I became aware of the word "activity centric computing" through the article by Bill Ives in his article back in 2005
IBM’s Social Software Initiatives: Blogs, Wikis, Tagging, and More – Part Three- Internal Applications
Since then, I have been keeping an eye on this theme. With the annoucement of Lotus Connections, Activity explorer was introduced to the market. But I think it has not received much attention yet.
IBM recently start taliking about Connections 2.0 and re-focus on this area by saying
In Connections 2.0 we have taken great lengths to re-focus on enabling Activity Centric Collaboration. What does that mean? The high level goal is to organize work around the activities people do rather than the tools they use.
Very much looking forward to what is coming next.
David A Brooks March 1 2008 12:02:35 PMIn Connections 2.0 we have taken great lengths to re-focus on enabling Activity Centric Collaboration. What does that mean? The high level goal is to organize work around the activities people do rather than the tools they use. Think how you get your work done. Lets say you receive an email about an opening in your department. You read through this email and initiate a instant message conversation with your Director. You and your co-worker each begin drafting a posting that describes the position. When finished, you post the document and start getting emails from job candidates. These applicants send you emails with links to websites, resumes, and so-on. As a team, you collaboratively review the applicants and make hiring recommendations.
Activities enables line of business workers to plan their tasks and create high level structure in the collaborative nature of an Activity while still using all your existing tools (email, instant messaging, word processing, spreadsheets, etc.). Activity templates allow your business to captures best practices and repeated tasks for easy discovery.
In Activities 1.0, line of business users could create and manage individual activities and their participating members. These activities had integrated tasks, discussion threads, bookmarks, files (documents, spreadsheets, pictures, etc.), and surfaced with all your familiar applications (email, instant messaging, etc.). This enables in-context collaboration while organizing and sharing via a higher level Activity.
Activities 2.0 brings this a step forward by introducing the concept of flexible entry types. Activities is no longer restricted to adding a predefined entry types (such as a file or a bookmark or a message) to an Activity. While creating an entry you can choose the characteristics of an entry that correlate to the task at hand. Returning to the job candidate example, you want to list all applicants in an Activity. An applicant has a name, contact info, a resume, a date of availability, and a link to an his or her external website or blog. In the new flexible entry types of Activities, the freedom is yours.
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