News Column

"Data Scope Origination within Aggregation Operations" in Patent Application Approval Process

February 4, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Information Technology Newsweekly -- A patent application by the inventors Hays, Christopher A. (Monroe, WA); Vulner, John H. (Kirkland, WA); Bruckner, Robert M. (Redmond, WA), filed on July 16, 2012, was made available online on January 23, 2014, according to news reporting originating from Washington, D.C., by VerticalNews correspondents.

This patent application is assigned to Microsoft Corporation.

The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Brief Description of Related Technology

"Businesses and other entities use software to generate reports on which decisions are based. To be useful, the reports typically group and aggregate data. For instance, when reporting on sales for a company, a mere list of every transaction does little good when making business decisions. By grouping and aggregating the data into meaningful categories (e.g., total sales broken down by product and region), data is transformed into more useful information.

"The data is often grouped via a definition of the report. The report definition sets forth instructions for the layout of the report, the source(s) of the data, and the aggregation operations and other computational processing of the data. The aggregation operations (e.g., a sum operation) may group the data in accordance with a level of detail, or data scope, of the data being aggregated. For example, sales may be aggregated by year, by quarter, by month, by region, by customer, etc., as well as various combinations thereof. Such data scopes may be established implicitly (e.g., by the context or location of the aggregation operation) or explicitly (e.g., by express declaration within the aggregation operation)."

In addition to the background information obtained for this patent application, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent application: "Methods, systems, and computer program products are directed to supporting data scopes originated within data aggregation operations. The data scopes may then be used in the data aggregation operations. The data scopes need not be explicitly created outside of a data aggregation operation for data display in a report.

"In accordance with one aspect of the disclosure, a report definition includes a calculation expression for populating a unit of a report. The calculation expression includes a data aggregation operation that, in turn, includes an originating reference to a data scope. With the originating reference, the data scope need not be one of the data scopes defined or introduced elsewhere in the report definition.

"This Summary is provided to introduce a selection of concepts in a simplified form that are further described below in the Detailed Description. This Summary is not intended to identify key features or essential features of the claimed subject matter, nor is it intended to be used to limit the scope of the claimed subject matter.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIGURES

"For a more complete understanding of the disclosure, reference should be made to the following detailed description and accompanying drawing figures, in which like reference numerals identify like elements in the figures.

"FIG. 1 is one example of a report or other data display having a number of computations that may be implemented via data scopes originated within aggregation operations in accordance with one embodiment.

"FIG. 2 is a schematic representation of a report definition of the report of FIG. 1.

"FIG. 3 is a schematic representation of one example of a calculation methodology for implementing the computations for the report of FIG. 1.

"FIG. 4 is a schematic representation of another example of a calculation methodology for implementing the computations for the report of FIG. 1.

"FIG. 5 is another example of a report or other data display having a number of computations that may be implemented via data scopes originated within aggregation operations in accordance with one embodiment.

"FIG. 6 is a schematic representation of a report definition of the report of FIG. 5.

"FIG. 7 is a schematic representation of one example of a calculation methodology for implementing the computations for the report of FIG. 5.

"FIG. 8 is a block diagram of an exemplary business intelligence system configured to develop and render reports and other data displays in which data scopes are originated within aggregation operations in accordance with one embodiment.

"FIG. 9 is a flow diagram of an exemplary computer-implemented method to generate a report from a report definition in which data scopes are originated within aggregation operations in accordance with one embodiment.

"FIG. 10 is a block diagram of a computing environment in accordance with one embodiment for implementation of one or more of the disclosed methods and systems.

"While the disclosed systems and methods are susceptible of embodiments in various forms, there are illustrated in the drawing (and will hereafter be described) specific embodiments of the invention, with the understanding that the disclosure is intended to be illustrative, and is not intended to limit the invention to the specific embodiments described and illustrated herein."

URL and more information on this patent application, see: Hays, Christopher A.; Vulner, John H.; Bruckner, Robert M. Data Scope Origination within Aggregation Operations. Filed July 16, 2012 and posted January 23, 2014. Patent URL: http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-adv.html&r=710&p=15&f=G&l=50&d=PG01&S1=20140116.PD.&OS=PD/20140116&RS=PD/20140116

Keywords for this news article include: Microsoft Corporation, Information Technology, Information and Data Aggregation.

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Source: Information Technology Newsweekly


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