The 2007 International Symposium on Collaborative Technologies and Systems
(CTS 2007)

May 21-25, 2007
Embassy Suites Hotel-Lake Buena Vista Resort, Orlando, FL, USA
In Cooperation with ACM, IEEE, and IFIP (Pending)

Tutorial I: Web 2.0, Grids and Cyberinfrastructure / e-Infrastructure
Geoffrey Charles Fox html pdf notes 1 notes 2

Tutorial II: Layered Sensing – A Collaboration Technology Challenge
Robert Williams html pdf

Tutorial III: Communities: Communications, Collaboration, and Learning
Nahum Gershon html pdf


Web 2.0, Grids and Cyberinfrastructure / e-Infrastructure

Geoffrey Charles Fox

Director and Professor
Community Grids Laboratory, Indiana University
Bloomington, Indiana


Collaboration is being revolutionized by the increasing power of communication infrastructure which allows both new modes of collaboration and new technologies to support existing approaches. Grids are enabling scientific collaboratories that will be essential for managing the deluge of information coming from sensors and instruments from the tiniest environmental monitor to distributed high throughput biological devices and the mammoth CERN LHC and shared international satellites. Social or community (social) collaborative networks are being created by intelligent bookmarking tools like and linked back to scientific grids by projects like Connotea. Further Wikis and collaborative collections of MP3 files point to other models of collaborative resource sharing.

In this tutorial, we discuss the role of Web 2.0 in building the distributed electronic infrastructure for science, business, consumer and government applications. We compare functionality of Web 2.0 technologies with those of Grids for API's, messaging, composition (workflow) and portals. We discuss Gadgets, AJAX, JSON and Mashups as core Web 2.0 technologies. We also review the functionality of Web 2.0 services such as Google Maps, Start pages, Community bookmarking and social networking sites and compare with those from Grid and P2P. We look at security, management and other capabilities where the robustness of Grids could be critical.


Requirements: Interest and familiarity with basic Internet technologies such as HTML and HTTP.

Audience: People building or responsible for building distributed systems.


The tutorial material will be presented in a 3-hour session.


Geoffrey Charles Fox(8122194643,,
Professor Fox received a Ph.D. in Theoretical Physics from Cambridge University and is now professor of Computer Science, Informatics, and Physics at Indiana University. He is director of the Community Grids Laboratory of the Pervasive Technology Laboratories at Indiana University. He previously held positions at Caltech, Syracuse University and Florida State University. He has published over 550 papers in physics and computer science and been a major author on four books. Professor Fox has worked in a variety of applied computer science fields with his work on computational physics evolving into contributions to parallel computing and now to Grid and multicore chip systems. He has worked on the computing issues in several application areas - currently focusing on Defense, Earthquake and Ice-sheet Science and Chemical Informatics. He is involved in several projects to enhance the capabilities of Minority Serving Institutions.

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Layered Sensing – A Collaboration Technology Challenge

Dr. Robert Williams

ATR/Sensor Fusion Algorithms Branch, Sensor Directorate
Air Force Research Laboratory


The Dept of Defense has directed the services to develop more effective responses to other-than-conventional threats. Of particular concern are "irregular threats" that employ unconventional ways as well as "catastrophic threats" as posed by delivery of terror weapons in urban areas. In combination, these capabilities can be so spectacular that they would quickly give an adversary an edge, particularly in the Global War On Terror (GWOT) and yet the sensing and algorithm challenges are daunting. In response, novel collaboration technologies in sensing and exploitation technologies, such as those found in advanced "Layered Sensing" concepts, are needed to meet this difficult and urgent challenge.

The resulting science and technologies have applications in Homeland Security as well as across a broad range of industrial and bio-medical applications that are dependent on approaches requiring numerous multi-phenomenology sensors and massive data handling.

In this tutorial, the basic principles of Layered Sensing are described and example technical innovations required in collaboration technologies for sensing and exploitation are presented. The presentation will focus on key areas that include, but are not necessarily restricted to, integration of sensing, processing, exploitation, and control with:

  • Distributed systems engineering and architectures;
  • Knowledge mining, modeling and simulation for a secure sensor web and global grid;
  • Advanced visualization; and
  • Human/computer interaction issues


    This tutorial is appropriate for novice researchers, academics, practitioners, and students, but should also be of interest to advanced practitioners who are unfamiliar with the specific topics to be covered in the presentation.


    The tutorial material will be presented in a 2-hour session.


