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http://hdl.handle.net/10071/13403
acessibilidade
Title: Design annotations to improve API discoverability
Authors: Santos, A. L.
Myers, B. A.
Keywords: API usability
Annotations
Code completion
IDE
Eclipse
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher: Elsevier
Abstract: User studies have revealed that programmers face several obstacles when learning application programming interfaces (APIs). A considerable part of such difficulties relate to discovery of API elements and the relationships among them. To address discoverability problems, we show how to complement APIs with design annotations, which document design decisions in a program-processable form for types, methods, and parameters. The information provided by the annotations is consumed by the integrated development environment (IDE) in order to assist API users with useful code completion proposals regarding object creation and manipulation, which facilitate API exploration and learning. As a proof of concept, we developed Dacite, a tool which comprises a set of Java annotations and an accompanying plugin for the Eclipse IDE. A user study revealed that Dacite is usable and effective, and Dacite’s proposals enable programmers to be more successful in solving programming tasks involving unfamiliar APIs.
Peer reviewed: yes
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10071/13403
DOI: 10.1016/j.jss.2016.12.036
ISSN: 0164-1212
Ciência-IUL: https://ciencia.iscte-iul.pt/id/ci-pub-33495
Accession number: WOS:000395226000002
Appears in Collections:ISTAR-RI - Artigos em revistas científicas internacionais com arbitragem científica

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