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Patent Title: Method and apparatus for searching a large volume of data with a pointerbased device in a data processing system

Assignee: IBM
Patent Number: US5680605
Issue Date: 10-21-1997
Application Number:
File Date:02-07-1995

Abstract: The present invention is directed to a pointer-based query formulation methodology for use with a computer having a pointer-based device associated therewith. The method of the present invention provides the user with a displayed n-grid of n-tuples of keys in a display window of a display device where the n-tuples of keys are attributes associated with the data set to be searched. Once the data set to be search has been selected and the n-grid generated and displayed, the user can use the pointer-based device to select one or more grid elements or n-tuples. The method then converts the selected grid elements into a search query that is then applied to the data set and the data entries containing or matching the search query are accumulated and displayed in a second display window for user review. The method can further include techniques for query refinement by activating a refinement procedure associated with each grid element using either a hot corner in a cursor magnifier or using an active window associated with the grid cursor. The refinement causes the generation and display of a refined grid comprising all trinary and ternary combination tuples containing the selected n-tuple of the original n-grid.


Link to USPTO

IBM Pledge dated 1/11/2005