The University of Edinburgh -
Division of Informatics
Forrest Hill & 80 South Bridge

MSc Thesis #92121

Title:A Training Aid for Debugging Prolog
Date: 1992
Abstract:Learning how to debug in any programming language has usually been left to the student. Although some basic principles are provided while learning the language along with new debugging oriented programming environments, the student will face the problem of developing their own debugging techniques and will not make full use of the facilities provided. The main goal of this project is to provide a tool that formalises debugging training in PROLOG. This way, the student will have the opportunity to structure debugging principles to be used while performing the task. The tool is based loosely in the SOPHIE system, given the features that made of SOPHIE a successful intelligent tutoring system and the analogy that can be drawn between finding faults in electronic circuits and debugging PROLOG. This project uses a principled debugging framework and a basic debugging strategy by Brna et al focused in non termination and wrong termination at a clause level. Basically TADP provides the student with a buggy PROLOG program and a debugging tool. While the student works out the bug, the system interacts in different ways: asking for a justification for an action, the type of bug the student might be looking for, and giving remediation if the debugging strategy is not consistent.

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