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GROUP Tables of Contents: 97990103050709101214

GROUP'07: International Conference on Supporting Group Work

Fullname:Proceedings of the International ACM SIGGROUP Conference on Supporting Group Work
Editors:Tom Gross; Kori Inkpen
Location:Sanibel Island, Florida, USA
Dates:2007-Nov-04 to 2007-Nov-07
Publisher:ACM
Standard No:ISBN 1-59593-845-1, 978-1-59593-845-9; ACM Order Number: 612070; ACM DL: Table of Contents hcibib: GROUP07
Papers:47
Pages:410
Links:Conference Home Page
  1. Theories of cooperative work
  2. Awareness and privacy
  3. Analysis of complex work settings
  4. Awareness and co-presence
  5. Sharing expertise
  6. Dealing with dependencies
  7. Knowledge sharing in practice
  8. Formation of groups, teams and communities
  9. Infrastructuring
  10. Wikis and information seeking
  11. Design methods
  12. Computer supported learning
  13. Social tagging
  14. Social networking
  15. Dealing with disruptions

Theories of cooperative work

Permutations of cooperative work practices: a study of two oncology clinics BIBAFull-Text 1-10
  Kjeld Schmidt; Ina Wagner; Marianne Tolar
Based on a comparative study of cooperative work practices at two oncology clinics, the paper shows that work practices across these otherwise comparable settings vary significantly. Asking, how can ethnographic studies of local work practices then provide a dependable basis for design, the paper discusses how we may conceive of the relationship between ethnographic studies and systems development and suggests that a way out of the dilemma might be found in developing an analysis of the 'higher-order' practices of endless combination and recombination of artifacts, formats, notations, etc. that are found across such sites.
Practices of stigmergy in architectural work BIBAFull-Text 11-20
  Lars Rune Christensen
Actors coordinate their cooperative efforts by acting on the evidence of work previously accomplished. The paper introduces, on the basis of a field study, the concept of stigmergy to the analysis of coordinative practices in architectural work. It distinguishes between practices of stigmergy and articulation work. Stigmergy is understood as coordination achieved by acting directly on the evidence of work previously accomplished and articulation work is understood as second order efforts to coordinate collaborative work. Furthermore, this leads to a distinction between representational artifacts associated with practices of stigmergy and coordination mechanisms in the service of articulation work.
From plans to planning: the case of nursing plans BIBAFull-Text 21-30
  Glenn Munkvold; Gunnar Ellingsen; Eric Monteiro
Drawing on a critical perspective stemming from socially informed studies of medicine, we analyze an ongoing effort to establish electronic nursing plans at the university hospital of central Norway (St. Olav's hospital). We argue for an alternative interpretation of the relative lack of success to date of making the nurses use the nursing plans. Rather than a preoccupation with the singular artifact the -- plan -- we emphasize the process of planning as a collective, ongoing and heterogeneous achievement. Our perspective on plans implies that they should be recognized as more of a network and less a singular artifact.

Awareness and privacy

Supporting creativity with awareness in distributed collaboration BIBAFull-Text 31-40
  Umer Farooq; John M. Carroll; Craig H. Ganoe
Based on qualitative analysis of three groups collaborating on a research task in a distributed setting, we identify four breakdowns in creativity: (1) Minority ideas were under-considered; (2) Novel ideas were easily lost; (3) There was a lack of critical evaluation of perspectives; (4) Reflexivity was weak during convergence. We propose two design strategies, illustrated with mock-ups, to support creativity with awareness: (1) Automatically summarize and recommend ideational activities from system logs; (2) Allow collaborators to enter status of work activity, making these activity updates visible on social and temporal dimensions. Our analysis also suggests an integrated framework of metrics to evaluate creativity as a long-term collaborative activity.
Providing awareness through situated process maps: the hospital care case BIBAFull-Text 41-50
  Federico Cabitza; Marcello Sarini; Carla Simone
Clinical Pathways (CPs) are artifacts that clinicians are increasingly introducing in their practices in order to deal with health problems in the most effective, efficient and agreed way. As a result of an observational study at a Neonatology Intensive Care Unit, we found that most CPs are still paper-based. Although perceived useful even on paper, the physicians advocated a system integrating CPs with the clinical record. Based on their requirements, we present a proposal on how to conceive a computational system that can promote awareness in order to achieve better coordination and committed inclusion of pathways in daily clinical practice.
Privacy in the open: how attention mediates awareness and privacy in open-plan offices BIBAFull-Text 51-60
  Jeremy P. Birnholtz; Carl Gutwin; Kirstie Hawkey
The tension between privacy and awareness has been a persistent difficulty in distributed environments that support opportunistic and informal interaction. For example, many awareness systems that display 'always-on' video links or PC screen contents have been perceived as too invasive, even though functional real-world analogues, like open-plan offices, may provide even less privacy than their online counterparts. In this paper we explore the notion of privacy in open-plan real-world environments, in order to learn more about how it might be supported in distributed systems. From interviews and observations in four open-plan offices, we found that attention plays an important role in the management of both confidentiality and solitude. The public nature of paying attention allows people to build understandings of what objects in a space are legitimate targets for attention and allows people to advertise their interest in interaction. Our results add to what is known about how privacy works in real-world spaces, and suggest valuable design ideas that can help improve support for natural privacy control and interaction in distributed awareness systems.

