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CRIWG Tables of Contents: 02030405060708091011121314

CRIWG 2004: Groupware: Design, Implementation, and Use 2004-09-05

Fullname:CRIWG 2004: Groupware: Design, Implementation, and Use: 10th International Workshop
Editors:Gert-Jan de Vreede; Luis A. Guerrero; Gabriela Marín Raventós
Location:San Carlos, Costa Rica
Dates:2004-Sep-05 to 2004-Sep-09
Publisher:Springer Berlin Heidelberg
Series:Lecture Notes in Computer Science 3198
Standard No:DOI: 10.1007/b100403; ISBN: 978-3-540-23016-8 (print), 978-3-540-30112-7 (online); hcibib: CRIWG04
Links:Online Proceedings
  1. Key Note
  2. Knowledge Management
  3. Awareness
  4. Support for Collaboration Processes
  5. Collaboration Applications
  6. Groupware Infrastructure
  7. Computer Supported Collaborative Learning
  8. Mobile Collaborative Work

Key Note

On Theory-Driven Design of Collaboration Technology and Process BIBAFull-Text 1-16
  Robert O. Briggs
The design and deployment of collaboration technology has, until lately been more of an art than a science, but it has produced some solid successes. Commercial groupware products now support millions of collaborations per year. Under certain circumstances teams that use Group Support Systems perform far better than groups that do not. However, as impressive as the achievements are in this field, we can do better. A rigorous theoretical approach to the design of collaboration technology and process can lead us to non-intuitive design choices that produce successes beyond those possible with a seat-of-the-pants approach. This paper explains the simple structure of a rigorous scientific theory and offers examples of theory-driven design choices that produced substantial benefits. It then differentiates rigorous theory from several classes of theory that have intuitive appeal, but cannot inform design choices. It then argues that the logic of the theory-driven design approach suggests that the most useful focus for collaboration technology researchers would be the technology-supported work process, rather than just the technology.

Knowledge Management

Divergence Occurrences in Knowledge Sharing Communities BIBAFull-Text 17-24
  Alicia Díaz; Gérôme Canals
While knowledge-intensive communities are actively interacting, divergent knowledge positions appear as a natural consequence of the knowledge-sharing activity. Although this feature can look like an unfavorable situation, we argue that maintaining the coexistence with conflicts and following their evolution allows the community to understand how new knowledge emerges. In this paper, we discuss the knowledge sharing process where divergences occur and we propose a technological approach that allows communities to coexist with conflicts.
On the Convergence of Knowledge Management and Groupware BIBAFull-Text 25-33
  Sajda Qureshi; Vlatka Hlupic; Robert O. Briggs
As successful organizations recognize that they need to convert their intellectual resources into customized services, the value of electronic collaboration has increased. Current efforts in managing knowledge have concentrated on producing; sharing and storing knowledge while business problems require the combined use of these intellectual resources to enable organizations to provide innovative and customized services. This paper argues that knowledge management and collaboration have common, mutually interdependent purposes and practices. It develops a framework that demonstrates this interdependence, mapping collaboration technologies to knowledge management activities. It concludes with a call for the convergence of these two streams for the benefit of researchers, practitioners, and organizations.
Applying Group Storytelling in Knowledge Management BIBAFull-Text 34-41
  Raphael Perret; Marcos R. S. Borges; Flávia Maria Santoro
Knowledge management and, specifically, organizational memory have become vital for organizations' life. Documenting tacit knowledge used to perform daily activities, such as, discussions and decisions is a complex task. Another challenge is dealing with collective knowledge, because an important part of organizational work is executed in a cooperative mode. In this paper, we present stories as an important tool to externalize tacit knowledge. We describe TELLSTORY, a system that supports the collaborative construction of stories. Based on the characteristics of traditional literary and journalistic narrative structure, TELLSTORY helps teams in developing stories to make explicit tacit knowledge elements.
Ranking the Web Collaboratively and Categorising It to Produce Digital Collections BIBAFull-Text 42-51
  Vidal A. Rodríguez; David A. Fuller
In this paper, we discuss the need of groups of people working towards a common goal, requiring reliable information. It would be helpful for these groups to have digital collections that would provide them with the information they need to do their work. We propose a tool that allows them to build their own collections using the Web. Each group may work in different projects. Each project requires a digital collection. The group members can rank the resources obtained by them from the Web for the project in a collaborative way. In addition, specialised cataloguers can categorise the resource collections, using a controlled language. We propose an interaction model, the architecture of the software system, and we show our actual implementation.
Understanding and Supporting Knowledge Flows in a Community of Software Developers BIBAFull-Text 52-66
  Oscar M. Rodríguez; Ana I. Martínez-Garcia; Jesús Favela; Aurora Vizcaíno; Mario Piattini
Knowledge sharing is a collective process where the people involved collaborate with others in order to learn from them. This effort creates communities where each member cooperates by sharing knowledge about a common domain. An example of these kinds of communities is software maintenance groups, where their members must collaborate with others, and share their knowledge and experience in order to complete their assignments. This paper presents a study carried out in two software maintenance groups to understand how the knowledge flows through these groups, that is, how their members share their knowledge when they perform their activities. The approach used to model the flows of knowledge and to identify the problems that affect that flow are described, as well as the main problems detected, and how we are trying to solve them with an agent-based knowledge management system.


