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Cross organizational groupware and interoperability challenges

An approach based on interoperating data sharing components
: Asrori, A.
: Nazari Shirehjini, A.A.

Darmstadt, 2004, 135 S.
Darmstadt, FH, Master Thesis, 2004
Master Thesis
Fraunhofer IGD ()
interoperability; computer supported cooperative work; CSCW; data sharing; web-based service

Many collaborative applications built based on similar component functions but implemented in different policies and architectures cannot interoperate with each other. Therefore it is not possible for users utilizing different collaborative applications to interact with each other even though the collaborative applications have similar functions.
The basic designs of collaborative application consist of data sharing, session management and concurrency control. Some developers have defined interoperability only in session management and concurrency control using different collaborative applications. Some others defined interoperability in data sharing, but by using only one collaborative application. For different frameworks, another approach is needed to support interoperability in data sharing. The objective of this thesis is to investigate different approaches of data sharing interoperability in collaborative systems, and to provide guidelines for developers and researches.
As a challenge for this interoperation, we experimented with two collaborative discussion components that are built in heterogeneous frameworks. The experiment has resulted in some general designs, techniques, and concepts (semantically and partially abstract) to the interoperation in different data sharing models, including a sample program as a proof of our model. The interoperation needs to ensure that the operations in one network are understandable and performs same semantic operations on other network(s). Therefore, a mediator (gateway) was utilized to bridge the differences in data sharing of two collaborative applications. Also, to determine the data sharing operations in collaborative applications, it is critical to define the semantic process of the operations and compare their behavior. For each operation the process, input/output, and aspects that possibly happen in the operations were defined.
This thesis also introduced the use of Web Services for supporting the interoperation that exposed the underlying data of collaborative application into the common interface. This is possible since Web Services supports protocol standards that are commonly used, platform independence, and ease of data translation.