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Method for Presenting Database Query in List and Item Modes

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000047128D
Original Publication Date: 1983-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-07
Document File: 2 page(s) / 13K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Sharman, GCH: AUTHOR

Abstract

In this article a method for presenting the results of a database query interchangeably in either of two generic modes, which are known as "list" mode and single "item" mode, is described. List mode is defined as that class of presentations in which many records of similar format are presented. Item mode is defined as that class of presentations in which a single record is presented. This method allows the end user great flexibility in determining the style of presentation and the flow of terminal dialogue, and significantly contributes to end user productivity. The method may be applied to any database system which is capable of retrieving records and which possesses a data dictionary facility containing a description of each field in those records.

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Method for Presenting Database Query in List and Item Modes

In this article a method for presenting the results of a database query interchangeably in either of two generic modes, which are known as "list" mode and single "item" mode, is described. List mode is defined as that class of presentations in which many records of similar format are presented. Item mode is defined as that class of presentations in which a single record is presented. This method allows the end user great flexibility in determining the style of presentation and the flow of terminal dialogue, and significantly contributes to end user productivity. The method may be applied to any database system which is capable of retrieving records and which possesses a data dictionary facility containing a description of each field in those records. The method is described in relation to a binary relational database system, which is known to possess these facilities. Query operations on a binary relational database have been described in [1,2]. The method by which query results may be processed as a virtual file has been described in [3]. A binary relational database possesses a data dictionary that describes each virtual file which may be materialized from that database. For any chosen virtual file, this dictionary contains a description of its record format giving field name, field offset, and field width for each field in the record. When the end user requests a presentation of some chosen virtual file, the presentation manager retrieves the appropriate record description from the data dictionary and builds a descriptor in main storage. It then interprets this descriptor in order to build a dynamic screen presentation. In all cases, the presentation includes both the descriptor information and the actual data record (or records) retrieved from the database. In the list mode, the presentation has a tabular form consisting of a number of columns, each of which corresponds to a particular field in the virtual record. The descriptor information, i.e., field names, is displayed as a series of column headings across the screen. The offset and width information is used to format the next row o...