Publication statistics

Pub. period:1988-2004
Pub. count:15
Number of co-authors:12



Co-authors

Number of publications with 3 favourite co-authors:

Brad A. Myers:6
Dario Giuse:2
Pedro Szekely:2

 

 

Productive colleagues

Brad Vander Zanden's 3 most productive colleagues in number of publications:

Brad A. Myers:154
Scott E. Hudson:113
James D. Foley:49
 
 
 

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Brad Vander Zanden

Picture of Brad Vander Zanden.
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Has also published under the name of:
"Bradley T. Vander Zanden"

Current place of employment:
University of Tennessee

 

Publications by Brad Vander Zanden (bibliography)

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2004
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander, Baker, David and Jin, Jing (2004): An explanation-based, visual debugger for one-way constraints. In: Proceedings of the 2004 ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology 2004. pp. 207-216. Available online

This paper describes a domain-specific debugger for one-way constraint solvers. The debugger makes use of several new techniques. First, the debugger displays only a portion of the dataflow graph, called a constraint slice, that is directly related to an incorrect variable. This technique helps the debugger scale to a system containing thousands of constraints. Second, the debugger presents a visual representation of the solver\'s data structures and uses color encodings to highlight changes to the data structures. Finally, the debugger allows the user to point to a variable that has an unexpected value and ask the debugger to suggest reasons for the unexpected value. The debugger makes use of information gathered during the constraint satisfaction process to generate plausible suggestions. Informal testing has shown that the explanatory capability and the color coding of the constraint solver\'s data structures are particularly useful in locating bugs in constraint code.

© All rights reserved Zanden et al. and/or ACM Press

2001
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander and Halterman, Richard L. (2001): Using model dataflow graphs to reduce the storage requirements of constraints. In ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction, 8 (3) pp. 223-265. Available online

Dataflow constraints allow programmers to easily specify relationships among application objects in a natural, declarative manner. Most constraint solvers represent these dataflow relationships as directed edges in a dataflow graph. Unfortunately, dataflow graphs require a great deal of storage. Consequently, an application with a large number of constraints can get pushed into virtual memory, and performance degrades in interactive applications. Our solution is based on the observation that objects derived from the same class use the same constraints, and thus have the same dataflow graphs. We represent the common dataflow patterns in a model dataflow graph that is stored with the class. Instance objects may derive explicit dependencies from this graph when the dependencies are needed. Model dependencies provide a useful new mechanism for improving the storage efficiency of dataflow constraint systems, especially when a large number of constrained objects must be managed.

© All rights reserved Zanden and and/or ACM Press

1999
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander and Marks, Joe (eds.) Proceedings of the 12th annual ACM symposium on User interface software and technology November 07 - 10, 1999, Asheville, North Carolina, United States.

 
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Zanden, Brad Vander and Halterman, Richard L. (1999): Reducing the Storage Requirements of Constraint Dataflow Graphs. In: Zanden, Brad Vander and Marks, Joe (eds.) Proceedings of the 12th annual ACM symposium on User interface software and technology November 07 - 10, 1999, Asheville, North Carolina, United States. pp. 83-92. Available online

Most one-way constraint solvers use directed dataflow graphs to represent the dependencies among variables in a constraint. Unfortunately, dataflow graphs require a great deal of storage. These storage costs can help push a large application into virtual memory, thus significantly degrading interactive performance. Reducing the storage costs of dataflow graphs is therefore an important goal in constraint research. This paper describes a study that makes two contributions to solving this problem.

© All rights reserved Zanden and and/or ACM Press

1996
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander and Venckus, Scott A. (1996): An Empirical Study of Constraint Usage in Graphical Applications. In: Kurlander, David, Brown, Marc and Rao, Ramana (eds.) Proceedings of the 9th annual ACM symposium on User interface software and technology November 06 - 08, 1996, Seattle, Washington, United States. pp. 137-146. Available online

One-way constraints have been widely incorporated in research toolkits for constructing graphical applications. However, although a number of studies have examined the performance of these toolkits' constraint satisfaction algorithms, there have not been any empirical studies that have examined how programmers use constraints in actual applications. This paper reports the results of a study intended to address these matters. Seven graphical applications were chosen for their diversity and profiling information was gathered about their use of constraints. The data reveal that constraint networks tend to be modular, that is, divided into a number of small, independent sets of constraints rather than one monolithic set of constraints. This finding suggests that constraint satisfaction algorithms should be able to resatisfy constraints rapidly after a change to one or more variables. It also suggests that debugging constraints should not be unduly burdensome on a programmer since the number of constraints that must be examined to find the source of an error is not terribly large. Overall, the results of this study should provide a repository of data that will be useful in directing future research on optimizing constraint solvers and developing effective debugging techniques.

