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Use-Oriented Documentation in Software Development
Linköping University, Department of Computer and Information Science, MDALAB - Human Computer Interfaces. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
1999 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Software documentation is an important tool in modem component-based programming. Building software applications requires detailed knowledge about a vast number of components and the structures they form. This knowledge is often acquired by reading reference documentation of application-programming interfaces (APIs). Thus, the design of the API reference documentation and its reading support affect the cost and quality of software development.

We examine how efficiency and quality in software development can be increased through the design of software documentation and reading support for software documentation. The thesis reports on the DJavadoc project and the reading support for online Java API reference documentation that it provides. The Java API reference documentation can be viewed as a collection of documentation designed for multiple needs. As a consequence, ex:cessive information is present in most situations. In DJavadoc we have extended the official Java API reference documentation to achieve control over the visibility of information types. DJavadoc adds client-side, real-time redesign to the documentation to support the design of multiple views. As a result, the reader may further design views of the information that are more in line with the reader's personal and changing needs. In the thesis we also discuss online API reference documentation and its role in programming.

Our preliminary studies support the design strategy taken in DJavadoc. The DJavadoc architecture has also proven suitable for continuos redesign of online documentation. Furthermore, our work provides several future research directions for software documentation and communication of functionality. The Javadoc approach can be developed to achieve more use-oriented documentation. However, the need of use-oriented documentation may also have impact on the Java programming language and ultimately object orientation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköpings universitet , 1999. , 105 p.
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Thesis, ISSN 0280-7971 ; 790
National Category
Computer Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-23095Local ID: 2491ISBN: 91-7219-615-7OAI: diva2:243408
1999-12-02, Estraden, Hus E, Linköping Universitet, Linköping, 13:15 (Swedish)
Available from: 2009-10-07 Created: 2009-10-07 Last updated: 2013-11-04

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Berglund, Erik
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MDALAB - Human Computer InterfacesThe Institute of Technology
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