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Authors: Maini Williams, Eija Kaasinen, Minna Kulju, Aleksi Rinta-Kauppila

Category: research article

Keywords: Cloud computing, contact book, co-creation, user interface design, evaluation, prototype, identities

Abstract: People are using several different devices and services for communication purposes. Managing and synchronizing contact information within these is challenging. In this paper we describe the development of a future contact book concept that utilizes the possibilities of cloud computing. A cloud based contact book can serve various devices and applications. Contact information can be updated automatically. The cloud based contact book could indicate availability of people and it could help in selecting the preferred communication channel. It also enables people to have different identities in their daily lives. The identities determine who is able to reach the person at any given moment and what communication channel is used. The contact book concept was co-created with potential users in different ideation activities. We describe the concept and initial user evaluation results.

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File Initial submission
File application/x-maker Cloud Based Consept for a Future Contact Book
In this paper the concept of cloud based contact book and initial user evaluation results are described. One of the key findings of the study was that users are having different identities. These identities could be used to determine who is able to reach the person at any given moment and what communication channel is used to make a contact.
reviewer611-4 says:
Nov 27, 2011 03:01 PM

This article introduces a concept design for a contact book, where contacts and availability information would be managed by a cloud service. The present article also describes the design process stressing user involvement. The reviewer thinks that the concept in its simplicity is quite clever and, assuming such design doesn't exist, we are witnessing a genuine innovation utilizing the possibilities of cloud service, with good value for the end-users.

The reviewer also has some suggestions to improve the paper. The reviewer feels that the first two sections (introduction and related research) are not conceptually linked, that is, it is difficult for non-experts to associate contact book to presence. In the introduction, you could therefore elaborate the relevant concepts more. This would also enable stressing the importance in identity in cloud based service more, since in cloud services the end-user devices and location becomes less relevant as users can log in to their services anywhere and using any device.

Although the paper is able to convince the reviewer about the benefits and simplicity of the concept implementation, the initial user tests are reported in less convincing way. The authors report some feedback received, but more information on the measures and methods for collecting the feedback would be needed.

Finally, the authors could envision the commercial possibilities of the new design.

associateEditors611 says:
Nov 28, 2011 08:45 PM

The paper addresses a timely topic, the creation of a cloud computing system that would allow users to contact each other using the best possible media. The paper is nicely written, and the plot is easy to follow, and it can definitely be accepted in the first issue of the journal.

However, I have some issues that I do not entirely feel good about when reading the paper. Firstly, the paper is not really about contact _book_ but more about a new kind of an application where users' connectivity issues are taken into account. Furthermore, there is also a side issue, which in some ways is even more interesting than the contact book per se ---- with cloud computing facilities, it is becoming increasingly feasible to create a system where all the users' content, including contacts but also a lot of other forms of data, are available in different devices. In my opinion, this, more than anything else, is the groundbreaking promise of cloud computing for mobile users.

The section regarding related work is somewhat boring to read, and it feels like going through a telephone catalog. Different approaches are introduced, but not really linked to the theme of the paper. Maybe it would be easier to first introduce the point of the paper and only then address related work, with an option to state what is really unique in this paper?

Finally, there are certain nitpicks regarding the text:

p. 1: ".... users are using..."; you could replace one of the terms with something else.

p. 3: "... others can see from him/her..."; in my opinion a better form would be "... others can see of him/her..."

p. 5: Figure 2 is unreadable and very difficult to grasp in b&w print. In general, images could be centralized.

p. 6: "6 users..." -> "Six users..."

p. 7: "Technical University of Tampere"; according to their web site, the correct form is "Tampere University of Technology"

Pasi Tyrväinen
Pasi Tyrväinen says:
Nov 29, 2011 10:55 AM

Editor Decision

Congratulations! Your manuscript has been conditionally accepted for publication in the first peer-reviewed issue of the Communications of Cloud Software journal.

To achieve this you need to read carefully the comments of the reviewers and update your manuscript accordingly in two weeks (by December 13th).

Please, check also the information for authors section providing useful guidelines for revising the paper.

Looking forward for the updated version by 13.12.

Minna Kulju
Minna Kulju says:
Dec 14, 2011 12:04 AM

Revisions to the paper:
The main thing is that the chapters 1 and 2 are combined so that the reading would be (hopefully) more fluent.

Some minor revisions to other text.

Tommi Mikkonen
Tommi Mikkonen says:
Dec 20, 2011 12:26 PM

Editor Decision

Congratulations! Your manuscript has now been accepted for publication in the first peer-reviewed issue of the Communications of Cloud Software journal.

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