Java User Interface

Secure and Accessible

By using Java rather than relying on a Web browser, the user interface can be made much more powerful while being just as easy to run on your computer. OCHRE is similar in this respect to sophisticated Internet applications such as Google Earth, which do not run in a Web browser but install specialized software on the user’s computer.

OCHRE employs the "Java Web Start" mechanism to launch the user interface from an ordinary Web link. After OCHRE has been started once by means of such a link, a desktop icon will be placed on your computer to make it easy to start it again without having to go to a Web page. Every time OCHRE is started, it checks to make sure that the latest version of the user interface is installed on your computer. If not, an updated version of the Java software will be downloaded and installed automatically.

The OCHRE user interface running on your computer communicates with a central XML database server via the Internet, permitting you to enter data from your own project and also to view and query data from other projects that have made their data visible to outsiders. OCHRE uses the XML Query Language (XQuery) to search and manipulate the data stored in the central database. The major database vendors (e.g., IBM and Oracle) now fully support XQuery for use with the semistructured XML data model, in addition to supporting the  Structured Query Language (SQL) for use with the relational data model. XQuery—and the XML data model in general—is much better than SQL for working with hierarchical, semistructured data of the kind that is common in cultural heritage research.