A Visual Environment for Creating and Debugging Reactive Applications

  • Kevin Noppe ((PhD) Student)
  • Wolfgang De Meuter (Promotor)
  • Jesse Zaman (Advisor)
  • Kennedy Kondo Kambona (Advisor)
  • Simon Van De Water (Advisor)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


While a lot of applications become more and more interactive, controlling user
generated events is an important part of the development process, especially when
it comes to user interfaces. The problem is that a lot of these events need to
be handled and managed manually, something that is very error-prone in larger
applications written in imperative languages. The reactive language paradigm
was created with these problems in mind, using a data-flow like implementation to
ensure the event-driven structure. Although there are already multiple categories
of reactive programming, each with multiple languages created during the last
decade of research, there are still some drawbacks that hold down the popularity
of reactive languages.
One of the things is that several of these languages seem to have a steep learning

curve, but also that not enough tools are available for creating industry-sized ap-
plications in reactive languages. The goal of this thesis is to introduce two tools

that make reactive programming more accessible. The first intent is a visual pro-
gramming environments, that uses the benefits of the similarties with data-flow

languages to visualise the reactive application. The second contribution is the
creation of a debugger designed specifically to handle reactive applications, since
these need a different approach than debuggers for imperative languages.
Date of AwardAug 2015
Original languageEnglish

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