Algebraic Operators for Processing Sets of Temporal Intervals in Relational Databases

Authors Andreas Dohr, Christiane Engels, Andreas Behrend

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Author Details

Andreas Dohr
  • University of Bonn, Institute of Computer Science III, Germany
Christiane Engels
  • University of Bonn, Institute of Computer Science III, Germany
Andreas Behrend
  • University of Bonn, Institute of Computer Science III, Germany

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Andreas Dohr, Christiane Engels, and Andreas Behrend. Algebraic Operators for Processing Sets of Temporal Intervals in Relational Databases. In 25th International Symposium on Temporal Representation and Reasoning (TIME 2018). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 120, pp. 11:1-11:16, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2018)


The efficient management of temporal data has become increasingly important for many database applications. Most commercial systems already allow the management of temporal data but the operational support for processing this data is still rather limited. One particular reason is that many extension proposals typically require considerable modifications of the underlying database engine. In this paper, we propose a lightweight solution where temporal operators are realized using a library of user-defined functions. This way the complexity of temporal queries can be drastically reduced leading to more readable and less error-prone code without touching the database system. Our experiments show that the proposed operators significantly outperform temporal queries formulated in pure SQL. In addition, we investigate the possibility to incorporate algebraic optimization strategies directly into our operator definitions which allow for further performance improvements.

Subject Classification

ACM Subject Classification
  • Information systems → Database management system engines
  • Information systems → Information systems applications
  • Temporal Databases
  • Relational Operators
  • Situation Calculus


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