Browse Prior Art Database

Control of Data Access of Sharing Users

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000115782D
Original Publication Date: 1995-Jun-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-30
Document File: 2 page(s) / 58K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Venturi, RJ: AUTHOR

Abstract

Many computer applications allow multiple users to access, view and alter the same data 'simultaneously'. Examples are Chalkboards and Shared Editors.

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

Control of Data Access of Sharing Users

      Many computer applications allow multiple users to access, view
and alter the same data 'simultaneously'.  Examples are Chalkboards
and Shared Editors.

      In these environments, there is a need to control access to the
data on a 'per-operation' basis.  Thus, if one user is
entering/changing a line of text, or constructing a graphical
element, he does not want one of the other users, with whom he is
sharing the data, to be trying to alter the same data at the same
moment.  An interlock is needed.  This can be anything form a simple
co-operative verbal agreement (if the users are also connected on a
voice channel), to a more formal owner/viewer arrangement in which
the application forces a programmable lockout of all users except the
one who currently has 'edit authority'.

      Whichever mechanism is used, there is a problem of how to
clearly inform all sharing users of the current state of the 'edit
authority' - i.e., is someone currently entering/changing data or is
it allowable to start doing it now?

      Obvious solutions involve 'STATUS' indicators on application
screens, coupled with the use of menu items or pushbuttons to request
a change of status, e.g., from 'AVAILABLE' to 'UNAVAILABLE' for the
other sharing users.  There are several examples of this, but they
are inconsistent in appearance and operation and, therefore, not at
all user-friendly or intuitive.

      The solution described h...