Lessons Learned from Using Reprogrammable Prototypes with End-User Developers

Marcel Borowski*, Ida Larsen-Ledet

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to book/anthology/report/proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review

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Involving end-users in the development of a product before it is deployed has great potential to increase the fit between a product and individual users’ needs. While end-users can be directly involved in modifying low-fidelity prototypes, they are left out when it comes to high-fidelity interactive prototypes—in part because these cannot be modified directly or require time-consuming edit-compile-run cycles. High-fidelity prototypes, however, are more engaging for users. We created a reprogrammable high-fidelity prototype and explored its use in short-term prototyping workshops with end-user developers, i.e. end-users with programming experience, in the domain of collaborative writing. We report observations and pitfalls, and distill four lessons learned into guidelines on how to use reprogrammable high-fidelity prototypes with end-users in contexts with limited resources. Our experiences demonstrate, among other things, that reprogrammable high-fidelity prototypes are difficult to work with—even for experienced programmers—and emphasize the need for careful attention to guiding participants, time for familiarization, and catering to multiple levels of programming experience.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnd-User Development - 8th International Symposium, IS-EUD 2021, Proceedings : 8th International Symposium, IS-EUD 2021, Virtual Event, July 6–8, 2021, Proceedings
EditorsDaniela Fogli, Daniel Tetteroo, Barbara Rita Barricelli, Simone Borsci, Panos Markopoulos, George A. Papadopoulos
Number of pages17
Place of publicationCham
Publication date2021
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-79839-0
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-79840-6
Publication statusPublished - 2021
EventIS-EUD 2021: 8th International Symposium on End-User Development - Remote via Internet
Duration: 6 Jul 20218 Jul 2021
Conference number: 8


ConferenceIS-EUD 2021: 8th International Symposium on End-User Development
LocationRemote via Internet
Internet address
SeriesLecture Notes in Computer Science


  • Malleable software
  • Reprogrammable software
  • Tailoring
  • Prototyping
  • Co-design
  • End-user development


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