Abstractions for designing and evaluating communication bridges for people in developing regions

Tucker, W D and Blake, E H (2010) Abstractions for designing and evaluating communication bridges for people in developing regions, Proceedings of First Annual Symposium on Computing for Development (DEV), 17-18 Dec 2010, Royal Holloway, University of London, London, UK, ACM.

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This paper describes two novel abstractions that help software engineers work in developing regions to align social and technical factors when building communication systems. The abstractions extend two concepts familiar to engineers of computer networks and applications: the Open Systems Interconnect stack for design, and Quality of Service for evaluation. The novel nature of the abstractions lies in how they help cultivate awareness of socio-cultural and technical issues when designing and evaluating communication bridges in the field. Advantages of the abstractions are that they can be understood easily by software engineers, they aid communication with beneficiaries, and can therefore facilitate collaboration. The paper makes an argument for these socially aware abstractions, describes the abstractions in detail, provides examples of how we used the new abstractions in the field and then gives practical guidelines for how to use them. The simple nature of the new abstractions can help software engineers and end-users to work together to produce useful information technology based communication systems for people in developing regions.

Item Type: Conference paper
Uncontrolled Keywords: Design, Measurement, Human Factors, Documentation, User-centred design
Subjects: Software and its engineering > Software creation and management
Human-centered computing
Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2010
Last Modified: 10 Oct 2019 15:34
URI: http://pubs.cs.uct.ac.za/id/eprint/639

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