Analysis of complex work settings

The implications of enterprise-wide pipeline management tools for organizational relations and exchanges BIBAFull-Text 61-68
  Melissa Cefkin; Jakita O. Thomas; Jeanette Blomberg
This paper explores the impact of enterprise-wide processes and technologies on group relations and exchanges. We examine the use of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tools in sales pipeline management. Through an ethnographic study of globally-distributed sales teams we show that the way enterprise-wide tools are integrated into daily practices impacts organizational relations and exchange. We pay particular attention to information exchange as a vehicle for building, leveraging and deterring organizational relations. Our analysis suggests that different approaches to using standardized tools and processes have variable impact on team relations. We provide support for the argument that technologies should be designed and deployed in accordance with an understanding of the contexts of use and in consideration for their impact on organizational relations.
Expressive interactions -- supporting collaboration in urban design BIBAFull-Text 69-78
  Valérie Maquil; Thomas Psik; Ina Wagner; Mira Wagner
This paper discusses technological interventions in support of planners, citizens and other stakeholders in envisioning and negotiating an urban project. A set of prototypal tools, including a tangible user interface, has been developed that allow users to create and manipulate visual/auditory scenes and mesh these scenes with the real environment of an urban site. The paper discusses how to support all users -- different types of stakeholders -- in the collaborative creation of mixed reality configurations as an integral part of expressing their ideas about an urban project, distinguishing between different types and levels of cooperation. It also looks into how to use mixed reality tools for enhancing an already highly developed representational culture.
The potential impact of 3d telepresence technology on task performance in emergency trauma care BIBAFull-Text 79-88
  Hanna M. Söderholm; Diane H. Sonnenwald; Bruce Cairns; James E. Manning; Greg F. Welch; Henry Fuchs
Emergency trauma is a major health problem worldwide. To evaluate the potential of emerging 3D telepresence technology for facilitating paramedic -- physician collaboration while providing emergency medical trauma care we conducted a between-subjects post-test experimental lab study. During a simulated emergency situation 60 paramedics diagnosed and treated a trauma victim while working alone or in collaboration with a physician via 2D video or a 3D proxy. Analysis of paramedics' task performance shows that the fewest harmful procedures occurred in the 3D proxy condition. Paramedics in the 3D proxy condition also reported higher levels of self-efficacy. These results indicate 3D telepresence technology has potential to improve paramedics' performance of complex emergency medical tasks and improve emergency trauma health care when designed appropriately.

