Musical program auralization

Paul Vickers, James L. Alty
2005 ACM Transactions on Applied Perception  
Program auralisation aims to communicate information about program state, data, and behaviour using audio. We have argued that music offers many advantages as a communication medium [1] . The CAITLIN system [4, 16, 17, 18] was constructed to provide auralisations within a formal structured musical framework. Pilot studies [4, 16] showed that programmers could infer program structure from auralisations alone. A study was conducted using twenty-two novice programmers to assess a) whether novices
more » ... ould understand the musical auralisations and b) whether the musical experience and knowledge of subjects affected their performance. The results show that novices could interpret the auralisations (with accuracy varying across different levels of abstraction) and that musical knowledge had no significant effect on performance. A second experiment was conducted with another twenty-two novice programmers to study the effects of musical program auralisation on debugging tasks. The experiment aimed to determine whether auralisations would lead to higher bug detection rates. The results indicate that, in certain circumstances, musical auralisations can be used to help locate bugs in programs and that musical skill does not affect the ability to make use of the auralisations. In addition, it the experiment showed that subjective workload increased when the musical auralisations were used.
doi:10.1145/1101530.1101546 fatcat:vjzjl6jl3jfnlicloovbnlm5jm