Browse Prior Art Database

Displaying Path Information in a Graphical Browsing Facility

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000102605D
Original Publication Date: 1990-Dec-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-17
Document File: 2 page(s) / 71K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Burns, L: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

Disclosed is a facility for keeping track of the path followed during a browsing session. Browsing is a facility for an inexpert user to easily explore the contents of a datastore in an unplanned manner and is discussed in [1]. During a browsing session, the user can follow a complex path to display a specific data element. This invention displays the path followed and permits any data element along the path to be made the current element which can be used to start a new path.

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Displaying Path Information in a Graphical Browsing Facility

       Disclosed is a facility for keeping track of the path
followed during a browsing session.  Browsing is a facility for an
inexpert user to easily explore the contents of a datastore in an
unplanned manner and is discussed in [1]. During a browsing session,
the user can follow a complex path to display a specific data
element.  This invention displays the path followed and permits any
data element along the path to be made the current element which can
be used to start a new path.

      In a browsing session, the user starts with a display of the
datastore schema as a graph.  Data elements classes are represented
as nodes and relationships between classes are represented as arcs.
The user operates directly on the display of the graph to retrieve
data elements and display their contents and operates on the data
windows showing data element information to navigate to related data
elements and display their contents.  Details of the Browsing
facility are discussed in [1].

      The objective of a browsing facility is to make it simple for
the user to navigate from data element to related data element to
reach and display the information that is desired.  The flip side of
this ease- of-use is that one can rapidly fill up the screen with
windows covering other windows, all of which are related in complex
ways to each other.  In such a situation it is easy to lose track of
how a particular data window was reached, i.e., the path that was
followed.

      This invention provides a facility for displaying the path
followed.  By invoking an option in the browsing facility, the user
can bring up an overview window showing the schema graph in
miniature....