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A visual perception account of programming languages : finding the natural science in the art

Stéphane Conversy 1, 2 
1 LII - ENAC - Equipe Informatique Interactive
ENAC - Ecole Nationale de l'Aviation Civile
2 IRIT-ICS - Interactive Critical Systems
IRIT - Institut de recherche en informatique de Toulouse
Abstract : There is no agreed set of grounded principles on which to rely to analyze and discuss code representations. I propose a combination of Semiotic of Graphics and ScanVis. I discovered that this unifying framework brings together many aspects of visual layout and appearance of programming languages. We describe how the framework applies to programming languages, which is not obvious and has never been done before. We show how to use the framework to compare representation of code by relying on sound arguments. Finally, we use the framework to devise design principles to help generate new representations. Relying on such a framework can help researchers and designers invent better languages with respect to this concern. This work also suggests that the gap between textual and graphical languages is narrow, and that true visual languages should rely on the capability of the human visual system.
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Submitted on : Monday, April 1, 2013 - 7:00:32 AM
Last modification on : Monday, July 4, 2022 - 8:47:06 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Friday, March 31, 2017 - 1:51:42 PM


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  • HAL Id : hal-00737414, version 1


Stéphane Conversy. A visual perception account of programming languages : finding the natural science in the art. 2012. ⟨hal-00737414⟩



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