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Title:INTROSPECT: A meta-level specification framework for dynamic, evolvable collaboration support
Author(s):Tolone, William Joseph
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Kaplan, Simon M.
Department / Program:Computer Science
Discipline:Computer Science
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Computer Science
Abstract:Much attention over the past ten years has been given to the research field of Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW). Although a relatively young research domain, CSCW includes a large, multi-disciplinary research community with individuals from both computer science and social science related fields. A fundamental challenge to the CSCW community is to build systems which support the inherent complexities of collaborative work situations. An understanding of the situated, double-level and invisible nature of work helps CSCW researchers meet this challenge by leading to the fundamental insight that work is highly contingent.
Efforts to develop CSCW systems, however, have suffered in part from an improper respect for the dynamic, evolutionary nature of collaborative work. Work activities are highly organic, i.e., they are continually evolving in response to contingencies, changes in objectives, changes in work place, etc. Consequently, users must be able to shape the collaboration support which CSCW systems provide. The need for dynamic, evolutionary collaboration support introduces a second problem to CSCW system design: the absence of appropriate Application Programmer Interfaces (APIs) and associated specification environments. To be useful, CSCW systems must provide end users an appropriate API since end users often shape their own work practices.
This thesis proposes a meta-level specification framework for collaboration called I scNTROSPECT. I scNTROSPECT is characterized as a meta-level specification framework because it employs a meta-level architecture based on the principle of reflection which affords dynamic, evolvable collaboration support and provides an Application Programmer Interface and associated specification environment which enables end users to define and evolve the required collaboration support through a combination of visual and textual specification techniques.
This research is couched within a larger project called the scWORLDS project. scWORLDS is a next generation CSCW environment designed to support the highly situated, contingent, formal and informal aspects of work. I scNTROSPECT provides scWORLDS with a collaboration infrastructure which enables users to receive highly dynamic collaboration support and provides users with the ability to define and evolve the collaboration support based on the work activity at hand. The design of scWORLDS, and consequently I scNTROSPECT, is grounded in part in a new theory of collaboration called Locale Theory.
Issue Date:1996
Rights Information:Copyright 1996 Tolone, William Joseph
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9712462
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9712462

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