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T-S. Yeh B. de Cambray

PRISM Laboratory (CNRS, Universities of Paris VI and Versailles-St Quentin) & GDR Cassini 45 avenue des Etats-Unis, F-78000 Versailles, France. E-mail: (Tsin-Shu.Yeh, Beatrix.De-cambray)@prism.uvsq.fr

Décembre 1994

Abstract

The goal of this paper is to present a data model to manage highly variable spatio-temporal data of the real world. The management of such data raises new database problems. These problems are the data volume, the great number of states that database operators have to manipulate, as well as the deficiency of versions that leads to non-determinist temporal queries. To this end, a new approach to represent and to manipulate these data is proposed. The representation model consists in describing how a value evolves in the course of time. We associate semantics to this description. Concerning the manipulation, this descriptive representation is converted into an internal geometric representation. Queries on highly variable data are solved by using geometric algorithm techniques on the geometric representation. The paper reports on this ongoing experiment. Keywords: GIS, Spatio-Temporal Database Model, Complex Object Data Model, 3D

Résumé

Le but de ce papier est de présenter un modèle de données pour gérer des données spatio-temporelles hautement variables du monde réel. La gestion de telles données soulève de nouveaux problèmes en bases de données. Ces problèmes sont le volume de données, le grand nombre d'états que les opérateurs de bases de données doivent manipuler, mais aussi le manque de versions qui entraîne des requêtes temporelles non déterministes. Pour cela, ce papier propose une nouvelle approche pour représenter et manipuler ces données. Le modèle de représentation consiste à décrire "comment" une valeur évolue au cours du temps. Nous associons de la sémantique à cette description. D'un point de vue manipulation des données, cette représentation descriptive est transformée en une représentation géométrique interne. Par conséquent, les requêtes sur des données spatio-temporelles hautement variables sont résolues en utilisant les techniques algorithmiques géométriques sur la représentation géométrique. Mots-clés : SIG, Modèles BD, Spatio-Temporel, Objets complexes, 3D

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are input versions representing the mobile entities): the flock of sheep moves between F1 and F2 (the motion is illustrated in Fig. for example. Conversely. On the other hand. a traditional approach for the execution would not be realistic in -2- . This kind of data is both characterized by an evolution that may be very complex and by a great number of states. The motivation to provide highly variable data is illustrated by the following example. several problems appear to manage highly variable phenomena. First. The modeling of such a data is not straightforward. With such data. it is possible to store the 2D sweeping of motion. archaeology. Continuous evolution is expressed by a highly variable data that is characterized by a potentially different value every other quantum of time. Introduction Many data of the real world describe continuous evolution.e. To capture the evolution complexity of real world entities. I1 y x F1 F2 I2 Figure 1: Example of 2D entities motion This example outlines a problem: with a usual model which does not capture the continuity of spatiotemporal evolution. This is an important problem in the sense that data query is the major functionality of databases. Indeed. 1. environmental analysis. if we do not model all the states the data access may lead to query answers that may be erroneous and not determinist. high variability leads to a large amount of data. "Has it rained at a given place when the flock was at this place ?"). Indeed. The proposed example describes (Figure 1) the motion of (2D) mobile entities through a 2D map: a flock of sheep and an area of inclement weather. such as path planning. the technological limits of usual DataBase Management Systems (DBMS) are exceeded. observation leads to classify evolution into two groups: continuous progressions (that may be stationary) and "accidents" that correspond to abrupt changes. The answer is true if there exists two versions that overlap. but the snapshot information is lost. Moreover. The duration of a state may be a quantum of time. future Geographical Information Systems (GIS) will have to be able to answer queries that involve dynamic phenomena such as "Has the flock of sheep been wet ?" (i. F2. a fire spreading evolves continuously: it is a highly variable data. we lose the continuity of the motion and therefore we may not have the information that the flock and the cloud paths intersect. F1. The data modeled in such applications represent phenomenon variability that ranges from stationary data like a land parcel boundary to highly variable data like mobile entities. if we only consider versions (e. For example. 1 with thick broken lines) and the inclement weather between I1 and I2 (represented in Fig. or military applications. need to model spatial data evolving in the course of time. Of course. For example. when the driver abruptly changes its direction. I1. it would be time consuming. as the amount of data is huge. Therefore. such a request will not give a determinist answer. and I2. application domains like meteorology.g. and I2) and not all the states between the versions. the movement of car may be less smooth. In the first case. 1. I1. Therefore. a mobile entity such as a cloud may evolve continuously. However. We have different versions of mobile locations at different hours (e. on the one hand.g. mobile robotics. High variability may lead to a fine data description and therefore to a large amount of states. F2. A data evolution may belong to one of these groups or may combine these two kinds of evolution.. plotted in Fig. 1 with broken lines).. within one time-scale. F1.. Indeed. a new and specific approach has to be introduced.Modeling Highly Variable Spatio-Temporal Data computer technology. even if all the states are available two crucial problems appear from a system point of view: (i) data volume and (ii) execution cost.

