Computer Corporation of America: Program Visualization

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    Program Visualization




Artist Statement:

    Program Visualization will allow computer programmers to create, experiment with, debug, and document their programs by graphic programming means. The researchers say Program Visualization will “open the side of the machine”, allowing both the user and the programmer to form an accurate model of a running program.

    In Program Visualization, symbols will be invested with data that, once triggered, can prompt things to happen. To explain it, consider the difference between flipping a light switch and getting light, and flipping a light switch and getting a menu of computer options. Programming Visualization would be the one, in our hypothetical construct, that would give light, not menus. In other words, the effect of an action would be literal, not encoded in another layer of symbols. It is this visual directness that would allow users to “open the side of the machine” to see and understand a running program.

    Programming Visualization would enable programmers to form clear, accurate mental images of the structure and construction of programs, and to select the most appropriate mode for a programming task.

    To designers this means that graphics will be used not only to represent information statically, as is typical: instead, graphics will be used to control information and to manipulate information processes dynamically.

Technical Information:

    DEC VAX 11/780
    3 Adage 512 screens converted to one high res, 1280x1024x8 bits

Process Information:

    New Graphic Directions

    As information technology becomes more sophisticated and becomes more deeply embedded in our society, it is clear that a new graphics which include sensory input and output will serve as the primary means of communication with computers. The implications of the shift away from a print communication is difficult to assess; however, one can postulate that the professional understanding and practice of design will be expanded and synthesized with computer capabilities.

    Some of the advanced issues of the new graphics are being explored now in research environments. Graphic languages that would help computer programmers in their programming work are being explored; as are dynamic graphics, capable of describing movement, and behavior, and which can be modified by the user.

Affiliation Where Artwork Was Created:

    Computer Corporation of America

Other Information: