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Analyzing User Plans to Produce Informative Responses by a Programmer's Consultant

Wolz, Ursula

One problem in current help systems for programming utility packages is their inability to provide information within the context of the task at hand. The relationship of a user's goal to the user's plan to accomplish that goal is not taken into account. Furthermore, even a goal/plan based help system should be informative by following rules of discourse. This paper puts established rules of discourse into the context of a programming environment, and describes how a report based on an analysis of a user's intended goal and stated plan can be generated. The programming environment under discussion is a programmer's tool kit for graphically exploring complex hierarchical data structures. A program that we have developed called the Plan Analyst is described that finds the relationship between a users intended goal and stated plan by mapping the goal to the functions of the tool kit. The report generated is informative because discourse rules have been in coded in the knowledge representation that is searched by the Plan Analyst. The intent of this paper is to demonstrate the potential for applying methods of discourse behavior from Natural Language Processing research to 3D interactive programming environment.

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Academic Units
Computer Science
Publisher
Department of Computer Science, Columbia University
Series
Columbia University Computer Science Technical Reports, CUCS-218-85
Published Here
November 7, 2011
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