PPIG 2011 - 23rd Annual Workshop
Programming with the User in Mind
Giora Alexandron, Michal Armoni, David Harel
Abstract: In this paper we present preliminary findings regarding the possible connection between the programming language and the paradigm behind it, and programmers’ tendency to adopt an external or internal perspective of the system they develop. According to the findings, when working with the visual, inter-object language of live sequence charts (LSC), programmers tend to adopt an external and usability-oriented view of the system, while when working with a language that is intra-object in nature, they tend to adopt an internal and implementation-oriented view of the system. To explain the findings, we present a cognitive model of programming that is based on that of Adelson and Soloway [1]. Our model suggests that the new paradigm of scenario- based programming, upon which LSC is based, combined with concrete interface programming and the ability to directly simulate the scenarios, allows the programmer to build systems while concentrating more on the user side. This work has two main implications. First, we believe that our findings on the programmers’ viewpoint are interesting in themselves. Second, it sheds light on how the LSC approach supports programming that requires less work in the solution domain. This can be applicable in areas such as novice and end-user programming.