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OIS Tables of Contents: 8284868890

Proceedings of the Conference on Office Automation Systems

Fullname:Proceedings of the SIGOA Conference on Office Information Systems
Editors:J. O. Limb
Location:Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Dates:1982-Jun-21 to 1982-Jun-23
Standard No:ISBN 0-89791-075-3; ACM Order Number 611820; ACM DL: Table of Contents hcibib: OIS82
  1. Office Systems
  2. Models
  3. User Interface
  4. Panel
  5. Artificial Intelligence
  6. User Needs
  7. Voice and Text Processing
  8. Panel
  9. Forms
  10. Communications
  11. Panel

Office Systems

Traits: An Approach to Multiple-Inheritance Subclassing BIBA 1-9
  Gael Curry; Larry Baer; Daniel Lipkie; Bruce Lee
This paper describes a new technique for organizing software which has been used successfully by the Xerox Star 8010 workstation. The workstation (WS) software is written in an "object-oriented" style: it can be viewed as a system of inter-communicating objects of different object types. Most of the WS software considers object types to be constructed by assembling more primitive abstractions called traits. A trait is a characteristic of an object, and is expressed as a set of operations which may be applied to objects carrying that trait. The traits model of subclassing generalizes the SIMULA-67 model by permitting multiple inheritance paths. This paper describes the relationship of WS software to the traits model and then describes the model itself.
The Design of Star's Records Processing BIBA 10
  Robert Purvy; Jerry Farrell; Paul Klose
Xerox' Star Professional Workstation is distinguished by a graphic user interface committed to the What-you-see-is-what-you-get design philosophy. The system promotes a see / point / push-a-button style of interaction with immediate feedback, in marked contrast to more familiar programming or command-language interfaces.
   Star's Records Processing feature integrates traditional data processing functionality into this user model. Normal Star documents may contain fields and tables. Star record files have their structure defined by copying the field structure of a regular document. Multiple output formats are provided for a record file by giving it a document with each desired format. Such a document may format multiple records in a tabular array, or present each record's data in a new copy of the formatting document. Data is transferred between documents and records wherever fields have matching names ("field lading"); non-matching fields may be given a fill-in rule which allows summary data to be computed. Queries are expressed in an exemplary fashion, by entering desired values and ranges of values into a copy of a record (a "filter").
   Common uses of the data in a record file are encapsulated in a "view", which specifies the subset of the file's records to be considered, the order in which they are to be presented, and the document to be used to format them. An arbitrary number of views may be associated with a record file; each may have its own index, but the underlying records are stored only once.
   Common records processing functions are provided at a high-level user interface: Moving a document, a folder of documents, or another record file to a record file adds records to the file. Moving a record file to a printer causes the current view of the record file to be printed.
   Benefits include an economy of concepts and effort for user and implementor alike, along with the synergy of a unified environment. The approach seems to extend easily to a number of new domains. However increased efforts are required to produce a coordinated design and implementation throughout the whole system, and acceptable performance may be harder to achieve.
Note: Appears in ACM Transactions on Office Information Systems, 1:1, 1983, 3-24
Office Information Systems Research and Development Projects in Europe BIBA 11
  Najah Naffah
In Europe most research projects in the area of Office Information Systems are concentrated around public communication services and transmission networks. Very few projects exists in what we call the Automated Office of the Future.
   In the first category, known as TELEMATIQUE, we find the videotex services, which consist of data banks connected to public networks and offering access to residential users through their color TV sets. A second service, called TELETEX, will start soon in different European countries to replace the present telex service with some kind of communicating word processors. All these projects are sponsored by the PTT and operate according to a set of standards elaborated by the CCITT.
   On the other hand, true Office Information Systems projects, which are tailored to the private users and organizations needs, are very rare. Some manufacturers are working on new word processors combining data processing and text processing, with voice input for command, and voice output for signalling.
   Local networks have been built in different research centers and have been produced by local manufacturers and distributed on national basis (e.g., Cambridge Ring in England, Danube in France, and Cobus in Switzerland). While manufacturers as ICL, Thomson, Siemens, Olivetti are announcing products with many components imported from the U.S., the research community has been very active in exploring new approach for O.I.S.
   Under the sponsorship of the CEC, a group of researchers from France, Germany, Norway, Sweden, U.K., are working on the Interconnection of Heterogeneous message system, where the most difficult problems reside in the naming strategy to adopt, the conversion between message format, the high level protocols to implement.
   Two research centers in Switzerland and in France, have been building workstations for the office. The first one has produced a portable personnel computer with text editor (Smaky - Ecole Polytechnique de Lausanne), and the second has built a sophisticated workstation with many integrated services (Buroviseur of the Kayak project - INRIA, France). In addition, a complete prototype of O.I.S. is under development in this project.
   Other work is undertaken by different research centers on issues related to O.I.S. (Queen Mary College - London; GMC, HMI and the University of Hamburg - Germany; INRIA, IMAG, SUPELEC, UPS - France, ...).
   In this presentation, we will give a summary of the work that has been accomplished and the future of some of the projects.


