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Industrial applications frequently involve manipulation and management of pictorial information. In spite of the fact that digitized images and pictorial information are becoming more significant as parts of user databases, conventional database techniques have focused primarily on numerical and textual information. The Image Database Management (IDBM) system extends these techniques to encompass images, pictures, and graphs. Designed to run in a microcomputer environment, the design of IDBM integrates efficient database algorithms and compression techniques to permit fast retrievals as well as an unusually large number of images to be set up as a single database. The support of a synonym base is another important characteristic of the IDBM system.