Studies have found awareness to be a very important component of a collaborative system Questionnaires and interviews, logging, etc may be used to assess awareness support, however, they require users. Even though users are probably the best evaluators of a system..
Quality assurance: extent to which quality is controlled in an organization. Early on, QA was based on inspections, but it evolved through methods such as statistical quality control, six-sigma and total quality management. QA extends not only to traditional industry but also to software, through e.g. cleanroom software engineering and SQFD. Formal technical reviews involve several people in a formal meeting during which a software artifact is presented, discussed, approved. Collaborative systems=technology+humans, concerned with group characteristics, communication, etc. In this setting WA must deal with multiple stakeholders, domains of concern and technology components. Difficult to assess due to complexity, time, cost. 3 existing groupware evaluation methods adapt FTR to collaborative systems: GHE (based on 8 heuristics that codify best practices in collab systems development), GWA (stepping through task sequences to explore possible failures) and KMA (checklist to assess knowledge circulation). However, in these methods, concern with awareness is diluted among many other concerns. Beyond these methods, the other technique found in the literature concerned with awareness, requires significant time and effort to accomplish.
Map of awareness elements and their relationships Awareness elements, main aspects and types of awareness they support
Time vs place is a classic categorization? in collaborative systems. This highlights spatial issues and the extent users have to go to to access the group. Studies of media richness and media naturalness show that communication mediated by technology loses several important features such as nonverbal cues, rapid feedback and arousal. In this line of reasoning, the notion of place is fundamental to adapt the medium to the group and task. Spaces provide additional context to places such as physical location, topology and mobility. We may identify five types of space
Space introduces geographical relationships: physical location, topology, mobility
Mainly concerns mobility
For example: virtual meeting rooms e.g. discussion forums, navigation is logical, not spatial
Final type of space
Workspace awareness is specialization of broader concept: situation awareness
Design elements mentioned in previous section that influence or contribute to awareness support, organized into 14 categories
Relationships between design categories and awareness elements Negatively influences workspace awareness because communication channels tend to be a limiting factor
Five experts, defined relationships between 77 design elements and awareness categories. They were supplied with strong relationships (=4), and had to add moderate (=2) and weak (=1) relationships. Accumulated correlations with value less than 2 were zeroed. Then normalized, to avoid design categories with more elements to have a higher importance in the overall score, and so the sum is 100%.
Correlations for each design element: strong positive, positive, uncorrelated, negative, strong negative Positive means implementation contributes to realize the design element, negative means implementation is detrimental to design requirement Each score (2,1,-1,-2) is multiplied by correlation in correlations matrix for the awareness category Then adding results, normalizing to a 0-100 scale, separately for positive and negative factors.
In each category, best outcome is 100 positive and 0 negative scores
Raise developers attention to understand if that type of awareness is required and how to better support it. Physical awareness: mobility and location play an important role but are not adequately supported
Developer is not forced to require all the design elements
Awareness Checklist: Reviewing the Quality of Awareness Support in Collaborative Applications Pedro Antunes, Claudio Sapateiro, Jos é A. Pino, Valeria Herskovic and Sergio F. Ochoa Department of Informatics of the Faculty of Sciences, University of Lisbon Computer Science Department, Universidad de Chile
Internalization, externalization Situation 7 Task, interaction, interdependence Workspace 6 Membership, attention Social space 5 Navigation, virtuality Virtual space 4 Mobility, physicality Physical space 3 Spatiality Geographical space 2 Accessibility, communication Time x place 1 Design categories Type of awareness