1984: twenty people from MIT and Paul Cashman of Digital Equipment Corporation organized a workshop to explore technology’s role in the work environment. they used the term CSCW to describe their findings
Office Automation, an earlier approach to group support, had ran out of steam. The problems were not just technical but understanding human requirements. OA practitioners needed more info on how people worked in groups.
CSCW: it started as an effort by technologists to learn from economists, social psychologists, anthropologists, org theorists, educators etc/ it became a place for system builders to share experiences and tell others about tech constraints through tele-videoconferencing, collaborative authorship applications, electronic mail.
CSCW draws from all rings and from preexisting development culture. There is however, a great interest in small groups applications. Product developers focus more on human-computer interface/ Organizational system developers fixate on functionality.
The greatest challenge of CSCW is being multidisciplinary: it represents a merging of issues, approaches, languages, making sense is a lively process. It can be frustrating when the others are ignorant of work one considers to be basic. Participants from different domains use the same terms in subtly different ways.
References + Image
Grudin, J., 1994. Computer-Supported Cooperative Work: History and Focus. In Journal Computer, Volume 27 Issue 5, May 1994, Page 19-26, available here