2 . The continuity of the value evolution is illustrated by the existence of a state of this value at each date. that is modeled by versions and by an important additional information named behavioral function. This deficiency is both due to the data model and to data capture. We define an operator set to manipulate these spatio-temporal data. discrete changes are named mutations [14]. In the second case. For example. The paper is organized as follows. However. 10. For that. A state may last a quantum of time. the data volume. 24. In spatio-temporal domain. Furthermore. The perception of the phenomenon is therefore discrete. Then. 2. However. We present how we model the evolution of a spatial value in section 2. the huge number of states. However. 27. In these models. instead of resulting in the deletion of former values. Modeling the Variability of a Spatio-Temporal Value Before introducing a database model allowing to model highly variable entities. Hence. flock on the move [4] and the spreading of a phenomenon (pollution. and the execution cost. These temporal and spatio-temporal database models represent time as a discrete entity and therefore lose the intrinsically continuous aspect of that phenomenon. 7]. For the representation. 29] and is an extension of [30] to spatio-temporal data. this interpolation only applies on numerical values. an artificial satellite is an important data source: it captures data every other time an artificial satellite flies over the observation point. Little research has integrated the spatial dimension with the temporal variability [14. The problem is the design of an appropriate temporal data model for discrete variability as well as highly variable data. 21. data volume and execution time are important. This model is a sequel to works presented in [28. …) in the space are highly variable values and their -3- . it is possible to know an additional information that describes how the phenomenon evolves between two versions. to search the states verifying a given criterion is equivalent to solving geometric computations on the second representation. we need to propose a solution to model a highly variable and spatial value. the first representation is transformed into a geometric representation. our model is based on a dual representation of data that is obtained by union of types [1]. data capture is not always possible. The proposed model aims to provide an answer to the above mentioned problems like the modeling of complex evolution. the deficiency of data. The first representation is a descriptive one. 13] but they only model data with a discrete variability. an appropriate data model has to reap advantage from this additional information. 26] are systems where updates. 21]. For instance. produce new versions of objects. These successive flights over the observation point only provide versions. The drastic problem for evaluating spatio-temporal queries on highly variable data is solved by using well-known geometric algorithm techniques.The wrong answer of the previous example comes from data deficiency. Historical database systems [16. this interpolation is defined by functions of scientific computations associated with an Abstract Data Type. Such a function gives the semantics of data evolution and describes how a value evolves. Data volume is therefore optimized. The evolution complexity corresponds to rapid changes of behaviors. for some data. Data may be spatio-temporal or not. data models and temporal data models are usually oriented to manage discrete changes of data. The evolution of a value follows a series of states. In the first case. they only define particular data structures or access methods to represent a data varying in the course of time. Hence. 20. in section 3 we describe the integration of this model into a database model for highly variable entities. fire. 11]. all the states are represented. the integration of interpolation in data model has been studied [22. 1 Describing the Variability of one Value: a Descriptive Representation A highly variable value that models a real world phenomenon is characterized by a continuous and complex evolution. Recent works aim to model dynamic data [20. To reduce the number of states. therefore. Many temporal models have been produced [25.

e. the approach consists in describing how the value evolves in the course of time. 21/01/94 7H. Linear). it expresses data variability producing intermediate states. From the system point of view. This approach allows to model data whose evolution is complex. Linear). Such an element is represented by a line that may be broken.. Behavioral functions are associated at version level in order to be able to describe complex data evolution. The surface may comprise holes. • Step function returns the most recent version compared to the given date. To model such a value. A geometric element may be a [15]: • Punctual element that is defined as an isolated point. For instance: "Who is the owner of the field n°1234 v1 v2 v3 on 21/01/94 6H on 21/01/94 7H on 21/01/94 8H Figure 2: A complex example of data evolution { ( ( . A behavioral function expresses the variability of a value between two successive versions. The example describes a fire spreading in the course of time (Figure 2). the behavior between two successive versions. there exists a stored value. 21/01/94 8H. and c is a behavioral function. The behavior of a value may change suddenly in the course of time. Every version represents a stable state valid until the next version. the recording of a sale has an event semantics. 1 . 2 Behavioral Functions Behavioral functions describe how a value evolves in the course of time. This descriptive model leads to store a sequence of values { (v. 1 GEOMETRY Domain The GEOMETRY domain is introduced to represent spatial values at a given date. Si and Si+1. segments (i. l1 s1 l2 s2 t1 p1 Figure 4: a geometry domain value 2 . The union of geometric elements is motivated because the model must provide a type that is closed for the geometric operations on these values.e. in this case. .evolution is complex. We illustrate this sequence by an example plotted in Figure 3. A geometric value of the GEOMETRY domain is the union of a non-empty set of 2D geometric elements (Figure 4). It is represented with an (x. t. The model predefines the following set of usual behavioral functions: • Punctual function returns a value if. Consequently. Indeed..g. In the temporal sequence.. The identity of each element is respected. c) } where v is a value.. A surface element is described by a set of segments that are its boundary. t. These lines are the external boundary of the surface. They are complementary data associated with sample data (v values). Each version (i. ( . This is the most commonly used versioning mechanism in temporal databases [26]. this is expressed by the linear behavioral function associated with each version. t is a date. 1 . 21/01/94 6H. may be different to the one between Si+1 and Si+2.} Figure 3: Temporal sequence describing fire spreading 2 . We suppose that the fire spreading follows a linear behavior. Punctual function interpretation corresponds to event recording. The values of this domain are defined by an Abstract Data Type (ADT) [19]. (v. • Surface element that is defined as a connected part of the space that is bounded by closed lines. measure) Si (e.. c)) is produced by some data inputs or updates. a line is described in only one piece). Linear). Behavioral functions may be either defined by the user or predefined functions. y) coordinate couple on a 2D map. Step function interpretation corresponds to state change recording. For example. behavioral functions define data semantics. • Linear element that is defined as a set of connected -4- . at a given date.

