Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://dx.doi.org/10.18419/opus-4260
Authors: Tippmann, Volker
Title: Konzeption und Entwicklung eines synchronen Kommunikationssystems für die verteilte Produktentwicklung
Other Titles: Conception and development of a synchronous communication system for distributed product development
Issue Date: 2009
metadata.ubs.publikation.typ: Dissertation
Series/Report no.: IPA-IAO-Forschung und Praxis;484
URI: http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:bsz:93-opus-50246
http://elib.uni-stuttgart.de/handle/11682/4277
http://dx.doi.org/10.18419/opus-4260
ISBN: 978-3-939890-45-4
Abstract: Ziel dieser Arbeit war es, auf der Grundlage einer detaillierten Anforderungserhebung ein synchrones Kommunikations- und Kooperationssystem zu entwickeln, das erweiterbare Basistechnologien zur Verfügung stellt. Dabei wurden für die Zusammenarbeit in der Produktentwicklung spezifische Werkzeuge prototypisch implementiert und unter Gesichtspunkten der Benutzerfreundlichkeit evaluiert. Die in der Forschung zum Thema Collaborative Virtual Environments (CVE) häufig verwendete Raummetapher wurde für die Entwicklung der synchronen Kommunikationstechnologien übernommen und in Form eines dreidimensionalen virtuellen Arbeitsraums umgesetzt. Aufgrund des hohen Kommunikations- und Koordinationsbedarfs im RPD lagen neben Arbeiten zur Unterstützung der Gruppenwahrnehmung (Awareness) die Schwerpunkte auf der Entwicklung verteilter Präsentations-, Moderations- und Visualisierungswerkzeuge. Diese Werkzeuge dienen der Kommunikationsstrukturierung und der Veranschaulichung von Sachverhalten, beides wichtige Vorraussetzungen für eine gelungene Kommunikation und Wissensintegration in multidisziplinären Teams. Es wurde ein 3D Multi-User-System entwickelt, das es verteilt arbeitenden Teams erlaubt, sich an einem virtuellen Arbeitsplatz zu treffen, multimodal zu kommunizieren und Besprechungen zu strukturieren. Von entscheidender Bedeutung im iterativen Prozess des RPD ist die Präsentation von Modellen und virtuellen Prototypen. Daher bietet die virtuelle Umgebung die Möglichkeit, virtuelle Prototypen zu visualisieren und in begrenztem Umfang zu editieren bzw. zu modellieren. Für den Austausch der Interaktionsdaten wurde ein XML-basiertes Protokoll entwickelt, das als Schnittstelle zu anderen Applikationen bzw. Endgeräten dient. Es wurde mit dem hier entwickelten Prototypen die Grundlage für ein leistungsfähiges Kooperationssystem geschaffen. In Zukunft gilt es, die Basisfunktionalitäten des Systems zu erweitern und es verstärkt in Zusammenarbeit mit der Industrie in Anwendungsszenarien weiterzuentwickeln. Das System wurde verschiedenen Industriepartnern vorgestellt, und es besteht das Interesse, es gemeinsam zur Produktreife zu bringen. Neben der Erarbeitung von neuen Modulen (z.B. HTML Browser, Video, verbesserte Textbearbeitung) stehen hier die Entwicklungen von alternativen Repräsentationen der Benutzer und der Räume an. Hier sollten zusätzlich zu den CUA Methoden auch verstärkt vergleichende Methoden zum Einsatz kommen. Die Anbindung an Datenmanagementsysteme ist auf das ASN beschränkt. Hier sollten Schnittstellen zu gängigen Systemen (PDM/EDM) geschaffen werden. Da es sich um ein webbasiertes System handelt, das zudem Schnittstellen für die Anmeldung von Nutzern bietet, ist es ohne großen Aufwand möglich, das System in bestehende Groupware-Umgebungen einzubinden. Es wäre möglich, das System mit anderen Virtual Reality Umgebungen, wie z.B. CAVEs oder Powerwalls zu integrieren. Das XML-Protokoll für den Datenaustausch bietet hierzu die Grundlage.
