Artifact awareness through screen sharing for distributed groups
When co-located, people can see the artifacts that others are working on, which in turn enables casual interactions. To help distributed groups maintain mutual awareness of people’s electronic work artifacts, we designed and implemented an awareness tool that leverages screen sharing methods. People see portions of others' screens in miniature, can selectively raise larger views of a screen to get more detail, and can engage in remote pointing. People balance awareness with privacy by using several privacyprotection strategies built into the system. An evaluation with two groups using this system shows that people use it to: maintain awareness of what others are doing, project a certain image of themselves, monitor progress, coordinate joint tasks, determine others’ availability, and engage in serendipitous conversation and collaboration. While privacy was not a large concern for these groups, a theoretical analysis suggests that privacy risks may differ for other user communities.