VTechWorks staff will be away for the Thanksgiving holiday starting at noon on Wednesday, November 23, through Friday, November 25, and will not be replying to requests during this time. Thank you for your patience.
DataSnap: Enabling Domain Experts and Introductory Programmers to Process Big Data in a Block-Based Programming Language
Hellmann, Jonathon David
MetadataShow full item record
Block-based programming languages were originally designed for educational purposes. Due to their low requirements for a user's programming capability, such languages have great potential to serve both introductory programmers in educational settings as well as domain experts as a data processing tool. However, the current design of block-based languages fails to address critical factors for these two audiences: 1) domain experts do not have the ability to perform crucial steps: import data sources, perform efficient data processing, and visualize results; 2) the focus of online assignments towards introductory programmers on entertainment (e.g. games, animation) fails to convince students that computer science is important, relevant, and related to their day-to-day experiences. In this thesis, we present the design and implementation of DataSnap, which is a block-based programming language extended from Snap!. Our work focuses on enhancing the state of the art in block-based programming languages for our two target audiences: domain experts and introductory programmers. Specifically, in this thesis we: 1) provide easy-to-use interfaces for big data import, processing, and visualization methods for domain experts; 2) integrate relevant social media, geographic, and business-related data sets into online educational platforms for introductory programmers and enable teachers to develop their own real-time and big-data access blocks; and 3) present DataSnap in the Open edX online courseware platform along with customized problem definition and a dynamic analysis grading system. Stemming from our research contributions, our work encourages the further development and utilization of block-based languages towards a broader audience range.
- Masters Theses