Awareness and co-presence

A field study of community bar: (mis)-matches between theory and practice BIBAFull-Text 89-98
  Natalia Romero; Gregor McEwan; Saul Greenberg
Community Bar (CB) is groupware supporting informal awareness and casual interaction. CB's design was derived from three sources: prior empirical research findings concerning informal awareness and casual interaction, a comprehensive sociological theory called the Locales Framework, and the Focus/Nimbus model of awareness. We conducted a field study of a group's on-going CB use. We use its results to reflect upon the matches and mis-matches that occurred between the theoretical and actual usage behaviors anticipated by our design principles vs. those observed in our deployment. As a critique, this reflection is an important iterative step in recognizing flaws not just as usability problems, but as an incorrect translation of theory into design that can be re-analyzed from a theoretical perspective.
Suitable notification intensity: the dynamic awareness system BIBAFull-Text 99-106
  Yao Wang; Wolfgang Gräther; Wolfgang Prinz
Being aware of others' activities has played a vital role in the success of online collaboration. This resulted in the emergence of many groupware systems that provide users with information about the activities of their collaborators in various manners. In virtually all current groupware systems, users are often overburdened by large amounts of unnecessary activity information. This happens because users are most of the time only interested in certain pieces of information for limited durations, while presently there exist no efficient mechanisms for automatically following a user's focus and adjusting the information flow directed at her/him. In this paper we present as a practical solution to this critical problem the dynamic awareness system, which extends the functionality of the BSCW shared workspace system. Key element of the dynamic awareness system is its rule-based inference mechanism to adjust the notification intensity, which reduces the information overload and indirectly allows users to better keep track of relevant events, as well as to manage more efficiently large amounts of shared information. We tested the effectiveness of the dynamic awareness system under real-life circumstances and describe the evaluation results.
The magic window: lessons from a year in the life of a co-present media space BIBAFull-Text 107-116
  Hyun Hoi James Kim; Carl Gutwin; Sriram Subramanian
The windows and doorways that connect offices to public spaces are a site for people to gather awareness information and initiate interaction. However, these portals often reveal more information to the public area than the office occupant would like. As a result, people often keep doors and window blinds closed, which means that nobody can gather awareness information, even those with whom the occupant would be willing to share. One solution to this problem is a co-present media space -- a computer-mediated video connection at the boundary between an office and a public area. These systems can provide both greater privacy control to the occupant and greater overall awareness information to observers. To see how co-present media spaces would work in real world settings, we built what we believe are the first ever co-present media spaces, and deployed them in two offices. From observations gathered over fifteen months, it is clear that the systems can do a better job of balancing the occupant's need for privacy and the observers' need for awareness better, than a standard window. However, we also identified a number of issues that affected the use and the success of the systems: the existence of alternate information sources, confusion with existing social norms, disparities between effort and need, and reduced interactional subtlety for observers in the public area. Our work contributes both a novel arrangement of a media space for co-present collaborators, and the first investigation into the design factors that affect the use and acceptance of these systems.

Sharing expertise

Searching for experts in the enterprise: combining text and social network analysis BIBAFull-Text 117-126
  Kate Ehrlich; Ching-Yung Lin; Vicky Griffiths-Fisher
Employees depend on other people in the enterprise for rapid access to important information. But current systems for finding experts do not adequately address the social implications of finding and engaging strangers in conversation. This paper provides a user study of SmallBlue, a social-context-aware expertise search system that can be used to identify experts, see dynamic profile information and get information about the social distance to the expert, before deciding whether and how to initiate contact. The system uses an innovative approach to privacy to infer content and dynamic social networks from email and chat logs. We describe usage of SmallBlue and discuss implications for the next generation of enterprise-wide systems for finding people.
Recommendations in taste related domains: collaborative filtering vs. social filtering BIBAFull-Text 127-136
  Georg Groh; Christian Ehmig
We investigate how social networks can be used in recommendation generation in taste related domains. Social Filtering (using social networks for neighborhood generation) is compared to Collaborative Filtering with respect to prediction accuracy in the domain of rating clubs. After reviewing background and related work, we present an extensive empirical study where over thousand participants from a social networking community where asked to provide ratings for clubs in Munich. We then compare a typical traditional CF-approach to a social recommender / social filtering approach where friends from the underlying social network are used as rating neighborhood and analyze the experiments statistically. Surprisingly, the social filtering approach outperforms the CF approach in all variants of the experiment. The implications of the experiment for professional and private-life collaborative environments and services where recommendations play a role are discussed. We conclude with future perspectives on social recommender systems, especially in upcoming mobile environments.
Arkose: reusing informal information from online discussions BIBAFull-Text 137-146
  Kevin K. Nam; Mark S. Ackerman
Online discussions such as a large-scale community brainstorming often end up with an unorganized bramble of ideas and topics that are difficult to reuse. A process of distillation is needed to boil down a large information space into information that is concise and organized. We take a system-augmented approach to the problem by creating a set of tools with which human editors can collaboratively distill a large amount of informal information.
   Two design principles, which we will define as incremental diagenesis and incremental summarization, help editors flexibly distill the informal information. Our system, Arkose, is built as a demonstration of these principles, providing the necessary tools for distillation. These tools include a number of visualization and information retrieval mechanisms, as well as an authoring tool and a navigator for the information space. They support a gradual increase in the order and reusability of the information space and allow various levels of intermediate states of a distillation.

