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定义、使用和操纵权限管理数据结构的技术

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CN1236387C
CN1236387C CN 02149370 CN02149370A CN1236387C CN 1236387 C CN1236387 C CN 1236387C CN 02149370 CN02149370 CN 02149370 CN 02149370 A CN02149370 A CN 02149370A CN 1236387 C CN1236387 C CN 1236387C
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technique
defining
controlling
authority
management
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CN 02149370
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CN1516022A (zh )
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埃德温·J·霍耳
维克多·H·希尔
卢克·S·托马塞洛
大卫·M·万维
罗伯特·P·韦伯
金·沃森克罗夫特
徐学军
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联信技术公司
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Abstract

一种提供对诸如安全容器的权限管理数据结构的抽象表达的描述性数据结构。该抽象表达可以描述权限管理数据结构的规划。它也可以提供元数据描述或定义权限管理数据结构使用和/或处理的其它特征。例如,描述性数据结构可以提供完整性约束以提供描述相关信息的规则的方式。该抽象表达可以被用于创建相互之间有互操作性和兼容性的权限管理数据结构。此种设计在不损害安全性的同时保证了灵活性和易用性。

Description

定义、使用和操纵权限管理数据结构的技术

本发明所属技术领域本发明涉及定义、创建和操纵权限管理数据结构的技术。更确切地说,本发明提供了用以定义和/或描述一个安全电子权限管理容器(container)的至少某些数据特征的系统和处理过程。本发明还提供了用以支持权限管理数据结构的完整性、灵活性、互操作性、用户及系统透明性和兼容性的技术。

发明背景及概述人们正日益增多的使用安全数字容器来安全可靠地存储和传送数字内容。一个安全数字容器模型是由位于美国加里福尼亚州的桑尼维尔市的InterTrust技术公司开发的“DigiBoxTM”容器。Ginter elal.的专利说明书描述了该DigiBoxTM容器模型的许多特征——强大、灵活、通用的结构能够对各种的电子商务关系进行安全的有效的和可互操作的电子描述和调节,这些关系包括安全传送、存储和该容器内部的对象和数据信息的权限管理接口。

简单的说,DigiBox容器是抗干扰数字容器,可以被用于包装任何类型的数字信息,比如文本,图形,可执行软件,音频和/或视频信息。DigiBoxTM容器中使用的权限管理环境允许商务参与者把规则和数字信息(内容)关联起来。该权限管理环境也允许安全的把规则(此处包括规则和参数数据控制)和别的权限管理信息如规则,在使用数字信息期间产生的审核记录和保证该环境正常工作的管理信息,包括确认权和各种组件间协议等关联起来。DigiBoxTM电子容器可被用于存储、传送并提供权限管理接口给数字信息,相关规则和别的权限管理信息,还有分布式权限管理环境内的其它对象和/或数据。该设计可用于当容器从一个实体移到另一个实体时提供一个含有权限管理的处理和控制的电子增强链。该功能有助于支持一个数字权限管理体系结构,它允许内容合法持有者(含任何与该内容相关的系统授权的团体,比如,内容出版商甚至政府机关)安全地控制和管理内容、事件、交易规则、和使用结果,包含任何必要的支付和/或使用报告。当内容在创建者,分布者,重定向者,消费者,分散支付者,和其它的价值链参与者之间传递、使用、和通过时,该安全控制和管理会始终如一地进行权限保护。

比如,内容创建者可以将一个或多个数字信息与规则集打包到DigiBox安全容器中--该规则能可变地位于一个或多个容器中和/或客户控制节点中——并传送该容器到分布者(distribute)。分布者可以用创建者(creator)允许的参数增加和/或修改容器内的规则。而后分布者可以按任何允许的(或不被禁止的)方式传送容器一比如,通过如国际互联网的电子网络传送。消费者可以下载容器,并按照容器内的规则使用容器。容器被打开,规则被InterTrust软件增强到本地计算机或别的被称为InterTrust商务节点的InterTrust敏感性设备上。消费者可以转发容器(或者拷贝)到其它消费者,后者可以(在规则允许的情况下)按照同样、不同或其它被包含的规则使用内容。这些规则的使用取决于用户可获得的权限,如,用户特定识别码,以及任何类成员资格(如汽车俱乐部或某一特定大学的雇员),与这些规则相一致,使用和/或支付信息由节点收集并传送到一个或多个用于支付结帐的清查屋,并传送使用信息给那些有权限接受的人。

上文描述的容器模型几乎有无限的灵活性,该描述还可参见Ginter et.al.专利说明书(包含相似的其它DigiBox/VDE(虚拟分布环境)模型)。它可被应用于许多不同的环境和特定的实现中。比如,参看图1A和1B,报纸出版商可以在容器100A中分布报纸102。时尚杂志出版商可以在另一个容器100C中分布时尚杂志106。相似的,大规模银行环境也可以使用一个容器,电子贸易系统也可以使用一个容器等等。

InterTrust DigiBox容器模型允许且便于这些或别的不同的容器使用。它为不同的应用和/或类应用和/或意在满足不同需要和商业模型的用户提供了定制复杂容器的便利,此种定制能力是十分重要的,特别是当应用于连接如Ginter et.al.所描述的通用的分布式的权限管理环境时。该环境要求实用的可定制性优化,包含可定制性和对容器模型的透明性。这种定制灵活性有许多优势,比如,允许为每个特定应用或环境进行复杂容器设计的优化(如最大有效性,最小间接费用),以便允许为许多不同目的(如商业模型)而设计的不同容器同时并存,并被位于用户电子设备如计算机或娱乐设备的权限控制客户(节点)所使用。

尽管支持高度灵活性有巨大的优势,它可能对一般用户产生困难。我们考虑一下绘画过程,绘画大师在空白画布上作画,因为画布起初是空白的,画师完全没有被约束,画可以是风景、人物、海景,或别的任何图象——唯一的限制是画师的想象力。该灵活性允许绘画大师创作一件如“蒙娜丽莎”那样的名作。然而,空白画布绘制令人满意的作品需要巨大的技巧。结果,没有经验的画师如果在空白画布上作画不可能创作出好画。

现在我们考虑一个业余画家开始作画,它没有技能把空白画布绘成一幅令人满意的图画,业余画家不必花费数年时间学习这种技能,他可以出去买一个“按数作画”绘画工具箱。抛开空白画布,业余画家从已定义好要画的图象和预先印制的画布开始作画,按照说明(“标有12的所有区域绘成暗红色,标有26的所有区域绘成亮蓝色”),业余画家可以用相当少的技巧绘制出一幅相对令人满意的图画,为了作到这一点,业余画家必须严格遵守预先印在画布上的说明,任何偏差都可能导致最后图画变糟。

