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Contribution Details

Type Conference or Workshop Paper
Scope Discipline-based scholarship
Published in Proceedings Yes
Title Context-aware conversational developer assistants
Organization Unit
  • Nick C Bradley
  • Thomas Fritz
  • Reid Holmes
Presentation Type paper
Item Subtype Original Work
Refereed Yes
Status Published in final form
  • English
ISBN 978-1-4503-5638-1
Page Range 993 - 1003
Event Title 40th International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE'18)
Event Type conference
Event Location Gothenburg
Event Start Date June 27 - 2018
Event End Date July 3 - 2018
Place of Publication New York, New York, USA
Publisher ACM Digital Library is
Abstract Text Building and maintaining modern software systems requires developers to perform a variety of tasks that span various tools and information sources. The crosscutting nature of these development tasks requires developers to maintain complex mental models and forces them (a) to manually split their high-level tasks into low-level commands that are supported by the various tools, and (b) to (re)establish their current context in each tool. In this paper we present Devy, a Conversational Developer Assistant (CDA) that enables developers to focus on their high-level development tasks. Devy reduces the number of manual, often complex, low-level commands that developers need to perform, freeing them to focus on their high-level tasks. Specifically, Devy infers high-level intent from developer's voice commands and combines this with an automatically-generated context model to determine appropriate workflows for invoking low-level tool actions; where needed, Devy can also prompt the developer for additional information. Through a mixed methods evaluation with 21 industrial developers, we found that Devy provided an intuitive interface that was able to support many development tasks while helping developers stay focused within their development environment. While industrial developers were largely supportive of the automation Devy enabled, they also provided insights into several other tasks and workflows CDAs could support to enable them to better focus on the important parts of their development tasks.
Free access at DOI
Digital Object Identifier 10.1145/3180155.3180238
Other Identification Number merlin-id:17145
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