Browse Prior Art Database

Graphic Representation of State Changes

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000050578D
Original Publication Date: 1982-Nov-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-10
Document File: 3 page(s) / 61K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Appel, A: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

This article describes a graphic technique for presenting past states in simulation and displaying processes at a display terminal. The technique is assumed to be implemented on a raster display. Two uses of this technique in a programming environment are presented.

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Graphic Representation of State Changes

This article describes a graphic technique for presenting past states in simulation and displaying processes at a display terminal. The technique is assumed to be implemented on a raster display. Two uses of this technique in a programming environment are presented.

Representing the past history of a simulation on a graphic terminal is often difficult. The simulation may represent an object moving, for example, in two dimensions. A user of a graphic terminal may wish to know the past trajectory of a object. Another type of past history is the time history of the activity of an object.

Fig. 1A shows a series of squares displaced along a 45-degree vector. Visualize that when displayed, the topmost square is of a color of low intensity and the bottommost square is of high intensity. Also visualize that when each square is written on the screen, it is outlined with four lines of different color end high intensity. The series of squares can represent a past history in space or in time. As time is presumed to pass, and a new configuration occurs, the old picture is redrawn on the video display in a less intense color, and the current picture is drawn in brighter colors. O1d events are dim, somewhat less obvious, and current events are bright, more obvious. The colors used to fill areas or draw lines can also cycle through a sequence so that the particular instant a picture represents can also be determined by inspection. The last square is the current state of the process or simulation, and by following the squares back one sees a past history. Fig. 1B shows the squares with edges entering and leaving from four sides. This provides a flexible means of showing relations between the squares and highlighting the past history of the squares.

The essential graphic technique is that colored areas are outlined with some color or the background color. In this way as new positions are drawn, these will stand out from old positions and can be recognized as occurring later in time or more recently. This use of outlining to emphasize temporal events is novel. Two simple examples in programming will now be shown to illustrate the use of the serie...