(10. in other words: operator(data). This point of view leads us towards a unification for spatial problems and temporal problems. A behavioral function is perceived either as a data or as a method.t1. (6. • Interpolation function uses an interpolation method to approach data evolution. 1 Temporal Sweeping Operator The transformation of a temporal sequence into a BR uses the temporal sweeping operator. (5.t7. linear). This insertion allows us: (i) to add complementary information. Other models apply an interpolation on the whole TS for some scientific computations [22.t6. our model differs by inserting behavioral function at version level. 2 . in other words: operator(data ∪ behavioral functions).. This geometric operation is apply on 3D objects. 2 Internal Manipulation of the Variability Information The nature of this highly variable information raises the problem of its manipulation by operators integrated in the DBMS. linear).on the 15/01/93 ?". (12. Accelerators [3] are used for geometric computations. (14. our model allows a finer description of the variability of a value. linear). }. The design of such operators is therefore more complex. The descriptive temporal sequence representation associates each value contained in a version with the method that defines its semantics. it has a dynamic nature while a value is static. It is equivalent to retaining all states of a value through time. like those defining a Time Series (TS) Abstract Data Type [24] as a sequence of (v. When a 2D geometric value evolves in the course of time. Generally.t2. This operator is based upon the strong hypothesis that the time is seen as a geometric dimension [5] which possesses properties of localization on the time axis. value linear versions step time t1 t2 t3 t4 t5 t6 t7 t8 t9 semantic information. This operator produces the whole evolution in a continuous way. To solve this problem. step). the evolution semantics can not change between two versions of the TS. we apply the operators on a new representation that is an internal representation derived from the descriptive representation for manipulation needs. A sweeping representation consists of shifting a Figure 5: Example of data evolution Compared to other models used in the scientific data area. 2 .. we use the Boundary Representation (BR).. (10. To represent such a value. The variability of the value described in Figure 5 may be expressed by the following sequence: { (10. The example illustrates the combination of different kinds of behavioral functions. The value at t1 is equal to 10 and it evolves linearly between t1 and t2. linear).t4. It follows that the static and dynamic data are stored in the same way. databases define operators which are applied to the data stored in the database (these data are static values). Our aim is not scientific computation but the modeling of highly variable data by adding complementary information. Conversely. The drastic problem for evaluating temporal queries on highly variable data is solved by using well-known geometric algorithm techniques. (8. Therefore. 2 . operators on our representation model are applied on static and dynamic data. This new representation is a geometric representation that is the dual representation of the descriptive one. Although a behavioral function is seen as a -5- . Hence.t3. linear). (ii) to describe complex evolution. t). The information is no more the description of how a value evolves but is the set of states in the course of time. step). both being reduced to geometric problems. which contain the whole set of states. linear). 23].t8. • Linear function uses the linear interpolation between two successive versions. By doing this. temporal operators are reduced to geometric computations. This temporal sweeping is equivalent to choosing time as the third axis. It is a sweeping of the value representation during the course of time and not a simple union of successive states. its representation is 3D.t5. Complementary information resolves data deficiency that leads to non determinist answers.

