Apple eyeing improved method for storing state information
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Apple eyeing improved method for storing state information

An Apple patent (number 20110219024) for a persistent state database for operating system services has appeared at the US Patent & Trademark Office.

Per the patent, a database is used to store user interface state information. The database is accessed by a key having a service ID field, a caller ID field, and a caller context ID field. The caller context ID is used to identify the context in the application program from which the user interface is called. In this manner, the system can differentiate between calls from different portions of the application program which can have different user expectations of the desirable user interface state. The inventors are Yan Arrouye, Sean J. Findley and Keith L. Mortensen.

Here's Apple's background and summary of the invention: "A computer's operating system typically provides a variety of different services that are called upon by clients, e.g. application programs and other processes, to perform functions that may relate to hardware components of the computer system, or other software programs. For instance, the file system permits a client to retrieve files from a local hard disk drive to open them within an application program, as well as store them back on the disk drive when they are closed. Another example of an operating system service is a color picker, which enables a client to vary colors which are displayed on a computer monitor and/or printed on a printer.

"Many operating system services require, or at least permit, a client to provide input which determines how the function of the service is to be carried out. For instance, when a file is to be opened in an application program, the client is provided with a choice of available storage locations, and files within that location, from which to select. Similarly, a color picker may provide sliders, or other types of control elements, which enable the user to adjust the colors on a display.

"These types of services typically have a user interface associated with them, via which the user can provide the necessary input. Other types of operating system services may not require explicit user input, and therefore normally do not have a corresponding user interface. For instance, the operating system may want to keep track of a user name and password for a server, to provide for automatic reconnection.

"One example of a user interface that is provided when an application program issues a call to open or save files comprises a visual display of a directory and its contents. The user selects a file to be operated on by the application program, by clicking on a representation of the file in the visual display of the user interface. Typically, information concerning the directory displayed in the user interface is stored when the access to the operating system service terminates, e.g. the user exits the user interface. The next time the application program calls that service, the operating system causes the user interface to display the most-recently stored directory.

"There are many operating system services which are called by multiple different clients. For instance, the file system service may be called by a text editing portion of a word processor, and then called by the dictionary portion of the same word processor, or by an entirely different application program. When the text portion of the word processor calls the file system again, its user interface will display the contents of the last directory that had been accessed.

"Thus, if the most recent call to the file system was from the dictionary portion of the word processor, the user interface might display a list of dictionary files. The user must then manipulate the user interface so that it displays the directory containing the desired text files. This can be a time-consuming annoyance to the user.

"Additionally, when a desired directory is displayed to the user, the display typically occurs at a default location in the directory. For example, if files are displayed in alphabetical order, the files which initially appear are those whose names begin with A, B, C, etc. Consequently, a user may have to scroll down the user interface to find a previously selected object. If a directory contains a long list of files this can take some time.

"It is desired to provide an improved method and apparatus for storing state information relating to operating system services across invocations of the services, to ensure correct operation of services, as well as to make the access to such services more convenient for the client.

"The present invention generally relates to a method and system for storing state information relating to shared service programs. A database stores information which preserves the state of a particular operating system service for each client which calls that service. Thus, whenever a client accesses the service, it will be returned to the same state that existed when it last exited that service, even if other clients had accessed the service in the meantime and left it in a different state. The stored information is external to the clients which utilize the services, so that changes to the services can be implemented without affecting the clients.

"In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the state information which is stored for each client-service pair includes as much information as possible which relates to the client's interaction with that service. For example, the state of a file system service might include the directory which was last accessed by the client, together with various parameters that define the user interface for that service, such as the size and location of a dialog window. Additional information along these lines can include position of a scroll button for the window, so that the client is returned to the same position in the directory where it exited the previous time, rather than a default position such as the top of a list.

"The state information is stored under the control of the shared service or the operating system, rather than the application program. The application program need not be modified to provide changes to the state information storing process. The application program, however, can provide context information to affect the storing of the state information indirectly.

"Preferably, the database is accessed by a key. The key includes a caller ID field indicating the application program or other client, a service ID field indicating the shared service program and a caller context ID field which may contain context information provided by the client.

