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System for associating editors/tools with resources in an IDE Disclosure Number: IPCOM000132005D
Original Publication Date: 2005-Nov-28
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Nov-28
Document File: 1 page(s) / 23K

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IDE and operating systems must associate editors or applications with files. Prior art uses either the file extension, or reads the header of the file to determine the file type when the extension is widely used. This invention describes a third technique whereby a process determines associations based on content of other files rather than the file being opened.

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System for associating editors /tools with resources in an IDE

In an Integrated Development Environment (IDE), there are many types of editors which are capable of editing different files/resources. One of the problems faced by the IDE is determining which editor to use for a given resource. The most common solution is to use the filename and/or its extension, for example,
.java should be edited with the java source editor. However, there may be many editors for a given extension such as "XML".

A known improvement on the above mechanism is to open the file and read some small amount (a "header") or all of the file, and use the contents of the file to determine which editor to use. For example, XML files might contain a certain reference to a schema or DTD, which could be used to associate it with the appropriate default editor in some cases.

This leaves a third case, where the content of the file can not easily indicate which editor should be used for the file. Instead, it is how the file is used by other files that determines the appropriate default editor. This is the case covered here.

A software process is created to maintain a mapping of resources to editor types. When the user attempts to open the resource choosing to use the "default" editor, this mapping is used in conjunction with the prior art is used to determining the appropriate editor.

By hooking into existing mechanisms for responding to resource changes (in an IDE or even in the Operating System),...