of segments and of faces are stored. 5). The main idea is to get a continuous transformation enabling the change from a first geometric shape (a vi version) into the next following shape (the vi+1 version) according to a given Behavioral function. Time Surface line Trajectory Figure 6: Sweeping Time V3 X Figure 7: temporal sweeping of a line Linear time S14 c21 UTS c22 S13 S9 f10 c20 c17 S10 c18 S11 c19 S12 c16 c14 f8 c11 c13 f5 c15 c9 f9 c12 f2 c10 f7 f6 y f3 S8 f4 c5 c7 c6 S5 c8 S6 S1 c4 c1 S2 f1 S7 c2 c3 S3 S4 UTS x Figure 9: Example of 3D object BR TREE: f1 OBJECT f2 f3 . Figure 10: BR of the object of Figure 9 2 .surface (or a section whose shape may vary) along a trajectory: the represented solid is thus swept (See Figure 6) [9]. A variability value only represents a piece of the curve describing the whole data evolution having a support value. each of which is defined by its boundaries (i. They define valid states -6- .. Compared with the usual definition of generalized sweeping. 11). 9. the different shapes of the section correspond to the versions stored in the temporal sequence and the trajectory is described with the associated Behavioral functions. The representation mode chosen is a non manifold BR [9] to be able to represent objects with dangling faces or edges. faces c1 c2 c3 c4 c5 c6 c7 c8 c9 . Lists of vertices. Fig. Figure 7 shows the temporal sweeping of a line. It is split each instant when a version exists (Fig. the two previous representations represent a continuous series of successive states. However. 3 Modeling a Subset of States for a Variable Value Some manipulations on a value that varies in the course of time have to remove some states.e. 2 ... edges S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 S8 S9 . This leads us to introduce the concept of Variability Value (VV).. vertices (x1 y1 z1) . the vertices and edges bounding it). Therefore.. A support value is either a descriptive representation or a BR representation. for an elevation z= t1.. Figure 8 illustrates the temporal sweeping result of the temporal sequence plotted in Figure 3. Time intervals are named lifespan values. a variability value value time V2 y V1 x Figure 8: temporal sweeping of a surface 2 .. We represent it with Boundary Representation (BR).. I Figure 11: Spliting a value evolution into a series of VV A variability value is defined by associating time intervals with a support value. This curve is split into a sequence of variability values (Fig. BR represents a solid in terms of its bounding surfaces: solids are represented as a union of faces. 10 illustrates the BR of the object of Fig. the section is the state at t= t1.. A face is a collection of segments and a segment is described by two vertices. 2 BR Representation The result of temporal sweeping operator is a 3D geometric object.

the selection operator is based on the primitive function Apply_lifespan (a. according to the above-mentioned representation model. As a 3D object represents the whole set of states during the time. VV(t) gives: Figure 12: A variability value as a function 2 .g. Our approach for defining functions that manipulate highly variable data consists in extending -7- . For instance.. The function therefore describes a set of states during an associated lifespan (interval of time). In order to describe the fundamental idea of our model.21/01/94 8H]. 4 Spatio-temporal Operation on a Variability Value A database operator is defined by applying a function on every object of a collection. We present in the next section how this lifespan value is computed. This important property is useful for some operators like selection operators. Then. The geometric intersection is a geometric function.. For instance. [6] has outlined that an important operator is the spatial intersection. the intersection of two 3D objects corresponds to the two by two intersections of states of the same date. To this end. The result consists of instants when the predicate is true. Many atemporal GIS define spatial functions that are applied on spatial values. This lifespan attribute differs from the valid time attribute associated with a tuple [25. It contains a set of time intervals. A lifespan domain defines the information representation in the temporal dimension. These latter are two kinds of spatial intersections. Variability value expresses the important property that a variability value is a mathematical function of time. This function implies the reduction of time intervals of the lifespan associated with variability values.21/01/94 7H25]. between 2D geometries may be expressed by geometric intersection and mathematical intersection. 34 }. we focus in this paper only on the geometric intersection function. adjacency. [29. Indeed. Thus. Between these two dates. etc. There exists an isomorphism between a set of time intervals and a set of quanta of time. Then. Time is considered as continuous and linear. an interval is therefore continuous.18[.. The description of other spatio-temporal functions may be found in [31].. ∀ t ∈ [21/01/94 7H. the suppression of the states that do not verify a given formulation consists in removing the corresponding instants in the lifespan attribute. Intersection.. ∀ t∈ [21/01/94 7H. This is illustrated in the Figure 12. etc. To define accurately the valid states of a v variability value an operator replicates the support value of v and associates to it a new lifespan value. θ. Several works in spatial data model have shown that various operators. it is equivalent to a 3D intersection between objects that result from the temporal sweeping as it is illustrated in Figure 13.35[ } = { 12. 18] in the sense that it represents the time when the tuple variability values vary. the reduction of the time interval entails a restriction of the previous set of states. VV(t) gives: atemporal spatial functions to spatio-temporal functions that are applied on each state of a variability value. 13. Hence. 29.. b) that returns all the instants when the θ predicate (e. such as overlap.) between a and b variability values is true. a variability value returns a state for each date t belonging to the lifespan. { [12. 17. …. a query like: "Search all the states when entities overlap" leads to search in a variability value the sub-sets of states verifying the spatial criterion. '='. Achieving selection on data varying is done by geometric algorithm techniques.described by the associated support value. the fundamental difference with our manipulation model and other temporal data models lies in state manipulation. To process selection on all the existing states by comparing each state to a criterion is a rough solution and time consuming. Mathematical intersection considers the boundary of a surface while geometric intersection does not consider it.

