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AusWeb 2008 Keynote Web Development: Fabrication or Orchestration? David Lowe Director, Centre for Real-Time Information Networks University of Technology,

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Presentation on theme: "AusWeb 2008 Keynote Web Development: Fabrication or Orchestration? David Lowe Director, Centre for Real-Time Information Networks University of Technology,"— Presentation transcript:

1 AusWeb 2008 Keynote Web Development: Fabrication or Orchestration? David Lowe Director, Centre for Real-Time Information Networks University of Technology, Sydney (edited for release – post-conference)

2 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 2 Software Engineering Wisdom “Some Facts: Before software and computing systems can be developed, their requirements must be reasonably well understood. Before requirements can be finalised the application domain, as it is, must be fairly well understood” ‘Domain Engineering: A “Radical Innovation” for Software and Systems Engineering? A Biased Account’, Dines Bjorner

3 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 3 Developer divergence of views  We interview the clients to determine requirements  We interview intended users to determine requirements  It is important to respond to changes in user requirements as they occur  Changes in the user requirements require the site or application to be renegotiated. We often have difficulty in the relationship with clients  We prefer a single client liaison  It is important to identify technologies to use as soon as possible  It is important to be able to modify the system once it is completed

4 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 4 Web Development: Research vs Practice  “You can’t improve what you don’t understand / measure” –Is this still true in the Web domain? –“the most important figures that one needs for management are unknown or unknowable but successful management must nevertheless take account of them.” Deming, Out of the Crisis  Do researchers understand development?  Do developers understand what they are doing?

5 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 5 Research on Web Development  Sample of 287 papers in the last 12 years on Web design models and methods. WebEng workshops, ICWE, WWW WebEng track, JWE, IJWET, … –Modelling: Information = 74 –Operations: 41 –Modelling: Architecture = 34 –Testing, Verification and Validation = 31 –Modelling: Functionality and Behaviour = 29 –Requirements = 17 –Quality = 14 –Cost/Effort estimation = 11 –Commercial practice = 8 !

6 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 6 How much of this research is being used? –Significant disjoint between research and practice! WHY? Are the models irrelevant? Are the models too cumbersome? Are the models not being communicated to developers? Are they ill-suited to the nature of the design process?

7 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 7 How much of this research is being used? –Significant disjoint between research and practice! WHY? Are the models irrelevant? Are the models too cumbersome? Are the models not being communicated to developers? Are they ill-suited to the nature of the design process? The sciences do not try to explain, they hardly even try to interpret, they mainly make models. By a model is meant a mathematical construct which, with the addition of certain verbal interpretations, describes observed phenomena. The justification of such a mathematical construct is solely and precisely that it is expected to work. [Johann Von Neumann] Essentially, all models are wrong, but some are useful. [George Box]

8 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 8 What questions should we be asking?  What then are the "hard" parts of the Web design process? –Understanding the users’ needs and intentions. –Blending content and functionality, engagement and control. –Orchestrating the interactions, rather than controlling them. –Creating an organic architecture which supports rapid evolution. –Making the interface “invisible”. –… A picture is worth a thousand words. An interface is worth a thousand pictures. (Ben Shneiderman) [Interface design’s] highest ideal is to make a computer so wonderful, so interesting, that we never want to be without it. A less travelled path [has a] highest ideal to make a computer so imbedded, so fitting, so natural, that we use it without thinking about it. (Mark Weiser)

9 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 9 Software Engineering Heresy  For Web projects, design and requirements can only be jointly resolved!  Web Engineering research seems to have missed this point! Developers have had to confront it – or sink! Domain Understanding RequirementsDesign

10 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 10 A short history lesson might be useful  Has this disjoint always existed?  Or did we lose focus at some point? Hegel was right when he said that we learn from history that man can never learn anything from history. (George Bernard Shaw) We live in a moment of history where change is so speeded up that we begin to see the present only when it is already disappearing. (R. D. Laing)

11 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide to k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  StyleThe “Content” Web Focus on static structured content Amazon launched in 1995  AdoptionEmergence / early adopters Discovering potential  Research Hypertext structuring HDM in 1992, RMM in 1994, OOHDM in 1994 Source:

12 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide to k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  StyleThe “content” Web Focus on static structured content Amazon launched in 1995  AdoptionEmergence / early adopters Discovering potential  Research Hypertext structuring HDM in 1992, RMM in 1994, OOHDM in 1994 Source:

13 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide to k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  StyleThe “Functional” Web Dynamic content + some workflow First online banking 1995, eBay 1995  AdoptionCommercial use explodes From 20k to 10M  ResearchHypertext + some functionality WAE in 1999, WebML in 1999

14 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide to k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  StyleThe “functional” Web Dynamic content + some workflow First online banking: Presidential savings, 1995  AdoptionCommercial use explodes From 20k to 10M  ResearchHypertext + some functionality WAE in 1999, WebML in 1999

