, Volume 15, Issue 3, pp 497–540

Spatiotemporal pattern queries


DOI: 10.1007/s10707-010-0114-3

Cite this article as:
Sakr, M.A. & Güting, R.H. Geoinformatica (2011) 15: 497. doi:10.1007/s10707-010-0114-3


This paper presents a novel approach to express and evaluate the complex class of queries in moving object databases called spatiotemporal pattern queries (STP queries). That is, one can specify temporal order constraints on the fulfillment of several predicates. This is in contrast to a standard spatiotemporal query that is composed of a single predicate. We propose a language design for spatiotemporal pattern queries in the context of spatiotemporal DBMSs. The design builds on the well established concept of lifted predicates. Hence, unlike previous approaches, patterns are neither restricted to specific sets of predicates, nor to specific moving object types. The proposed language can express arbitrarily complex patterns that involve various types of spatiotemporal operations such as range, metric, topological, set operations, aggregations, distance, direction, and boolean operations. This work covers the language integration in SQL, the evaluation of the queries, and the integration with the query optimizer. We also propose a simple language for defining the temporal constraints. The approach allows for queries that were never available. We provide a complete implementation in C+ + and Prolog in the context of the Secondo platform. The implementation is made publicly available online as a Secondo Plugin, which also includes automatic scripts for repeating the experiments in this paper.


Moving objects databases Trajectory Lifted predicate Spatiotemporal patterns Secondo 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Database Systems for New ApplicationsFernUniversität in HagenHagenGermany
  2. 2.Faculty of Computer and Information SciencesUniversity of Ain ShamsCairoEgypt

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