A Framework for Asynchronous Change Awareness in Collaboratively-Constructed Documents BIBAFull-Text 67-83
  James Tam; Saul Greenberg
Change awareness is the ability of individuals to track the asynchronous changes made to a collaborative document or surface by other participants over time. We develop a framework that articulates what change awareness information is critical if people are to track and maintain change awareness. Information elements include: knowing who changed the artifact, what those changes involve, where changes occur, when changes were made, how things have changed, and why people made the changes. The framework also accounts for people's need to view these changes from different perspectives: an artifact-based view, a person-based view, and a workspace-based view.
Increasing Awareness in Distributed Software Development Workspaces BIBAFull-Text 84-91
  Marco A. S. Mangan; Marcos R. S. Borges; Cláudia Maria Lima Werner
This work presents a middleware for collaborative applications that increase product and workspace awareness information available to users of computer-aided software engineering tools. This middleware-based approach helps application developers to construct enhanced tools, adapted to specific needs, reusing software components and existing applications. These enhanced tools must be designed to overcome some of the technical difficulties of collaboration in distributed software development scenarios, like the need of monitoring changes in remote workspaces. This paper describes the middleware architecture and intended usage, presents examples of enhanced tools, and proposes future case studies.
Ariane: An Awareness Mechanism for Shared Databases BIBAFull-Text 92-104
  Vaninha Vieira; Marco A. S. Mangan; Cláudia Maria Lima Werner; Marta Mattoso
Awareness is an essential requirement in collaborative activities. This paper presents Ariane, a generic and reusable awareness infrastructure, independent of a specific application or DBMS. Ariane improves the availability of awareness information to different cooperative applications by monitoring the application persistence mechanism. A prototype of Ariane was developed using the Java Data Objects (JDO) persistence mechanism and aspect-oriented programming techniques, which were employed in order to increase the potential reusability of the solution. A preliminary evaluation of the prototype, applied in an environment for cooperative software development based on components, confirmed that no additional code is necessary to monitor JDO complaint applications. Besides, Ariane proposes a multidimensional data structure for awareness information, the awareness cube. On-line analytical processing tools can be employed to perform queries to retrieve aggregated value from small grained awareness information.
Design of Awareness Interface for Distributed Teams in Display-Rich Advanced Collaboration Environments BIBAFull-Text 105-120
  Kyoung Shin Park; Jason Leigh; Andrew E. Johnson; Yongjoo Cho
This paper discusses design issues for enhancing awareness among distributed teams in the display-rich advanced collaboration environments. We conducted an exploratory design study of nine groups performing a set of collaborative tasks using a variety of advanced collaboration and display technologies. The result showed that group interaction and awareness was improved by the use of multiple public displays due to information visibility to all members. While maximized visibility supported work activity awareness, it also revealed a need to support shared resource awareness and more importantly task awareness for effective group coordination.