Dealing with dependencies

Supporting collaborative software development through the visualization of socio-technical dependencies BIBAFull-Text 147-156
  Cleidson R. de Souza; Stephen Quirk; Erik Trainer; David F. Redmiles
One of the reasons large-scale software development is difficult is the number of dependencies that software engineers face. These dependencies create a need for communication and coordination that requires continuous effort by developers. Empirical studies, including our own, suggest that technical dependencies among software components create social dependencies among the software developers implementing those components. Based on this observation, we developed Ariadne, a plug-in for Eclipse. Ariadne analyzes software projects for dependencies and collects authorship information about projects relying on configuration management repositories. Ariadne can "translate" technical dependencies among components into social dependencies among developers. We have created visualizations to convey dependency information and the presence of coordination problems identified in our previous work. We believe the information conveyed in the visualizations will prove useful for software developers.
Dcv: a causality detection approach for large-scale dynamic collaboration environments BIBAFull-Text 157-166
  Ning Gu; Qiwei Zhang; Jiangming Yang; Wei Ye
Recent studies have indicated the significance of supporting real-time group editing in "Wiki" applications, whose collaboration environments have their dynamic and large-scale nature. Correct capture of causal relationships between operations from different users is crucial in order to preserve consistency of object copies. This challenge was resolved by employing vector logical clock. But since its size is equal to the number of cooperating sites, it has low efficiency when dealing with a collaborative environment involving a large number of participants. In this paper, we propose a direct causal vector (DCV) approach for solving causality detection issues in real-time group editors. DCV timestamp does not record the causality information that can be deduced from the transitivity of causal relation. As a result, it can automatically reduce its own size when people leave the collaboration session and always keep small. We prove that DCV approach is well fit for capturing causality in wiki like large-scale dynamic collaboration environments.
Community, consensus, coercion, control: cs*w or how policy mediates mass participation BIBAFull-Text 167-176
  Travis Kriplean; Ivan Beschastnikh; David W. McDonald; Scott A. Golder
When large groups cooperate, issues of conflict and control surface because of differences in perspective. Managing such diverse views is a persistent problem in cooperative group work. The Wikipedian community has responded with an evolving body of policies that provide shared principles, processes, and strategies for collaboration. We employ a grounded approach to study a sample of active talk pages and examine how policies are employed as contributors work towards consensus. Although policies help build a stronger community, we find that ambiguities in policies give rise to power plays. This lens demonstrates that support for mass collaboration must take into account policy and power.

Knowledge sharing in practice

Knowledge work artifacts: kernel cousins for free/open source software development BIBAFull-Text 177-186
  Margaret Elliott; Mark S. Ackerman; Walt Scacchi
Most empirical studies of peer production have focused on the final products of these efforts (such as software in Free/Open Source projects), but there are also many other knowledge artifacts that improve the effectiveness of the project. This paper presents a study of an intermediate work product, or informalism, used in a Free/Open Source Software project, GNUe. A digest-like artifact called the Kernel Cousin (KC) was used extensively in the project. These KCs allowed critical coordination and memory, but at the cost of considerable effort. The paper presents two examples of the KCs' use in the project as well as an analysis of their benefits and costs.
Structuring cross-organizational knowledge sharing BIBAFull-Text 187-196
  Kevin F. White; Wayne G. Lutters
Ontology development is fundamental to most knowledge management efforts. When approached in a formal knowledge engineering manner the resulting ontology usually becomes brittle when spanning even a modest number of groups within a single organization. It breaks entirely when scaled to multiple, heterogeneous organizations. A promising alternative is the bottom-up approach such as can be found in social tagging systems (e.g., del.ico.us), but little research has examined the utility of these systems for knowledge reuse activities. In this paper we extend our field work with IT helpdesk staff to examine the drivers for natural ontology development. We found that a balance between some degree of external order while maintaining local flexibility was required. This information space is navigated via social relations, especially expert referral. We examine the user-centered design criteria for both mid-level ontology development and related expert profile management.
The gospel of knowledge management in and out of a professional community BIBAFull-Text 197-206
  Norman Makoto Su; Hiroko Wilensky; David Redmiles; Gloria Mark
Knowledge management (KM) remains an anomaly in most corporations today. Critics call KM a fad of the 1990s, whereas supporters claim KM is actively evolving. Our work examines the disciplinary rhetoric of KM: how is it that practitioners of KM seek to legitimize their field in the corporate world? We focus on practitioners in the aerospace industry and their forum. We argue that this forum serves as a hub for constructing KM's legitimacy. Our two year ethnography traces the rhetorical strategies utilized by informants in and out of a professional community to legitimize KM as discipline in the aerospace industry.

