The next installment in using the cognitive dimensions...
For each user goal that the API supports, describe the minimum amount of information
that the user needs to maintain while working with the API. This is different to the
learning style which refers to the way that the user gains the information they need.
Working framework describes the amount of information that they need.
In the System.IO example, the user must keep track of the following information:
In this case, much of the information that the user needs to keep track of is represented
in the API that the user uses to accomplish the goal. For example, the mode of the
StreamWriter or StreamReader is a property of the instance of the class the user is
working with. However, the structure of the text file is not directly represented
by the API. In order to use the System.IO classes to work with a structured text file,
the user needs to maintain some application level information.
Having described the information that the user needs to keep track of for a given
set of goals, the working framework can be defined in the following terms.
Given the above definitions, the System.IO namespace classes require a working framework
close to global for all but the simplest of tasks.
users can tolerate different working framework demands placed on them by an API. Make
sure that your API does not demand more than your users will tolerat