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Sketching and Notation Creation with FlexiSketch Team: Evaluating a New Means for Collaborative Requirements Elicitation


Wüest, Dustin; Seyff, Norbert; Glinz, Martin (2015). Sketching and Notation Creation with FlexiSketch Team: Evaluating a New Means for Collaborative Requirements Elicitation. In: 23rd IEEE International Requirements Engineering Conference (RE'15), Ottawa, Canada, 24 August 2015 - 28 August 2015, 186-195.

Abstract

Whiteboards and paper allow for any kind of notations and are easy to use. Requirements engineers love to use them in creative requirements elicitation and design sessions. However, the resulting diagram sketches cannot be interpreted by software modeling tools. We have developed FlexiSketch as an alternative to whiteboards in previous work. It is a mobile tool for model-based sketching of free-form diagrams that allows the definition and re-use of diagramming notations on the fly. The latest version of the tool, called FlexiSketch Team, supports collaboration with multiple tablets and an electronic whiteboard, such that several users can work simultaneously on the same model sketch. In this paper we present an exploratory study about how novice and experienced engineers sketch and define ad-hoc notations collaboratively in early requirements elicitation sessions when supported by our tool. Results show that participants incrementally build notations by defining language constructs the first time they use them. Participants considered the option to re-use defined constructs to be a big motivational factor for providing type definitions. They found our approach useful for longer sketching sessions and situations where sketches are re-used later on.

Abstract

Whiteboards and paper allow for any kind of notations and are easy to use. Requirements engineers love to use them in creative requirements elicitation and design sessions. However, the resulting diagram sketches cannot be interpreted by software modeling tools. We have developed FlexiSketch as an alternative to whiteboards in previous work. It is a mobile tool for model-based sketching of free-form diagrams that allows the definition and re-use of diagramming notations on the fly. The latest version of the tool, called FlexiSketch Team, supports collaboration with multiple tablets and an electronic whiteboard, such that several users can work simultaneously on the same model sketch. In this paper we present an exploratory study about how novice and experienced engineers sketch and define ad-hoc notations collaboratively in early requirements elicitation sessions when supported by our tool. Results show that participants incrementally build notations by defining language constructs the first time they use them. Participants considered the option to re-use defined constructs to be a big motivational factor for providing type definitions. They found our approach useful for longer sketching sessions and situations where sketches are re-used later on.

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3 citations in Web of Science®
4 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper), refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Informatics
Dewey Decimal Classification:000 Computer science, knowledge & systems
Language:English
Event End Date:28 August 2015
Deposited On:04 Feb 2016 10:50
Last Modified:08 Dec 2017 18:24
Publisher:IEEE
Other Identification Number:merlin-id:12166

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