计算机领域的易用性问题可以类比为“按数作画”的情形。如果对未经训练和/或没有经验的用户使用特定软件很重要的话,系统设计者会预先定义特定的结构并把它们设计到系统中,该技术允许没有经验的用户在不必完全理解的情况下使用潜在的非常复杂的设计。但这通常严格定义即严格限制了使用该程序可获得的功能和灵活性。结果,为了提供实用价值,有创意的问题解决方案被限制。另外,即使是对有经验的用户使用预先实现的设计也会大有裨益。因为,比如说用户有能力编制复杂的程序,但这并不意味着编制一个特定目的的程序是有效的或合适的,即使这种预先实现的程序不是理想的,如果编制新程序花费太多时间或金钱资源,如果可以预先搞到手的话,有经验的用户通常也会使用预先实现的程序。因而,与定制相关的最大的总实现价值在于能够用巨大的易用性和有效性实现定制,以便使费用不会超过所得利益。

一致性、灵活性、兼容性、和可互操作性是计算机应用领域需要考虑的其他因素,尤其是当涉及系统支持定制时。在绘画时,人眼可以评价独特性——名作如蒙娜丽莎的“自成一派”的特性相当大程度上决定了该画如此有价值。相反,在计算机领域,人们希望一致性,至少在总体上和事物的格式上一致。对计算机而言,预先知道如何处理和使用对象会大有效率。如果计算机不预先知道如何读取或处理输入对象,那么我们说计算机和对象“不兼容”,即它们不能一起工作,当多台计算机可以一起工作时,我们称它们是“可互操作的”,不兼容和互操作性问题可能阻止计算机与别的计算机交谈,也可能妨碍使用别的计算机创建的数据。

比如,在非计算机世界,一个只懂一点英语的法国人可能会发现使用自己的本族语——法语更能有意义地和有效地描述一个复杂的问题。但当他与另一个不懂法语的英国人说话时,他们两人用法语不能“互操作“,这个法国人只能求助于效率远低的英语来跟该英国人会话。当然,这总比他跟一个既不懂英语又不懂法语的德国人交谈要好得多,这两人在讨论问题时是不能“互操作的”。相似的,因为权限管理容器可能被大量不同的用户、群组、和组织为大量不同的目的而交流和使用,提供兼容性和可互操作性是十分重要的,如果这些不同的团体,每个都参与到一个或多个不同的权限管理模型中,它们就希望有效地互操作。例如,如果一个权限管理容器被用于发布新闻邮件并且被按此目的优化,新闻邮件的每个用户必须有一个计算机系统或软件”知道“如何读取容器及其中的新闻邮件。由于诸如发布新闻邮件之类的商务需要尽可能的高效低费,优化即定制权限管理容器来最优地反映这些模型的需求,并且抛弃对每个个别应用或类应用而言不必要的特征是十分重要的,因为这些不必要的特征会消耗不必要的计算机间接费用和/或存储空间。

不同的新闻邮件出版者可能使用不同的容器格式定制成他们自己特定的新闻邮件和/或内容类型和/或格式。可阅读许多不同新闻邮件的新闻邮件阅读器需要有能力阅读大量不同格式,它通常将不会高效地(或者由于安全性问题,将不会适当地)分析所传递的各种不同容器也难以查明或识别特定的使用格式。

出版标准有助于为给定类型的应用获得一定层次的互操作性,但对任何特定标准它通常要花费很长时间获得工业范围内的认可,而且标准需要根据不同类型的应用做大幅改变。进而言之,数据结构和其它标准常常被设计成最低常用主导者——即,它们包含一些不必要的域和需求或遗漏一些在特定例子中优化的其它特征。如果被迫使用特定标准,那么总有不能被优化成高效和/或可操作的应用。

一旦考虑安全性,那么灵活性,易用性,兼容性和可互操作性之间的折衷会进一步复杂化。为了保证在众多电子商务应用中的有效性,电子容器设计必须是抗干扰的和安全的。必须假定任何广泛用于创建和/或使用容器的工具会落入那些试图破坏或砸开容器的人或未经授权而使用电子信息的人手中。因此,容器创建和使用工具必须自身是安全的,它们必须保护关于容器设计的特定细节,这种附加的安全性需求可能使提供容器的易用性和互操作性更加困难。

上面引用的Ginter el.al.专利说明以不彻底的例子描述了作为控制说明设备(或设备集)的“模板“和/或用于对象控制软件的数据。参见在Ginter el.al.说明中讨论的“对象创建和初始控制结构”,“模板和分类”和“对象定义文件”,“信息”方法和“内容”方法。所述模板至少在一些例子中能够与用户指示和所提供的内容相互作用以创建(和/或修改)对象。Ginter el.al.揭示出模板可以表达成定义了特定结构和/或元件组列的文本文件,这些模板-与它们的结构和/或元件组列一道--可以作为对象授权和/或对象控制应用。Ginter el.al.说,模板有助于在特定的工业和/或商业和/或应用环境中增强固有的灵活性和可配置能力,提供一个操作框架和/或结构使现有的工业和/或应用和/或商业操纵熟悉的概念,诸如,内容类型、分布方式、价格机制,用户与内容相互作用和/或相关管理活动、预算等相似的概念,这有益于追求优化的商业模型和提供有效性、透明性、高效性之间的权限平衡的价值链。

本发明扩展了该项技术,除了其它特性外,还提供一种机器可读的描述性数据结构用于关联的权限管理数据结构,如安全容器。在一个例子中,这种机器可读的描述性数据结构可以制作出权限管理数据结构中的数据格式的快速抽象表达,该抽象数据表达可被用于描述单一权限管理数据结构,它也适合于遵循同一格式和/或别的由抽象表达定义的特征的一族数据结构。该抽象表达可被用于创建权限管理数据结构,允许其它权限管理节点阅读和理解该数据结构并操纵部分或全部数据结构。

描述性数据结构可被用做“模板”来帮助创建和描述其它节点,权限管理数据结构,以及被用于帮助理解和操纵该权限管理数据结构。

在特别有利的设计中,该种机器可读描述性数据结构可关联到一个或一族相应的权限管理数据结构中,因而可以独立于任何特定的权限管理数据结构。例如,描述性数据结构的拷贝可与这种数据结构一起保存。另一种情况是,部分或全部描述性数据结构可从其它地方(如清查屋或仓库)获得并独立的在所需基础上传送。

在一个例子中,该机器可读描述性数据结构提供了在权限管理数据结构中反应和/或定义相应结构的描述。例如,描述性数据结构可以提供了递归的层次性列表反映和/或定义相应的在权限管理数据结构中的递归的层次性结构。在其它例子中,由描述性数据结构提供的描述可以与复杂的有2、3或几维的多维数据结构通信,描述性数据结构可以直接或间接指定在关联的权限管理数据结构的何处可以发现相应的定义好了的数据类型。描述性数据结构可以进一步提供元数据来描述一个或多个相应的权限管理数据属性和/或用于创建和/或使用它的处理过程。在一个例子中,整个描述性数据结构可被称为元数据。

