Title: Being There: The Promise Of Multimedia
Authors: David Brittan
Citation: Technology Review May/June 1992
Reprinted in: Baecker, R.M., Readings in Groupware and Computer-Supported Cooperative Work 1993, pp. 57-65
Multimedia is one of the most effective ways of enforcing the computer
supported cooperative work using computers. It has been said that without the use
of video clips the communication looks dull and important visual clues are lost. This
paper covers the usage of multimedia in the CSCW.
There are a variety of tools already developed which use the multimedia applications.
Rapport Systems : This system discusses the aspect of virtual meeting rooms where one person at a time is in full control of the document in question. The others can raise a point occasionally in the system and hence proceed. Since tranmission of video is a great problem they have not used it in this system.
NTT's Team Workstation : A common document can be worked upon on the individual screens and the total result can be obtained on the shared screen which gives the overall outlook of the document.
Media Space : In this they have a projector screen which has a camera in the background transmitting the data or the corrections which in turn in sent to another screen and the other group can analyse the work.
Cruiser : This system enables the users to incorporate drop in visits to their colleagues using the video audio Cruiser system. They have a camera and an audio tool which forms the basis for this project.
The above tools although incorporated in the information world today pose some problems though like the video transmission and compression techniques, bandwidth limitations, camera shyness and others. But as the tools become more popular people will get accustomed to it and may be the virtual work environment will become a reality