The Web is still much regarded as a user space rather than an author space. Hence, Web engineering cares for both current user requirements (e.g. usability) and future user requirements (e.g. maintainability), but overlooks author needs. This tendency is already observed in the increasing availability of open APIs and mashup applications. This work addresses another way of end user authorship, client scripting, whose vigour is evidenced by initiatives such as Greasemonkey. Client scripting permits end users to locally customize content, layout or style of their favourite websites. But current scripting suffers from a tight coupling with the website. As a result, website upgrades can make the script to fall apart. This can refrain users from participating, and slow down open innovation for website owners. To avoid this situation, this work proposes to characterise websites with a "tuning interface" in an attempt to decouple layman’s script from website upgrades. Scripts do not longer access the website code (i.e. the implementation) but a stable description of the website (i.e. the interface). This interface limits tuning but increases change resilience, and offer a balance between openness (scripter free inspection) and modularity (scripter isolation from website design decisions).
The 9th International Conference on Web Engineering (ICWE2009), San Sebastian, (Spain)
ONEKIN, UNIVERSITY OF THE BASQUE COUNTRY