Each attribute defines a variability value of this entity in the course of time. Motivation 2: We want to model. for the fire. The result of this representation proceeds from a set of criteria. To obtain the representation of the variability values plotted in Figure 14. with such a concept. a variability relation contains variability tuples that appear as: (i) the data description thanks to its behavior description (Figure 15) for update language. For instance. A temporal object is a sequence of tuples. This fire is represented by a sequence of tuples. Each tuple describes the evolution of different -8- .b(t)) } We have presented how we can model a variability information that is expressed by a variability value. An example of entity state is. states verifying a criterion. Fire_Armenville. Duality of representation: Given the abovementioned duality of variability value perception. We have also shown how we can determine. the lifespan values of the variability values describing the same temporal object are factorized. However. (ii) the data description with a state set (Figure 14) for query language. states of entities and not states of attributes. ). etc. To this end.) as a series of states during an interval of time represented by the attribute Fire_T. This modeling leads to model temporal objects. If we gather all the values of an attribute. The variability relation of Figure 14 represents the states described by the relation of Figure 15. It is important to notice that each tuple represents a continuous series of states that expresses the evolution of the temporal entity during an interval of time. y x Figure 13: search of states that intersect Definition: For a and b variability values and θ a predicate applied on these arguments: Apply_lifespan (a. This factorization describes temporal entity states instead of attribute states. This figure represents only one fire spreading. In the schema point of view.instants when there is intersection time values (Name. An attribute that contains a variability value is called a variability attribute. These operators are characterized by the manipulation on states contained in each tuple. The goal of the representation model may be defined thanks to the following motivations: Motivation 1: Each object contains a continuous series of states. This is the main difference with other temporal algebra [17]. 3. θ. 3. To avoid accessing to several tuples. (S1. interpolation requires to access to several versions stored in different tuples of a temporal object. We also define a set of temporal operators that is applied on this representation. Integration of Variability Values into a Database Model We integrate the model for a highly variable value into a complex object data model. we obtain all the states of the data modeled by the attribute during the evolution of the entity. in a tuple representation.1 Temporal Objects An example of representation of an entity is given by the Figure 14. the lifespan attribute name is in brackets and follows the attribute name. 21/01/94 7H45. A temporal object represents an abstract entity like an area of atmospheric disturbances. GeomBoundary. we propose an implementation that is similar to the one presented in [30] in the case of numerical variable values. This will be obtained by introducing the concept of variability value as mentioned above. b) = { t / t ∈ lifespan(a) ∩ lifespan(b) ∧ θ (a(t). this model allows to manipulate only one highly variable value. “GeomBoundary (Fire_T)“ is a variability attribute defined on the Fire_T lifespan.

21/01/94 7H] } Name(Fire_T) Fire_Armenville GeomBoundary (Fire_T) S1 { [21/01/94 7H. which is unique for the database. Remaining states correspond to the instants contained in the new lifespan (Fire_T). to reduce the value of the lifespan attribute for a given tuple entails a restriction of tuple states. step Fire_Armenville. However. Linear Figure 15: Final relation representing a fire spreading by a temporal object Fire_S S1 Fire_T { [21/01/94 7H40. Linear Figure 16: Modification of tuple states Consequently. as index. A surrogate is an object identifier [12] for the temporal object.21/01/94 8H] } { [21/01/94 8H. This is a logical suppression.Now] } Fire_Armenville Figure 14: Perception of an infinity of states Fire_S S1 S1 S1 Fire_T { [21/01/94 6H. data volume) increases in the course of the time since new states describing the entity are added to the temporal object. allows to use techniques of data clustering and access. Linear . step . Each tuple represents the variability of the temporal entity during a given period. 14) of VV contained in the other attributes.e. in order to access efficiently to temporal object states.e. each variability value of a tuple is linked to its lifespan attribute value.. The surrogate notion is thus introduced to enable to bind a set of tuples that forms a temporal object. according to the property that a variability value is a mathematical function of time. a temporal object is divided into a sequence of tuples. It is an identifier -9- .21/01/94 7H50] } Name(Fire_T) Fire_Armenville GeomBoundary (Fire_T) GeomBoundary (Fire_T) . Motivation 3: A temporal object is an object whose size (i.21/01/94 7H] } { [21/01/94 7H. For this purpose. an important query category accesses to a state or to a sub-set of states. such that a value is constant during a given period. To obtain this result.. we need two elements: (i) the surrogate and (ii) the independence of value.Fire_S S1 Fire_T { [21/01/94 6H. Moreover. the variability of some temporal object attributes is often a step variability (i. This reduction implies a change (comparatively to Fig. value is constant during a given period). To access only to an object part optimizes the expensive I/O disk. An efficient partition of temporal objects. step Fire_Armenville. Indeed. Indeed. Figure 16 represents a time interval reduction of the Fire_T attribute of the second tuple of the table in Figure 14.21/01/94 8H] } Fire_Armenville S1 { [21/01/94 8H. such an object gathers all the states of an entity in the course of time.Now] } Name(Fire_T) Fire_Armenville.

