What Ails End-User Composition: A Cross-Domain Qualitative Study

  • Vishal DwivediEmail author
  • James D. Herbsleb
  • David Garlan
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10303)


Across many domains, end-users need to compose computational elements into novel configurations to perform their day-to-day tasks. End-user composition is a common programming activity performed by such end-users to accomplish this composition task. While there have been many studies on end-user programming, we still need a better understanding of activities involved in end-user composition and environments to support them. In this paper we report a qualitative study of four popular composition environments belonging to diverse application domains, including: Taverna workflow environment for life sciences, Loni Pipeline for brain imaging, SimMan3G for medical simulations and Kepler for scientific simulations. We interview end-users of these environments to explore their experiences while performing common compositions tasks. We use “Content Analysis” technique to analyze these interviews to explore what are the barriers to end-user composition in these domains. Furthermore, our findings show that there are some unique differences in the requirements of naive end-users vs. expert programmers. We believe that not only are these findings useful to improve the quality of end-user composition environments, but they can also help towards development of better end-user composition frameworks.


Composition Activity Geospatial Analysis Composition Problem Composition Task Platform Developer 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work is supported in part by the National Security Agency. The views and conclusions contained herein are those of the authors and should not be interpreted as representing the official policies, either expressed or implied, of the National Security Agency or the U.S. government.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vishal Dwivedi
    • 1
    Email author
  • James D. Herbsleb
    • 1
  • David Garlan
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Computer ScienceCarnegie Mellon UniversityPittsburghUSA

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