Location awareness and fluidity of work

Kakihara, M., Sørensen, C., and Wiberg, M. (2004). Negotiating the fluidity of mobile work. In Wiberg, M., editor, The Interaction Society: Practice, Theories, & Supportive Technologies. Available from: http://mobility.lse.ac.uk/download/KakiharaSorensenWiberg2002.pdf. Some excerpts:

This paper addresses one particular aspect of organisational life for mobile workers, the constant negotiation of fluid work, based on the assumption that an essential aspect of mobile work is the negotiation of desirable versus disruptive interaction. (...) In order to initiate the debate we ask the question: What are the pertinent issues involved in individuals negotiating mobile work? This is based on the assumption of temporary asymmetry between individual mobile workers in terms of fluid mobile work – what for one person is a perfectly justifiable request can for another be a disruption. (...) [and the most relevant part with regard to my interests:]

Establishment of mutual awareness of location has been promoted as an important element of mobile interaction (Mäenpää, 2001), but also conflicting accounts of the awareness of activities as the primary element has been promoted (Weilenmann, 2001). However, in both cases, a generalised notion of location awareness is being negotiated since Weilenmann argues that the awareness of activity infers awareness of location. It can, therefore, be argued that the use of mobile phones, for example, socially constructs a location based services, both in terms of allowing constant update mutual awareness of locations, as well as in bringing the interaction to the location. Much research has discussed applying specific awareness technologies, AwareWare (Nilsson et al., 2000). The most common of these technologies is a stationary interaction technology in it's own right, namely Instant Messaging, where platforms such as ICQ allow participants explicitly to declare the interactional status. Other systems, such as the one reported by Nardi et al. (2000) supported implicit awareness by monitoring user keystroke rates and therefore enabling others to gain an impression of whether or not the person to be contacted is situated by their desk, or alternatively they perhaps is too busy to be contacted at all. Tang et al. (2001) demonstrate a multi-platform mobile awareness system with implicit location logging. Dix et al. (2000) suggest a generic systems architecture for mobile awareness technologies that integrates the technologies technical "awareness" of internal state with the inclusion of the external context to support mutual awareness between users.