"> PhD Program in Computer and Information Science -- Mathias Heilig
University of Konstanz
Graduiertenkolleg / PhD Program
Computer and Information Science

Dr. Mathias Heilig

Doctoral Student in the PhD program from 15.10.2007 to 31.10.2010.


1. Prof. Dr. Harald Reiterer
2. Prof. Dr. Marc Scholl
3. Prof. Dr. Marcel Waldvogel

organisational data

Room: D 202
Tel.: +49 (0)7531 / 88-3066
E-mail: mathias.heilig "at" uni-konstanz.de
Other Resources: http://hci.uni-konstanz.de/staff/Heilig

project description

Information seeking activities such as searching the web or browsing a media library are often considered to be solitary experiences. However, both theoretical and empirical research has demonstrated the importance of collaborative activities during the information seeking process. Students working together to complete assignments, friends looking for joint entertainment opportunities, family members planning a vacation, or colleagues conducting research for collaborative projects are only few examples of cooperative search. However, these activities are not sufficiently supported by today's information systems as they focus on individual users working with PCs. Reality-based User Interfaces, with their increased emphasis on social, tangible, and surface computing, have the potential to enhance this aspect of information seeking. By blending characteristics of real-world interaction and social qualities with the advantages of virtual computer systems, these interfaces increase possibilities for collaboration. To date, this phenomenon has not been sufficiently explored. This thesis is an analytical investigation of the improvements and changes reality-based user interfaces can bring about in collaborative information seeking activities. To explore these interfaces, a realistic scenario had to be devised in which they could be embedded. The Blended Library has therefore been developed as the context for this thesis. In this vision, novel concepts have been developed to support information seeking and collaborative processes inside the physical libraries of the future; the Blended Library thus represents an appropriate ecosystem for this thesis. Three design cases have been developed that provide insight into how collaboration in information seeking may be influenced by reality-based user interfaces. Subsequently, two experimental user studies were carried out to attain more profound insight into the behavior of people working collaboratively, based on the type of interface in use.


The following list of publications covers only those, which are or were published during participation at the Graduiertenkolleg / PhD program.

Book Chapters


Articles in Journals


Conference Papers


Phd Theses