Data Fields

A data field is the smallest subdivision of the stored data that can be accessed. A data field can be used to store numerical information such as price, count or a date or time, or even a data and time. A pair of data fields can be used in combination to hold a geo-spatial coordinate. Also, a data field can be used to hold a block of text. A data field takes up permanent storage within the data-store.

The data-store is composed of a number of data records which are, in turn, composed of a number of predefined data fields. Each of these data fields must be defined within the Load Definition File with a unique name.

Data Types
A data field can be any one of four types:



Signed numeric data

Includes numeric values, bit masks, times and dates. May be filtered, sorted, displayed and used within formulas of all types.

String data

Consists of text blocks not exceeding 255 characters. May be sorted and displayed by Flexible Search.

Text data

Consists of text blocks of unlimited size. May only be displayed by Flexible Search, not sorted.

Attribute data

An array of boolean flags that can be turned on or off to set and check specific criteria. An attribute type can hold up to 1024 different attribute flags, each of which can be set to either true or false. However, space should only be set aside for the number of attributes required.

Temporary Fields
In addition, a numeric, string or text data field can be marked as temporary. Temporary fields are used for calculating values or indexing data. A temporary field is like a data field, but it does not take up any permanent storage within the data-store. It is used as a scratch location for holding temprorary data while it is being indexed or used within an expression to generate permanent data for a data field.