Browse Prior Art Database

Instantaneous Help Generator

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000112083D
Original Publication Date: 1994-Apr-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-26
Document File: 2 page(s) / 87K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Anderson, B: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

Disclosed is a methodology by which Operating System/2 (OS/2)* Presentation Manager (PM)* applications can dynamically build the environment required to present Help windows under PM. This process can be used in any situation where text data is required for display.

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

Instantaneous Help Generator

      Disclosed is a methodology by which Operating System/2 (OS/2)*
Presentation Manager (PM)* applications can dynamically build the
environment required to present Help windows under PM.  This process
can be used in any situation where text data is required for display.

      PM is a screen presentation facility and a set of screen
management functions provided by OS/2 through a series of application
program interfaces (API).  Through these APIs, an application can
communicate with an end user by presenting information through panels
and accepting user information through data entry fields in these
same panels.  This is performed by the application through PM windows
built by the application developer.  In order to display a single
window, a Help Resource file must be built by the developer.  This
file contains static information as to how the window will appear.
For each window, a separate Help Resource file must be created which
contains help text data used when the user of the panel selects Help
on any one of the panel fields.  For multiple language support, a
person must translate this text from one language to another.  To do
this, that translator (human) must have knowledge of the structure of
the Help Resource file because the translatable text for the window
lies within this file.  Learning this interface, changing the text,
and then retesting the operation of these help panels can be a very
costly operation.  To overcome this hurdle, the Instantaneous Help
Generator process was created.

      The Instantaneous Help Generator (IHG) is a process by which
Help Resource files are dynamically generated at application run
time.  To generate these Help Resource files required by an
application, the IHG process requires information from the developer
to build two tables used by IHG.  The first table, Panel Field Table
(PFT), contains information about the fields in each panel required
by the user's application.  Each entry in the PFT represents a single
field in a panel that will require Help function support.  The format
of the PFT is illustrated below.

        Panel Field Table

____________________________________

| Panel ID | Field ID | Text Index |

|----------|----------|------------|

| PANEL001 |  0001    |  0001      |

|----------|----------|------------|

| PANEL001 |  0002    |  0002      |

|----------|----------|------------|

| PANEL001 |  0003    |  0003      |

|----------|----------|------------|

| PANEL002 |  0001    |  0004      |

|----------|----------|------------|

| PANEL002 |  0002    |  0002      |

|----------|----------|------------|

| PANEL002 |  0003    |  0005      |

|----------|----------|------------|

      A second table, the Panel Text Table (PTT), is a series of
language-dependent panel text strings (...