Rapid Product Development (RPD) is characterised by a target-oriented use of prototypes, rapid iteration cycles and the employment of self-organising, distributed teams. The processes of RPD are based on the concept of evolution. Contrary to traditional concepts, RPD is characterized by short control loops within the process of product data generation and the according management processes. The whole process of development is constrained by the project environment, such as market developments or new technologies. Furthermore the execution of cycles is not necessarily sequential, e.g. results from the prototype generation can be incorporated directly in a new design segment. In RPD the initial product concept is checked and might be redefined according to the project progress. RPD therefore offers the possibility to introduce ideas, new technologies or market trends for a much longer development period than a traditional simultaneous engineering approach. This leads to innovation even during the development process. A major pre-requisite for these highly interlocked processes is a constant flow of information between development teams. Besides sophisticated data storage and retrieval systems, efficient tools for asynchronous as well as synchronous collaboration and communication are needed. This thesis presents the research on and development of a synchronous co-operation system that supports product development teams in their collaborative daily tasks. In order to identify shortcomings of currently existing synchronous co-operation systems, a detailed analysis of state of the art research on computer supported co-operative work and groupware technologies was conducted. Market surveys, system evaluations, research literature, and user surveys were examined to accomplish this task. Additionally, several studies on work in interdisciplinary teams were carried out in order to learn more about the general problems in such a work setting. Special attention was given to the requirements of RPD, in expert workshops, interviews and questionnaires the specific requirements for collaborative work in a RPD setting were identified. The analysis yielded the following general requirements: • extensive exchange of information Because of the interdisciplinarity of RPD teams and the high demand on coordination and integration of knowledge in these teams an extensive exchange of information is needed. Thus it is necessary to provide tools that facilitate communication on all levels (1 on 1 - 1 on many, inside the team – between teams, formal - informal) and at any time. • visualisation or prototypes and other artefacts (2D/3D CAD, sketches, etc.) It is crucial for an interdisciplinary team to have a common understanding of the goals of the project. In order to build up that “common ground” it is important – especially in an engineering environment, that artefacts of the product are visualized as early as possible. Therefore visualisation tools and technologies are indispensable in the co-operation system. • high awareness of other team members and their current activities. Without being aware of co-workers, coordination of tasks and building of a common ground is hardly possible and communication is bound to fail. Especially in RPD teams with their high demand on information exchange this is fatal. • Structured communication Interdisciplinary teams are more successful when they are able to structure their communication. Equal speaking time, unbiased statements and opinions, and efficiently planned and moderated meetings are important aspects of successful communication. Tools to support efficient communication structures are needed. • Seamless integration of tools The different co-operation tools mentioned above have to be integrated in one system with a single user interface in order to allow the seamless transition from one communication or co-operation mode to another. In summary a communication zone is required, where constant communication on all levels is possible at any given point of time. In this communication zone it should be possible to visualize 2D as well as 3D artefacts. Tools for planning and moderating meetings should be provided. People working in this zone should be highly aware of their co-workers and their work. In order to respond to these requirements, a room metaphor was chosen for the design of the system. The goal was to build a three-dimensional virtual team room where people interact, communicate and co-operate just like in a real world setting. The co-operation system was developed with an iterative prototyping approach. In order to test the concept of the system, a prototype was developed and assessed. Evaluation methods (Collaboration Usability Analysis, Mechanics of Collaboration) especially designed for the development of groupware applications were used to heuristically determine the usability of the system. On the basis of the results of these examinations, a detailed functional specification was developed, including a use case analysis. Different alternatives concerning programming languages, network architecture, network communication, etc. were examined and the software was designed using standard software engineering techniques. Several features that do not exist in current communication systems were developed: • A web-based 3D World with the possibility to load and edit 3D objects at run-time • Integration of tools supporting moderation techniques • Application Sharing through a XML data interchange protocol • Protocol interfaces for future module development Several test-beds were developed in order to evaluate and improve the behaviour and performance of the software (e.g. in terms of generated network traffic). The prototype was tested in RPD scenarios through inspection methods. During these tests the co-operation system was rated high on all tested mechanics of collaboration and fully met the requirements of computer-based co-operation environments as well as the requirements of a RPD co-operation environment.
Appears in Collections:07 Fakultät Konstruktions-, Produktions- und Fahrzeugtechnik

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
Diss_Tippmann_hs.pdf1,99 MBAdobe PDFView/Open


Items in OPUS are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.