Innovations in Visualization


Stacey D. Scott
Sheelagh Carpendale

Territoriality in Collaborative Tabletop Workspaces

Casual piling of paper-based media during traditional tabletop collaboration is an important practice that helps coordinate task and group interactions. Previous research has shown that the ability to move piles around on a table plays a critical role in accessing and sharing task resources. However, existing casual storage techniques for digital workspaces only provide access to stored items at the periphery of the workspace, potentially compromising collaborative interactions at a digital tabletop display. To address this issue, we introduce storage bins, a mobile storage mechanism that enables access to stored items anywhere in the workspace. We also present an exploratory user study involving the use of mobile and peripheral storage mechanisms on a large, hi-resolution collaborative tabletop display. Findings from this study demonstrate the utility of storage bins and further our understanding of the impact of mobile and peripheral storage mechanisms on collaboration at a tabletop display.

In addition, current interfaces do not effectively support collaborative work at a tabletop display because standard interface components are not appropriate for large, horizontal displays. Consequently, the fundamental components of tabletop groupware interfaces must be reconsidered. New interface components and interaction techniques must be developed to provide the basic building blocks for tabletop groupware designers, analogous to the interface components used by designers of desktop systems (e.g., buttons, sliders, and drop-down menus), before effective tabletop groupware systems can be developed.

The lead author Stacey Scott is now a professor at the University of Guelph, formerly at the University of Waterloo.


Stacey D. Scott, M. Sheelagh T. Carpendale and Stefan Habelski. Storage Bins: Mobile Storage for Collaborative Tabletop Displays. Computer Graphics and Applications, 25(4):58-65, 2005. PDF Paper
Stacey Scott, Sheelagh Carpendale and Stefan Habelski. Storage Bins: Mobile Storage for Collaborative Tabletop Displays. Research report 2004-767-32, Department of Computer Science, University of Calgary, Canada, 2004. PDF Paper
Stacey D. Scott and Sheelagh Carpendale. Theory of Tabletop Territoriality. In C. Müller-Tomfelde (Ed.) Tabletops - Horizontal Interactive Displays, pages 375-406. Springer, 2010. PDF Paper
Stacey Scott. Territoriality in Collaborative Tabletop Workspaces. PhD thesis, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, March, 2005.
Stacey D. Scott, M.Sheelagh T. Carpendale and Kori M. Inkpen. Territoriality in Collaborative Tabletop Workspaces. In Proceedings of the ACM Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW, November 6-10, 2004, Chicago, IL, USA), CHI Letters. ACM Press, pages 294-303, 2004. PDF Paper