Method and apparatus for processing free-format data

  • US 6,272,495 B1
  • Filed: 08/06/1998
  • Issued: 08/07/2001
  • Est. Priority Date: 04/22/1997
  • Status: Expired due to Term
First Claim
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1. A method of processing free-format data stored in a computing system, comprising the steps of examining elements of the data to determine attributes of the data, by examining the content of the elements and the contextual relationships of elements to each other, to determine semantic and syntactic information about the data, producing additional data relating to this information, in the form of a text object which includes pointer means enabling access to the elements of the free-format data, and the additional data being accessible by a query processing means to provide at least one of answers to queries relating to the semantic and syntactic information about the data and to access the data to manipulate the data;

  • and arranging the text object to act as a layer, between the free-format data and the query processing means, for at least one of interpretation and manipulation of the dataprocessing a plurality of free-format data records and producing a text object associated with each free-format data record; and

    producing a text object index including attribute type identifiers for elements of each data record and pointers to each data record, whereby the index may be queried by queries relating to semantic and syntactic-information about the data and the data may be accessed via the index.

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