ADOC-Pro - Adaptive Document Prompter

Prompt Access to the Right Documents at the Right Time

In Short

ADOC-Pro - our adaptive document prompter - is not a new application, it is a situation-specific adaptation of already existing applications. In certain situation it gives users prompt access to exactly that part of their personal data which is relevant in the current context. The relevant documents like e-mails, web links , meeting minutes, or financial data are context-driven filtered and sorted.

Setting - On the Trade Fair

In our scenario you are a business user visiting a trade fair. You use a mobile computing device (e.g. a PDA or a portable PC) to manage your business documents. For your visits on the fair plenty documents are relevant. They are loosely connected with the people and companies you are about to meet. On site, in different situations like meetings or presentations, you are quite in a hurry and need an efficient way to access the relevant documents. This is particularly important, since the documents are of different kinds, stored at different places on the device, and managed with different applications.

Without ADOC-Pro

Without tool support, you have to be well prepared for each meeting and will have to:

  • Remember all relevant documents
  • Switch between diverse tools
  • Find all documents quickly during the conversation

This can be quite stressful and annoying but manually sorting important documents prior to the fair is only of limited use. Preparation might even cause more problems than it solves: it is a laborious, tedious and error-prone task, often leading to a redundant and unclear document management. See figure 1 as illustration.

With ADOC-Pro

ADOC-Pro produced relief here. While you explore the fair, ADOC-Pro continuously sorts and filters all your documents according to the booths you are close to. Even when you spontaneously stop and start a discussion you can be sure to find the most relevant documents for each application promptly. Depending on the application and type of data ADOC-Pro uses a suitable way to highlight the more relevant documents, e.g. sorting, filtering, marking. See figure 2 as illustration.

How it Works

When you enter the fair your device recognizes this situation and automatically scans for adequate adaptations. The fair organization offers ADOC-Pro, a special services for document management support. The current version of ADOC-Pro contains:

  • a document indexing service, which creates an index for searching and classifying documents
  • a vicinity explorer calculating the fair booths closest to your current location
  • an index matcher, which determines how similar two index lists are
  • a sorter, a filter, and a tree flattener for manipulation of your data structures.

These adaptations work together in the following way (cf. fig. 3):

  1. The indexing service creates for each locally stored user document a (potentially weighted) index characterizing the content of the document.
  2. The vicinity explorer calculates the distance between the user and all stands on the fair (given by the Fair Map) and determines which stands are close to the user's current position.
  3. The index matching service estimates the relevance of each document for the closest booth by comparing both index lists and though produces a document classification.
  4. For the currently closets booths all documents get ordered by relevance. Therefore, each exhibitor provides an index list describing his company (Booth Description).
  5. Prompt access to the relevant documents is provided in the user interface of all adapted client applications. Therefore three services can be used for sorting, filtering, marking, as well as manipulating the data structures.

Future Work

ADOC-Pro is actively being developed further in different ways:

  • a joint user interface for all applications will improve usability further. Switching between different applications can be reduced when all relevant documents are shown in one are on the screen. This is in particular interesting on small mobile devices like PDAs which typically show only one application at a time.
  • we aim to develop a server-based variant

Research Context

ADOC-Pro was developed as a part of the Context Sensitive Intelligence Project (CSI). Its goal is to explore the theoretical and practical challenges of context-aware computing and to develop a general framework for context-driven applications. The project is directed by Prof. Dr. Armin B. Cremers and Holger Mügge, it receives financial and conceptional support from Deutsche Telekom Laboratories.

Further Information

You are welcome to ask for details. Please contact Holger Mügge or Daniel Speicher.





Screenshot of original client applications
Figure 1: Original client applications

Screenshot of applications adapted with ADOC-Pro
Figure 2: Applications adapted with ADOC-Pro

Diagram of how ADOC-Pro combines services
Figure 3: How ADOC-Pro combines services