Formation of groups, teams and communities

Cooperation and groupness: community formation in small online collaborative groups BIBAFull-Text 207-216
  Sean P. Goggins; James Laffey; I-Chun Tsai
We present a detailed descriptive analysis of the adoption and adaptation of common online tools by a newly forming small group with a cooperative work task. We compare their use of different tools over the course of successive specific cooperative activities, and describe how they use these tools as objects in the formation of a small online community. General patterns of participation that recognize the physical contexts of online group members, and specific patterns of interaction that influence the formation of an online community are explicated. The results of this study have implications for understanding how tools and tasks influence group formation and sense of community in online systems.
Feedback for guiding reflection on teamwork practices BIBAFull-Text 217-220
  Gilly Leshed; Jeffrey T. Hancock; Dan Cosley; Poppy L. McLeod; Geri Gay
Effective communication in project teams is important, but not often taught. We explore how feedback might improve teamwork in a controlled experiment where groups interact through chat rooms. Collaborators who receive high feedback ratings use different language than poor collaborators (e.g. more words, fewer assents, and less affect-laden language). Further, feedback affects language use. This suggests that a system could use linguistic analysis to automatically provide and visualize feedback to teach teamwork. To this end, we present GroupMeter, a system that applies principles discovered in the experiment to provide feedback both from peers and from automated linguistic analysis.
A metrics framework for evaluating group formation BIBAFull-Text 221-224
  Asma Ounnas; David E. Millard; Hugh C. Davis
Many approaches to learning and teaching rely upon students working in groups. So far, many Computer-Supported Group Formation systems have been designed to facilitate the formation of optimal groups in learning. However, evaluating the quality of automated group formation is not always well reported. In this paper we propose a metrics framework for evaluating group formation based upon a model for constraint satisfaction-based group formation.
How does common ground increase? BIBAFull-Text 225-228
  Gregorio Convertino; Helena M. Mentis; Alex Y. W. Ting; Mary Beth Rosson; John M. Carroll
We studied the process of sharing and managing knowledge (common ground process) in three-member teams performing emergency management planning tasks on shared maps. We built a reference task and a role-based multi-view prototype for studying this process. In this paper we empirically test the claim that common ground increases through joint experience on a task over time. We model the common ground process using a realistic task, a controlled setting, and multiple measures. We present findings from the analysis of questionnaires, communication transcripts, videos, and artifacts.

Infrastructuring

Tensions across the scales: planning infrastructure for the long-term BIBAFull-Text 229-238
  David Ribes; Thomas A. Finholt
In designing information infrastructure participants are planning for the long-term. The notion of infrastructure evokes images beyond 'a proof of concept,' a 'prototype' or an isolated 'application'; it is intended to be a persistent, ubiquitous and reliable environment. However, in implementing such projects participants confront multiple difficulties such as securing sustained funding, supporting maintenance and integrating new technologies.
   Based on cross-case ethnographic analysis this paper traces nine tensions identified by participants as they endeavor to transition from short-term projects to long-term information infrastructure. We explore three core concerns framed by actors: motivating contribution; aligning end-goals; and designing for use. These concerns have unique implications for each scale of infrastructure: institutionalization; the organization of work; and enacting technology.
Growing an infrastructure: the role of gateway organizations in cultivating new communities of users BIBAFull-Text 239-248
  Ann Zimmerman; Thomas A. Finholt
Issues of scaling are critical when an infrastructure is trying to grow. Systems that worked well with smaller numbers or particular types of users must change to meet the needs of an expanding and diversified user base. A first step toward growth is to cultivate new users. We present results from research that examines one approach to the challenge of attracting new users to a large-scale computing infrastructure. We describe gateway organizations and the important social and technical support they provide, which help potential users to conceptualize a use for the infrastructure and increase their willingness and ability to use it.
The story of a working workflow management system BIBAFull-Text 249-258
  Steen Brahe; Kjeld Schmidt
This work presents experiences with the adopting of a workflow management system in a large financial institution. We describe the gradual evolution of a traditional work process, from manual to computational regulation of coordination. The study shows that computational workflows may increase labor productivity remarkably and in general have significant economic benefits, but also that to make current workflow technologies yield such results requires unorthodox twists and tweaks in the workflow design to allow for worker control and process overview. The paper argues that workflow technology is now at a stage where the contribution of CSCW is obviously needed.