    Dr. Rob Williams is the tech advisor for AFRL Sensor Directorate's ATR/Sensor Fusion Algorithms Branch at Wright Patterson AFB, OH. In that role, he is responsible for developing and directing the branch's research strategy and budget in advanced layered sensing and exploitation concepts. The branch is staffed primarily by government researchers with advanced degrees in Engineering, Computer Science, Math and Physics. The branch charter is to accelerate the transition of innovations through collaboration with industry and academia. As such, Dr. Williams is the principal architect of Sensor Aided Vigilance – an instantiation of Layered Sensing currently being pursued as a pathfinder project for AFRL Sensors Directorate, which depends heavily on collaboration technologies. Past assignments include a tour at the Air Force Institute of Technology as a professor specializing in communications and adaptive processing, the former Foreign Technology Division as a senior space-based technologies analyst, and at DARPA as a program manager specializing in collaborative small UAVs and urban ISR concepts.

    Dr. Williams holds a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Dayton.

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    Communities: Communications, Collaboration, and Learning

    Dr. Nahum Gershon

    Senior Principle Scientist
    The MITRE Corporation1 and
    McLean, Virginia


    In this tutorial, we will discuss communities, compare traditional and technology-enabled ones, and discuss some empirical strategies for formulating how to design software that supports online communities. Although a technology-enabled community does not necessarily need to be like a traditional community, one could learn a great deal about why and how human beings congregate by studying traditional communities. This knowledge is expected to be important in designing technologies that will enable efficient communications and learning in technology-based communities. This is also the reason, by the way, why the study of the design of office space that promotes communications and learning could benefit the planning of good online communities.

    Social interactions are important in work environments since in addition to cognitive activities, work usually involves procedural and social processes and the fact that human beings are herd animals and they usually like to congregate. Based on current initial experience, technology-enabled communities will broaden even farther the role and scope of social interactions and collaboration in work environments.

    Technology has enabled us to develop new types of communities that are not bound to one location where the members interact and communicate using new technologies. Some of the many examples of these non-geographical communities are MySpace [1] and YouTube [2]. Virtual communities are of many sub types depending mainly on the technologies used. Some technologies used in online communities are:

  • Listserv- by email
  • Blogs
  • Wikis
  • Phone
  • Video- VTCs, and so on.

  • In addition to dependence on the specific technology used, the type of the community may depend on the organizational structure governing it, if any. Ideally, the software governing the social network should allow “people build and design their own worlds which is the nature of what people want to do online” [3].

    Another form of collaborative work is asking a crowd of people the same questions or letting them bet on specific outcomes and aggregate the results. In his book, The Wisdom of Crowds [4], James Surowiecki suggests that for a crowd to be a wise crowd, it needs to have a diversity of opinion, its members should be independent, and people should be able to specialize and draw on their knowledge. To turn the private judgments into a collective decision, there must be a mechanism for aggregating the diverse judgments into a collective decision. Technology tools are needed to support these types of interactions.


    This tutorial is appropriate for novice researchers, academics, practitioners, and students, but should also be of interest to advanced practitioners who are unfamiliar with the specific topics to be covered in the presentation.


    The tutorial material will be presented in a 2-hour session.


    Nahum grew up in a melting pot- a real one. This multi-lingual environment was cerebral but also literal and oral. So naturally, he desired, since he was a child, to be a scientist, an aspiration he fulfilled specializing in the areas of chemistry, physics, and biology.

    Later in life, he discovered that humans cannot live on reason & linear thinking alone, so he went through years of personal transformation. Today, Nahum works on combining creative expressions like storytelling, film, and visual and interactive design with technology, social processes, and strategic planning. He can be still logical (and very much so), but he does it only when it’s appropriate.

    Nahum is a Senior Principle Scientist at the MITRE Corporation where he focuses on research and practical applications of presentation and visualization of data and information, as it relates to perception, storytelling, society, and culture. Routinely, he tries very hard not to torture his audience with PowerPoint slides and bully bullets whenever possible.

    In his free time, Nahum, among other things, participates in a number of national and international committees. He enjoys life.


    3. Mark Andreessen in Brad Stone’s, “Social Networking’s Next Phase,” the New York Times, March 3, 2007.
    4. James Surowiecki, The Wisdom of Crowds: Why the Many Are Smarter Than the Few and How Collective Wisdom Shapes Business, Economies, Societies and Nations.

    1 The opinions and points of view expressed here or in the tutorial do not reflect the opinions and views of the MITRE Corporation.

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