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METHOD FOR PRODUCING NATURAL INHERITANCE BASED U/I USING DATA INHERITANCE IN XML

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000013775D
Original Publication Date: 2001-Oct-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-18
Document File: 3 page(s) / 43K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

This publication describes a method and process for producing user interfaces using an inheritance mechanism.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 54% of the total text.

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  METHOD FOR PRODUCING NATURAL INHERITANCE BASED U/I USING DATA INHERITANCE IN XML

   This publication describes a method and process for producing user interfaces using an inheritance mechanism.

In today's U/I development environments like Java/Swing, C++/MFC, and Visual Basic, development of user interfaces is typically containment based, that is to say the elements of U/I are added to container and displayed.

This approach works well but the containment aspect of these system does not lend itself well to inheritance based User Interface. Consider the notion that a user interface is to be developed to accept information for a corporateUser. A user interface element such as a wizard, dialog, property sheet or other device is programmed to accept data entry for the corporateUser.

Now, if another application wishes to re-use the user interface and add data to it to extend the corporateUser to be a CorporateNotesUser, the programmer will probably have to rewrite some aspect of the original corpoarateUser U/I to produce the new U/I. The derivative code may have used some of the original code, but what happens with new data fields are added to coporateUser? Since the CorporateNotesUser system is most likely separate it will not know about the changes..

The Lidea language toolkit uses a model/view/controller paradigm to display user interface. A <DATA-GROUP> and a layout are matched to produce a user interface. Lidea has three layout types WIZARD, PROPERTY-SHEET, and DIALOG. For each layout type the first sub-grouping of data in the data group determines a segment of the U/I. For example consider the following sample data groups:

<DATA-GROUP ID="CorporateUser">

<GROUP ID="EmployeeName">

<STRING ID="LastName"/>

<STRING ID="FirstName" />

</GROUP>

<GROUP ID="EmployeeInfo">

<STRING ID="EmployeeNumber"/>

<STRING ID="EmployeePhoneNumber"/>

</GROUP> </DATA-GROUP>

<DATA-GROUP ID="InternetUser>

<GROUP ID="User-Information">

<STRING ID="UserID" />

<STRING ID="IP-Address"/>

</GROUP> </DATA-GROUP>

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If this data group is matched with a wizard layout it will always produce a two page wizard because of the two sub groups in the data group. If the s...