All About ArborWay

ArborWay Labs is deeply committed to advancing retrieval technology. So far, through rigorous research and development, we have developed an innovative technology that automates database application development. We believe that this breakthrough will transform database technology from the Information Age to the Knowledge Age.

ArborWay adds value to the database by enabling users to browse and explore its data contents, so they can pinpoint the information they need on their own.  Additional advantages are seen in its ability to introduce real-time marketing capabilities. These capabilities redefine retrieval technology expectations and provide an empirical basis for determining a return on investment.

Some Background Information

The ArborWay Project started in 1992 when Paul Zellweger was developing database applications for end-user scientists in Boston’s Longwood medical area and its biotechnology industry. Knowledge workers, in this multidisciplinary setting, all seemed to run into the same problem — how do you find something in the database when multiple names or terms refer to the same thing?  This question shed a new light on an age-old information retrieval problem. What role did word usage play into database retrieval?

Understanding How Words Are Used

Individual researchers came from different academic disciplines and subspecialties. Each group had their own background and training. In this work setting, problems with jargon were subtle.  But on the computer, they became a major obstacle. Specific word usage could only be understood within a larger context.

In a nutshell, the same word or term could mean different things to different disciplines. To make matters worse, it seems each discipline coined their own terms to identify the same thing. To avoid confusion, the computer software had to be programmed to recognize these differences. Yet conventional access methods, all based on word matching, were never intended to do this.  And the retrieval technologies that could make these distinctions were simply not practical for everyday database retrieval.

The Emergence of A New Technology

To solve this problem, Paul Zellweger invented a new data structure called the open hierarchical data structure (OHDS). It could capture the way structured information is organized, and it could represent how equivalent words and terms can be used to refer to the same thing. Its hierarchical organization creates sets of data and data relationships that link downward to information at the end of a path. This new approach not only provided a comprehensive way to represent how information in the database is organized, it organized menu data for ArborWay’s content menu.

ArborWay’s first patent on the open hierarchical data structure was filed in 1994 and issued in May 1997. Since then, 12 additional patents have been issued, and more are pending. ArborWay continues to develop this pioneering technology in new innovative directions. This past month, a patent for a data relation in the relational database was allowed on April 3, 2017 (U.S. Patent 13/033,298).  This data relation is called the “Aleph” and it is at the foundation of our new automated relative technology ART Studio.