机器可读的描述性数据结构根据不同的特定应用可以或不可以部分或全部的被保护。一些机器可读的描述性数据结构可以被整个或部分地加密,而别的描述性数据结构可能保持“未加密”形式以便它们能被方便地获得。一些机器可读的描述性数据结构,不论是否加密,可能部分或全部进行完整性保护,使用加密哈希(杂凑)算法结合一个安全算法来形成一个加密封条,和/或通过使用别的保护技术(包括硬件,例如,安全半导体和/或硬件打包保护方式)。机器可读的描述性数据结构可以自我封装在权限管理数据结构中,控制它们的访问和使用的规则(如许可记录)也被关联在一起。

与如何有效利用描述性数据结构的本发明的实施例相一致,机器可读的描述性数据结构可被供应商创建来描述供应商的特定权限管理数据结构如安全容器的总体规划。这种描述性数据结构(“描述性数据结构”)模板可被用于创建容器,在两个或多个可能的描述性数据结构之间可以选择基于一个或多个类,其中一个或多个类可以基于参数数据。描述性数据结构可作为被创建的安全容器的规划被装载和使用,供应商可以保持描述性数据结构私有,或发布它以便其它供应商可以创建兼容的、可互操作的基于同一描述性数据结构的容器。

描述性数据结构也可以被容器查看器,浏览器,阅读器或任何设计好与容器一起工作的其它终端用户应用。真正合适的查看器,或别的应用能够处理任何格式的容器至少部分使用描述性数据结构。因而,描述性数据结构可能至少暂时被用于转换和/或定制一个通用查看器(和/或别的应用),或一个特定的围绕一个或多个容器类优化的查看器(和/或别的应用)。另外,特定的阅读器可被提供给有效处理的描述性数据结构来定位关键媒体元素(例如,封面页,内容表,广告索引,词汇表,论文,未保护的预览,价格,和/或关于查看、打印、保存、重分布的权限信息,相关预算和/或别的参数信息等)。

这种专门阅读器可以无缝地,透明地,自动地处理从而提供给用户为特定应用容器和/或用户而优化的易用接口(比如,用图标显示每一个关键媒体元素)。例如,这些元素可以基于用户和/或用户节点的识别符以不同的形式被显示或使用,并且把影响这种自动处理的一个或多个类属性也考虑在内。

举例而言,两个或多个描述性数据结构不仅可被关联到一个或多个用户和/或节点类,而且可被关联到容器和/或容器内容。因此,可以基于一个以上的分类和/或一个以上的基于参数数据的分类在两个以上可能的描述性数据结构中选择,用于给定的容器和/或容器内容。总而言之,定制容器模型所具有的易于特征化,循环利用存储性能优化的能力和随之而来的从定制容器(如特定的描述性数据结构)转译成通用权限管理应用的透明性是特别有用的。例如,这种定制的描述性数据结构能作为基础来创建定制的,优化显示的容器内容和/或控制信息,从而显著地改善分布式通用权限管理环境的易用性,有效性,透明性和优化性。在该环境中,用户节点能够与不同的描述性数据结构相互作用,自动调节来满足商业的或与描述性数据结构相关的其它权限模型的需求。

一些供应商可能花费相当多的时间设计复杂的容器描述性数据结构来描述他们的容器的总体结构。由于在结构和格式上的这种花费,描述性数据结构常常会在相同或相似的应用中有极大的重利用价值。实体可利用描述性数据结构来确保所创建容器的一致性和高效性。第三方供应商(即除负责创建描述性数据结构的供应商之外的供应商)可使用这些描述性数据结构,如果他们想创建与别的实体兼容的容器的话。例如,一家发行量大的报纸出版商开发了一个描述性数据结构来阅读其报纸,别的小报纸通过采用同样的容器格式与大发行量的报纸使用同样的查看器或其他工具,描述性数据结构拥有版权,可以受到法律和权限管理系统自身的双重保护。例如,它们也可以被自身的容器和相关控制所保护,确保描述性数据结构创建者,和/或发布者,和/或描述性数据结构的其它用户受到公正的权限系统管理,以回报他们创建和/或使用描述性数据结构的努力。

除了前文所述,下文列出了本发明的特点和优势:·完整性约束:描述性数据结构允许供应商通过实现完整性约束保护其内容的完整性。完整性约束为描述与内容有关的规则的完整性提供了途径。

·应用生成:描述性数据结构可被用于生成操纵权限管理结构的软件程序的一个或多个部分。比如,描述性数据结构能作为“指令”驱动数字内容的自动包装程序和/或是象显示优先权和组织(如,顺序和/或规划)之类的数字内容的自动阅读器。

·创建应用的动态用户界面:应用可读取描述性数据结构来产生优化了的界面用于某一特定模型的数据创建、编辑、和/或写作,这些模型包括复杂的内容,诸如文件、音频、视频、交互(如询问)元素。数据形式可能是容器,数据库和/或任何其它数字信息组织,比如任何简单或复杂的文件格式。应用也可通过读取描述性数据结构来学会如何最好地显示用于收集和/或创建内容的界面。

·显示应用的动态用户界面:应用通过读取描述性数据结构来产生显示数据的适当界面。数据可以是容器,数据库或任何其它复杂的文件格式。应用还可通过读取描述性数据结构来学会如何最好地显示界面以提供相应内容。应用还可进一步通过读取描述性数据结构来学会如何管理关于与其它一个或多个应用、代理、计算环境、用户和/或用户节点的实体(包含实体类)等等相互作用的显示功能,这些显示功能包括内容创建和/或打包和/或用户目的显示,以及对相互作用的优化。举例来说,用户界面可能被优化成不同形式在下列用户之间相互作用:美国空军战士对大学社会科学专业教师,基瓦尼俱乐部(美国工商业人士的一个俱乐部)成员对新教徒教堂俱乐部成员,美国公民对沙特阿拉伯公民。显示内容应包括对预期类成员标志以及相关组织的适当显示,或者取消显示某些不适当的信息。

自动识别和定位数据域的能力:全文检索,代理,网络蜘蛛等等有益于也有能力与描述性数据结构的一个或多个区域中包含的信息相互作用,若已知数据文件中的区域包含潜在的令人感兴趣的信息,而且该信息已用预定义的格式提供的话。

在没有数据格式的第一手知识的时候提取所需数据的能力:全文检索,代理,网络蜘蛛等等有益于也有能力与描述性数据结构的一个或多个区域中包含的信息相互作用,若任意复杂性、未知作者的大数据文件不需要特别的知识即可被处理的话。

高效的,人机可读的数据抽象:描述性数据结构可优化成小型、方便、低费用的方式来处理、传送和/或存储。

可重用、可销售——独立于实际数据:描述性数据结构有任意复杂性,因而可能花费大量时间创建并需要特定的专门技术,这赋予了描述性数据结构销售价值。

内容规划的飞行定义和重定义:使用规划工具可以快速反复设计(规划)(包括编辑和修改),这可能比创建同一规划更方便、更低费,何况创建规划可能相当有难度,超出了许多用户的技能。

描述性数据结构属性允许在实际数据中隐藏元特征:因为同一描述性数据结构被创建过程和后创建过程所处理,元数据可放入其打包内容不可获取的描述性数据结构中。是否显示一个特定域的一个例子是“必须”或“隐藏”。