a domain value..n i. However. according to the above-mentioned representation model. • Union. 3 . Each attribute is defined by a n a m e . <v1 . However. 1 Selection Operator The fundamental difference with the traditional operator lies in state manipulation. Figure 17: Fire schema 3. vk >. The forthcoming definition gives the grammar of a variability tuple representation. Thus. the fundamental difference with the temporal operators [17] lies in state manipulation. is (i) a variability value ( V V ij ) provided by a user. 2 . Intersection. To obtain a complete set oriented manipulation. . where each value vi . as in [2].g. This operator is equivalent to intersecting the lifespan values with the given interval of each tuple. each tuple has to be manipulated independently of the other tuples. and VVij is the variability value domain. each variability attribute contains a series of values defined at a given time interval. the projection result comprises the surrogate attribute and the lifespan attribute of each attribute. A behavior domain describes how the attribute values evolve: the variability is produced by calling the required behavioral function. we give the definition of the representation. • Temporal Projection. We give a brief description of the operators: • Cartesian product is defined in a standard way. A variability tuple is a tuple. noted Φ I (r). Fire_T. This latest attribute varies continuously and linearly. Geometry (linear) }. projects all the states included in a given time interval (I). For example. and a behavior domain composed by a set of behavioral function names. and GeomBoundary representing the 2D boundary of the area that is burning. The pattern "(Si x Ii x VVij ni)" can be repeated n times. some behavioral functions require an interpolation between several versions. Si is the surrogate domain. The reader may refer to [30] for more details on the operators. A fire entity is described by a record number that is a temporal invariant. Indeed.10 - . j ∈ 1.. and Difference are applied on states contained in each tuple. or (ii) a value of an attribute added by the system (surrogate attribute (Si) or lifespan attribute (Ii)).. The tuple belongs to the result if the intersection is not empty. …. VarChar (Step). the suppression of the states that do not verify a given formulation consists of removing the corresponding instants in the lifespan attribute.value shared by the tuple set constituting a temporal object. This operator implies the reduction of time intervals of the lifespan attributes associated with variability values. it would have been possible to choose another behavioral function (e. v2 . We use the following notation: π{Fire_S.n. we only relate in detail the selection operator. For the sake of concision. When n is greater than 1. These operators manipulate states since each tuple contains a state set. Real (linear).2 Algebra Operators The data manipulation model is based on an operator set. we model entities representing the spreading of a fire. Ii is the lifespan domain. Fire_T attributes (Figure 15). GeomBoundary}(Fire). A solution is to recopy in a tuple all the versions that are required for the interpolation. its name that changes discretely. the relation is a result of the Cartesian Product between variability relations [8]. • Projection operators eliminate attribute columns. Create Fire {Number Name CO2 GeomBoundary Integer (Step). Definition The variability tuples are defined on the domain: (Si x Ii x VVij ni) n where i ∈ 1. 1 ≤ i ≤ k. These attributes define variability value. CO2 referencing the CO2 rate that is a numerical value varying continuously and linearly. The independence of variability values lends itself to the independence of tuples. A schema describes the relation structure as a collection of Variability Attributes. For example. spline or a specific function defined by the user) to describe the evolution of GeomBoundary. Finally. projection of the GeomBoundary attribute includes the system Fire_S. Then. Of course.