Support for Collaboration Processes

Combining Communication and Coordination Toward Articulation of Collaborative Activities BIBAFull-Text 121-136
  Alberto Barbosa Raposo; Marco Aurélio Gerosa; Hugo Fuks
In this paper, we present a proposal for the articulation of collaborative activities based on communication and coordination representation models. Articulation is essential in any kind of collaboration and involves pre-articulation of the tasks, their management, and post-articulation. For the representation of pre- and post-articulation phases, conversation clichés (communication) are used. For the coordination phase, a model separating the tasks and their interdependencies is used. The articulation schema, which is especially suited to e-business applications, is then applied to a business-web example.
ThinkLets as Building Blocks for Collaboration Processes: A Further Conceptualization BIBAFull-Text 137-152
  Gwendolyn L. Kolfschoten; Robert O. Briggs; Jaco H. Appelman; Gert-Jan de Vreede
In the past decade, there has been a steady increase in the importance of collaboration to value creation in organizations, which has given rise to a new research field. Collaboration Engineering aims to model, design, and deploy repeatable collaboration processes to be executed by practitioners themselves of high-value recurring collaborative tasks. Thus the aim of collaboration engineering is to create ready made designs for group processes. A key concept in Collaboration Engineering is a thinkLet -- a codified facilitation intervention in a group process to create a desired pattern of collaboration. This paper presents an analysis of the thinkLet concept and possible thinkLet classification schemes to support collaboration engineers in effectively designing collaboration processes.
Bridging the Gap Between Decisions and Their Implementations BIBAFull-Text 153-165
  Marcos R. S. Borges; José A. Pino; Renata Mendes de Araujo
Decisions are frequently sent to implementers without much detail. It should not be a surprise, then, that results are not as expected. The lack of accompanying information and a common context produces wrongly implemented or lost decisions. This paper proposes a solution to this problem based on computer technology. In particular, a combination of tools including shared workspaces, process modeling with workflow and a discussion tool, is proposed. A case is used to illustrate the problem and its solution.
CreEx: A Framework for Creativity in Cooperative Problem Solving BIBAFull-Text 166-174
  Adriana Santarosa Vivacqua; Jano Moreira de Souza
Creativity has become an important factor in recent years, as companies need to be able to quickly adapt to take advantage of new opportunities and handle fast paced changes in their environment. Creativity theorists have proposed models to explain creative thought that go beyond the individual to encompass social aspects of creativity. We are interested in the interactions between team members that lead to innovative solutions for problems and new ideas, and in computer support for collaborative creativity in problem solving. In this paper, we present CreEx, a framework to foster and support group creativity. By creating appropriate environments for the exploration of problems and discussion of ideas, we hope to enable users not only to generate novel solutions and capture decisions made, but also to learn about each other's domains and think differently.