"The caller context ID field in the key allows different states to be stored for different contexts in an application. For example, the same service could be called by the text editing portion of a word processor, and the dictionary portion of the word processor. When the text portion of the word processor calls the service, the user interface will be set up with the state information corresponding to the state of the service which existed the last time the text portion of the word processor called the service. This avoids the annoyance of the user interface showing a directory of dictionary files when one wants to open a text file. The use of the caller context ID field allows two or more different states to be stored; one for each context of the application program.

"In a preferred embodiment of the present invention, the key to the database also has a service context ID field. The service context ID field allows different versions of the shared service program to store different types of state data. A first version of a shared service interface might store the user interface state information in a certain manner. An upgrade to the shared service program can modify the way state information is stored. However, entries to the database may have already been made using the first version of the shared service program. The service context ID allows the upgraded shared service program to determine how the state data is stored in the database; the old way or the new way."

-- Dennis Sellers

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Little Snitch 3.5.3 - Alerts you about o...
Little Snitch gives you control over your private outgoing data. Track background activity As soon as your computer connects to the Internet, applications often have permission to send any... Read more
Cocktail 8.4 - General maintenance and o...
Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets you clean, repair and optimize your Mac. It is a powerful digital toolset that helps hundreds of thousands of Mac users around the world get... Read more
PDFKey Pro 4.3 - Edit and print password...
PDFKey Pro can unlock PDF documents protected for printing and copying when you've forgotten your password. It can now also protect your PDF files with a password to prevent unauthorized access and/... Read more
Kodi 15.0.beta1 - Powerful media center...
Kodi (was XBMC) is an award-winning free and open-source (GPL) software media player and entertainment hub that can be installed on Linux, OS X, Windows, iOS, and Android, featuring a 10-foot user... Read more
DiskCatalogMaker 6.4.12 - Catalog your d...
DiskCatalogMaker is a simple disk management tool which catalogs disks. Simple, light-weight, and fast. Finder-like intuitive look and feel. Super-fast search algorithm. Can compress catalog data... Read more
Macs Fan Control 1.3.0.0 - Monitor and c...
Macs Fan Control allows you to monitor and control almost any aspect of your computer's fans, with support for controlling fan speed, temperature sensors pane, menu-bar icon, and autostart with... Read more
Lyn 1.5.11 - Lightweight image browser a...
Lyn is a lightweight and fast image browser and viewer designed for photographers, graphic artists and Web designers. Featuring an extremely versatile and aesthetically pleasing interface, it... Read more
NeoOffice 2014.11 - Mac-tailored, OpenOf...
NeoOffice is a complete office suite for OS X. With NeoOffice, users can view, edit, and save OpenOffice documents, PDF files, and most Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents. NeoOffice 3.x... Read more
LaunchBar 6.4 - Powerful file/URL/email...
LaunchBar is an award-winning productivity utility that offers an amazingly intuitive and efficient way to search and access any kind of information stored on your computer or on the Web. It provides... Read more
Remotix 3.1.4 - Access all your computer...
Remotix is a fast and powerful application to easily access multiple Macs (and PCs) from your own Mac. Features Complete Apple Screen Sharing support - including Mac OS X login, clipboard... Read more