Dialogue and Process Design for Interactive Information Systems using Taxis BIBA 12-20
  John Barron
This paper deals with dialogue and process management for interactive information systems (abbrev. IISs) within the framework of Taxis , a language for IIS design. Dialogues between a user and the system are represented through a small set of primitives incorporated into Taxis while process control is accomplished by incorporating Hoare's I/O commands for communicating sequential processes . The overall organization and structure of dialogue and process control for a particular IIS is achieved using scripts, a modified version of augmented Petri nets , and the Taxis conceptual framework which stresses generalization abstraction. A journal editing procedure is used to illustrate the proposed extension.
Office Information Models and the Representation of 'Office Objects' BIBA 21-26
  Simon J. Gibbs
Office information models are used to represent the operations and information structure of Office Information Systems. This paper determines requirements for these models by examining the functionality of Office Information Systems. The paper then discusses the representation of 'office objects' and their associated operations of filing, mailing and formatting. This representation is based upon concepts from the field of semantic data modelling.
An OIS Model for Internal Control Evaluation BIBAK 27-28
  Andrew D., Jr. Bailey; James Gerlach; R. Preston McAfee; Andrew B. Whinston
This article presents a precedence model for specifying accounting office systems. Formal analysis procedures are formulated for evaluating the internal controls of the modeled system. The procedures establish precondition and postcondition relationships between select control points.
Keywords: Accounting internal control, Precedence model, Precondition, Postcondition
Note: Appears in ACM Transactions on Office Information Systems, 1:1, 1983, 25-44

User Interface

How Do People Really Use Text Editors? BIBA 29-40
  John Whiteside; Norman Archer; Dennis Wixon; Michael Good
Keystroke statistics were collected on editing systems while people performed their normal work. Knowledge workers used an experimental editor, and secretaries used a word processor. Results show a consistent picture of free use patterns in both settings. Of the total number of keystrokes, text entry accounted for approximately 1/2, cursor movement for about 1/4, deletion for about 1/8, and all other functions for the remaining 1/8. Analysis of keystroke transitions and editing states is also presented. Implications for past research, editor design, keyboard layout, and benchmark tests are discussed.
Virtual Editing: II. The User Interface BIBA 41-46
  H. A. Wilder; N. F. Maxemchuk
This is the second half of a two-part report on Virtual Editing. In the first paper, virtual editing was defined and its implementation described. In this paper, a user interface to the editor is described and some of the problems of introducing a new form of communication which conceptually merges various media are discussed. The aim is acceptance by the office worker, or eventual end user. Possible applications for this technology are suggested. In addition, the use of a mouse in the system as a way of entering the user commands is explained.
How Do People Organized Their Desks? Implications for the Design of Office Information Systems BIBA 47-49
  Thomas W. Malone
In this paper, I described a series of case studies of how professional and clerical office workers organize the information in their desks and offices. Then I discuss a number of implications of these results for designing natural and convenient office information systems.
   Two principal claims are made: (1) A very important function of desk organization is to remind the user of things to do, not just to help the user find desired information. Failing to support this function can seriously impair the usefulness of electronic office systems, and explicitly facilitating it can provide an important advantage for automated office systems over their non-automated predecessors. (2) The cognitive difficulty of categorizing information is an important factor in explaining how people organize their desks. Computer-based systems can help with this difficulty by: (a) doing as much automatic classification as possible (e.g., based on access dates), and by (b) including untitled "piles" of information arranged by physical location as well as explicitly titled and logically arranged "files."
Note: Appears in ACM Transactions on Office Information Systems, 1:1, 1983, 99-112


Evaluation of Offices BIBA 50-51
  William Harless
The purpose of this panel is two-fold: 1) To classify some of the social and behavioral issues in the evaluation of office information systems (OIS); and 2) to promote interaction between a few of the leading social and computer scientists in the field of OIS.

