Meetings in a Virtual Space: Creating a Digital Document.

Abstract

Improvements in computer network infrastructures and information utilities have led to an increase in the number of social and work interactions carried out ‘virtually’ by geographically separated group members [1, 5, 6, 7]. In this paper we describe the design and evaluation of a prototype system that supports synchronous and asynchronous collaboration between researchers separated by space and time. The system provides non-collocated team members with a digital, virtual space for information sharing and discussion. For synchronous interactions, our design prioritizes provision of shared context, real-time discourse, and real-time problem solving and negotiation between the team members. In the case of asynchronous interactions, we have prioritized the capture of team decision making and negotiation processes and the representation of these processes in a context-rich, hypertextual document of team problem solving and negotiation.