15 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide to k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  StyleThe “Social” Web (and Web 2.0) Friendster 2002, FaceBook 2004 Flickr 2004, YouTube 2005  AdoptionMainstreaming commercial use Focus shifts to business integration  ResearchHypertext + some workflow Drawing in Software Engineering lessons

16 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide to k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  StyleThe “Social” Web (and Web 2.0) Friendster 2002, FaceBook 2004 Flickr 2004, YouTube 2005  AdoptionMainstreaming commercial use Focus shifts to business integration  ResearchHypertext + some workflow Drawing in Software Engineering lessons

17 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide to now k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  StyleThe “Mashed” Web Rich intermixing of applications Digg 2004, Ajax 2005, Google Maps 2005, …  AdoptionIncreasing Interdependence Inter-business integration  ResearchHypertext + Architecture Web Services + QA + V&V + Estimation + …

18 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 18 Now to … k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  Style???  Adoption???  Research??? EPIC 2015

19 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 19 Now to … k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  Style???  Adoption???  Research??? Information Functionality Static / Passive Participatory Participatory Functionality Giving the user access to mashing functionality - Intel Mash Maker 0/ - Microsoft PopFly ws/article/0,289142,sid8_gci ,00.html - IBM Zero cleID=31713

20 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 20 Now to … k 10k 100k 1M 10M 100M 1G  Style???  Adoption???  Research??? Information Functionality Static / Passive Participatory Social-world (mediated, delayed, interpreted, artificial, …) Physical-world (direct, immediate, raw, real, …) Real-time sporting events Live Auctions Monitoring (personal, environmental, home, …) Control (personal, environment, home, …)

21 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 21 Real-World, Real-Time –Ability to monitor and manipulate things in real-time Not just watch the world, discuss the world, but control the world? –How far will this go? Can I do anything at a distance that I currently do locally? “Trying” an item I want to purchase? Can I start and then listen to a car I might be bidding on? Is my lawn too dry? Can I change the chlorine dosing in my pool? Can I know my heart rate right now? Can you know my heart rate right now? –How far are we from me being able to duck out of here this afternoon, and remotely walk my kids home from school? –But you aint seen nothing yet! (guess what was TechCrunch product of the year?)

22 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 22 Physical World: Examples  NY Exchange - NY Exchange  Australian Open - Australian Open  Earthmine - Earthmine  HackDiary - HackDiary –See also …

23 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 23 Physical World: Example  Monitoring and watering my lawn…. –Simple devices Wireless embedded Web server –http://www.lantronix.com/device-networking/embedded-device-servers/wiport.htmlhttp://www.lantronix.com/device-networking/embedded-device-servers/wiport.html Webcam… Little bit of code… –and…

24 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 24

25 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 25 So back to development…  Two key questions: –What should be the focus of commercial development? Will our current approaches continue to work? –What should be the focus of research? Shouldn’t we focus on what improves the end-result of the development, rather than what we can model?  Cutting to the chase… –Why should these be any different!

26 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 26 So back to development…  Returning to the evolution pathway… Information --> Functionality –Need to model what we can do with he Web! Hints of some of this in use- case modelling, but this is still quite limited? Static --> Participatory –Need to let go of control. Provide an environment for engagement. But what engages? –Monitoring usage patterns and rapid adaptation becomes crucial –Does an architect design a house to not "change" at all? How do they enable it to be “shaped” by its use? For every user to leave their mark? Surrogate-World --> Real-World –Need to identify the points of connection to the real-world! –What real-tasks (not Web tasks) might be supported?

27 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 27 So back to development…  Result is a complex interdependency between systems, organisational processes, and the real world …  Key Issues: –Impact assessment –Co-evolution –Context awareness

28 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 28 So back to development…  Result is a complex interdependency between systems, organisational processes, and the real world …  Key Issues: –Impact assessment –Co-evolution –Context awareness Remember…. “[the] highest ideal is to make a [web system] so imbedded, so fitting, so natural, that we use it without thinking about it”

29 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 29 Evolutionary orchestration  We have become too bound by our expectations of what can be achieved? Rather than what we want to achieve!  So… A web designer needs to: –Be a choreographer, not a technocrat –Be a facilitator, not a modeller –Be agile and responsive, not a proponent –Understand the technology, but see it only as a tool –Begin from the user outcomes, determine the needed interactions, then try to make them invisible!

30 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 30 OK – so I like (mis)quotes….  Ask not what the Web can do for you, but rather what you might want to do (with the Web)? –We spend too much time thinking about the technology, and not the task  Computers make it easier to do a lot of things, but most of the things they make it easier to do don't need to be done. (Andy Rooney) –What does need to be done?  For a list of all the ways technology has failed to improve the quality of life, please press three. (Alice Kahn)  Any science or technology which is sufficiently advanced is indistinguishable from magic. (Arthur C. Clarke)  Any technology that is distinguishable from magic is not sufficiently advanced (Gregory Benford) –Make your applications magic!

31 AusWeb 2008 Keynote, (C) David Lowe, UTSSlide 31 Thank You!


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