB hard disk.
With the increas...