通过描述性数据结构“精灵工具”使设计自动化:以“精灵工具”方式可以使描述性数据结构自身获得进一步自动化。比如说,可设计一个描述性数据结构来帮助定义其它描述性数据结构。定义其它描述性数据结构的描述性数据结构可以代表一本书或杂志的不完整的描述性数据结构。“精灵工具”可提供一系列对话框,显示给用户来填写留空的信息,从而使其成为完整的描述性数据结构。

特定的权限管理体系之外的应用:例如,多形态应用可使用描述性数据结构来决定特定数据的可能化属性和/或需求,比如何种视觉和感觉应显示给用户。如果描述性数据结构包含一个字处理文档,多形态应用程序能创建一个适合显示和编辑该文档的界面,如果描述性数据结构包含许多可执行程序,多形态应用程序可能会询问用户文件应被存放在何处。

伞应用程序能够处理描述性数据结构并代表未知文件类型和过程:伞(或多形态)应用程序能够作为特定数据文件操作。这个伞应用程序可以提取并处理它关心的数据文件中的事情,尽管它忽略或代表(用户和/或价值链伙伴(如分布者)来控制这些项目的显示)那些它不理解的事情。

·实时翻译:有可能实时的翻译描述性数据结构,实质性地增加其高效性和及时性。

·实时自适应性:通过使用描述性数据结构系统能适应实时到达的动态数据。

·自动转换能力:描述性数据结构可用于自动的从一种格式转换成另一种格式。

·简化系统设计:使用描述性数据结构可以显著减少对附加的“打包器”应用编程接口(API)或别的容器创建过程安全包装设计的需要。这种“打包器”API需要控制或限制容器创建过程来确保所有创建的容器是相互兼容的,因而限制了灵活性和定制的能力。

·面向对象模板编程环境:通过高层用户界面,优先权和相关参数数据说明可以选择使用显示相关、相互作用相关、权限相关的概念对象,这使创建诸如建构和显示提示信息之类的特定模板范畴变得十分容易。

·模板语言和通过语言元素的使用和这种语言的翻译支持编程的翻译器的使用:Ginter el.al.描述的节点通过使用语言元素和该语言的翻译器支持编程。该语言元素包括显示描述、权限、程序相互作用元素、优先权、和参数数据。

附图的简要说明本发明的实施例的特点和优势通过结合下述附图的详细描述可获得更好且更完整的效果:

图1A和1B显示内容容器实例。

图2A和2B显示与描述性数据结构相关的内容容器的实例。

图3显示描述性数据结构创建和使用过程的实施例。

图4显示创建和使用过程的另一实施例。

图5显示使用描述性数据结构的实施例系统体系。

图5A显示由图5系统完成的实施例过程。

图6显示等级式描述性数据结构组织。

图6A显示描述性数据结构如何与原子传送数据一起使用的实施例。

图7显示描述性数据结构格式实施例。

图8显示描述性数据结构创建图形界面实施例。

图9显示跟踪描述性数据结构权限管理相关数据的实施例过程。

图10A显示使用描述性数据结构提供环境之间的互操作性的实施例。

图10B进一步详细描述图10A所示描述性数据结构的组织方式。

本发明的详细描述图2A、2B显示图1A、1B中的实例容器100a,100c及其相关的机器可读描述性数据结构200和200’。参看图2A,描述性数据结构200与内容容器100a相关联,该描述性数据结构200可用于定义容器100a的内容(以及特定的其它特征)。在所示例子中,描述性数据结构200定义了许多栏目的报纸风格内容102,比如标题(描述符202a)、发行日期(描述符202b)、重要新闻(描述符202c)、爆炸性新闻(描述符202d)、图片(描述符202e)、广告(描述符202f)和栏目(描述符202g)。

在本例中,描述性数据结构定义202并未包括或指定报纸102的相应区域的特定内容,而是更抽象的定义了报纸风格出版所可能使用的一般格式。例如,图2A实例描述性数据结构标题定义202a并未指定某一特定标题(如:“美国佬赢了三角旗!”),而是定义了该标题信息驻留在容器数据结构100a(以及其它特征)中的位置。(比如逻辑或其它偏移地址)。因为描述性数据结构200通用于一类或一族报纸风格内容出版,它可以被重新利用。举例说明,每份按日发行的报纸可创建使用相关的同一描述性数据结构200。通过抽象的定义数据格式和报纸风格内容102的其它特征,描述性数据结构200允许方便的创建、使用和操纵报纸风格内容102。

参照图2B,另一不同的描述性数据结构200’可用于定义其它类型的内容出版物106,比如,时尚杂志,该内容类的描述性数据结构200’反应了一种与图2A的描述性数据结构200不同的格式(或可能的其它特征)。举例而言,既然典型的时尚杂志不包括标题或爆炸性新闻,实例描述性数据结构200’就不定义这种格式。相反,定义一类时尚杂志内容的描述性数据结构200’可能定义发行日期(描述符204a),杂志名(描述符204b),摄影者姓名(描述符204c)以及相关艺术设计(描述符204d)。

图2A和2B举例说明了描述性数据结构200、200’在内容对象容器100a、100c以及相关内容102、106中传递。例如,描述性数据结构200可被独立的在其自己容器中传送并用相应的规则来控制其访问和/或使用。另外,描述性数据结构200可被存储于库中,并在所需基础上按照特定需求的不同而以安全或不安全的形式传送。

除此之外,尽管图2A和2B是印刷出版内容的实例,描述性数据结构200的应用却并不受此限制。相反,描述性数据结构200能被用于定义包括如下所列的大量不同类型的数字信息的格式和/或其它特征。

·图象·声音·视频·计算机程序·方法·可执行程序·翻译器·货币对象·货币对象的货币容器·规则·任意计算机输入·任意计算机输出·其他描述性数据结构

·任何其他信息创建和使用描述性数据结构的实施例过程图3显示创建和使用描述性数据结构200的实例过程。在本例中,规划工具300被用于创建描述性数据结构200。该规划工具300可以是,例如,与人通过图形用户界面交互的软件控制过程。它生成的结果描述性数据结构200(可被存储于大容量存储设备或别的存储器上)就能方便地用于任何数量的别的过程来创建或解释所存储的数据。比如说,描述性数据结构可被用于创建过程302。创建过程302读取描述性数据结构并且作为响应,用预先定义的格式创建输出文件400,例如,与通过描述性数据结构200描述的格式相应的容器100。查看过程304使用描述性数据结构200在输出文件400中定位重要项目并加以显示。浏览过程306使用描述性数据结构200在所存储的输出文件400中定位诸如关键字或别的可搜寻文本之类的项目。描述性数据结构200提供完整性约束或规则来保护内容使用和/或访问期间的相应内容的完整性。

