SSP Group Meeting
July 2nd, Wednesday, 11am-12pm
Department of Artificial Intelligence, 80 South Bridge, Room E13


Dialogue in WWW Site Design

Renaud Lecoeuche

Numerous frameworks have been suggested as aids to the acquisition of software requirements (e.g., goal-oriented or scenario-oriented approaches, fast prototyping). Much less attention has been paid to the control of dialogue taking place between the user and the system whilst using such frameworks. Our ability to develop sophisticated formal frameworks makes this deficiency more acutely felt, since increases in formality are often accompanied by greater difficulty in understanding and using the frameworks. Frameworks for requirements acquisition are not normally accompanied by theories of the types of dialogue which they support. However, some theories of dialogue structure are beginning to emerge, notably from the natural language community. It is interesting to examine how the structure of requirements acquisition frameworks (which attempt to control the development of a requirements specification) may be linked to the structure of theories of dialogue (which attempt to control dialogue according to the conventions of discourse). I will present the architecture and working of a very early prototype combining requirements elicitation rules and natural language constraints. The prototype works in the domain of WWW sites creation and enables users to define the navigational aspect of the sites.