On 1 Mar 2011, at 14:29, Stefano Federici wrote:

Do you have any references to similar evalutations?

Now that Alan and Chuck have made the text of 'Psychology if Programming' available again, you might start there. Also look for work by Jorma Sajaniemi in Finland, and for lots of work by Margaret Burnett and her students in USA.

@John Daughtry:

 Rather than
asking which tool is best, you may be better served by seeking to
empirically describe and explain the underlying trade-offs

As an experimentalist, I'd see that as the goal of a _program_ of research. Any one study is usually about individual effects.

I agree, though. It's certainly much much better to understand _why_ effects are happening, than to get one result and say That's That; and if John's subtext is that some studies in the literature are indeed rather shallow, I have to agree.

Er, a spot of self-promotion here ..... the various types of comparison I did in the past led to a framework which attempts to make some sense of the underlying trade-offs, the cognitive dimensions framework, developed by me and lots of other people. Stefano, if you simply want to know whether your new tool works, then you probably just need to do an experiment and stop; but if you want to know why it works (or doesn't), you might take a look at that framework. There's a resources page here: http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~afb21/CognitiveDimensions/

CDs analysis is quite quick, though very vague. It's actually quite possible that it would reveal problems you've overlooked .....


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