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A graphical environment for user-interface design and development

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5 Author(s)
J. DeSoi ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., Texas A&M Univ., College Station, TX, USA ; M. Lease ; W. Lively ; S. Sheppard
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The design of an easy-to-use and flexible user-interface management system (UIMS) is described. The authors identify two major problems for UIMSs. The first problem is to find a way to make the UIMS easier to use without sacrificing important functionality. A design concept, behaviour abstraction, is described which allows important gains in ease-of-use, while retaining the kind of flexibility needed by user-interface designers. The second problem is to provide a user-interface design tool that allows easy and flexible runtime configuration. A traditional notation, the data-flow diagram, proves to be an appropriate organising principle for the design of the runtime connection between a user-interface module and application modules. An implementation, called the graphical specification system (GSS), provides an integrated environment for designing the user-interface component of interactive embedded system software. GSS provides two tools; an application display generator (ADG) for designing screen objects and a data-flow editor (DFE) for specifying runtime connections. GSS demonstrates the smooth integration of a drawing environment for display design and a data-flow editor for runtime specification. The results provide a platform for future work in extending the behaviour abstraction concept and for building in usability engineering tools

Published in:

Software Engineering Journal  (Volume:5 ,  Issue: 5 )