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Method to Convert Graphical User Interface Definitions and Windows to HyperText Markup Language

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000118884D
Original Publication Date: 1997-Aug-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Apr-01
Document File: 8 page(s) / 355K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Farn, B: AUTHOR

Abstract

Internet web browsers are able to display HyperText Markup Language (HTML) entry forms from a remote computer system. These forms are completed and are sent back to the host system for processing. Personal computer software programs that contain graphical user interface elements are unable to send their existing user interfaces as HTML entry forms. A method of converting an existing user interface to an HTML form is discussed, specifically by converting graphical user interface control definitions to HyperText Markup Language forms.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 30% of the total text.

Method to Convert Graphical User Interface Definitions and Windows
to HyperText Markup Language

      Internet web browsers are able to display HyperText Markup
Language (HTML) entry forms from a remote computer system.  These
forms are completed and are sent back to the host system for
processing.  Personal computer software programs that contain
graphical user interface elements are unable to send their existing
user interfaces  as HTML entry forms.  A method of converting an
existing user interface  to an HTML form is discussed, specifically
by converting graphical user  interface control definitions to
HyperText Markup Language forms.

      The following list of personal computer graphical user
interface controls have corresponding HTML elements that can be
displayed in a web browser:
  o  Entry field
  o  Multi-line edit field
  o  Combination box
  o  Static text field
  o  Push button
  o  List box
  o  Radio button

Each of these controls has a set of common characteristics:
  o  Its position in a two dimensional plane
  o  Its size within the two dimensional plane
  o  Any initial textual values

      Within a layout definition, the control definition statements
may appear in any order.  For instance, dialog editors sequence
controls in the order that the controls will be tabbed to by the
person interacting with the user interface.  The following is a
sample list of controls and their characteristics.  These
characteristics can be obtained from a dialog editor's resource file
or can be obtained dynamically from controls within an application
window.

Each entry has the following characteristics:
  o  Control type
  o  X origin (left)
  o  Y origin (top)
  o  X extent (width)
  o  Y extent (height)
  o  Initial textual values

The graphical user interface for the above control definitions looks
like this:

                            (Image Omitted)

      In order to convert each control type to an HTML element, a
table is required that lists each control type and its corresponding
HTML element syntax, such as the one below. 

                            (Image Omitted)

      HyperText Markup Language forms require that HTML elements are
listed in a top down, left to right layout order.  Therefore, the
following steps must be performed:
  o  The controls must be translated into HTML elements
  o  The elements must be listed in a top-down, left to
      right order

An HTML table element can be used to layout the elements, so that
they appear in a similar arrangement as the controls are laid out in
a window.  HTML tables consist of columns and rows.  Each column and
each row is a predefined, constant number of pixels wide and high,
respectively.  The intersection of any row with any column can be
called a cell.  Each HTML element occupies a rectangular region of
cells.  Each unused group of cells in a row ca...