Collaboration Applications

SaGISC: A Geo-Collaborative System BIBAFull-Text 175-191
  Paula André; Pedro Antunes
The production of geological mapping by conventional processes is a complex work of data gathering and integration, along with expert and team analysis. This process is very time consuming, since it implies several expeditions to the study location. In the organization studied by this paper, this process can take several years to be completed. The objective of this project is to build a remote collaborative system that supports information sharing by the teams that participate in geological data gathering. The developed system integrates several tools for information sharing and geological/topographical data referencing, as well as support to group discussion and decision. The integration of these tools makes up a geo-collaborative system. The development of this system was done in the context of the Portuguese Geological and Mining Institute (IGM). The evaluation of the prototype by 30 experts from IGM revealed that the proposed goals were accomplished: the system was considered better than the conventional approach.
Blind to Sighted Children Interaction Through Collaborative Environments BIBAFull-Text 192-205
  Jaime Sánchez; Nelson A. Baloian; Tiago Hassler
In this paper we present a software system implementing a remote synchronous collaborative "Battleship" game that can be played by two persons. The system provides two different interfaces, one to be used by sighted people and the other to be used by blind people based on spatialized sound, thus allowing sighted and blind people play against each other, without knowing if the adversary is a sighted or blind person. The paper also presents a framework which supports the synchronisation of heterogeneous applications sharing only some common objects. This is the key for developing collaborative applications with very different interfaces as it is shown in this work.
Implementing Stick-Ons for Spreadsheets BIBAFull-Text 206-214
  Shermann S.-M. Chan; José A. Pino
Spreadsheet systems were initially intended for individual use. Collaborative use implies there should be a local versioning mechanism. As such, it is proposed to use a modified Stick-On. This means to define them to cope with the wide variety of data types, which can be associated to spreadsheet cells. The proposed design includes a hierarchy of these new Stick-Ons, a Field Dependency Graph and a Peer Referencing Mechanism.
Empirical Evaluation of Collaborative Support for Distributed Pair Programming BIBAFull-Text 215-222
  Jesús Favela; Hiroshi Natsu; Cynthia B. Pérez; Omar Robles; Alberto L. Morán; Raul Romero; Ana María Martínez Enríquez; Dominique Decouchant
Pair programming is an Extreme Programming (XP) practice where two programmers work on a single computer to produce an artifact. Empirical evaluations have provided evidence that this technique results in higher quality code in half the time it would take an individual programmer. Distributed pair programming could facilitate opportunistic pair programming sessions with colleagues working in remote sites. In this paper we present the preliminary results of the empirical evaluation of the COPPER collaborative editor, developed explicitly to support pair programming. The evaluation was performed on three different conditions: pairs working collocated on a single computer; distributed pairs working in application sharing mode; and distributed pairs using collaboration aware facilities. In all three cases the subjects used the COPPER collaborative editor. The results support our hypothesis that distributed pairs could find the same amount of errors as their collocated counterparts. However, no evidence was found that the pairs that used collaborative awareness services had better code comprehension, as we had also hypothesized.

Groupware Infrastructure

Communicating Design Knowledge with Groupware Technology Patterns: The Case of Shared Object Management BIBAFull-Text 223-237
  Stephan Lukosch; Till Schümmer
Many groupware frameworks offer programming abstractions to relieve developers from recurring issues during groupware development. However, some properties of the frameworks complicate their usage. We identify these properties and argue that the framework approach alone is not sufficient for supporting groupware developers. Groupware development support should instead educate developers on how to design and implement groupware applications and foster the reuse of proven solutions. We propose pattern languages as an educational and communicative vehicle for reaching this goal. To assist developers in the development process of groupware applications, we provide a pattern language that offers proven solutions for recurring issues in the area of shared object management and allow developers to reuse them.
Adaptable Shared Workspace to Support Multiple Collaboration Paradigms BIBAFull-Text 238-245
  Jang Ho Lee
Several recent collaborative systems provide a room-based metaphor to represent shared workspaces that require use of multiple collaborative tools. These systems provide users with a fairly static usage paradigm of room-centered collaboration, requiring users to mold their collaborative activities to the paradigm rather than molding the paradigm to fit the requirements of their collaborative activities. In this paper, we propose a powerful and yet simple event-action based model, augmented with multi-user features, for room-based systems for providing a high degree of adaptability so that these systems can be adapted to provide support for a variety of collaborative facilities, such as call centers, transient rooms, paper reviewing rooms, and role-based collaboration, including facilities that are not necessarily anticipated by system designers. The model can be used by both system developers as well as by system administrators to customize a system to meet the requirements of their group tasks.
A Decoupled Architecture for Action-Oriented Coordination and Awareness Management in CSCL/W Frameworks BIBAFull-Text 246-261
  Pablo Orozco; Juan I. Asensio-Pérez; Pedro García López; Yannis A. Dimitriadis; Carles Pairot
This paper introduces AORTA, a software architecture that provides object-level coordination and shared workspace awareness support to synchronous and distributed collaborative applications. AORTA is motivated by the need to enhance current coordination and awareness capabilities of existing software component frameworks for the domains of CSCL (Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning) and CSCW (Computer-Supported Cooperative Work). AORTA is characterized by the use of actions as its key abstraction instead of low-level events, the support for mutual influence between coordination and awareness, the use of coordination and awareness policies for supporting complex and dynamic collaboration scenarios, and the use of software design patterns in order to decouple coordination and awareness from the development of other aspects of CSCL/W applications. The paper motivates, justifies, and describes the main functional features of AORTA as well as its proposed software architecture. The paper also introduces a prototype of AORTA that adds coordination and awareness support to an existing groupware framework called ANTS. Finally it describes a CSCL application developed on top of both AORTA and ANTS that has been used to validate some of the presented contributions: application development is decoupled from coordination/awareness aspects, application development is facilitated by the use of action-orientation, and application coordination/awareness behavior can be configured and changed without modifying the application itself.
Reusing Groupware Applications BIBAFull-Text 262-270
  Sergio F. Ochoa; Luis A. Guerrero; José A. Pino; César A. Collazos
Many groupware applications have been developed and continue being developed over white-box groupware platforms. These platforms have brought important contributions to the development of groupware systems. However, the lack of compatibility among these platforms is limiting the portability of such solutions. This paper presents a middleware, which allows to improve the portability of new and legacy groupware applications supported by white-box platforms. The middleware translates a set of functionalities provided by the groupware platforms to a set of common groupware services used by the applications. These services provide groupware support and allow to improve the portability of groupware systems. A prototype of the proposed middleware has been tested and the interim results are encouraging.
Distributed Dynamic-Locking in Real-Time Collaborative Editing Systems BIBAFull-Text 271-280
  Xianghua Xu; Jiajun Bu; Chun Chen; Yong Li
In this paper, a Customizable and Dynamic Locking (CDL) scheme is proposed for concurrency control in Internet-based real-time collaborative editors. The idea of dynamic-locking is that: locking mechanism dynamically determines locking set according to locking policies and latest collaborative activities happened in the shared workspace, and pre-locks objects for succeeding editing and preventing from other user's edit. Dynamic locking is optional: user decides whether and when to use locking mechanism. In the proposed scheme, locking policy is separated from locking mechanism. Locking policies can be customized for different collaboration tasks. Locking scope is dynamically determined according to locking policies and collaborative activities among users. Multiple users can select different policies in the same collaborative session, and change locking policies at different phases of collaboration as well. Protocols and algorithms for locking conflict resolution and consistency maintenance are also presented in this paper.

