Research and Development in Collaboration

Throughout the company's history, one speciality of GSC Associates has been the development of effective human-computer interfaces, Such interfaces combine the perceptual and cognitive abilities of humans optimally with the capabilities of computer processing. Many of these human-computer interfaces have been in important and challenging areas including:

  1. conceptual design of complex systems including military aircraft and electronic circuits,
  2. the acquisition of new SIGINT targets for collection,
  3. mission planning and mission management in intelligence collection systems, and
  4. "fly the business" interfaces for senior managers in manufacturing operations.

Today, these complex human-computer interfaces typically involve a major element of computer supported collaborative work (CSCW) among multiple individuals and organizations. During the past five years, GSC Associates has gained considerable experience in the development of collaborative interfaces and the analysis of the effectiveness of  such interfaces and has developed a significant technology base in this area. The areas in which we have working in the recent past and are continuing to work include some of the most challenging areas of collaborative work today:

  1. As part of the Rolling Start for DARPA?s Integrated Battle Command program in 2004, we designed and developed the Coalition Collaboration Aid (CCA) system to support operations planning at a Joint Forces headquarters. CCA analyzed the progress of collaborative interchanges in real-time using a variety of measures of effectiveness based both on message externals and internals (linguistic content) and alerted leaders to groups whose members were not interacting effectively. We participated in a demonstration of this technology at USJFCOM in November 2004 and presented a paper about this work at the 10th International Command and Control Research and Technology Symposium (ICCRTS): A Measurement and Monitoring System for Tracking and Visualizing Collaboration Metrics in Real-time and for Later Analysis.
  2. As part of the  Strategic Mobility 21 research program conducted for the Office of Naval Research, in 2007 we conceptualized, designed, and developed a set of web portal interfaces. We implemented these interfaces using SharePoint 2007 along with standard Microsoft Office file formats such as Excel. The web portal provides a collection of web based interfaces for human users and operators of a transportation and logistics management system for Southern California. The functionality includes: 
    1. a collaborative interface that allows military transportation planners and ship stow planners to cooperate in optimizing the transportation of unit equipment to ports and the loading of that equipment on board ships; 
    2. a logistics common operating picture that analyzes information for many different sources including EDI messages, RFID tag reads, and rail tracking data to present actionable information to the operators of costal and inland ports; and 
    3. a regional planning interface that includes a wikipedia and database of regional logistics and transportation information, geo-spatial visualizations, and modelling, simulation, and analysis tools organized around set of common data files based on a formal ontology.
    A paper about this work presented at the 12th ICCRTS: Collaboration in Regional Civilian and Military Transportation Planning.

GSC Associates
Denver: 2727 Xanthia Court, Denver, CO 80238-2611, +1-720-453-8045 (phone)
Keystone: 0084 Oro Grande Drive, #123D, Keystone, Colorado 80435-7768, +1-970-262-1429 (phone)


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