Search Values of Array in "One Go"

Bob Sneidar bobsneidar at iotecdigital.com
Thu Aug 24 13:50:23 EDT 2017


I mentioned a few years ago when arrays first were introduced that there ought to be an engine based way to seach arrays for values, returning matching key references (not just one but ALL). If you are only interested in certain keys you could then filter the results. 

To make this fast for large arrays, you might have to have a way to index the arrays, but now we are talking about a memory based database system, and I am not sure Livecode arrays are the way to go. It may be enough to be able to do a kind of full text search on an array in memory. 

I suppose thinking about it you could arrayencode an array then do a search on it, but I am not sure how you would discern the array keys. I'll have to look at the encoded format. At that point if that approach worked, the only advantage to searching a memory based array is you would be skipping the encoding step, and searching the actual array in memory with the engine might be considerably faster than having LC search a text variable. 

I'll play around with it to see what I can come up with. 

Bob S


> On Aug 24, 2017, at 09:00 , Richard Gaskin via use-livecode <use-livecode at lists.runrev.com> wrote:
> 
> At my local Linux User Group last year a fella from NASA gave a presentation about a system he'd developed for querying planetary data via URLs.
> 
> The data is huge (basically everything every interplanetary satellite/robot delivers to JPL) and his choice of HDF (Hierarchical Data Format) as the storage base was interesting in itself (imagine a large encoded array but designed for traversal on disk).
> 
> But even more so was his query API.  A thing of beauty.  One-line URLs could be entered in a browser to locate just about anything in the massive HDF store.
> 
> Ultimately it could be seen as a simplified form of XQuery, every bit as elegant and flexible but without the XML-specific cruft (having to account for the mix of elements and attributes).
> 
> Of course this led me to thinking of ways to use this for LC arrays.
> 
> It should be possible to craft a library to allow XQuery-like one-liners to locate anything anywhere in any array.
> 
> It should also be possible to do this in the engine with blindingly-faster efficiency.
> 
> But as a starting point, fleshing out the API in script seemed at least a good first step.
> 
> I do not have the time to pursue it in earnest.  But XQuery is well documented, and a sufficiently-inspired person may be able to come up with a pretty great query system given sufficient time to explore the possibilities...
> 
> -- 
> Richard Gaskin
> Fourth World Systems
> Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web





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