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Andreas Kunz, Stefan Dehlin, Tommaso Piazza, Morten Fjeld, and Thomas Olofsson

Collaborative Whiteboard: Towards Remote Collaboration and Interaction in Construction Design

Abstract: The need for improved interaction and sharing of information in construction projects has grown significantly in recent years, especially as projects have become ever more complex.The early design stage is of particular importance for the final results as most of the building lifecycle characteristics are committed at this stage and the opportunity to influence them decreases rapidly as the cost of making changes, or correcting design errors, increases dramatically. Recent advances in information technology offer methods and tools to meet this need. In view of this, CollaBoard – an interactive whiteboard for remote collaboration – was developed to support mixed, geographically distributed teams. Interconnected via a network, two or more system setups allow users to interact and share information over a common interactive vertical whiteboard. Superimposing the live video of the remote partner – “people on content” – also allows the transfer of Meta information such as gestures, et cetera; resulting in a more intuitively distributed collaborative teamwork. Based on technology such as CollaBoard, the envisioned outcome of our research is a system allowing experts from different disciplines to integrate and optimize lifecycle-related parameters into a new product. The resulting system will allow each expert to adjust his/her own set of parameters, giving access to a large database through intuitive interfaces. This article also discusses possible areas of application with focus on early design, recommends future development needs and provides a brief comparison to existing and state-of the-art systems. The development work includes interdisciplinary research and development and interdisciplinary collaboration between academia and industry.

Keywords: design process, lifecycle, remote collaboration, visualization technology, whiteboard

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Full text: content.pdf (158,968 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2010 (browse)
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