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Query Picture

These papers describe the fundamentals of building conceptual queries within the ORM context. ConQuer, the language on which these queries are based, makes query building easy for end users and database administrators.

Conceptual Queries pdf file (94K)
Halpin, T. 1998, ‘Conceptual Queries’, Database Newsletter, vol. 26, no. 2, ed. R.G. Ross, Database Research Group, Inc., Boston MA (March/April 1998).
(Note: This newsletter has since been renamed Business Rules Journal and is published by Business Rules Solutions, Inc..).

Formulating non-trivial queries in relational languages such as SQL or QBE can prove daunting to end users. ConQuer, a new conceptual query language based on Object Role Modeling (ORM), enables users to pose complex queries in a readily understandable way, without needing to know how the information is stored in the underlying database. This article highlights the advantages of conceptual query languages such as ConQuer over traditional query languages for specifying queries and business rules.


ConQuer: a Conceptual Query Language pdf file (150K)
Bloesch, A. & Halpin, T. 1996, ‘ConQuer: a conceptual query language’, Proc. ER’96: 15th Int. Conf. on conceptual modeling, Springer LNCS, no. 1157, pp. 121-33.

Relational query languages such as SQL and QBE are less than ideal for end user queries since they require users to work explicitly with structures at the relational level, rather than at the conceptual level where they naturally communicate. ConQuer is a new conceptual query language that allows users to formulate queries naturally in terms of elementary relationships, and operators such as “and”, “not” and “maybe”, thus avoiding the need to deal explicitly with implementation details such as relational tables, null values, and outer joins. While most conceptual query languages are based on the entity relationship approach, ConQuer is based on Object Role Modeling (ORM), which exposes semantic domains as conceptual object types, thus allowing queries to be formulated in terms of paths through the information space. This paper provides an overview of the ConQuer language.


Conceptual Queries using ConQuer–II pdf file (99K)
Bloesch, A. & Halpin, T. 1997, ‘Conceptual queries using ConQuer-II’, Proc. ER’97: 16th Int. Conf. on conceptual modeling, Springer LNCS, no. 1331, pp. 113-26.

Formulating non-trivial queries in relational languages such as SQL and QBE can prove daunting to end users. ConQuer is a conceptual query language that allows users to formulate queries naturally in terms of elementary relationships, operators such as “and”, “or”, “not” and “maybe”, contextual for-clauses and object-correlation, thus avoiding the need to deal explicitly with implementation details such as relational tables, null values, outer joins, group-by clauses and correlated subqueries. While most conceptual query languages are based on the entity relationship approach, ConQuer is based on Object Role Modeling (ORM), which exposes semantic domains as conceptual object types, allowing queries to be formulated via paths through the information space. As a result of experience with the first implementation of ConQuer, the language has been substantially revised and extended to become ConQuer–II. ConQuer–II's new features such as arbitrary correlation and subtyping enable it to be used for a wide range of advanced conceptual queries.


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