Crossy Road Devs Hipster Whale are Bring...
Hipster Whale, the minds behind the rather popular (and rather great) Crossy Road, have teamed-up with Bandai Namco to create PAC-MAN 256: an absolutely bonkers looking maze runner chaser thing. | Read more »
Meet the New Spotify Music
Spotify Music  has a lot going on. They're introducing 3 new modes to serve all your musical needs, with the "Now" start page  gives you curated playlists based on your particular tastes. As you listen the app will learn more about your tastes and... | Read more »
What the Apple Watch Gets Right, and Wha...
| Read more »
Celebrate PAC-MAN's 35th Birthday W...
BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment America is celebrating PAC-MAN's 35th anniversary by releasing updates for PAC-MAN and PAC-MAN Lite for iOS. [Read more] | Read more »
Strike Wing Episode 2 has Landed on the...
Strike Wing: Raptor Rising is an exciting space combat simulator by Crescent Moon Games, which was recently updated to continue the story with Episode 2. [Read more] | Read more »
Kiqplan Expands its Interactive Coaching...
The makers of Fitbug have been hard at work on their Kiqplan lineup, and have added four new summer themed plans to help you get the most out of your workout. [Read more] | Read more »
Make a Photobook in Minutes with Pictyea...
What happens when you can't stop taking photos and have an urge to create a photobook? Pictyear saves the day. [Read more] | Read more »
This Week at 148Apps: May 18-22, 2015
May Days at 148Apps How do you know what apps are worth your time and money? Just look to the review team at 148Apps. We sort through the chaos and find the apps you're looking for. The ones we love become Editor’s Choice, standing out above the... | Read more »
Biz Builder Delux (Games)
Biz Builder Delux 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: Ah, there's nothing like the rhythmic bustle of a burgeoning business burg... especially when you're the one building it... | Read more »
Auroch Digital is Bringing Back Games Wo...
| Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

What Would the ideal Apple Productivity Platf...
For the past four years I’ve kept a foot in both the Mac and iPad camps respectively. my daily computing hours divided about 50/50 between the two devices with remarkable consistency. However, there’... Read more
New 13-inch 2.9GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale...
B&H Photo has the 13″ 2.9GHz/512GB Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1699.99 including free shipping plus NY tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price for this model from... Read more
12-inch MacBook stock status for Monday, May...
The new 12″ Retina MacBooks are still on backorder at The Apple Store with a 3-5 week waiting period. However, a few models are in stock today at Apple resellers. Stock is limited, so act now if you’... Read more
New 27-inch 3.3GHz 5K iMac in stock with free...
Adorama has the new 27″ 3.3GHz 5K iMac in stock today for $1999 including free shipping plus NY & NJ sales tax only. Adorama will include a free copy of Apple’s 3-year AppleCare Protection Plan. Read more
Memorial Day Weekend Sale: New 27-inch 3.3GHz...
Best Buy has the new 27″ 3.3GHz 5K iMac on sale for $1899.99 this weekend. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale price for online orders only, in-store prices may vary... Read more
OtterBox Maximizes Portability, Productivity...
From the kitchen recipe book to the boarsroom presentation, the OtterBox Agility Tablet System turns tablets into one of the most versatile pieces of handheld technology available. Available now, the... Read more
Launch of New Car App Gallery and Open Develo...
Automatic, a company on a mission to bring the power of the Internet into every car, has announced the launch of the Automatic App Gallery, an app store for nearly every car or truck on the road... Read more
Memorial Day Weekend Sale: 13-inch 1.6GHz Mac...
Best Buy has the new 13″ 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air on sale for $849 on their online store this weekend. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale price for online orders... Read more
Memorial Day Weekend Sale: 27-inch 3.5GHz 5K...
Best Buy has the 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMac on sale for $2099.99 this weekend. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale price for online orders only, in-store prices may vary.... Read more
Sale! 16GB iPad mini 3 for $349, save $50
B&H Photo has the 16GB iPad mini 3 WiFi on sale for $349 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $50 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this model. Read more

Jobs Board

Architect / Senior Software Engineer, *Apple...
Changing the world is all in a day039s work at Apple . If you love innovation, here039s your chance to make a career of it. You039ll work hard. But the job comes with Read more
*Apple* Pay Support Readiness Project Manage...
Changing the world is all in a day039s work at Apple . If you love innovation, here039s your chance to make a career of it. You039ll work hard. But the job comes with Read more
Hardware Design Validation Engineer - *Apple...
**Job Summary** The Apple Watch team is looking for a Hardware Design Validation Engineer. This person will be part of the Apple Watch hardware team with Read more
Sr. Payment Program Manager, *Apple* Pay -...
**Job Summary** Apple Pay is an exciting environment and a…devices in a simple, private and secure way. The Apple Pay Team is looking for an experienced Senior Read more
Project Manager / Business Analyst, WW *Appl...
…a senior project manager / business analyst to work within our Worldwide Apple Fulfillment Operations and the Business Process Re-engineering team. This role will work Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.