图4给出了描述性数据结构创建和使用过程的更详细的例子。在本例中,规划工具300通过图形用户界面312接受用户输入310。规划工具300的输出可能是一个文本文件形式的描述性数据结构200。安全打包过程302a接受容器特定数据作为输入,它还可能接受描述性数据结构200作为只读输入。打包器302a把容器特定数据314包装入安全容器100。它也可能在有要求的情况下把描述性数据结构200包装入同一容器100。查看器304借助描述性数据结构200并根据规则316可查看数据314。应用于数据314和/或描述性数据结构200的规则316也被打包进入该容器。

使用描述性数据结构的实施例体系图5显示了适合于使用描述性数据结构200的实例安全系统体系。在本例中,位于抗干扰屏蔽502中的电子设备500就是上文引用的Ginter et al.专利说明所描述的那类设备。电子设备500包含一个应用编程接口(API)504。一个或多个应用506通过API504与电子设备500通讯。在有些情况下,应用506可以在安全的电子设备500中执行。每个应用506都包括描述性数据结构解释程序508。在使用时,电子设备500访问安全容器100并根据规则316访问描述性数据结构200及其包含的内容102,并且提供内容到应用506。在应用506中的解释程序508可依次地读取和使用描述性数据结构200。除此之外,应用506可以是多形态的,它可以表现出至少部分由描述性数据结构200所定义的特性或行为。

图5A详细显示图5中实例安全系统体系实现过程的例子。在本例中,应用506要求设备500从容器100中提取描述性数据结构200(如方框550所示)。电子设备500读取描述性数据结构200,并且根据相应规则316所指定的条件,把描述性数据结构提供给应用506(如方框552所示)。应用506要求其解释程序508解释描述性数据结构200(方框554)。解释程序508告诉应用506描述性数据结构200所表达之意(方框556)。应用506从解释程序508提取或获得其所需的描述性数据结构信息(方框558)。例如,假设应用506希望显示如图2A所示报纸风格内容的“标题”信息,应用506就要求解释程序508给它提供信息帮助其定位、阅读、格式化和/或显示此“标题”信息。

另举一例,解释程序508可给应用506提供相应于报纸风格内容的“标题”信息的元素识别码(如十六进制数或其它识别符)(方框558)。然后应用506通过API504提供给电子设备500适当的内容信息来要求电子设备500回馈给它容器100中的“标题”(或其它)内容信息102(方框560)。例如,应用506把解释程序508提供的元素识别码传递给电子设备500。即使应用506没有关于容器100的直接知识(可能它只能通过由设备500提供的安全VDE节点访问容器100),解释程序508(通过查看描述性数据结构200)可以告诉应用506足够的信息以便它能够知道如何从电子设备500处请求所需的信息。

电子设备访问容器100中的信息102,并传送(根据容器内的规则316)所请求的信息给应用506(方框562),而后,应用506至少部分基于解释程序508所告诉它的关于内容的信息来使用电子设备500提供的信息(方框564)。比如,描述性数据结构200可能提供了关于应用506该如何处理信息102的特征。描述性数据结构200能够告诉应用506总是显示某一特定字段(如,作者或版权字段)而总不显示别的信息(如应该对大多数用户隐藏的信息)。描述性数据结构200也能提供完整表述或“可视化”信息以便信息供应商能够在信息被显示或提交时控制信息的视觉和感觉。描述性数据结构200可用元数据的形式提供对其它特征的编码,该元数据也能在创建、使用和操纵容器100过程中被应用506使用。描述性数据结构200可被用于生成软件程序来操纵权限管理结构。比如,描述性数据结构200能作为“指令”来驱动数字信息的自动包装应用或数字内容的自动阅读器。

描述性数据结构提供的描述实施例图6举例说明了描述性数据结构200如何描述和定义任何复杂度的信息结构,比如级联式容器100。在该例中,容器100包括特性600(1),600(2)。特性600(1)包括n个属性602(1),602(2),…602(n)。特性600(2)包括任意数目的属性604(1),604(2)…它还包括一个附加特性606。依次地,特性606也有自己的属性608(1),608(2)…相关的描述性数据结构可被组织成树状结构列表250提供一个递推结构来反映容器100内容本身的递推结构。例如,列表250包括分别相应于特性600(1),600(2)的特性描述符252(1)。252(2)构成的特性分支。依次地,每个特性描述符252又以同样的递推、级联式设计包含属性列表254或者可能包含附加特性描述符256以反映实例内容容器结构。描述性数据结构200可用于描述任意复杂度,任意维数(1到n)的级联式或非级联式数据结构。

图6A显示描述性数据结构200可被用于连接任何类型的信息诸如定义“原子交易”(如房地产交易)那样的事件或方法。在图6A所示例子中,容器100包括一个或多个与定义房地产交易的一系列“事件”700相关的描述性数据结构200及其相应控制集合316。比如,描述性数据结构200可能包括许多与不同的交易“事件”相关的不同的项200A-200N(如“提交”,“接受”,“买/卖”,“检查”,“抵押”等)。项200A-200N定义了事件在容器100中的位置。项200A-200N也可包括元数据以提供相应于事件的附加特征(如关于事件的特定信息应如何显示)。

描述性数据结构格式的实施例图7用一个例子说明描述性数据结构是如何格式化的。如上所述,描述性数据结构200可能包含列表,比如链接表。每个表项260(1),260(2)可能包括如下的一系列数据字段:·对象名称字段262·一个或多个元数据字段264(它可能是描述性数据结构的一部分和/或被描述性数据结构引用)·定位信息266(它帮助识别容器数据结构100的相应信息)

对象名称字段262可能包含相应于(或描述了)一类信息的常数。比如,对象名称字段262可作为内容或数据的“句柄”;它可以是对内容或数据的间接引用;它可被用于寻找内容或数据。以下是对象名称的实例:通用目的对象名称数字字符串日期标题描述作者供应商多用途的网际邮件扩充协议(MIME)类型版本统一资源定位符(URL)电子邮件新组文件名关键字创建日期修改日期最后访问日期本地平台大小内容预览草图(thumbnail)文本作品说明未知模板列表名称容器书籍风格对象名称截止日期标题页序言介绍摘要目录表章章号索引电子邮件风格对象名称从(发信人)到(收信人)抄送主题消息主体封装报纸风格对象名称发行日期文章栏目封面故事重要故事爆炸性新闻广告节社论描述性数据结构200可能包括或引用任何类型的数据或元数据。在本例中,描述性数据结构200用对象名称字段262来指向或引用元数据。元数据可定义与对象名称相关的特定特征。例如,元数据可能在创建和/或使用过程中施加完整性或别的约束(如,“当你创建对象时,你需提供某某信息”,或者“当你显示对象时,你需显示某某信息”),元数据264可进一步描述或限制相应的对象名称。

