End-User Computing & Domain-Specific Tools

Domain experts, such as pharmacologists, are often faced with a steep learning curve when adopting computational approaches developed and still under development in the domain of computer science (CS) as they often have a limited CS background. The  absence of CS experts or knowledge are stalling the uptake of these technologies in many domains. By using an end-user computing approach (Goodall & Howie, 1997) this can be remediated. End-user computing refers to systems in which non-programmers can create their own software applications. The end-user computing approach refers to a group of approaches aiming to better support end-users. One specific approach is the use of domain-specific tools and methods instead of domain general tools and methods. Domain-specific tools and methods are dedicated and restricted to a particular domain and a specific class of problems (van Deursen, Klint &Visser, 2000). They provide appropriated abstractions that make the specifications of solutions for this particular class of problems easier and less time consuming. The abstractions are using the vocabulary of the problem domain and as such domain experts can use them. Often, visual languages are used because they are easier to deal with and better for conveying complex models and designs to non-programmers, but also the use of controlled natural language is considered.

Goodall, Howie (March 1997). ,End-user computing, CHI EA '97 CHI '97 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems. ACM CHI 97 Human Factors in Computing Systems Conference. Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, United States of America: Association for Computing Machinery. pp. 132–132. ISBN 0-89791-926-2. Retrieved 30 December 2015.

van Deursen, A., Klint, P., and Visser, J.: Domain-specific languages: an annotated bibliography, ACM SIGPLAN Notices, Volume 35 Issue 6, (2000)

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