© All rights reserved Zanden and and/or ACM Press

1995
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander and Myers, Brad A. (1995): Demonstrational and Constraint-Based Techniques for Pictorially Specifying Application Objects and Behaviors. In ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction, 2 (4) pp. 308-356. Available online

The Lapidary interface design tool is a demonstrational system that allows the graphics and run-time behaviors that go inside an application window to be specified pictorially. In particular, Lapidary allows the designer to draw example pictures of application-specific graphical objects that the end user will manipulate (such as boxes, arrows, or elements of a list), the feedback that shows which objects are selected (such as small boxes on the sides and corners of an object), and the dynamic feedback objects (such as hairline boxes to show where an object is being dragged). The run-time behavior of all these objects can be specified in a straightforward way using constraints, demonstration, and dialog boxes that allow the designer to provide abstract descriptions of the interactive response to the input devices. Lapidary generalizes from these specific example pictures and behaviors to create prototype objects and behaviors from which instances can be made at run-time. A novel feature of Lapidary's implementation is its use of constraints that have been explicitly specified by the designer to help it generalize example objects and behaviors and to guide it in making inferences.

© All rights reserved Zanden and Myers and/or ACM Press

1994
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander (1994): Optimizing Toolkit-Generated Graphical Interfaces. In: Szekely, Pedro (ed.) Proceedings of the 7th annual ACM symposium on User interface software and technology November 02 - 04, 1994, Marina del Rey, California, United States. pp. 157-166. Available online

Researchers have developed a variety of toolkits that support the development of highly interactive, graphical, direct manipulation applications such as animations, process monitoring tools, drawing packages, visual programming languages, games, and data and program visualization systems. These toolkits contain many useful features, such as 1) structured graphics, 2) automatic display management, 3) constraints, and 4) high-level input-handling models. Despite a number of optimizations that have been described in the literature, most toolkit-generated applications run in a predominantly interpreted mode at runtime: they dynamically determine the set of constraints and objects that must be redisplayed, which requires the use of time-consuming algorithms and data structures. The optimizations that do exist rely on semantic information that applies globally to all operations in an application. In this paper we identify a number of optimizations that require local, operation-specific semantic information about an application. For each operation, these optimizations pre-compute update plans that minimize the number of objects that are examined for redisplay, and pre-compute constraint plans that minimize the amount of dynamic scheduling and method dispatching that is performed for constraint satisfaction. We present performance measurements that suggest that these optimizations can significantly improve the performance of an application. We also discuss how a compiler might obtain from a programmer the information required to implement these optimizations.

© All rights reserved Zanden and/or ACM Press

 
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Zanden, Brad Vander, Myers, Brad A., Giuse, Dario and Szekely, Pedro (1994): Integrating Pointer Variables into One-Way Constraint Models. In ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction, 1 (2) pp. 161-213. Available online

Pointer variables have long been considered useful for constructing and manipulating data structures in traditional programming languages. This article discusses how pointer variables can be integrated into one-way constraint models and indicates how these constraints can be usefully employed in user interfaces. Pointer variables allow constraints to model a wide array of dynamic application behavior, simplify the implementation of structured objects and demonstrational systems, and improve the storage and efficiency of constraint-based applications. This article presents two incremental algorithms -- one lazy and one eager -- for solving constraints with pointer variables. Both algorithms are capable of handling (1) arbitrary systems of one-way constraints, including constraints that involve cycles, and (2) editing models that allow multiple changes between calls to the constraint solver. These algorithms are fault tolerant in that they can handle and recover gracefully from formulas that crash due to programmer error. Constraints that use pointer variables have been implemented in a comprehensive user interface toolkit, Garnet, and our experience with applications written in Garnet have proven the usefulness of pointer variable constraints. Many large-scale applications have been implemented using these constraints.

© All rights reserved Zanden et al. and/or ACM Press

1993
 
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Hudson, Scott E., Pausch, Randy, Zanden, Brad Vander and Foley, James D. (eds.) Proceedings of the 6th annual ACM symposium on User interface software and technology 1993, Atlanta, Georgia, United States.

