Share my browser and collaborate

Host clicks on “Share” button on Google Chrome, invites users (thru an url) to instantly see his tab-content from browsers on multiple devices (tablets, smartphone, desktops etc.,)

Contextually, users will be also able to collaborate effectively by using seamlessly integrated IM, web cam, ‘dialed-in’ VOIP/phone/ video calls  etc,

You may read more about the idea and vote.

Update 1: Just paid $5 developer fee on Chrome Web Store. Getting slowly started with the browser extension code.

Read related discussion on Google Chome Help Forum

Update 2 : Planning to start with a simple non-secure page. Looks like the DOM dump or serializing the DOM approach isn’t feasible for now. Setback.

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ECN

Engineering Collaboration via Negotiation is a socio-technical group decision making activity.

The term ‘Socio-technical’ signifies mutual consideration of true integration / synergy between the social (teamwork) and the technical (task work) aspects of engineering activities. – Alistair Cockburn

Collaborative Engineering is a socially mediated technical activity.

Negotiation activity is best carried out by a co-construction process.

Six Sigma & Interaction Design

Six Sigma is both a Metric & a Process

See what Cooper has to say about using Six Sigma in Interaction Design. >> Click here

The newsletter talks about What is Six Sigma, Evolution of Six Sigma, DMAIC process followed in Honeywell, GE etc.,
and also about the drawbacks of these processes and methods by which these drawbacks can be overcome.

Six Sigma works for well certain companies. Some companies have inherited their ‘Manufacturing Mindset’ to Software development. Cooper talks integrating his Goal Directed Design methodology with Six Sigma processes for designed software.

More Info :
http://www.isixsigma.com/
http://www.designsixsigma.com/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_Sigma

The Rise of the Web Browser – Thanks to AJAX

Web Browsers are slowly posing a serious threat to other Desktop applications! Features that were only possible on Desktop Applications are now, not only possible on Web Based Applications but also provide better User Experience. (Atleast in the Communications domain, says Prasant)

Gmail’s new Chat feature runs on the Browser & is integrated with Gmail contacts, address book etc. Users dont really have to launch a separate Desktop Application ( viz Yahoo Messenger) to Chat with friends. Great thinking there Google. Hope they’ve patented this innovation.

Yahoo Mail Beta seems to threaten the very existence of Microsoft Outlook. Thanks to their aquisition of Oddpost. While the Calendar intergration is yet to happen on Yahoo, think its just around the corner.

New Features in Yahoo Mail Beta

– MDI : Multiple Document Interface (Tabs)
– Table row item data is fetched only when the particular set of rows gets visibility.
This reduces the data load on the server but increases the no or requests on the AJAX engine
– On Mail Select, Yahoo Mail usese panes to display the entire mail content.
This is currently not possible on Gmail. Gmail only displays the first few words of the mail
– Contextual Display of System Status
– Reduced Latency
– Table Header Sorting without Page Refresh
– Back button takes you back to the previous tab :
– Right Click Menus
– Drag n Drop and so on and so forth

Suggestions for Improvement

– Consider introducing UNDO/REDO. May be in multiples
– Auto Save
– Right Click on an attachement to “Print” and E-mail (?)

– On Mouse Over URLs can display site preview
– On Mouse Over, date & time can display current appointments and also display a link to add new appointment

Microsoft Office Tools are their Cash Cows!
But for how long? Will there be a solid web-based alternative to Office Tools? May be these tools could be integrated with Internet Explorer.

Technorati Tag : Gmail Chat | <a href="AJAX“>

A nice weekend in Bangalore

The Indian Movie Industry has finally ARRIVED!

Rang De Basanti

Rang de Basanti is undoubtedly one of the best Indian films that I ‘ve eva experienced. Aamir Khan with his infinite wisdom, has used the media to effectively evoke intense patriotic feelings from the the Next Gen audience. Well timed comic-reliefs, balances the seriousness of the topic, in this 3 hour movie.

The cast was carefully picked to appeal to a variety of audience across India. The story is about an English documentary maker who ropes in a bunch of Delhi college students to re-create the account of freedom struggle as mentioned in her grand dad’s diary.

K, I ”ll shut my gob now, before I am tempted to narrate the whole story.