在一个例子中,描述性数据结构200使用对象名称262引用存储在其它地方如容器100中的元数据。该引用技术有许多优势,比如,在与描述性数据结构200分离的安全容器100中存储元数据是有用的,这种情形的出现是因为人们希望使描述性数据结构方便的访问外部应用,但又同时保护相关元数据。例如,我们考虑一个处理网络蜘蛛查询的例子,网络蜘蛛可能询问描述性数据结构200某一特定的对象名称262,如果对象名称找到了,那么网络蜘蛛会请求相应的元数据,网络蜘蛛可以方便地访问元数据,但只能在适当的条件下访问来自容器100的相关元数据。该条件由基于相关规则316的相应安全电子设备500控制。其另一个优势是,把元数据存储在与描述性数据结构200分离的地方,可允许同一描述性数据结构用于不同环境中的不同元数据。假设描述性数据结构200包含对象名称,如“关键字“。当描述性数据结构200与容器100A相关联时,描述性数据结构对象名称”关键字“引用容器100A中的关键字元数据。然而,如果该同一描述性数据结构200后来又关联(如打包)到一个不同的容器100c,那么描述性数据结构对象名称”关键字“就引用容器100B的关键字数据。

尽管人们更喜欢用对象名称262来引用存储于其它地方的元数据,然而,仍然有别的实例需要在描述性数据结构200中清楚地包含元数据,为说明起见,图7所示实例描述性数据结构200既包含了元数据字段264,又使用对象名称262引用位于容器100中的元数据,任一技术都可使用。

因此,描述性数据结构200允许价值链参加者通过实现完整性约束说明保护内容的完整性。描述性数据结构200完整性约束提供了一种方式来描述关于内容的规则。比如,描述性数据结构200可以指定报纸的一篇文章在其标题未被查看到时,其内容不能被查看,相应的完整性约束可表达成规则“如果有文章,那么必须有标题”。另举一例,作为杂志一部分的照片和其说明必需同进同出,描述性数据结构200提供的完整性约束规则可能是“不要提供不带相应说明的照片”。

描述性数据结构200完整性约束为价值链参与者提供了一个工具来保护描述性数据结构200的使用,确保特定的描述性数据结构表达的内容包含了所有必要的组件。这正是描述性数据结构的表现。它为供应商提供了建立规范并增加使用的标准化的途径,有许多可能的完整性约束,下面仅举几例,·必须:a是内容的必须部分·可选:a是内容的可选组件·必需关系:如果a存在,那么b也要存在,或者,如果a提交给b,那么c和d也必须提交,相反的,如果b不存在,那么a也不能存在,此类关系是1:m(m>0)。

·可选关系:如果a存在,b可以存在也可以不存在。如果b存在,那么授权a存在。此类关系是1:n(n>=0)·重复:a必须发生n次(n>1)。此处可指定取值范围等。

·其它规则和/或需求·元数据264创建描述性数据结构的图形界面的实施例图8显示了描述性数据结构创建图形用户界面312的事例。在本例中,图形用户界面312显示给用户对象名称。另外,图形用户界面312提供选项用于指定相关元数据264,如图8所示选项可以是:·“构筑类型”元数据(构筑对象时,该信息是必需的,构筑对象时,对象创建工具总是或永不提示该信息)·显示元数据(如:总是显示相关信息,如版权提醒,作者名之类,或者总是或永不提示该信息。)

·规划“暗示”和字段定义(例如:文本,文本块,整型,文件,图片或别的数据类型)元数据描述并不仅限上述例子,其它元数据特征和属性也可以使用。

使用描述性数据结构的实施例过程图9举出一个描述性数据结构实例设计,该设计使用了在美国专利申请08/699,712(上文引用)中描述的基础结构,图9所示的设计在许多不同环境中都可使用。例如,描述性数据结构200的供应商600想知道哪种描述性数据结构200是其消费者最喜欢的,以便他/她能够改善其产品的质量。或者,供应商600可能要求消费者在单用户方式或其它基础上使用描述性数据结构200。在其它例子中,一些描述性数据结构200或描述性数据结构200类可能仅限授权用户或授权用户类使用。

如图9所示,描述性数据结构供应商600传送描述性数据结构200和相应控制集316到价值链参与者602。控制316提供规则及其结果来控制或影响价值链参与者602对描述性数据结构200的使用或其它操作。控制316和描述性数据结构200可打包入容器100。价值链参与者602可以从描述性数据结构供应商600处直接获得包含描述性数据结构200的容器100;另一情形是,供应商把它提供给权限许可清查屋,然后参与者602从清查屋(或其它地方)获得它(参见图中容器100B)。

价值链参与者602使用描述性数据结构200来建立内容102,参与者602把内容102和相关控制316A打包入容器100A。如果它愿意的话,参与者602可以把描述性数据结构200及其相关控制316a,316b以及内容102包入同一容器,或者基于供应商600和/或权限许可清查屋604独立的传送描述性数据结构及其控制给最终用户606。

最终用户606(1)…606(n)结合内容102并根据控制316来使用描述性数据结构200(比如读取,浏览或访问容器内容)。控制316,316a要求用户设备提供使用数据610到使用清查屋612,使用清查屋612把访问和/或使用描述性数据结构200的使用数据610A提供给描述性数据结构供应商600,并把访问和/或使用内容102的使用数据610B独立的提供给价值链参与者602。

描述性数据结构用于获得权限管理环境之间的一定程度的互操作性本发明提供的描述性数据结构200可在源权限管理环境和目标权限管理环境之间提供一定程度的互操作性,和/或提供桥梁使权限管理环境和其外部世界之间获得至少一定程度的互操作性。

不同的权限管理环境在定义有关对象的权限时可能有巨大的不兼容机制。描述性数据结构200提供了至少部分桥梁来获得一定程度的兼容性和互操作性。比如,供应商在源权限管理环境中定义对象时创建的描述性数据结构可被用于一个或多个目标权限管理环境的过程中。对象创建者或别的供应商可以在描述性数据结构200中指定特定规则、完整性约束和/或其他特征,当它进入目标权限管理环境之后,即可应用于对象,目标权限管理环境可根据它对源环境的信任程度有选择地增强这些规则、约束和/或其他特征。例如,从一个应用X.12安全性的EDI系统导入的对象可能比从别的具有较少(或没有)安全性的环境中导入的对象更值得信任。

另举一例,在任何权限管理环境之外创建对象的供应商可创建描述性数据结构200以便使用,如果该对象导入一个或多个权限管理环境的话。目标权限管理环境可利用描述性数据结构有效的理解和处理对象。进而言之,在权限管理环境中创建的描述性数据结构可被导出到该环境之外的一个或多个应用中,并帮助这些应用来解释导出的内容或其他信息。

图10A举例说明了描述性数据结构200如何用于提供互操作性。在图10A所示例子中,描述性数据结构创建工具800创建了包含一个或多个目标数据块801的描述性数据结构200。描述性数据结构创建工具800可能基于和/或包含规划工具300的某些或全部能力,除此之外,还提供互操作的能力。另一种情况是,描述性数据结构创建工具800不包括规划工具300的任何能力,而是单独为互操作目的创建描述性数据结构200。描述性数据结构创建工具800可以是带有图形用户界面的应用程序,仅当用户配制时才显示用户界面的后台进程,操作系统的一部分,计算机固件的一部分,在系统之间(如公用网络和私有网络,两个或多个私有网络,局部网和广域网等等)作为部分或全部“网关”而独立运作的服务器进程,或者是任何其它希望的实现或整合。

