Online Collaboration Tools


Legal action against spam

The owner of a business in the Channel Isles has successfully used a new anti-spamming law, The Directive on Privacy and Telecommunications, to win out of court damages against a UK company who sent him spam. The spammers ignored him when he wrote asking for an apology and claiming damages under regulation 30 of the privacy regulations according to Court victory hailed as spam stopper (December 28, 2005). This legal action is thought to be the first of its kind under the directive and may be a landmark case.


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Open Document standards

Imagine a scenario a couple of years from now where our governments and commercial enterprises discover that 99% of their documents are stored in a proprietary format (Microsoft) and some serious legal or technical issue has arisen which threatens their long-term accessibility. Fortunately this scenario is now much less likely due to an important international standards initiative known as Open Document Format.



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Review of SNARF: Social Network and Relationship Finder

Microsoft Research tool sorts your email inbox by importance

Sometimes the simplest ideas are the best – in this case automatically ‘triaging’ inbound email by user defined importance. SNARF allows the user to design their own personal email importance criteria such as the "number of emails sent to me in the last month". Such metrics can, in turn, be combined to create overall importance criteria for sorting your inbox.


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Web2.0 Collaboration Tools

Collaboration2.0 - a new generation of virtual collaboration products or just slicker marketing?

A hot topic at present on the web is the suggestion that we have now reached a new level of products, services and suppliers. Some are calling it Web2.0 and others such as BusinessWeek are calling it WebSmart.


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Less intrusive mobile phones: research into social mobiles

Always on mobile devices need supporting etiquette

The Economist (Jan 2003) in a short article “Think before you talk” reports on how Ideo (the designers behind the Palm Pilot and Microsoft Mouse) have developed 5 prototype “social mobiles” known as SoMo's which modify their user’s behavior to make them less disruptive. Click here to view an excellent web presentation on the 5 SoMos. Other technologies like VoIP and IM can be equally disruptive and intrusive - its prompted me to develop a draft POLite Intrusive Technology Etiquette (PoLITE for short) a discussion starter of which you can find here.



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Collaborative group intelligence: a proven free toolset

The Delphi Technique is a proven way to harness collaborative group intelligence (popularly known as the wisdom of crowds) in a wide range of applications. Delphi has been around since the 1950’s with a large body of support material, case studies and tools on the web and should be part of any virtual team, community or network leader's toolset.


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Revolt against interactive voice response systems

We really value your call, so much so that we are answering it by computer!

If bioteaming is about making organisations and teams more alive then the current generation of Interactive Voice Response Systems (IVRs) must be the complete antithesis of bioteaming.


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Two great free hosted wiki services

Schtuff and Writeboard provide good wiki functionality for free

The wiki market is maturing nicely with the arrival of some excellent hosted wiki services which are totally free within average levels of usage. Two of these free wikis which caught my attention are Schtuff from JanRain Inc and Writeboard from 37 signals.


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Blog readers need web accessibility too

Perhaps I am being harsh or even uninformed but the whole area of Web Accessibility seems to have been largely ignored in the blogosphere. Just try doing a google search on web accessibility and blogs and you will see what I mean.


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Collaborating as a community against SPAM

A tool which leverages the collective intelligence of web users to fight SPAM

I am evaluating an innovative anti-spam product Cloudmark which aims to adopt an automated collaborative approach between its users to identify SPAM flitered through a weighted assessment of each users reputation in correctly spotting and reporting SPAM..Cloudmark works like this:



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