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Communications of the ACM

Communications of the ACM

A note on information organization and storage


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Since the logical structure of a data base can be represented by a tree or graph, it is quite natural for us to view the process of designing a data base as that of constructing a tree or a graph. A general method for constructing such a tree or graph is provided. There are three important elements in this general construction method; namely, a set of binary relations, an algorithm for constructing subsets of a set, and an algorithm for selecting an element from the given set of objects. The use of different relations and algorithms results in different information structures, as list, tree, ring, etc. Thus the problem of information organization and storage is reduced to that of defining relations and formulating algorithms under a given set of constraints. The results presented may be valuable to designers as useful design concepts, and may serve as a basis for developing a formal theory on the subject.

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