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O'Reilly Mac OS X Conference
Mac Troubleshooting Dog.


UI Design for Collaborative, Multi-user Applications
Brook Conner, NYU

Track: Programming
Date: Wednesday, October 29
Time: 10:45am - 11:30am
Location: Lafayette/San Tomas/Lawrence

Evaluate Session


Networking permits computer-supported collaborative work (CSCW) and Rendezvous enables spontaneous CSCW, but traditional menus and windows are designed for a single user, not for several working at the same time. If you're building a distributed, multi-user, collaborative application, how should you design the UI? This session shows you how.

There are many different conceptual models for a CSCW UI: shared memory like a chat room; distributed and uncoupled like CVS; or exclusive control like single-speaker conference calls. These models are all built on low-level concepts usually relegated to kernel and database hackers, topics like concurrency (i.e., readers/writers locks), race conditions, and network lag. User interface designers must not only understand these concepts, but present them to users in understandable and effective ways. Social aspects come into play as well.

This session will explore all these topics, and show how the unique graphical and user interface capabilities of Mac OS X can be used to present CSCW users with a clear, easy-to-use, and Mac-like user interface.

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