20 - 24 September 2009
Oregon State University
Corvallis, Oregon, USA

VL/HCC Most Influential Papers

The VL/HCC community began a new tradition last year. A voting group consisting of all members of the current steering committee, current program committee, and program chairs of the VL/HCC conferences of the years being considered, review the papers from the VL/HCCs held one decade ago and two decades ago, to select the papers from these decades that have had the most influence on VL/HCC research or commerce.

The voting group considered technical papers presented at VL/HCC approximately one decade ago (in 1998, 1999, and 2000) and approximately two decades ago (in 1988, 1989, and 1990). All members were invited to nominate papers from these years and, once a shortlist of nominated papers was produced, the members who did not have conflicts with the nominees reviewed and voted for the most influential paper from each decade.

The process was organized and facilitated by Maria Francesca Costabile, Mark Minas, and Steve Tanimoto.

Following this process, the group voted to award the Most Influential Paper Awards to the following papers. These awards will be officially presented at VL/HCC 2009 in Corvallis, Oregon.

Most Influential Paper from approximately two decades ago
Prograph: A Step towards Liberating Programming from Textual Conditioning
Philip T. Cox, F. Rick Giles, Tom Pietrzykowski
1989 IEEE Workshop on Visual Languages
We present a critique of textual programming languages and software development environments, linking them to the development of hardware and discussing their connection with natural languages and mathematical formalisms. We then outline criteria for modern integrated programming languages and environments based on the use of graphics. These principles are illustrated by a description of the pictorial, dataflow, object-oriented language Prograph and its implementation. Finally, possibilities for further use of pictures in programming environments are discussed.
Available from IEEE Explore: http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/WVL.1989.77057

Most Influential Paper from approximately one decade ago
Formalizing Spider Diagrams
Joseph Gil, John Howse, Stuart Kent
1999 IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages
Geared to complement UML and to the speci?cation of large software systems by non-mathematicians, spider diagrams are a visual language that generalizes the popular and intuitive Venn diagrams and Euler circles. The language design emphasized scalability and expressiveness while retaining intuitiveness. In this extended abstract we describe spider diagrams from a mathematical standpoint and show how their formal semantics in terms of logical expressions can be made. We also claim that all spider diagrams are self-consistent.
Available from IEEE Explore: http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/VL.1999.795884