If the data is not yet represented with the BR. (point 0 in Figures 18. Then. Figure 20: Query execution Selection for each tuple u do Apply_Lifespan ( on VV) end < [12/04/94. in the same way.18/04/94] (Flock) (1) R2 = Select(R1. t) plane. in Figure 14. S t e p > is a variability value that represents the land parcel. A temporal sweeping of this VV produces a vertical column (Figure 13) while the temporal sweeping of the flock produces the other 3D object (Figure 13). To compute states that verify criteria on highly variable data (point 2 in Figure 20). u. The comparison (θ) result is one or several time intervals stored in I (point 1).18/04/94]. This primitive is based on data dictionary information. For a given variability attribute "a". Att_lifespan(GeomBoundary) is equal to Fire_T. re ⇐ re U { v } end for each end if end for each return re.11 - . Its geometry varies according to a step behavior. The Apply_lifespan function is applied for each tuple. < [12/04/94. Figure 21). for each tuple of R1 the states verifying criteria. GeomBoundary}(R5). v[ att_lifespan(b) ] ⇐ i. a loop computes. belonging to I (point 2). we describe the Att_Lifespan primitive function. all the values of attributes of u (point 3). For each time interval. v[ att_lifespan(a) ] ⇐ i. (2) (3) Figure 19: Selection between two VV Before presenting the selection algorithm operator. . the value of i to the lifespan attribute associated with the a attribute (6). then we assign. Att_Lifespan(a) returns the name of the associated lifespan attribute. v. u[b]) if I is not empty then for each i ∈ I d o v ⇐ u.18/04/94]. end Operator (0) (1) (2) (3) (4) 3. Temporal Sweeping Function 2. If the second attribute of the operand is not a constant. to search all the states that overlap the constant value in the course of time. Then. Figure 19 describes a selection between two variability attributes. θ. The query resolution is done by operators described in Figure 20. 19. we project the resulting 3D objects upon the (x. end Operator Operator σ v a θ b(r): re for each u ∈ r d o I = Apply_lifespan (u[a]. intersect is the notation for the spatial intersection operation. Step >)). the system searches the instants when the overlapping exists. re ⇐ re U { v } end for each end if end for each return re. i. For example.Operator σ v a θ vv(r): re for each u ∈ r d o I = Apply_lifespan (u[a]. vv). (intersect( Geom. if I is not empty then for each i ∈ I d o v ⇐ u. 1. the system applies on each variability value the transformation using the Temporal Sweeping function (cf. R = π{Flock_S. 19).3 Example of Query Figure 18: Selection between variability attribute and VV We want to answer the simple query: “Retrieve the states of a flock of sheep such that the flock passes through the land parcel between the 12/04/94 and the 18/04/94”. θ. This . The selection operator is algorithmically described in Figures 18. v[ att_lifespan(a) ] ⇐ i. The first operator process a temporal projection that retains only states included in the given interval. . Geometrical Algorithms Figure 21: call of the Apply_lifespan function To apply selections on highly variable data. we recopy in a tuple. we compute the intersection between the two BR corresponding to the variability value and the 3D representing a constant spatial value. then we assign the value of i to the lifespan attribute associated with the a attribute (4). Figure 18 describes a selection between a variability attribute and a variability value. R1 = (0) (1) (2) (3) (4) (6) Φ [12/04/94. To this end. the adequate representation in our model is the BR. This is followed by a selection operator. Flock_T.

. We apply the following techniques. LNCS No 525. the second representation is an internal to the system representation derived from the first one. Evans. P. Hull. Our experiments have shown the feasibility of the geometric approach with a profit from both data volume and execution cost points of view. the most important contribution of our model is that it provides the possibility to model continuity. However. The representation of variability is not an easy task and a new and specific approach has to be introduced. In particular the selection operator integrates geometric algorithm techniques. Prof. 1991. 11. Sept. pages 499-527. these instants are combined with the lifespan values stored in the Fire_T attribute. USA. In order to obtain the result. we outlined the problems of managing highly variable and spatial data in GIS. on DB Syst. G. on Theory of Databases. Although geometric computations are known as expensive calculations. This new concept provides a dual perception of the temporal data. 1993.12 - . It is a geometric representation based on Boundary Representation.first projection eliminates the 'y' dimension. The only difference between the new tuple and the previous one lies in its lifespan attribute. This work is partially supported by GDR CASSINI (a research group of the French Research Organization (CNRS)). [2] [3] [4] [5] . J. Dutta. Cheylan. For geometric computations. Pucheral. This kind of variability is a crucial problem in the scientific domain because data vary in the course of time. Acknowledgments We wish to thank Prof. J. S. 3D Geometric computation is time consuming. There remain the instants that are solutions. Cheylan and S. References [1] S. Topological constraints: a representational framework for approximate spatial and temporal reasoning. Ariav. B. the new tuple that has been produced is solution. We also introduced operators that manipulate complex objects containing highly variable data. Vol. Restructuring of semantics database objects and office forms. In COSIT 93. This representation is more compact. This work is a part of the research work undertaken by GDR CASSINI (research group of the French Organization of Research) on environmental projects [4]. A temporally oriented data model. Lardon. Conf. 1986.P. We introduced an approach based on geometric algorithm techniques to manipulate data. this model is based upon the variability value notion. de Cambray. In SSD'91. our approach and the optimizations provided enables to lead an unfeasible problem to a more realistic domain. No 4. ACM Trans. The high variability implies a data volume and a number of operations that can not be processed by the current technology of both databases and temporal databases. Viémont for many helpful conversations or for critically reading the paper. pages 338-347. October 1993. For data manipulations. J-P. The user has a perception of continuous evolution of data. a the new lifespan is produced. some queries on highly variable data may have non-determinist answers due to discrete sampling and to the deficiency of versions. pages 161-180. Spatio Temporal processes: Toward a conceptual data model and analysis using GIS. Rome. The challenge is to manage highly variable data. we use bounding parallelepipeds [3]. t) plane is made. In Int. Moreover. Furthermore. A second projection upon the (y. the description associates to a data behavioral functions that express the semantics of data variations. In order to solve these problems. 4. Gardarin. G. 1986. This paper relates our work to design a new approach to solve spatio-temporal problems [29]. To reduce the computation time of spatio-temporal queries to a reasonable time. and Y. If the lifespan is not empty. Three-Dimensional (3D) Modelling in a Geographical Database. The first representation is a description of data evolution by a temporal sequence. optimization is essential. This optimization may use index and data clustering methods. In Auto-Carto'11. A first optimization is to apply firstly the operators on numerical values varying according to a s t e p behavior. Conclusion In this paper. Hence. Abiteboul and R.

