The spreading of XML data in many contexts of modern computing infrastructures and systems causes a pressing need for adequate XML querying capabilities; to address this need, the W3C is proposing XQuery as the standard query language for XML, with a language paradigm and a syntactic flavor comparable to the SQL relational language. XQuery is designed for meeting the requirements of skilled database programmers; its inherent complexity makes the new language unsuited to unskilled users. In this article we present XQBE (XQuery By Example), a visual query language for expressing a large subset of XQuery in a visual form. In designing XQBE, we targeted both unskilled users and expert users wishing to speed up the construction of their queries; we have been inspired by QBE, a relational language initially proposed as an alternative to SQL, which is supported by Microsoft Access. QBE is extremely successful among users who are not computer professionals and do not understand the subtleties of query languages, as well as among professionals who can draft their queries very quickly. According to the hierarchical nature of XML, XQBE’s main graphical elements are trees. One or more trees denote the documents assumed as query input, and one tree denotes the document produced by the query. Similar to QBE, trees are annotated so as to express selection predicates, joins, and the passing of information from the input trees to the output tree. This article formally defines the syntax and semantics of XQBE, provides a large set of examples, and presents a prototype implementation.

XQBE (XQuery By Example): a visual interface to the standard XML query language

BRAGA, DANIELE MARIA;CAMPI, ALESSANDRO;CERI, STEFANO
2005

Abstract

The spreading of XML data in many contexts of modern computing infrastructures and systems causes a pressing need for adequate XML querying capabilities; to address this need, the W3C is proposing XQuery as the standard query language for XML, with a language paradigm and a syntactic flavor comparable to the SQL relational language. XQuery is designed for meeting the requirements of skilled database programmers; its inherent complexity makes the new language unsuited to unskilled users. In this article we present XQBE (XQuery By Example), a visual query language for expressing a large subset of XQuery in a visual form. In designing XQBE, we targeted both unskilled users and expert users wishing to speed up the construction of their queries; we have been inspired by QBE, a relational language initially proposed as an alternative to SQL, which is supported by Microsoft Access. QBE is extremely successful among users who are not computer professionals and do not understand the subtleties of query languages, as well as among professionals who can draft their queries very quickly. According to the hierarchical nature of XML, XQBE’s main graphical elements are trees. One or more trees denote the documents assumed as query input, and one tree denotes the document produced by the query. Similar to QBE, trees are annotated so as to express selection predicates, joins, and the passing of information from the input trees to the output tree. This article formally defines the syntax and semantics of XQBE, provides a large set of examples, and presents a prototype implementation.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/554953
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