Implementing the Ability for Backward Searches in Presentation Manager Containers
Original Publication Date: 1995-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-29
Johnson, DK: AUTHOR [+3]
Disclosed is a description of how backward search capability can be implemented in a Presentation Manager* (PM) application, allowing the user to search in either direction through the records contained in the container, and thus increasing the usability of record searching in containers with a large number of records.
Implementing the Ability for Backward Searches in
a description of how backward search capability
can be implemented in a Presentation Manager* (PM) application,
allowing the user to search in either direction through the records
contained in the container, and thus increasing the usability of
record searching in containers with a large number of records.
The PM of
OS/2* provides the capability to search for specific
records in a container based on the first character of the text
string associated with the record. When the user types a key, the
next record starting with that character is found and scrolled into
view. The search will wrap around to the top of the container if no
matches are found from the current record to the end of the list.
This is a
good usability feature, but it lacks a crucial
component: it does not allow the user to search backwards in the
container. This is very important for containers that contain a
large number of records. For example, the user can keep hitting the
search key, moving one by one through the records that match, until
the desired record is found. If impatient, the user can type faster
than the search can complete, thus invoking type-ahead support. This
can cause the searched-for record to be missed by the time all of the
keystrokes have been processed. Unless the records are sorted in the
container by the text string, which they often are not, there is no
way to know where the previously found records are in the container.
Having no PM-supplied support to then search backwards a record or
two, the user has no option but to start the search over and type
slower this time. This can be frustrating for the busy user.
useful advantage for backward search capability is in a
large container when the user knows that the record he or she is
searching for is near the end of a large number of records that start
with the same first letter. It would be very convenient to be able
to go directly to the first record after the large group he needs to
search, and then to search backwards to find the one he is looking
for, rather than having to search through all of the records in the
same character group to find the one desired record near the end of
The user must
be able to specify whether a backward search or a
forward search is desired. This can be implemented by presenting to
the user a search dialog that includes an entry field where the user
can enter the text to be searched for as well as a checkbox
signifying if a backward search is desired. Once a user has
indicated that a backward search is desired, the application must
perform the search.
should start from the record that currently has the
focus, if any. The application should send to the container the
CM_QUERYRECORDEMPHASIS message with the CRA_CURSORED flag set in
order to learn which record has...