Ex parte OLSON et al. - Page 2

               Appeal No. 1996-0331                                                                                               
               Application 08/239,942                                                                                             


                      The subject matter on appeal is directed to the field of database systems, and in particular, to a          

               method of altering an existing data structure in a database system using a change definition language              

               (CDL) (specification, page 2).  A CDL is a form of structured query language (SQL), which is a high-               

               level programming language used to access and define data tables, objects, and indexes of the                      

               database.  Database software typically includes a catalog of definitions for defining the tables and               

               indexes.  As indicated in the specification at page 3, it is common that a database system frequently              

               needs to be updated, debugged, or expanded.  Appellants have recognized (see specification, page 4)                

               that a problem exists in the prior art that database definitions used by design and development people             

               are different from those used by production-level programmers.  To solve this problem, of passing                  

               changes from design and development to production and visa versa, appellants provide a CDL which                   

               uses a SQL to allow changes to be made to existing definitions at all phases of the development and                

               production cycle (see specification, page 5).  In general, appellants’ invention recited in independent            

               claims 1 and 31 on appeal seeks to provide a method of altering an existing data structure in a database           

               system which uses a change definition language based on a structured query language.  As further                   

               discussed, infra, we find that the applied reference to Hawkins fails to teach or suggest at least this            


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