Computer Supported Collaborative Learning

A Model for a Collaborative Recommender System for Multimedia Learning Material BIBAFull-Text 281-288
  Nelson A. Baloian; Patricio Galdames; César A. Collazos; Luis A. Guerrero
In a cluster of many servers containing heterogeneous multimedia learning material and serving users with different backgrounds (e.g. language, interests, previous knowledge, hardware and connectivity) it may be difficult for the learners to find a piece of material which fit their needs. This is the case of the COLDEX project. Recommender systems have been used to help people sift through all the available information to find that most valuable to them. We propose a recommender system, which suggest multimedia learning material based on the learner's background preferences as well as the available hardware and software that he/she has.
An Integrated Approach for Analysing and Assessing the Performance of Virtual Learning Groups BIBAFull-Text 289-304
  Thanasis Daradoumis; Alejandra Martínez-Monés; Fatos Xhafa
Collaborative distance learning involves a variety of elements and factors that have to be considered and measured in order to analyse and assess group and individual performance more effectively and objectively. This paper presents an approach that integrates qualitative, social network analysis (SNA) and quantitative techniques for evaluating online collaborative learning interactions. Integration of various different data sources, tools and techniques provides a more complete and robust framework for group modelling and guarantees a more efficient evaluation of group effectiveness and individual competence. Our research relies on the analysis of a real, long-term, complex collaborative experience, which is initially evaluated in terms of principled criteria and a basic qualitative process. At the end of the experience, the coded student interactions are further analysed through the SNA technique to assess participatory aspects, identify the most effective groups and the most prominent actors. Finally, the approach is contrasted and completed through a statistical technique which sheds more light on the results obtained that far. The proposal draws a well-founded line toward the development of a principled framework for the monitoring and analysis of group interaction and group scaffolding which can be considered a major issue towards the actual application of the CSCL proposals to real classrooms.
A Tailorable Collaborative Learning System That Combines OGSA Grid Services and IMS-LD Scripting BIBAFull-Text 305-321
  Miguel L. Bote-Lorenzo; Luis M. Vaquero-González; Guillermo Vega-Gorgojo; Yannis A. Dimitriadis; Juan I. Asensio-Pérez; Eduardo Gómez-Sánchez; Davinia Hernández Leo
This paper presents Gridcole, a new collaborative learning system that can be easily tailored by educators in order to support their own CSCL scenarios, using computing services provided by third parties in the form of OGSA grid services. Educators employ scripts in order to describe the sequence of learning activities and required tools, with standard IMS-LD notation. Thus, through the integration of coarse-grained tools, that may even offer supercomputing capabilities or use specific hardware resources, educators do not depend on software developers to easily configure a suitable environment in order to support a broad range of collaborative scenarios. An example of a learning scenario for a Computer Architecture course is described to illustrate the capabilities of Gridcole.
A Model for CSCL Allowing Tailorability: Implementation in the "Electronic Schoolbag" Groupware BIBAFull-Text 322-338
  Christian Martel; Christine Ferraris; Bernard Caron; Thibault Carron; Ghislaine Chabert; Christophe Courtin; Laurence Gagnière; Jean-Charles Marty; Laurence Vignollet
We describe in this paper a model for Computer Supported Collaborative Learning and the corresponding architecture. This model has been designed to take into account the variety of educational activities and cultures. It offers primitives to endusers, mainly the teachers, allowing them to describe a collaborative activity and to regulate it (i.e. modify it dynamically). It has been implemented within a groupware based on the metaphor of electronic schoolbag, which is used today by more than 40000 users in both University and secondary french schools. Thanks to the model, the developed groupware is flexible and tailorable.

