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Generic Cascade Menu to Create New Object Instances

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000113642D
Original Publication Date: 1994-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-27
Document File: 4 page(s) / 166K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Bloomfield, MA: AUTHOR

Abstract

Disclosed is a method for facilitating the creation of a new object instances through selections available from a cascade menu presented when the "create another" selection from a pop-up menu is chosen by the user. The cascade menu contains a list of all template objects in the system of the same base class as the original object. This method eliminates a need to find an object template for a drag and drop operation.

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This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 46% of the total text.

Generic Cascade Menu to Create New Object Instances

      Disclosed is a method for facilitating the creation of a new
object instances through selections available from a cascade menu
presented when the "create another" selection from a pop-up menu is
chosen by the user.  The cascade menu contains a list of all template
objects in the system of the same base class as the original object.
This method eliminates a need to find an object template for a drag
and drop operation.

      The OS/2* Workplace Shell uses a technology providing a drag
and drop mechanism for creating new instances of objects through the
use of template objects.  Any object of any class, for which data and
properties are defined, can become a template object, allowing
different types of objects with different data and properties to be
defined.  Instances can be created from these templates by using a
drag and drop action to "peel off" a new instance from the template
stack.

      As shown in Fig. 1, the icon for a template object 10 is
superimposed on a graphical "sticky pad" 12, being scaled down when
compared to a non-template object 14.  The default drag and drop
operation creates another object from a template object without
copying its template property.  In other respects, a template is
identical to the non-template form.  While this technique works well
to create new object instances in many situations, this method is not
convenient if the desired object template is obscured by other
windows, or it the desired object template is in a folder which is
not currently open.  Additionally, different classes of template
objects may be mixed in a template folder, making access to a
particular class of objects difficult.

      A pop-up menu 16 for an object 14 contains a list of actions
that can be performed on that object in its current state.  Pop-up
menus are available for closed objects, with no view windows open,
and for open objects, with one or more view windows open.  Many
objects, particularly data-file based objects, such as documents,
contain a "create another" selection within their pop-up menu.  The
"create another" selection is available regardless of whether the
object is open or closed and can result in the display of a
conventional cascade menu or a conditional cascade menu.

      The "create another" cascade menu 17 contains a dynamic list of
all template objects of the same base class as the original object
within the entire system.  Each of these template objects represents
some data and a set of properties.

      When an object type is selected from the "create another"
cascade menu 17, a new object instance is created, having data and
properties defined by the template object corresponding to the
selection made.  In this way, a new instance is created with a
template object without using a drag and drop technique.  This use of
a cascade menu is particularly helpful for situations in which the
drag and drop met...