AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED CONTENTBASED HISTORY MECHANISM
 Inventor: David M. Bristor, Menlo Park, Calif.
 Assignee: Sun Microsystems, Inc., Palo Alto, Calif.
 Appl. No.: 08/497,805  Filed: Jul. 3, 1995
 Int. CI. G06F 15 00
 U.S. CI 345/354; 345/352; 395/825;
 Field of Search 395/326, 348,
395/352, 825, 887; 345/326, 348, 349,
352, 353, 354; 707/3-6, 102-104
Primary Examiner—Huynh Ba
Attorney, Agent, or Firm—-James D. Ivey
A history mechanism is provided in which user data, which represents signals generated by a user, are stored for subsequent recall and regeneration in a history database in one
of two or more categories associated with two or more respective component symbols of the user data. For example, in one embodiment, user data includes alphabetic symbols and a respective category is formed for each letter of the alphabet. User data is parsed into components and stored in the history database in each category corresponding to the initial letter of each component of the user data since the initial letter of each component of the user data is prominent. The user recalls and regenerates the user data by selecting a category corresponding to a letter of the alphabet which is the initial letter of any component of the user data. The user then selects the previously generated user data from a list of previously generated user data classified under the selected category. By classifying previously generated user data based on the content of the user data, e.g., prominent symbols of the user data, previously generated user data is stored in a organizational structure without intervention by the user and independently of the user's particular subjective perspective of the user data being classified. By classifying the user data redundantly according to each of one or more components of the user data, reliance on any single component of the user data being particularly memorable or unique is avoided.
27 Claims, 15 Drawing Sheets