Skip to Main Content
While many real-world applications need to organize data based on space (e.g., geology, geomarketing, environmental modeling) and/or time (e.g., accounting, inventory management, personnel management), existing conventional conceptual models do not provide a straightforward mechanism to explicitly capture the associated spatial and temporal semantics. As a result, it is left to database designers to discover, design, and implement - on an ad hoc basis - the temporal and spatial concepts that they need. We propose an annotation-based approach that allows a database designer to focus first on nontemporal and nongeospatial aspects (i.e., "what") of the application and, subsequently, augment the conceptual schema with geospatiotemporal annotations (i.e., "when" and "where"). Via annotations, we enable a supplementary level of abstraction that succinctly encapsulates the geospatiotemporal data semantics and naturally extends the semantics of a conventional conceptual model. An overarching assumption in conceptual modeling has always been that expressiveness and formality need to be balanced with simplicity. We posit that our formally defined annotation-based approach is net only expressive, but also straightforward to understand and implement.