目标数据块801提供信息用于提供与特定目标环境850之间的互操作性。在某种情况下,单一的描述性数据结构200通过包含相应于不同目标环境850(1)…850(n)的n个目标数据块801(1)…801(n)来提供与n个不同目标环境850的互操作性。

在本例中,每个目标数据块801包含规则(控制)信息。不同的目标数据块801为不同的目标环境850提供不同的规则信息,可以是相关目标环境850中的应用程序功能856的有关操作(事件)和/或结果,如下所例:·允许和/或必需操作·允许和/或必需操作的固有操作和/或扩展操作

·执行允许和/或必需操作的结果如果需要,目标数据块801也可包括附加信息来发出指令给位于相应目标环境850中的描述性数据结构分析程序852和/或解释程序854。

图10B显示一个详细例子来说明在描述性数据结构200中目标信息的组织方式。在该例中,描述性数据结构创建工具800创建一个描述性数据结构头805,该描述性数据结构头805引用一个或多个目标记录头807。如图所示,描述性数据结构头805可能包括如下字段:“目标号”字段809用来指示描述性数据结构200中的目标数据块801的编号,“对第一个目标数据区域的偏移”字段811用来提供描述性数据结构200中第一个目标数据块801(1)的位置,“源消息”字段812A用以识别源环境,可选的“创建者封条”字段812B可用于验证描述性数据结构200的完整性和正当性。″源消息″字段812A(可选)包括“源ID”(用于帮助验证描述性数据结构200的源环境)和可选的“源封条”(可以出现也可以不出现在“源消息”字段中)。描述性数据结构200中的每个目标数据块801的开头是一个目标记录头807,它包括“目标ID”字段813,“长度”字段815,“对下一个目标数据区域的偏移”字段817,可选的“创建者封条”字段819,以及可选的“源消息”字段821。“目标ID”字段813指定唯一的识别号或识别值相应于关联的目标数据块801和/或识别扩展的目标环境。“长度”字段815指明目标数据块801的长度,“偏移”字段817指明描述性数据结构200中下一个目标数据块801的(相对或绝对)位置(对最后一个目标数据块而言,该字段取空值)。

可选的“创建者封条”字段812B,819(以及“源封条”)可以是密码封条用于分别确保描述性数据结构200和目标记录801自创建以来未被改变,并且也可识别出描述性数据结构200的创建者和/或源。可选的源消息812C和821可提供信息帮助确保目标环境知道哪个源环境创建了描述性数据结构200。

重新参照图10A,描述性数据结构创建工具800在创建描述性数据结构200的过程中,可使用合适的加密过程来加密封装描述性数据结构200及每个目标数据块801以使其完整。加密过程的一个例子是首先对数据运行加密哈希(杂凑)函数(如SHA,MD5等),然后用不对称加密系统(如RSA,El Gamal等)所关联的描述性数据结构创建者的私钥加密结果哈希值。如果使用了封装,描述性数据结构创建者应确保公钥以及加密私钥被认证(如用认证授权的私钥加密)并且能让目标环境可以利用它来验证封装(如,通过在描述性数据结构200中包含认证并在公用网络上发行认证)。

如果使用了源消息812C,821,它们应提供源环境的代表性信息以便帮助目标环境识别源环境,也能进一步帮助确认描述性数据结构200确实是由源环境所创建(因而它能扩展到信任源环境的环境中)。例如,源环境有一个受保护处理环境(PPE),其形式可参见上文引用的Ginter et al.专利申请的描述。该种受保护处理环境有可获取的密钥(如公钥/私钥对中的私钥)用于加密描述性数据结构头805或目标数据块头807中合适的密码哈希。在本例中,目标环境需要使用信任技术(如传递受信认证机关签发的认证)来获得相应的密钥(如公钥/私钥对中的公钥)以便评估源消息。另一种情形是,描述性数据结构创建工具800在被制造时就装备有密钥,人们可使用该密钥而不是来自受保护处理环境的密钥,尽管通常该种技术更易于被有经验的计算机黑客所破解从而一定程度上不易被目标环境所信任。

另外(如果加密技术不合适或并不需要),源消息可以包含一个相应于源环境的唯一的识别符。

描述性数据结构创建工具800(见图10A)把结果描述性数据结构200和相应的对象830一起打包入安全容器100。另一种情形是,描述性数据结构创建工具800把描述性数据结构200嵌入或关联到对象830,‘对象830’提供方法把描述性数据结构发行给目标环境分析程序852。描述性数据结构200及其关联的对象830就可传送到一个或多个目标环境850以供处理。

目标环境分析程序852(和/或解释程序854)可以是应用程序的一部分,操作系统的一部分,或者是应用程序和/或操作系统所使用或关联的实用程序的一部分。目标环境分析程序852接受描述性数据结构200并分析描述性数据结构200来定位相应于目标环境850(k)的目标数据块801(k)。分析程序852而后根据相应的目标数据块801决定目标数据块包含的规则。分析程序852能够很好的理解描述性数据结构200的结构从而(用如图10B所示的头信息)发现其相应的适当目标数据块801,分析程序也能够理解目标数据块中的规则。目标环境分析程序852并不需要理解任何附加性的规则316,后者可能被打包入容器100或与对象830一起传送;但如果需要,分析程序可以使用任何该类附加规则(例如,当它发现描述性数据结构200中没有相应于特定目标环境850的目标数据块801时,它能够通过理解其它目标数据块801(其规则基于出版说明和/或标准)来了解特定目标环境850)。

目标环境分析程序852可以从目标数据块801获得实用的目标规则,并提供这些规则给应用程序函数856。应用程序函数856可定义任意有关于对象830的操作,举例如下:·剪切·拷贝

·打印·粘贴·保存·改变·删除·任何其它操作分析程序852提供的目标规则可以被用于许可、请求和/或阻止特定操作;执行特定操作的扩展定义(如限制拷贝数目,定义扩展剪切,应用于剪切信息的后续使用的规则等);定义执行特定操作的结果(例如,要求用户打印、使用和/或访问全部或部分对象830,维护执行该类操作的时间记录和/或数量记录).

