Software Development and Application for the Analysis of Cross-Sections

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This chapter deals with computer-aided analysis of cross-sections. It provides an overview of various software applications available for cross-section design and analysis. A framework for the development of a general-purpose cross-section analysis software (based on theoretical formulations developed in Chapters 2 and 3) is presented. A brief introduction of CSiCOL (a comprehensive software package for the analysis and design of reinforced and composite column sections) is also included. This chapter also introduces various new ideas and scopes related to the development of mobile applications for structural analysis on both Android and iOS platforms. Various applications of cloud computing and component-based software engineering in analysis and design of structures are also introduced.

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The usefulness of mobile devices has increased greatly in recent years allowing users to perform more tasks in a mobile context. This increase in usefulness has come at the expense of the usability of these devices in some contexts. We conducted a small review of mobile usability models and found that usability is usually measured in terms of three attributes; effectiveness, efficiency and satisfaction. Other attributes, such as cognitive load, tend to be overlooked in the usability models that are most prominent despite their likely impact on the success or failure of an application. To remedy this we introduces the PACMAD (People At the Centre of Mobile Application Development) usability model which was designed to address the limitations of existing usability models when applied to mobile devices. PACMAD brings together significant attributes from different usability models in order to create a more comprehensive model. None of the attributes that it includes are new, but the existing prominent usability models ignore one or more of them. This could lead to an incomplete usability evaluation. We performed a literature search to compile a collection of studies that evaluate mobile applications and then evaluated the studies using our model.