Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Horizontal Thinking

Thinking differently about working spaces can help just as much as the latest digital offerings.

But what about the situation when not all of your team are completely used to working in digital environments? Its still the case that some are more used to working in a room with a whiteboard and marker pens. So how can you help them work collaboratively?

Neil Maiden, Head of Human Computer Interaction at City Univerisity in London claims in a recent Computer Weekly article that whiteboards may not be the best way to encourage collaboration. By their very design they are a wall that gets monopolised by a particular individual. From my own experience, working together on one becomes cumbersome.

But what happens when you turn the whiteboard down and create a tabletop environment instead? Well you get a "table supported multi-user collaboration" environment of course. Put in a simplistic way.. its easier and more inclusive for people to work on a horizonal surface... who'd have thought?

The article goes on to cover digital tabletop technology such as Microsoft Surface, the digital version of this idea, manifested as a desktop... literally.

Could meeting rooms in the future be less about the writing on the walls and more about what's put on the table?
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