Artificial Intelligence

Extending the Power of Programming by Examples BIBA 52-66
  Giuseppe Attardi; Maria Simi
Programming by Examples is one of the methodologies that has been proposed for supporting the development of office applications by non computer specialists. Programs are built by performing direct manipulations on objects visually represented on a display, simulating the execution of the program on exemplary data items. We distinguish two major approaches: a declarative approach (SBA by DeJong and Zloof) and a procedural approach (Tinker by Lieberman and Hewitt). We examine the computational power and the expressive convenience of the two systems. The procedural approach achieves full generality by allowing the user to explicitly introduce iterative or recursive control structures. The SBA system has built in control mechanisms, which avoids explicit use of such constructs, but it is correspondingly less powerful. We present an algebraic model of SBA programs which allows us to determine the expressive power of the SBA language. We discuss a more general control mechanism than the one embedded in SBA, based on homomorphic transformations, which allows to compute all primitive recursive functions. Further flexibility is obtained by coupling the PBE methodology with the knowledge representation language Omega.
An Actor-Based Programming System BIBA 67-78
  Roy J. Byrd; Stephen E. Smith; S. Peter de Jong
A programming system is described with which applications are built by defining collections of communicating objects, called actors. The actor programming system provides a uniform environment in which distributed applications can be automated in a highly modular and efficient manner. The system's design is based on the formal theory of actors, with certain modifications made for the sake of efficiency. We describe our view of the actor system, and an implementation of that view. We also discuss applications built on, and contemplated for, the actor system.
Supporting Organizational Problem Solving with a Workstation BIBA 79-81
  Gerald Barber
This paper describes an approach to supporting work in the office. Using and extending ideas from the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI) we describe office work as a problem solving activity. A knowledge embedding language called Omega is used to embed knowledge of the organization into an office worker's workstation in order to support the office worker in his or her problem solving. A particular approach to reasoning about change and contradiction is discussed. This approach uses Omega's viewpoint mechanism.
Note: Appears in ACM Transactions on Office Information Systems, 1:1, 1983, 45-67

User Needs

Toward a New Framework for Office Support BIBA 82-92
  Raymond R. Panko; Ralph H., Jr. Sprague
Office automation is the outgrowth of one form of corporate information technology -- the office products category. If we are really to enhance the total office function, however, we will need a much broader concept of office information systems. This paper proposes one such concept, which we call office support.
Implementing Office Automation: Principles and an Electronic Mail Example BIBA 93-100
  Jeffrey H. Tucker
This paper discusses reasons for resistance to office automation and proposes a method of implementing change drawn from the literature on organizational development and on the implementation of management information systems. The general method is applied to a pilot project of an electronic mail system. Data gathered from the 36 project participants are summarized. Although the project data indicate a need for an EMS, the project failed to produce an adequate user communication volume, and it was cancelled. The paper describes the problems which prevented the effective utilization of the system.
A Case Study of Office Workstation Use BIBA 101-107
  Christine V. Bullen; John L. Bennett; Eric D. Carlson
This paper describes the use of the Office Analysis Methodology to study a specific office environment in order to determine requirements for an advanced office workstation. The research site environment was unique in providing an opportunity to observe a natural growth pattern in the use of advanced technology. Specific workstation requirements were identified and are being implemented. Interesting observations are reported in the following areas: categories of secretarial work, use of existing workstations, influence of a community of users, access to shared services, and impacts on productivity and organization behavior.

