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Apple patents 'data-driven' page layout app

updated 11:20 am EDT, Thu November 1, 2007

Apple page layout patent

Apple has filed an application with the US Patent and Trademark Office for a "data-driven" page layout application. The filing notes that writing custom pages in languages like XML can often take time, even if using templates, since these still require building the code, and knowing enough to fix it if the template is somehow broken. Apple's technology instead suggests a way of producing pages based on previously created ones, pulling out structural objects and "relationships" from them, while still allowing users to edit the new pages in a graphical interface.

This permits the quick creation of pages with transposed means of representing data, while letting users customize this information by adding or deleting elements. Copied graphs, for instance, could have points inserted or removed, and their information changed. To this Apple suggests adding an assortment of possible stock objects, similar to those found in current WYSIWYG web editors, such as bars, buttons, dividers and tables.

As an example of the concept Apple has supplied a sketch of an "Island Music" website, in which the layout of the main page could be quickly replicated for each sub-page, data changing to reflect the albums and songs of a particular genre.

by MacNN Staff





  1. Mrjinglesusa

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Will you guys EVER learn?

    An APPLICATION for a patent is NOT a patent. Apple hasn't "patented" anything yet. They have simply filed an application seeking a patent. They may or may not get one - filing an application is not a guarantee that you will actually get a patent.

  1. Bartman

    Joined: Dec 1969



    thats the new database "i" app for iwork

  1. rubaiyat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    XML is not ideal

    They are already using XML for TextEdit, Pages, KeyNote and Numbers and I have noticed how readily the styling seems to fall apart.

    This is really creating a house of cards and selling it as regular real estate to the unsuspecting.

  1. dwoodruff

    Joined: Dec 1969


    hey rubaiyat....

    what exactly do you mean the styling falls apart?

    As for Text edit, Keynote, Pages and Numbers, my experience has been exceptional.

    Using a non-clever analogy doesn't really state your case.

  1. hayesk

    Joined: Dec 1969


    re: xml is not ideal

    XML is an encoding format like any other. I'm not sure how it is a "house of cards" or how it is inherently more instable than a binary format. Less efficient, yes, but instable, how?

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