Using Email to Facilitate Wiki-based, Coordinated Collaborative Authoring

Dandelion is a wiki-based tool that supports coordinated, collaborative authoring. In this paper, we present an extended version of Dandelion, which provides an email interface for users to accomplish their tasks by email in a coordinated, collaborative authoring process. Specifically, Dandelion employs a semi-structured, template-based approach that allows users to use templates to specify their requests in email. These emailed requests can be interpreted by Dandelion and the interpretation results are then used to automatically drive the collaboration flow. As part of its actions, Dandelion also automatically creates a wiki page and dynamically updates it to record co-authoring tasks and collate co-authored content. As a result, users can use their familiar tool (email) to accomplish their tasks in a co-authoring process, while leveraging a wiki for additional benefits (e.g., collaboration awareness and document editing). Our preliminary study with two groups of users shows the usefulness of both Dandelion email and wiki features and their impact on collaboration effectiveness.

By: Chang Yan Chi; Michelle X. Zhou; Min Yang; Wen Peng Xiao; Eric M. Wilcox

Published in: RC25056 in 2010


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