Using distributed user interfaces in collaborative, secure, and privacy-preserving software environments
In complex, ad hoc constituted situations, people with different intentions, experiences, and expertise need or want to cooperate to cope with the domain-specific challenges they face. These situations can occur in both a professional and a leisure-life context. Cooperative systems providing enhanced interaction facilities in the user interface (e. g., direct manipulation techniques) could substantially support cooperation especially for geographically distributed cooperating participants. In many cases, sensitive information has to be shared in a common workspace requiring different handling procedures according to the different types of participants involved in these ad hoc processes. This article proposes the use of a common, multilaterally secure distributed user interface to support collaboration for distributed groups of process participants. The system combines a collaborative multipointer system with an anonymous credential security system to provide users with an easy way to share and access information securely, ensuring the privacy of sensitive information communicated in the course of ad hoc processes. Various scenarios representing contrary use cases from three different projects are introduced to derive typical requirements and to show the generality of the proposed system and its core components.