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Research Issues in Computer Support for Collaborative Problem Solving

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Problem solving is increasingly performed by people using computer software. Such programs include everything from office productivity tools to specialized workflow managers. However, a new genre of tools that support teams of people in the solving process is emerging. While the need for solving complex problems increases, the opportunities afforded by the Internet and advances in artificial intelligence and human-computer interaction make it timely to develop such new tools. This lecture introduces the topic and presents a prototype system called CoSolve. This system is based on the classical theory of problem solving, which is briefly reviewed in the lecture. Finally, an overview of the related research issues is given. These issues include support for problem formulation, visualizing problem spaces, adapting problem-solving technologies for design, collaboration and crowdsourcing in problem solving, and designing agents to support collaborative problem solving.

This talk is part of the Computer Laboratory Wednesday Seminars series.

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