Mobile Collaborative Work

Representing Context for an Adaptative Awareness Mechanism BIBAKFull-Text 339-348
  Manuele Kirsch-Pinheiro; Jérôme Gensel; Hervé Martin
The application of mobile computing technologies to Groupware Systems has enforced the necessity of adapting the content of information by considering the user's physical and organizational contexts. In general, context-aware computing is based on the handling of features such as location and device characteristics. We propose to describe also the user's organizational context for awareness purposes. Our objective is to permit Groupware Systems to better select the information and then to provide mobile users with some adapted awareness information. This paper presents a representation of this notion of context to be used by awareness mechanisms embedded in Groupware Systems. Then, we show how this representation is exploited for filtering the content of information inside the awareness mechanism.
Keywords: adaptability; awareness; mobile computing; cooperative work
Opportunistic Interaction in P2P Ubiquitous Environments BIBAFull-Text 349-362
  Rolando Menchaca-Mendez; E. Gutierrez-Arias; Jesús Favela
In this paper we present the design and implementation of an ubiquitous system that supports the opportunistic collaborative edition of shared documents. Our system is based on the instant messaging metaphor in the sense that it uses concepts and interfaces similar to those used in instant messaging systems. We employ the concept of group to define a cluster of users that work on a particular shared document and use awareness to convey the state of users with respect to the shared documents (editing, reading, not using it). The system is implemented using a peer-to-peer (P2P) architecture and can be accessed by means of mobile devices such as handheld computers or cellular phones as well as from desktop computers. The P2P architecture provides the system with useful properties such as fault tolerance, the possibility of using public key infrastructures to implement secure transactions, scalability, a P2P repository to store shared documents and a distributed awareness service.
Mobile Support for Collaborative Work BIBAFull-Text 363-375
  Luis A. Guerrero; José A. Pino; César A. Collazos; Andres Inostroza; Sergio F. Ochoa
An attempt is made to characterize situations in which the use of mobile devices can be useful for the development of collaborative systems. Mobile devices have advantages, such as small size, low cost, portability. They also have disadvantages, such as small viewing screen, little storage capacity, slow processor, unreliable communication facilities. The idea is to use them when advantages are most relevant and disadvantages do not affect the system under development. A collaborative system for text co-authoring is presented as an example of design for the best conditions of mobile devices inclusion. This system uses the mobile devices for individual tasks performed while away from normal work site in uncomfortable or congested places.