Filtering and Searching

It is possible to ask the resource to identify some nodes using a string that specifies search criteria (i.e., a filter). The default implementation provided by smtk::graph::Resource::queryOperation allows users to filter nodes based on their component type-name as well as the existence and values of properties attached to them. For example, a geometric model of a motor will have many model faces that might each be marked with properties to indicate which are bearing surfaces, which are fastener or alignment surfaces, which surfaces will be in contact with coolant or fuel, etc.

In order to allow user interface components to only show relevant model entities, the resource’s queryOperation method accepts strings in the following format:

node-typename [ property-type [ { property-name [ = property-value ] } ]


  • node-typename specifies matches to names returned from any node’s typeName() method. The type name may be

    • a “bare” component’s type-name (with no enclosing quotes) to match any object which inherits the given type-name;

    • a single-quoted type-name which requires an exact match to the component’s type-name;

    • a forward-slash-enclosed regular expression matching one or more type names; or

    • * or any to indicate any graph node should be considered.

  • property-type is one of the following string literals string, floating-point, integer.

  • property-name is either a single-quoted name or a slash-quoted regular expression (i.e., a regular expression surrounded by forward slashes such as /(foo|bar)/).

  • property-value is one of the following
    • a single, single-quoted string value to match (when searching for string properties),

    • a single, slash-quoted regular expression to match (when searching for string properties by regular expression),

    • a single, unquoted integer or floating point value to match (when searching for properties of those types), or

    • a tuple (indicated with parentheses) of values, as specified above, to match. Note that this implies the property must be vector-valued and the length must match the specified tuple’s length in order for a match to be successful.

Whitespace is allowed anywhere but is treated as significant if it is inside any quoted string value or regular expression.

Note that single quotes are used because these filter strings will appear in XML and/or JSON serializations that use double-quotes to mark the start and end of the query string. The examples below include the double-quotes around the query as a reminder.

For regular expressions, the c++11 standard library is used to search for matches; the syntax must be accepted by the std::regex constructor and std::regex_search() must return true when passed property names or values in order for the corresponding entity to be included in filtered results.

See the documentation for smtk::resource::Resource Filtering and Searching for examples of filtering on property types and values.