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DARS — Database Access and Retrieval System

The Database Access and Retrieval System (DARS) is a macOS application that can perform natural language lookups on any SQLite database. A video of it in action is available here: https://youtu.be/yM43Q41spZA

DARS was an experimental project written in 2012 and is no longer being updated.

Usage

Building and Installation

  1. Download and unzip the project.
  2. Open Chemistry/DARS.m, and change the file path to point to vocabulary.db, which was included in the zip file. vocabulary.db is empty, and can easily be created using the command sqlite3 test.db ""
  3. Open the Xcode project.
  4. Build and run.

Creating Database Adaptors

Adaptors are required to give DARS the natural language names of the tables and columns in your database. They're JSON files containing a dictionary.

  1. Create JSON file for the adaptor, and create a dictionary.

  2. Use the code below as a template:

    {
        "DARS_file_contents": "DARS.database.adaptor",
        "database_format": "sqlite3",
        "database_name": "<db name>",
        "tables":
        [
         {
         "table_name": "<db table name>",
         "table_natural_language_name": "<table name as you would say it>",
         "table_contents_plural": "<e.g. elements>",
         "table_contents_singular": "<e.g. element>",
         "columns":
         [
          {
          "column_name": "<column name as it is in the db>",
          "column_natural_language_name": "<column name as you would say it>",
          "column_contents_singular": "<e.g. proton number>",
          "column_contents_plural": "<e.g. proton numbers>",
          },
          // ... more columns ...
         ]
         },
         // ... more tables ...
        ]
    }

You may refer to the chemistry_db.js adaptor for chemistry.db.

Attaching and Detaching Databases

  1. Run command attach database (<full path to db>) (<full path to adaptor>).
  2. Perform queries.
  3. Run command detach database <database_name> if you wish to detach it.

About

The Database Access and Retrieval System (DARS) is a macOS application that can perform natural language lookups on any SQLite database.

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