The patent's assignee for patent number 8527497 is
News editors obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Computer users are able to access and share vast amounts of information through various local and wide area computer networks including proprietary networks as well as public networks such as the Internet. Typically, a web browser installed on a user's computing device facilitates access to and interaction with information located at various network servers identified by, for example, associated uniform resource locators (URLs). Conventional approaches to enable sharing of user-generated content include various information sharing technologies or platforms such as social networking websites. Such websites may include, be linked with, or provide a platform for applications enabling users to view web pages created or customized by other users where visibility and interaction with such pages by other users is governed by some characteristic set of rules.
"Such social networking information, and most information in general, is typically stored in relational databases. Generally, a relational database is a collection of relations (frequently referred to as tables). Relational databases use a set of mathematical terms, which may use Structured Query Language (SQL) database terminology. For example, a relation may be defined as a set of tuples that have the same attributes. A tuple usually represents an object and information about that object. A relation is usually described as a table, which is organized into rows and columns. Generally, all the data referenced by an attribute are in the same domain and conform to the same constraints.
"The relational model specifies that the tuples of a relation have no specific order and that the tuples, in turn, impose no order on the attributes. Applications access data by specifying queries, which use operations to identify tuples, identify attributes, and to combine relations. Relations can be modified and new tuples can supply explicit values or be derived from a query. Similarly, queries identify may tuples for updating or deleting. It is necessary for each tuple of a relation to be uniquely identifiable by some combination (one or more) of its attribute values. This combination is referred to as the primary key. In a relational database, all data are stored and accessed via relations. Relations that store data are typically implemented with or referred to as tables.
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