Wikis and information seeking

Creating, destroying, and restoring value in wikipedia BIBAFull-Text 259-268
  Reid Priedhorsky; Jilin Chen; Shyong (Tony) K. Lam; Katherine Panciera; Loren Terveen; John Riedl
Wikipedia's brilliance and curse is that any user can edit any of the encyclopedia entries. We introduce the notion of the impact of an edit, measured by the number of times the edited version is viewed. Using several datasets, including recent logs of all article views, we show that an overwhelming majority of the viewed words were written by frequent editors and that this majority is increasing. Similarly, using the same impact measure, we show that the probability of a typical article view being damaged is small but increasing, and we present empirically grounded classes of damage. Finally, we make policy recommendations for Wikipedia and other wikis in light of these findings.
An investigation of the use of a wiki to support knowledge exchange in public health BIBAFull-Text 269-272
  Richard Giordano
This paper describes the use of a wiki to foster joint learning among a group of non-profit, community-based organizations involved with improving public health in London. The goal of the wiki was to encourage the growth of a community of practice-clear patterns of mutual engagement, joint enterprise and an emergent and shared repertoire of action-among these organizations. Participants reported that they failed to contribute to the wiki largely for economic reasons, issues of identity, and a lack of group norms. A critical factor in its failure, however, was the lack of its integration into existing work practices and project governance.
Twiki and wetpaint: two wikis in academic environments BIBAFull-Text 273-276
  Libby Hemphill; Jude Yew
This paper describes a community-based effort to preserve organizational knowledge and to orientate newcomers to a graduate school. It presents a very brief review of recent research on wiki use in corporate and organizational environments and initial data from two wiki implementation iterations within our academic community. We contrast use of a TWiki with that of a WetPaint wiki. Our data suggest that with low barriers to participation and a great deal of patience, wikis can be useful stores for community information and knowledge sharing.
The "active" gatekeeper in collaborative information seeking activities BIBAFull-Text 277-280
  Patricia Ruma Spence; Madhu C. Reddy
Multidisciplinary team members often must work together to find needed information. To identify when team members collaborate, why they collaborate, and how they collaborate during information seeking activities, we conducted a field study of a multidisciplinary patient care team. We found that the unit secretary, a non-clinical team member, had characteristics of various types of gatekeepers identified in previous studies. However, unlike those gatekeepers, the unit secretary also played a particularly active role during information seeking activities. Most medical information systems design focus on supporting collaboration amongst clinical staff. Our study highlights the importance of also supporting non-clinical team members.

Design methods

Value tensions in design: the value sensitive design, development, and appropriation of a corporation's groupware system BIBAFull-Text 281-290
  Jessica K. Miller; Batya Friedman; Gavin Jancke
We report on the value sensitive design, development, and appropriation of a groupware system to support software engineering knowledge sharing. Usage data (5,965 visitors) and semi-structured interviews (18 individuals) suggest the methods employed were successful in addressing value tensions, particularly with respect to privacy, awareness, and reputation. Key contributions include: (1) "proof-of-concept" that established Value Sensitive Design principles and methods can be used to good effect for the design of groupware in an industry setting, (2) a new design method for addressing value tensions, Value Dams and Flows, and (3) demonstration of the co-evolution of technology and organizational policy.
Beyond the lan: techniques from network games for improving groupware performance BIBAFull-Text 291-300
  Jeff Dyck; Carl Gutwin; T. C. Nicholas Graham; David Pinelle
Networked games can provide groupware developers with important lessons in how to deal with real-world networking issues such as latency, limited bandwidth and packet loss. Games have similar demands and characteristics to groupware, but unlike the applications studied by academics, games have provided production-quality real-time interaction for many years. The techniques used by games have not traditionally been made public, but several game networking libraries have recently been released as open source, providing the opportunity to learn how games achieve network performance. We examined five game libraries to find networking techniques that could benefit groupware; this paper presents the concepts most valuable to groupware developers, including techniques to deal with limited bandwidth, reliability, and latency. Some of the techniques have been previously reported in the networking literature; therefore, the contribution of this paper is to survey which techniques have been shown to work, over several years, and then to link these techniques to quality requirements specific to groupware. By adopting these techniques, groupware designers can dramatically improve network performance on the real-world Internet.
Users as contextual features of software product development and testing BIBAFull-Text 301-310
  David Martin; John Rooksby; Mark Rouncefield
This paper examines how software developers discuss users and how such discussions are intrinsic to the negotiation and settling of technical decisions in the development and testing of a software product. Using ethnographic data, we show how the user features in conversations, not as a 'topic' but as 'context' to technical work. By understanding the user as a contextual feature in developers' group work we are able to draw attention to issues in the use of Extreme Programming for software product development. Extreme Programming is a participatory design method, but software product development involves envisioning and designing for future customers.

