Collaborative Working Environments
ACT has started to test Web 2.0 technologies as working methods in ESA.
The second generation of the World Wide Web based services emphasizes information sharing and collaboration between and by the users and implies significant changes in the usage of the Web.
As first step, ACTwiki was installed (which is a MediaWiki) and now we use it in our daily work: organizing the meetings, composing the Ariadna proposals, tracking the projects and ideas, etc.
For internal projects and also external ones (for instance Ariadna projects) ACT uses Concurrent Version System (we use subversion).
We have made small steps to explore the capability of the semantic web. As a result you can now browse our publication list using the Exhibit semantic engine (developed under the SIMILE project).
A local version of the openacademia environment was installed on internal servers and tested on the databases of the GSP Calls for Ideas 2005 and 2006-2007. This example was also chosen to demonstrating the potential of this technology to visualise (potentially complex) relationships within and between different databases.
For a first demonstration with "real" ESA databases, a new user interface (called faceted view) has been created to query and fuse data from the TIDC database and from two GSP Call for Ideas databases, of course again without altering the original databases.
A Small Space Procurement entitled "Current and Future Technologies for Collaborative Working Environments" has been started recently. The main scope of this study is to provide a comprehensive survey of existing, under development and emerging CWEs softwares. Each CWEs shall then be evaluated with respect to a performance matrix including a list of preliminary criteria (like computer architectures supported, extensibility, scalability, focus, valued result, key features, motivation, key challenges, typical duration of use for information, etc.) take into account the possible use of the CWEs for multinational medium and large size enterprises (500-5000 persons). A dynamic web page will be developed containing the performed comparison. The study kick-off was held on the 14th of December with the Technical University of Vienna and will be performed in the first two months of 2008. You are invited to visit a wiki site where the current stage of the study can be followed.
Finally, please visit the ACT bookmark on the del.icio.us website.
On the 16th of April, 2007 as part of the ACT Talk series, Ivan Herman from the World Wide Web Consortium was invited to give a talk on the semantic web.