Researchers Submit Patent Application, "Method and Apparatus Providing Omnibus View of Online and Offline Content of Various File Types and Sources", for Approval
The patent's assignee is
News editors obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: "The present invention relates to computer-driven data management systems. More particularly, the invention concerns a method and apparatus for performing an omnibus search providing a consolidated view of an online service subscriber's online and local data objects, and for conducting additional operations such as viewing, changing, and sharing the data objects.
"With the advent of the 'information superhighway' various online services came into existence. These services provide tools for an incredible variety of functions for their users, which may be one-time guest or long term subscribers. These online services enable users to search the worldwide web, store digital photographs online, read news stories, send and receive e-mails, and well as many other tasks. One side effect of these many services is the explosion of data that somehow has to be stored, organized, managed, and otherwise processed.
"One of the leading Internet access and online content providers today AMERICA ONLINE CORPORATION (AOL). Although different online data management systems already exist, and some may even enjoy significant publicity and use today,
As a supplement to the background information on this patent application, VerticalNews correspondents also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent application: "An online service provider (OSP) operates online data centers to store members' data objects relating to various online member services of the OSP. An aggregated catalog lists members' data objects residing in the online data centers and also those residing in member computers' local storage. An aggregator monitors contents of the online storage facilities to detect new storage of prescribed types of data objects owned by the members, and also communicates with member computers to identify prescribed types of data objects newly stored in the respective local storage. The aggregator updates the aggregated catalog to list the newly stored data objects. Responsive to a request by a member, a finder searches the aggregated catalog and utilizes results of the search to provide, for display at the requesting member's computer, a consolidated listing of online data objects and locally stored data objects owned by the requesting member.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
"FIG. 1 is a block diagram of the hardware components and interconnections of a data management system;
"FIG. 2 is a block diagram of a digital data processing machine;
"FIG. 3 shows an exemplary storage medium;
"FIG. 4 is a flowchart of an operational sequence of background operations for operating the data management system of FIG. 1; and
"FIG. 5 is a flowchart of an operational sequence of user operations, and namely, utilizing the system of FIG. 1 to perform an omnibus search providing a consolidated view of an online service subscriber's online and local data objects."
For additional information on this patent application, see: Fairchild, Granville R.; Frischling, Bill;
Keywords for this news article include: Information Technology,
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