Computer supported learning

Transparency and technology appropriation: social impacts of a video blogging system in dental hygiene clinical instruction BIBAFull-Text 311-320
  L. Amaya Becvar; James D. Hollan
This work describes a multi-year ethnography-for-design study in a dental hygiene training program in San Diego, USA. We performed an ethnographic analysis of instructional practices used in clinical instruction, and helped design a new training laboratory, equipped with digital media technology, through which students and instructors could access a video blogging ('vlogging') system. We present an analysis of how the vlogging system transformed social and instructional interactions in clinical training. Additionally, we describe how the faculty's appropriation of vlog technology was initially challenged by the presentation of divergent methodology in vlog records, and increased transparency of teaching practices in video records.
Mixed-method validation of pedagogical concepts for an intercultural online learning environment: a case study BIBAFull-Text 321-330
  Effie Lai-Chong Law; Anh Vu Nguyen-Ngoc; Selahattin Kuru
The rise of social software poses the challenges to the design and evaluation of a pedagogically sound online learning environment (OLE). Our OLE addresses these challenges by the integration of three pedagogical concepts -- cross-cultural collaboration, self-directed learning and social networking -- with the aim to advance participants' competencies and by mixed-method approaches to evaluating the complex situations. A validation trial involving four European countries was conducted. Groups of students co-created a questionnaire, which was assessed to provide an indicator of task performance. Multi-source (surveys, blogs, emails, diaries, chats, videoconference, and interviews) and multi-perspective data (facilitators, students, researchers) were studied with social network analysis, content analysis and conversation analysis. Several a posteriori research questions are addressed.
The effects of explicit referencing in distance problem solving over shared maps BIBAFull-Text 331-340
  Mauro Cherubini; Pierre Dillenbourg
Explicit Referencing is a mechanism for enabling deictic gestures in on-line communication. Little is known about the impact of ER on distance problem solving. In this paper, we report on a study where 120 students (60 pairs) had to solve a problem collaboratively, at a distance, using chat tools that differed in the way a user may relate an utterance to the task context. Results indicate that team performance is improved by explicit referencing mechanisms. However, when Explicit Referencing is implemented in a way that is detrimental to the linearity of the conversation, resulting in the visual dispersion or scattering of messages, its use has negative consequences for collaborative work at a distance. The role of a linear message history in the collaboration mechanisms was equally important than that of Explicit Referencing.

Social tagging

Comparing tagging vocabularies among four enterprise tag-based services BIBAFull-Text 341-350
  Michael J. Muller
We compare four tagging-based enterprise services, which respectively stored bookmarks to webpages and documents, to people, to blog entries, and to hierarchically-structured activity records. Analysis of user data and tag data showed relatively small overlaps in tags used. Conventional normalization strategies produced only modest improvement. These results suggest difficulties in combining exploratory searches across multiple social-tagging services. We recommend strategies for cross-service tag integration at the points of tag storage and tag search, rather than at the conventional point of tag entry. We close with a research agenda around this strategy.
Evaluating tagging behavior in social bookmarking systems: metrics and design heuristics BIBAFull-Text 351-360
  Umer Farooq; Thomas G. Kannampallil; Yang Song; Craig H. Ganoe; John M. Carroll; Lee Giles
To improve existing social bookmarking systems and to design new ones, researchers and practitioners need to understand how to evaluate tagging behavior. In this paper, we analyze over two years of data from CiteULike, a social bookmarking system for tagging academic papers. We propose six tag metrics-tag growth, tag reuse, tag non-obviousness, tag discrimination, tag frequency, and tag patterns-to understand the characteristics of a social bookmarking system. Using these metrics, we suggest possible design heuristics to implement a social bookmarking system for CiteSeer, a popular online scholarly digital library for computer science. We believe that these metrics and design heuristics can be applied to social bookmarking systems in other domains.
The quest for quality tags BIBAFull-Text 361-370
  Shilad Sen; F. Maxwell Harper; Adam LaPitz; John Riedl
Many online communities use tags -- community selected words or phrases -- to help people find what they desire. The quality of tags varies widely, from tags that capture a key dimension of an entity to those that are profane, useless, or unintelligible. Tagging systems must often select a subset of available tags to display to users due to limited screen space. Because users often spread tags they have seen, selecting good tags not only improves an individual's view of tags, it also encourages them to create better tags in the future. We explore implicit (behavioral) and explicit (rating) mechanisms for determining tag quality. Based on 102,056 tag ratings and survey responses collected from 1,039 users over 100 days, we offer simple suggestions to designers of online communities to improve the quality of tags seen by their users.

