Smart Meetings: Experimenting with Space
During May and June 2011, motivated by the need to improve techniques for recording the processes and outputs of research, we ran two workshops under the auspices of the e-Science Institute. The theme title was “Smart Spaces for Smart People”. Although our initial intention was to explore interactions between the physical and digital worlds, the emphasis changed to the productive exploitation of spaces ascribed as smart. We explored the quality of smartness in the context of smart meetings, which led us to conclude that the role of hardware and software technologies is to confer capability. For a system to achieve smartness, we deem certain components to be essential, most notably people. However, we also consider the role of both technological and traditional techniques for capturing meeting outcomes. We learned lessons that are applicable not only to meetings about research but also in the more general knowledge transfer context. We conclude that the way forward for exploiting smart spaces relies on design and on empowering the users of such spaces in that design. This paper is the first in a series of three, each dealing with different aspects of the workshops and how they influenced our thinking about knowledge transfer meetings, particularly in the context of sharing research outputs.
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