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A learning agent that assists the browsing of software libraries

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3 Author(s)
Drummond, C.G. ; Sch. of Inf. Technol. & Eng., Ottawa Univ., Ont., Canada ; Ionescu, D. ; Holte, R.C.

Locating software items is difficult, even for knowledgeable software designers, when searching in large, complex and continuously growing libraries. This paper describes a technique we term “active browsing”. An active browser suggests to the designer items it estimates to be close to the target of the search. The novel aspect of active browsing is that it is entirely unobtrusive: it infers its similarity measure from the designer's normal browsing actions, without any special input. Experiments are presented in which the active browsing system succeeds 40% of the time in identifying the target before the designer has found it. An additional experiment indicates that this approach does, indeed, speed up searches

Published in:

Software Engineering, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:26 ,  Issue: 12 )