Jethro Tull
Jethro TullUncle Anderson ( or is it Grand pa Anderson) had an awesome stage-presence. I couldnt relate much to Tull but it wasnt bad either. Think Ilayaraja got some influences from Tull. Could hear a lota influences from Tull, Mozart in “Nothing but Wind”

TAAQ
Only the Lead Singer of Thermal and A Quarter seemed to be enjoying their cacaphony. I ‘ve neva seen such a dull show in Bangalore.
Radia Gaga was the only decent number they played and their own numbers failed to rock the crowd.

Books
I spent coupla hours at Landmark and this picked up these books.

  • Ten Faces of Innovation by Tom Kelly
    http://www.tenfacesofinnovation.com/
  • Pursuit of Wow by Tom Peters
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0679755551/104-6492817-9731117?v=glance&n=283155
  • DFSS Vs VPD

    Some questions on User Experience Design & Development processes.

    How does one measure the quality of a product/experience?
    Once measured, how does one control it?
    What are the relevant Six Sigma tools that are available?
    How does one verify the validity of design decisions?
    How to do “Predictive Design”
    How & when do I do Process tailoring?

    What is Design For Six Sigma (DFSS)? http://www.isixsigma.com
    What is Velocity Product Development (VPD)?
    What is Lean Six Sigma?

    Mangalore Site Visit!

    Just got back from an enriching ‘Site Visit’. This plant in Mangalore falls under the Automation & Control Systems domain.

    I was lucky to be given an opportunity to observe users (Operators) contextually, in one of the biggest plants in India. Its an awesome experience getting inputs directly from the Horse’s mouth and observing Users at their workstation. Also met some SMEs (Subject Matter Experts- guess we will have to live with these jargons). I also experimented with my User-interviewing skills. Did manage to PROBE too.

    These Operators use software tools (touch screen interfaces) to monitor and control plant operations 24/7. At any point of time, any hiccup in the plant’s operations can result in the loss of crores of rupees. Now, imagine doing a software migration in this scenario! : ) The flip side of this kinda Contextual Enquiry is that the User’s get distracted by getting calls etc.,

    This is my second visit to Mangalore. The last time it was purely for pleasure.
    Noticed a lotta concrete roads in Mangalore. The sunset was awesome. The red manganese ores on the beach made the sunset even more beautiful 🙂
    Also tried the GudBud icream in Papabas.

    Application Design Automation Tool

    Some thoughts on creating User friendly, Developer Friendly and Management Friendly Applications

    1. Hard Code
    In the beginning, there was this complex thing called “Code”.
    Developers hand-coded ‘em . It was a complex, tedious and stressful job.

    2. Parameter Entry
    To ease their load and expedite delivery times, Parameter-based code generating tools were created. De-bugging was a lot easier. Design View & Preview Mode were built-in. Readymade configurable tags were also present.
    Designers were able to generate the front-end code perfectly. The UI was centered on User’s goals. Developers focused more on back-end coding and were happy doing the same.

    Example: Tools : Dream weaver
    Object : Table
    Parameter : width =”” Height=”” No of Columns=”” No of Rows=””

    3. Components
    And then came ‘re-usable components’. This did speed up coding. Developers were able to re-use “chunks or modules” of code. It however it did not have readymade “re-usable functionalities”

    Example: Tools : DotNet
    Object : Panels
    Parameter : autobindings , DynamicProperties, DockBindings etc

    4. Re-usable Functionalities
    If we identify commonalities among the different kinds of applications and design “chunks of readymade components” packed with a lots of tested ‘best practices’ and use a wizard based method to implement an application, we will be able to greatly speed up application implementation. These can be added to IDE (Integrated Development Environments) Libraries

    Example: Tools : To be designed
    Object : Login Page Functionality
    User Name + Password + Button + Header + Footer + Application Description etc.,
    Method : Drag & Drop + Wizard to do backend integration

    5. Pattern based ‘Application Design’ Automation
    Assuming that “Re-usable Functionalities” are complete, it is possible to identify patterns of functionalities and create parameter-driven “re-usable” and customizable applications!

    Example: Application : Discussion Thread

    What are the Failure Modes of this approach? Any ideas?