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Data Structure for Selecting Objects by Name or from Attributes

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000104586D
Original Publication Date: 1993-May-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-19
Document File: 4 page(s) / 86K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Duttlinger, EM: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

Selecting from among a very large set of objects that share many attributes is simplified by allowing the user to select an object either by giving its name, or by choosing from among the attributes to arrive at a name. Each time the user selects an attribute, the remaining attribute choices are computed and displayed. This process of attribute selection and recalculation of remaining choices continues until a single object has been identified possessing all of the requested attributes. The attributes that are associated with an object of a given name can also be computed and displayed.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 52% of the total text.

Data Structure for Selecting Objects by Name or from Attributes

      Selecting from among a very large set of objects that share
many attributes is simplified by allowing the user to select an
object either by giving its name, or by choosing from among the
attributes to arrive at a name.  Each time the user selects an
attribute, the remaining attribute choices are computed and
displayed.  This process of attribute selection and recalculation of
remaining choices continues until a single object has been identified
possessing all of the requested attributes.  The attributes that are
associated with an object of a given name can also be computed and
displayed.

      The disclosed data structure solves the "calculation of
remaining attributes problem" as well as rendering the ability to
show what attributes a named object has.  The data structure is
created the first time it is needed, and can then be modified
(objects added to or deleted from it) easily.  The data structure is
doubly-doubly linked, allowing fast and easy searches in both
directions (from names to attributes and from attributes to names).

      For the purpose of description, the invention will be described
as it relates to the selection of a font object.  However, this data
structure is generalizable to the selection of any object that can be
identified either by its name or from its attributes (i.e., printers,
software, species,...).

      The basic data structure is doubly-doubly linked.  It can be
accessed from two ends.  One end of the structure is a doubly linked
list of the names of available font objects (C0S0CR08, ...).  The
other end is a doubly linked list of the typefaces (most important
font attribute) available (Courier,...).

      Each font attribute points to a doubly linked list of the set
of possibilities for the next most important attribute (I.E., each
typeface points to the list of sizes available in that typeface),
until the least important attri...