Automatic interfaces

thu25oct2007—43w298d81%— 19h02m00s—0utc

Who would have thought the new Mathematica would introduce one of the coolest interface design innovations in recent years: automatic inteface building?

You should browse this nice showcase of examples but to really grok the idea you’ve got to watch the Author and Deploy an Application in 60 Seconds screencast.

That above is a screenshot of the presentation: the code above generates the application below. Isn’t it beautiful?

Wolfram Research calls it the day documents and applications merged and they’ve got a point. This makes creating an application as automated and straightforward as creating a graph, and similar ease is being introduced for embedding these tiny apps in documents (“Documents are, quite simply, talking things”).

It’s no panacea but it do makes simple things easy, difficult things possible. In Rails jargon, you could call this a very elegant scaffolding functionality, a victory of convention over configuration“At its core it means that what you do ”p">(especially if you’ve done it a lot) should carry a lot more weight than having to configure (and reconfigure) things over and over".

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