AutoTap: synthesizing and repairing trigger-action programs using LTL properties

Proceedings of the 41st International Conference on Software Engineering(2019)

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End-user programming, particularly trigger-action programming (TAP), is a popular method of letting users express their intent for how smart devices and cloud services interact. Unfortunately, sometimes it can be challenging for users to correctly express their desires through TAP. This paper presents AutoTap, a system that lets novice users easily specify desired properties for devices and services. AutoTap translates these properties to linear temporal logic (LTL) and both automatically synthesizes property-satisfying TAP rules from scratch and repairs existing TAP rules. We designed AutoTap based on a user study about properties users wish to express. Through a second user study, we show that novice users made significantly fewer mistakes when expressing desired behaviors using AutoTap than using TAP rules. Our experiments show that AutoTap is a simple and effective option for expressive end-user programming.
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Key words
end-user programming, program repair, program synthesis, trigger-action programming
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