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@misc{WOODBURY2013D, key = {Woodbury}, author = {Jeffrey Guenther and Robert Woodbury and Chris Shaw}, title = {Shiro - A Language for Describing Parametric Alternatives }, howpublished = {GRAND NCE Annual Conference}, month = {May}, year = 2013, abstract = {Parametric systems have been used in CAD tools like Generative Components and Rhino + Grasshopper to allow designers to construct geometry based on mathematical relationships. Designers have had great success using these tools to create dynamic designs that take too long to draft using traditional CAD tools. Parametric systems have also been applied to visual analytics tools to allow analysts to manipulate and visualize data. Both designers and analysts work to solve ill-defined problems, problems where there is no objective solution only a set of tradeoffs that must be balanced, and must explore many possible solutions. Parametric systems allow problem solvers to change parameter values and immediately see how the change affects their solution. Parametric systems also support reuse by allowing the logic of a solution to be created once and re-evaluated with a new set of input values. While parametric systems allow analysts and designers to explore the designs and visualizations created by different parameter values, a parametric system only represents one design. To create alternative solutions, problem solvers resort to workarounds like storing alternative designs on layers, or by saving versions of their work to disk. It is difficult for problem solvers to compare or combine parts of solutions as most applications can have only one state and thus only one solution. To allow problem-solvers to represent alternative solutions in a single parametric graph, we have begun work on a subjunctive parametric system. A subjunctive parametric system is a parametric system that allows variations in parameter values and logic to be represented in a single parametric graph. To realize these ideas, we have prototyped a programming language called Shiro. Shiro allows problems solvers to describe nodes, subjunctive nodes, graphs, and states. States describe alternative solutions as they indicate the active subjuncts for the subjunctive nodes in a graph. Shiro is the first step to make alternatives first class objects of a solution as it allows problem solvers to computationally represent alternative parametric solutions. } }

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