. pages 418-448.B. H. Viémont. Vol 11. 1990. An Update of the Temporal Database Bibliography. A Homogeneous Relational Model and Query Language for Temporal Databases. Pistor. What's special about spatial ? Database requirements for vehicle navigation in geographic space. G. N. 11. pages 406-416. E.[6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18] [19] [20] [21] M. principles and practice. 1986. 1984. 1993. 13. pages 115-126. pages 79-88. August 1984. pages 66-80. No 4. Mobile File and Efficient Processing of Path Queries On Scientific Data. ACM Computing Surveys. In SIGMOD RECORD. Erbe. R. A. pages 53-72. Heaven. In ISACC'94. Shoshani.S. Vol. 1992. Egenhofer. L. Ward. Eng. Olken. Langran. Egenhofer. In 12th VLDB Int. pages 320-328. T. Herring. Evaluation of Relational Algebras Incorporating the Time Dimension in Databases. December 1990. [22] [23] [24] [25] [26] [27] [28] [29] [30] [31] A. 1987. pages 398-402. Algebraic Optimization of Computations over Scientific Databases. Vol. Snodgrass. D. Khoshafian and G. R. and Y. In VLDB Conf. In SSD'93. Lum. Hachem. Larue. Dec.S. In ACM SIGMOD. E. 22. Switzerland. Vol 19. P. 1990. pages 1-12. USA. Addison-Wesley. Vol. In SIGMOD RECORD. Woodfill. P. D. 1995. 1993. Snodgrass. A Temporal relational model and query language. 1987. G. Characteristics of Scientifc Databases. J. L. In ACM TODS. Walch.K. IEEE. Feiner. Dec. J. Navathe and R. on DB Systems. Viémont.T. Vol. de Cambray. T. 1992. S-K. A.13 - .. PhD Thesis. In 2nd Int.. Monterrey. N. R. IEEE Trans. Time in Geographic Information Systems. Navathe. J. A. Dadam. March 1992. Vol. No 4. Wong. Snodgrass. Modélisation de la variabilité des entités dans un Système d'Information Géographique. pages 13-24. Journal Information Science. Graefe. on Integrating GIS and Environmental Modeling. P. Taylor & Francis. Shoshani. Pastre. Breckenbridge. June 1993. In OOPSLA'86. LCNS No 692. Shoshani and K Kawagoe. October 1985. September 1993. Managing Highly Variable Data in a Temporal Database: a Medical Application. Conf. 1989. S. Kline. Shashi and T.T. Designing DBMS Support for Temporal Dimension. V. pages 357-373. and J. A. Object Identity. S. Fundamentals of Database Systems.K. Yeh and B. Yeh and B. ACM Transactions on Database Systems. pages 247-298. 1986. Guenauer. 2. Munich. T. In 19th VLDB Conf. A mathematical framework for the definition of topological relationships. and M. T. Hughes. In VLDB Conf. Statistical and Scientific Database Issues. No 3. 1988. Foley. Time as a geometric dimension for modeling the evolution of entities: a 3D approach. August 1986. pages 157-166. J. Shoshani and H. S. T. Int. Strong Integration of Spatial Domains and Operators in a Relational Database System. Elmasri and S. Yeh. T. The Temporal Query Language TQuel. R. ACM Trans. Conf. Wong. Temporal aspects of Geographical Databases. pages 454-466. Osborn and T. No 10. Segev and A. In ACM SIGMOD Conf. May 1993. de Cambray. pages 803-813. J. In ACM SIGMOD Conf. The design of a relational database system with abstract data types for domains. Singapore. Computer graphics. R. van Dam. No 2. pages 147-160. and H. M. Ahmed. N. Gadia. In EGIS'92. No 4. Temporal Databases Status and Research Directions. and J. F. M. on Softw. S. Yang. In Spatial Data Handling. 1988. Benjamin/Cumings. Gennert. Copeland. McKenzie and R. December 91. Qiu..S. 23. 4. Wolniewicz and G.. 1993. Jan. Kyoto. Yeh and Y. Sept. 12. Werner. Temporal data management.. Logical modeling of temporal data.. K. R.S. Mexico.B.. Managing Derived Data in the Gaea Scientific DBMS. Boston. S. October 1994. A.

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