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Introduction

In the age of globally acting enterprises and organisations the development and production of consumer goods, as well as service supplies are increasingly affected by a world-wide distribution and specialisation of development and production locations. Therefore, the coordination between provider, developer and component-supplier is bound to high time and cost expense. Collaborated system techniques can be used to support knowledge transfer and productivity. It is essential to improve those systems for efficient and safe service.

Goals

In the framework of CoSpaces new and highly collaborative working environments are supposed to be developed. These systems will allow engineers to build their own user-specific workspaces for design and construction. The focus lies on developing a software environment that supports collaborative solutions for:

  • distributed development at different locations
  • co-located development
  • mobile maintenance ser-vice.


EU Contract Number IST-5-034245; 01.05.2006 - 31.04.2010

Software Framework Design

The Layers of the CoSpaces Software Framework

The CoSpaces implementation plan is comprised of two technological clusters (Collaboration Services and Tools Cluster and Collaborative Workspace Cluster), with two complimentary but tightly integrated objectives to support the smooth development of technologies for supporting collaborative workspaces. The purpose of these two clusters is to produce the CoSpaces Collaborative Work Environment as presented in the above Figure.

In the implementation plan, Cluster 2 is charged with the design and implementation of the CoSpaces distributed software framework (CoSpaces Foundation Layer and the CoSpaces Collaboration Tools Layer) to bring together deployable technological components, core services and collaboration tools to support the easy creation and use of distributed collaborative workspaces to support multi-functional, mult-site and mobile team work. The design concepts of the software framework will be based on the three building blocks of ambient intelligence: "Ubiquitous Computing", "Ubiquitous Communication", and "Intelligent User-friendly Interfaces". This work will consolidate the results of previous EC funded projects and other international projects to create a deployable software support for industry.

Similarly, Cluster 3 is charged with the development and validation of a series of collaborative workspaces in realistic industrial settings to support key collaborative processes among workers and teams. The initial collaborative workspaces developed in this project are distributed design workspace, co-located design workspace and mobile workspace. These workspaces have been identified as important collaborative workspaces required by distributed virtual engineering organisations, during the EU funded Future_Workspaces roadmap activity conducted by the members of this consortium.

Our Roles

The University of Cologne is the leader of cluster 2, work package 2: "Creation of the CoSpaces Foundation Platform Layer" and work package 3: "Creation of Collaboration Tools Layer".
As the leader of work package 2 the University of Cologne is concerned with the system integration co-ordination for the creation of the Foundation Platform Layer.
The scope of our implementation work lies within the design, implementation and integration of Dynamic Session Management Tools for Collaboration.
Since the University of Cologne is also commissioned with the lead of work package 3, we are furthermore responsible for the system integration coordination for the creation of the collaboration tools layer.

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