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Collaboration and collaborative software: Glossary

Directions: Click on each term to read our complete definition. Want more information? See our Fast Guide to Collaborative Software.

application integration: the process of bringing components of different programs together.

asynchronous groupware: programming that enables collaboration among geographically-distributed work group members, although not necessarily in real time (unlike synchronous groupware).

chat abbreviations: short forms for common words and phrases; used in text messagin to speed the typing process.

chat room: a Web site venue for communities of users with common interests to communicate in real time.

cloud collaboration: a type of enterprise collaboration that allows employees to work together on documents and other data types, which are stored off-premises and outside of the company firewall.

collaboration: a joint effort of multiple individuals or work groups to accomplish a task or project. Within an organization, collaboration typically involves the ability of two or more people to view and contribute to documents or other content over a network.

collaboration platform: business software that adds broad social networking capabilities to work processes.  The goal is to foster innovation by incorporating knowledge management into business processes so employees can share information and solve business problems more efficiently.

collaboration specialist: someone who is responsible for implementing and managing an organization's collaboration platform and web-based collaborative communication tools.

collaborative BI (collaborative business intelligence):  the merging of business intelligence software with collaboration tools, including social and Web 2.0 technologies, to support improved data-driven decision making.

collaborative browsing (also known as co-browsing): a software-enabled technique that allows someone in an enterprise contact center to interact with a customer by using the customer's Web browser to show them something.

Collaborative citizen journalism (CCJ): the pooling of research and reporting by volunteers to develop journalistic news stories or to critically examine existing ones, especially stories from the mainstream media.

collaborative consumption: a new approach to consumer access of goods and services based on an interdependent peer-to-peer model. Elements of the collaborative model include bartering, sharing, gifting, lending and leasing or renting.

Collaborative CRM: an approach to customer relationship management (CRM) in which the various departments of a company share any information they collect from interactions with customers.

collaborative robot (cobot): a robot designed to assist human beings as a guide or assistor in a specific task.

collaborative software: programs that help people work together collectively while located remotely from each other (same as groupware).

Computer-Supported Collaborative Work (CSCW): field of study focused on collaborative software.

Contextual collaboration: collaboration in which all the relevant applications are combined into a unified user interface that uses presence technology to enhance immediacy of communication.

copy board: one of several kinds of writeable presentation display systems that can be used in a classroom or videoconference (same as white board ).

corporate portal: a portal that serves as the starting page for users of a corporate network.

distributed computing: computing that involves multiple computers remote from each other that each have a role in a computation problem or information processing

Domino: the applications and messaging server program created for Lotus Notes.

E-mail: the exchange of computer-generated messages over a network.

e-mail program: formally known as a mail user agent , a program that allows you to receive and send e-mail messages.

enterprise collaboration:  a system of communication among corporate employees that may encompass the use of a collaboration platform, enterprise social networking tools, a corporate intranet and the public Internet. 

enterprise information portal: a Web site that serves as a single gateway to a company's information and knowledge base for employees and possibly for customers, business partners, and the general public.

enterprise social networking:  an organization's use of social media, internally and externally, to connect individuals who share similar business interests or activities.  Enterprise social networking includes the use of in-house intranet software as well as third-party social media platforms like Yammer and Socialcast to improve communication and collaboration between employees.  

free software: software that can be freely used, modified, and redistributed with only one restriction: any redistributed version of the software must be distributed with the original terms of free use, modification, and distribution.

grid computing: applying the resources of many computers in a network to a single problem at the same time.

groupware: programs that help people work together collectively while located remotely from each other (same as collaborative software).

identity management: administrative area that deals with identifying individuals in a system and controlling their access to resources by associating user rights and restrictions with the established identity.

instant messaging: an application that allows the user to detect when contacts are online and communicate with them in real time through text and other media.

integration server: a server used to facilitate interaction between diverse operating systems and applications across internal and external networked computer systems.

Internet Business Framework (IBF): the group of programs that form the technological basis for mySAP, created to spur e-business and collaboration

Intranet: a private network contained within an enterprise; may consist of many interlinked local area networks and/or use leased lines in the wide area network.

issue tracking system (ITS): a software application that allows an enterprise to record and follow the progress of every problem that a computer system user identifies until the problem is resolved.

joint application development (JAD): a methodology that involves the client or end user in the design and development of an application, through a succession of collaborative workshops called JAD sessions.

K Desktop Environment (KDE): an open source graphical desktop environment for Unix workstations, contributed to by software developers all over the world.

knowledge management: how an organization gathers, organizes, shares, and analyzes its knowledge in terms of resources, documents, and people skills.

Lotus Workplace: a set of customizable online work collaboration products from IBM's Lotus division.

mobile collaboration: the use of mobile devices and collaborative apps to allow geographically dispersed people to work together on endeavors ranging from small personal projects to high-profile enterprise teamwork.

mySAP: SAP's e-business software integration tool that delivers content to the user based on their role in the enterprise.

NetWeaver: mySAP application for integrating business processes and databases from multiple sources.

Notes : IBM subsidiary Lotus' groupware application that lets a corporation and its workers develop communications- and database-oriented applications for collaboration

portal: a Web page that connects directly to various services, applications, and links for the user's convenience.

presence technology: a type of application that makes it possible to locate and identify a computing device as soon as the user connects to the network or signs on to a service.

portal software: development tool used to create a portal for access to consolidated enterprise-related functions, such as e-mail, customer relationship management (CRM) tools, company information, workgroup systems, and other applications.

QuickPlace: Lotus's Web-based shared workspace software for real time collaboration among geographically dispersed participants.

real-time collaboration: using the Internet and presence technology to communicate with co-workers as if they were in the same room, even if they are located on the other side of the world.

Remote Job Entry (RDE): a facility that allows remote computer users to submit a batch job to a centrally-located computer (typically a mainframe).

Sametime: formally called "IBM Lotus Instant Messaging & Web Conferencing," Lotus software for group collaboration over the Internet.

SAP Exchange Infrastructure (SAP XI): a component of the NetWeaver product group used to facilitate the exchange of information among a company's internal software and systems and those of external parties.

SAP Integration Server: the central component of SAP XI; facilitates interaction between the invariably diverse operating systems and applications across internal and external networks.

smartboard: one of several kinds of writeable presentation display systems that can be used in a classroom or videoconference, or a softare version of such a system (same as whiteboard).

social collaboration: work that is carried out by more than one person. The term is also used to describe communication tools that help employees to work together. 

StarOffice: free office application suite from Sun Microsystems that includes word processor, spreadsheet, database, presentation maker, illustrator, schedule managment, e-mail, and newsgroup components.

synchronous groupware: programming that enables real-time collaboration among geographically-distributed work group members.

teleconference: a telephone meeting among two or more participants involving technology more sophisticated than a simple two-way phone connection.

UCC (unified communications and collaboration): versatile conferencing software that takes the various methods used in conference calls such as text, audio, video and virtual white boards and makes them available through a single interface.

videoconference: a live connection between people in separate locations for the purpose of communication, usually involving audio and often text as well as video. 

virtual learning environment (VLE): a set of teaching and learning tools designed to incorporate computers and the Internet.

voice portal: sometimes called a vortal, a portal that can be accessed from a cell phone.

videoconference : a live video communication between people in separate locations.

WebDav: IETF standard for collaborative authoring on the Web; a set of extensions to the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) that facilitates collaborative editing and file management between remote users.

Web services: services made available from a business's Web server for users or other Web-connected programs.

This was last updated in March 2016
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