Social networking

Judging you by the company you keep: dating on social networking sites BIBAFull-Text 371-378
  Adeline Y. Lee; Amy S. Bruckman
This study examines dating strategies in Social Networking Sites (SNS) and the features that help participants achieve their dating goals. Qualitative data suggests the SNS feature, the friends list, plays a prominent role in finding potential dates, verifying credibility, and validating ongoing relationship commitment levels. Observations of how study participants use the friends list may provide design implications for social networking sites interested in facilitating romantic connection among their users. More broadly, this research shows how subtle user-interface design choices in social computing software can have a profound effect on non-trivial activities like finding a life partner.
That's what friends are for: facilitating 'who knows what' across group boundaries BIBAFull-Text 379-382
  N. Sadat Shami; Y. Connie Yuan; Dan Cosley; Ling Xia; Geri Gay
We describe the design and evaluation of K-net, a social matching system to help people learn 'who knows what' in an organization by matching people with skills with those who need them. Transactive memory theory predicts that K-net will improve individuals' awareness of 'who knows what'. This should lead to improved performance through sharing knowledge across group boundaries. We evaluate K-net in terms of these predictions in an experiment with 41 students in seven groups working on software engineering projects. Accurate recommendations improved awareness of 'who knows what' versus 'random' recommendations, but did not improve performance. Our results highlight issues related to the evaluation of systems for sharing knowledge across group boundaries.
Identity management: multiple presentations of self in facebook BIBAFull-Text 383-386
  Joan Morris DiMicco; David R. Millen
As the use of social networking websites becomes increasingly common, the types of social relationships managed on these sites are becoming more numerous and diverse. This research seeks to gain an understanding of the issues related to managing different social networks through one system, in particular looking at how users of these systems present themselves when they are using one site to keep in contact with both their past social groups from school and their current social connections in the workplace. To do this, we examined online profile pages and interviewed employees at a large software development company who frequently use the website Facebook, a site primarily used by college students and young graduates transitioning into the work force. The outcome of this initial case study is a framework for understanding how users manage self-presentation while maintaining social relationships in heterogeneous networks.
The dogear game: a social bookmark recommender system BIBAFull-Text 387-390
  Casey Dugan; Michael Muller; David R. Millen; Werner Geyer; Beth Brownholtz; Marty Moore
We describe the Dogear Game, which works with an enterprise social bookmarking system. The game is designed to accomplish individual, collaborative, and organization goals. Individual players receive entertainment and learn about their colleagues' bookmarks. The player's colleagues receive recommendations of websites and documents of potential interest to them. And the organization benefits from a richer knowledge-base of bookmarks as recommendations are accepted. The Dogear Game builds on von Ahn's "serious games," useful in motivating and distributing game-like entertaining "work" to a large group of game players. This note presents the design and implementation of a working prototype and some initial user feedback.

Dealing with disruptions

Supporting trust building in distributed groups by appropriate security technology BIBAFull-Text 391-398
  Wolfgang Appelt; Sanjin Pajo; Wolfgang Prinz
In this paper, we discuss requirements for building trust in locally distributed groups whose members co-operate via shared workspace systems. We argue that appropriate security technology should be an intrinsic part of such systems and describe a conceptual model as well as a recent extension to an existing shared workspace system that provides the respective functionality based on PGP.
Unpacking the social dimension of external interruptions BIBAFull-Text 399-408
  Rikard Harr; Victor Kaptelinin
The paper systematically explores the social dimension of external interruptions of human activities. Interruptions and interruption handling are key issues in human-computer interaction (HCI) and computer-supported cooperative work (CSCW) research. However, existing research has almost exclusively dealt with effects of interruptions on individual tasks. In this paper we call for expanding the scope of analysis by including the effect of interruptions on the social context. We identify four facets of the social 'ripple effect' of interruptions: location, communication, collaboration, and interpersonal relation. We discuss the advantages of extending the notion of interruptions and its implications for future research.