1991
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander and Myers, Brad A. (1991): The Lapidary Graphical Interface Design Tool. In: Robertson, Scott P., Olson, Gary M. and Olson, Judith S. (eds.) Proceedings of the ACM CHI 91 Human Factors in Computing Systems Conference April 28 - June 5, 1991, New Orleans, Louisiana. pp. 465-466. Available online

 
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Zanden, Brad Vander, Myers, Brad A., Giuse, Dario and Szekely, Pedro (1991): The Importance of Pointer Variables in Constraint Models. In: Rhyne, James R. (ed.) Proceedings of the 4th annual ACM symposium on User interface software and technology Hilton Head, South Carolina, United States, 1991, Hilton Head, South Carolina, United States. pp. 155-164. Available online

Graphical tools are increasingly using constraints to specify the graphical layout and behavior of many parts of an application. However, conventional constraints directly encode the objects they reference, and thus cannot provide support for the dynamic runtime creation and manipulation of application objects. This paper discusses an extension to current constraint models that allows constraints to indirectly reference objects through pointer variables. Pointer variables permit programmers to create the constraint equivalent of procedures in traditional programming languages. This procedural abstraction allows constraints to model a wide array of dynamic application behavior, simplifies the implementation of structured object and demonstrational systems, and improves the storage and efficiency of highly interactive, graphical applications. It also promotes a simpler, more effective style of programming than conventional constraints. Constraints that use pointer variables are powerful enough to allow a comprehensive user interface toolkit to be built for the first time on top of a constraint system.

© All rights reserved Zanden et al. and/or ACM Press

1990
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander and Myers, Brad A. (1990): Automatic, Look-and-Feel Independent Dialog Creation for Graphical User Interfaces. In: Carrasco, Jane and Whiteside, John (eds.) Proceedings of the ACM CHI 90 Human Factors in Computing Systems Conference 1990, Seattle, Washington,USA. pp. 27-34.

Jade is a new interactive tool that automatically creates graphical input dialogs such as dialog boxes and menus. Application programmers write a textual specification of a dialog's contents. This specification contains absolutely no graphical information and thus is look-and-feel independent. The graphic artist uses a direct manipulation graphical editor to define the rules, graphical objects, interaction techniques, and decorations that will govern the dialog's look-and-feel, and stores the results in a look and feel database. Jade combines the application programmer's specification with the look-and-feel database to automatically generate a graphical dialog. If necessary, the graphic artist can then edit the resulting dialog using a graphical editor and these edits will be remembered by Jade, even if the original textual specification is modified. By eliminating all graphical references from the dialog's content specification, Jade requires only the absolutely minimum specification from the application programmer. This also allows a dialog box or menu's look and feel to be rapidly and effortlessly changed by simply switching look and feel databases. Finally, Jade permits complex inter-field relationships to be specified in a simple manner.

© All rights reserved Zanden and Myers and/or ACM Press

1989
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander (1989): Constraint Grammars -- A New Model for Specifying Graphical Applications. In: Bice, Ken and Lewis, Clayton H. (eds.) Proceedings of the ACM CHI 89 Human Factors in Computing Systems Conference April 30 - June 4, 1989, Austin, Texas. pp. 325-330.

User Interface Management Systems often attempt to separate the graphical and nongraphical aspects of an application, but rarely succeed. Constraint grammars provide a new model for specifying interfaces that achieves this goal by encapsulating the data structures in a single package, and providing a powerful transformation-based editing model for manipulating them. Constraint grammars incorporate a number of important tools, such as the part-whole hierarchy, almost hierarchical structures, and multidirectional constraints, that permit designers to specify a wide variety of graphical applications, including simulation systems, program visualization systems, and visual programming environments.

© All rights reserved Zanden and/or ACM Press

 
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Myers, Brad A., Zanden, Brad Vander and Dannenberg, Roger (1989): Creating Graphical Interactive Application Objects by Demonstration. In: Sibert, John L. (ed.) Proceedings of the 2nd annual ACM SIGGRAPH symposium on User interface software and technology November 13 - 15, 1989, Williamsburg, Virginia, United States. pp. 95-104.

The Lapidary user interface tool allows all pictorial aspects of programs to be specified graphically. In addition, the behavior of these objects at run-time can be specified using dialogue boxes and by demonstration. In particular, Lapidary allows the designer to draw pictures of application-specific graphical objects which will be created and maintained at run-time by the application. This includes the graphical entities that the end user will manipulate (such as the components of the picture), the feedback that shows which objects are selected (such as small boxes on the sides and corners of an object), and the dynamic feedback objects (such as hair-line boxes to show where an object is being dragged). In addition, Lapidary supports the construction and use of "widgets" (sometimes called interaction techniques or gadgets) such as menus, scroll bars, buttons and icons. Lapidary therefore supports using a pre-defined library of widgets, and defining a new library with a unique "look and feel." The run-time behavior of all these objects can be specified in a straightforward way using constraints and abstract descriptions of the interactive response to the input devices. Lapidary generalizes from the specific example pictures to allow the graphics and behaviors to be specified by demonstration.

© All rights reserved Myers et al. and/or ACM Press

1988
 
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Zanden, Brad Vander (1988): Constraint grammars in user interface management systems. In: Graphics Interface 88 June 6-10, 1988, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. pp. 176-184.

 
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