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- Created 2012-02-15
designed to help people involved in a common task achieve goals. One of the earliest definitions of collaborative software is 'intentional group processes plus software to support them.'
The design intent of collaborative software is to transform the way documents and
are shared to enable more effective team collaboration. Collaboration, with respect to
, seems to have several definitions. Understanding the differences in human interactions is necessary to ensure that appropriate technologies are employed to meet interaction needs.
Collaboration requires individuals working together in a coordinated fashion, towards a common goal. Accomplishing the goal is the primary purpose for bringing the team together. Collaborative software helps facilitate action-oriented teams working together over geographic distances by providing tools that aid communication, collaboration and the process of problem solving. Additionally, collaborative software may support
functions, such as task assignments, time-managing deadlines, and shared
s. The artefacts, the tangible evidence of the problem solving process, and the final outcome of the collaborative effort, require documentation and may involve
project plans, deadlines and deliverables.
Collaborative software is a broad concept that greatly overlaps with
Computer-supported cooperative work
(CSCW). Some authors argue they are equivalent. According to Carstensen and Schmidt (1999) groupware is part of CSCW. The authors claim that CSCW, and thereby groupware addresses "how collaborative activities and their coordination can be supported by means of computer systems". Software products such as email, calendaring,
belong to this category, whenever used for group work, whereas the more general term
applies to systems used outside the workplace, for example,
online dating service
social networking site
. It has been suggested that
— the more people who use something, the more valuable it becomes — applies to these types of software.
The use of
in the workspace creates a
collaborative working environment
(CWE). A collaborative working environment supports people in both their individual and cooperative work thus giving birth to a new class of professionals,
s, who can work together irrespective of their geographical location.
Finally collaborative software relates to the notion of
collaborative work systems
which are conceived as any form of human organization that emerges any time that collaboration takes place, whether it is formal or informal, intentional or unintentional. Whereas the groupware or collaborative software pertains to the technological elements of computer supported cooperative work, collaborative work systems become a useful analytical tool to understand the behavioral and organizational variables that are associated to the broader concept of CSCW.
from Wikipedia (last updated: 04 December), licensed under
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