Technical Report CS0413

Title: Unifying Entity-relationship and Universal Relation Approaches to User Interfaces
Authors: V.M. Markowitz
Abstract: The data description and data manipulation are two aspects of data modeling which are so interrelated that one would expect that a common language would cover both of them. Since most users understand and communicate about information in terms of text in natural language, it seems appropriate to base such a data language on natural language (NL). A suitable background for such a language is the Entity-Relationship Diagram (ERD) which can be made to reflect the surface structure of the NL sentence types associated with an Entity-Relationship schema. ERROL (Entity Relabonship Role Oriented Language) is an ERD backed query language, founded on the linguistic aspect of the ERD. ERROL rules have linguistic analogs, such that the construction of complex expressions follow patterns of natural language sentence combination.

ERROL was originally based on a restricted ERD, its expression of NL quantifiers is set oriented. and it was designed as a query language, so that most of the data description and manipulation aspects have been overlooked. We propose to extend ERROL in all these aspects, both enhancing its NL orientation and making it a full sized data language.

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