Voice and Text Processing

Integrating Diverse Knowledge Sources in Text Recognition BIBAK 108-109
  Sargur N. Srihari; Jonathan J. Hull; Ramesh Choudhari
A new algorithm for text recognition that corrects character substitution errors in words of text is presented. The search for a correct word effectively integrates three knowledge sources: channel characteristics, bottom-up context and top-down context. Channel characteristics are used in the form of probabilities that observed letters are corruptions of other letters, bottom-up context is in the form of the probability of a letter when the previous letters of the word are known, and top-down context is in the form of a lexicon. A one-pass algorithm is obtained by merging a previously known dynamic programming algorithm to compute the maximum a posteriori probability string (known as the Viterbi algorithm) together with searching a lexical trie. Analysis of the computational complexity of the algorithm and results of experimentation with a Pascal implementation are presented.
Keywords: Text error correction, Contextual pattern recognition, Trie structures, Knowledge integration
Note: Appears in ACM Transactions on Office Information Systems, 1:1, 1983, 68-87
Message Files BIBA 110-112
  D. Tsichritzis; S. Christodoulakis
We describe a message filing capability which allows for the retrieval of messages according to contents. Messages are organized in large general files such that frequent reorganization is avoided. The user specifies a filter which restricts the attention to a manageable subset of messages. Messages within the subset are retrieved for a final check. We discuss file organization and access method, as well as performance and implementation considerations.
Note: Appears in ACM Transactions on Office Information Systems, 1:1, 1983, 88-98
A Voice Response System for an Office Information System BIBA 113-121
  Dik Lun Lee
One of the major activities in offices is communication. Communication involves information exchange in different kinds of media such as text, voice, pictures, and most likely, a mix of these. As such, a successful office information system must provide adequate facilities for handling these kinds of communication media. This paper discusses the design and implementation of a voice response system for OFS (Office Form System), a prototype office information system.


Views of Office Data BIB 122
  S. P. de Jong; Richard E. Fikes; Carl Hewitt; Vania Joloboss; Lance A. Miller


SEDL -- A Language for Specifying Integrity Constraints on Office Forms BIBA 123-130
  James C. Ferrans
ODIN is a system developed by Western Electric to automate the construction of electronic form entry, processing, and retrieval systems. An important component of ODIN is SEDL, the language used to define the logical structure of forms and the integrity constraints that each form must pass as it is entered.
   SEDL is a powerful, concise end-user language. Its integrity constraints are sophisticated assertions which are combined by using standard programming language constructs. Lists on forms are considered to be relations in a miniature relational database, and data manipulation language constructs are used to specify constraints involving them. SEDL's expressive power has been more than adequate for the complex office applications that have used it.
OFFICETALK-D: An Experimental Office Information System BIBAK 131-140
  Clarence A. Ellis; Marc Bernal
WHAT: Herein is described an experimental Office Information System designed and built at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center to allow multi-computer experiments in distribution and sharing of control within an office environment.
   WHY: Current office systems go a long way toward aiding the individual user to transact his/her personal office work. Future office information systems need to aid tightly coupled communities of users. Thus, this investigation into communal computing systems is motivated.
   HOW: Using the Alto/Dorado machines, and the Cedar database and programming environment, we have devised a system which allows the flexible manipulation of electronic forms on the display screen of users and helps to coordinate and control the flow of forms between user workstations. Novel facilities implemented in the system include distributed schedulers, dispatchers, office observer workstations, alerters, a data dictionary synthesizer, change agents, and on-line office modeling, simulation and design facilities.
Keywords: Office information systems, Distributed systems, Office modeling, Office simulation, Database design, Communal computing systems, Graphical user interfaces, Electronic forms, Data dictionary generation
A Modelling Tool for Office Information Systems BIBA 141-152
  J. Lebensold; T. Radhakrishnan; W. M. Jaworski
Application of ABL, Alternative Based Language, to modelling office information systems is described. This language is powerful for the description of parallelisms and is amenable to stepwise refinement. After studying the different OIS modelling tools, we propose eight requirements of a good modelling tool and examine how well ABL fulfills these requirements. Some capabilities of the ABL environment and user interface are demonstrated. We present the ABL description of an order processing office.


Development of a CBMS Message Transfer Protocol BIB 153-159
  Gerald F. Mulvenna


How Much Bandwidth is Enough? BIB 160
  Karle Kummele