另一方面,分析程序852也将其从目标数据块801中获得的部分或全部规则提供给其它设计以应用这些规则,比如“其它的权限管理函数”块858。块858可提供任何类型的权限管理函数。如果需要让应用程序函数856和/或“其它的权限管理函数”块858理解规则,可使用解释程序854。在某种情况下,解释程序854可用于进一步使获自目标数据块801的规则信息更加精细化、参数化和/或安全,所以它们与“其它的权限管理函数”块858更加兼容甚至完全兼容。

上文结合实用的和现存的具体实施例描述了一个有用的数据结构定义方法和设计。本发明并不仅限于这些实例,相反地,它包含了定义于权利要求中的各种变化和等值物,并体现在权利要求的精神中。

Claims (22)

1.一种使用描述性数据结构的方法,在第一地址处按第一数据处理安排,所述方法包括:在所述第一数据处理安排的通讯端口从所述第一地址的远程地址接收第一安全容器,所述第一安全容器至少具有(a)内容,以及(b)至少一种规则,该规则被设计用于至少部分地支配所述内容的至少一次使用或存取,所述支配至少包括将某些与所述使用或存取相关的信息临时地存储起来的要求;在所述通讯端口从所述第一地址的远程地址接收第二安全容器,所述第二安全容器至少具有(a)一种描述性数据结构,包括至少部分地描述或代表所述第一安全容器内容的组织的至少一方面的信息,以及(b)至少一种规则,该规则被设计用于至少部分地支配所述描述性数据结构的至少一次使用或存取;使用所述第二容器规则以存取所述描述性数据结构的至少一部分;以及至少在一次使用所述第一安全容器内容的处理中,使用所述描述性数据结构部分;其中,所述描述性数据结构部分的使用还包括使用所述组织信息,用于识别所述第一安全容器内容的指定部分;所述第一数据处理安排还包括具有描述性数据结构解释程序的第一计算机程序;以及使用所述描述性数据部分的步骤包括促成该使用的所述第一计算机程序。
2.根据权利要求1所述的方法,其中:所述第一计算机程序包括一个浏览器,而且使用所述描述性数据结构部分的步骤还包括:所述浏览器使用所述描述性数据结构用于识别并定位所述第一安全容器的内容部分;所述浏览器使所述定位后的第一安全容器内容部分被显示出来。
3.根据权利要求2所述的方法,其中:所述浏览器使用所述描述性数据结构用于识别并定位所述第一安全容器内容部分的步骤还包括,所述浏览器从所述描述性数据结构接收单元标识符,所述单元标识符识别所述第一安全容器内容部分;以及所述浏览器显示所述定位后的第一安全容器内容部分的步骤还包括,所述浏览器存取所述使用所述单元标识符的第一安全容器内容部分。
4.根据权利要求3所述的方法,还包括:所述识别完成后,至少使用一种所述第一安全容器的规则以存取所述标识后的第一安全容器内容部分。
5.根据权利要求4所述的方法,还包括:在所述通讯端口接收第三安全容器,所述第三安全容器包括(1)与所述描述性数据结构相关的元数据;以及(2)至少一种被设计用于至少部分地支配所述元数据结构的一次使用或存取的规则;以及使用所述描述性数据结构的所述步骤还包括:在所述描述性数据结构中,将引用存取到元数据;使用所述第三容器的至少一种规则以存取所述元数据的至少一部分;以及在与所述第三安全容器内容的使用相关的使用所述描述性数据结构的处理中使用所述元数据。
6.根据权利要求5所述的方法,其中:使用所述元数据的步骤包括,使用所述元数据中的信息,用于至少部分地决定所述第一安全容器内容的一部分是否应被显示给用户。
7.根据权利要求6所述的方法,其中所述元数据的使用包括:如果一些或所有所述第一安全容器内容被显示出来,元数据包括指定那些被指定信息必须被显示的信息;使用所述元数据的步骤包括显示被指定信息的步骤。
8.根据权利要求7所述的方法,其中:所述指定信息包括标识所述第一安全容器内容部分的至少一个所有者或创建者的信息。
9.根据权利要求5所述的方法,其中:从第二数据处理安排接收所述第一安全容器;以及从第三数据处理安排接收所述第二安全容器和第三安全容器;所述第二数据处理安排和所述第三数据处理安排被定位在彼此分离之处,且所述第二数据处理安排和所述第三数据处理安排的地址都与所述第一数据处理安排被定位的地址不同。
10.一种分布式数据处理装置,包括:第一数据处理装置包括:一个中央处理器;存储描述性数据结构的第一存储器,所述描述性数据结构包括:在安全容器中与第一单元组织有关的信息,所述信息包括:在所述安全容器中与所述单元组织有关的信息;以及,在所述安全容器中与至少一些所述单元的地址有关的信息;通讯装置,所述描述性数据结构可以通过该通讯装置和与所述第一数据处理装置不同的数据处理装置进行通讯;具有与所述第一数据处理装置的地址不同地址的第二数据处理装置,所述第二数据处理装置包括:一个中央处理器;一个第二存储器包括:第一安全容器至少包括:至少部分地根据所述描述性数据结构具有的信息构成的数据单元;以及至少一种规则,该规则被用于至少部分地支配所述数据单元的存取或使用的至少一方面;至少有一种所述规则需要这样的信息,即至少一种所述数据单元的至少一次使用可以至少被临时记录下来;以及至少在一次操作中,在所述第一安全容器或所述第一安全容器的内容上,至少有一段计算机程序被设计用于所述描述性数据结构的一部分;所述使用包括至少使用与在所述第一安全容器中识别和/或定位至少一个所述单元的单元组织相关的所述信息;通讯装置,所述第二数据处理装置可以通过该通讯装置接收所述描述性数据结构或其副本的至少一部分。
11.根据权利要求10所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中:所述应用包括一浏览器,该浏览器使用所述与单元组织信息有关的信息,在所述第一安全容器中至少部分地控制来自所述安全容器的至少部分信息的显示。
12.根据权利要求10所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中:所述计算机程序被集成到一个操作系统中。
13.根据权利要求12所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中:所述操作系统与微软视窗操作系统的至少一种版本相兼容。
14.根据权利要求10所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中:所述描述性数据结构包括在第二安全容器中;所述第二安全容器至少包括:所述描述性数据结构;以及至少一种规则,该规则至少部分地支配所述描述性数据结构的至少一部分的至少一次使用。
15.根据权利要求14所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中:所述计算机程序包括用于所述第二容器规则以支配所述描述性数据结构的所述计算机程序的使用的至少一方面的装置。
16.根据权利要求15所述的分布式数据处理装置,还包括:与所述第一安全容器相关的元数据。
17.根据权利要求16所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中所述元数据被存储在所述第二安全容器中。
18.根据权利要求16所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中所述元数据被存储在第三安全容器中。
19.根据权利要求18所述的分布式数据处理装置,还包括:第三数据处理设备,所述第三数据处理设备包括:一个中央处理器;一个第三存储器,所述第三存储器包括:一个包括所述元数据的第三安全容器;至少一种规则,用于至少部分地支配所述元数据的存取或使用的至少一方面;以及通讯装置,所述第三数据处理装置可以通过该通讯装置使所述第三安全容器,或所述第三安全容器的副本与所述第二数据处理装置进行通讯。
20.根据权利要求10所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中:所述规则包括至少一种至少部分地控制审计处理的至少一方面的规则。
21.根据权利要求10所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中:所述规则包括至少一种至少部分地控制预算处理的至少一方面的规则。
22.根据权利要求10所述的分布式数据处理装置,其中:所述第二数据处理装置包括一个安全电子设备。
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