Provision of contex information to CSCW applications: a web service approach.

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To tackle the demand for support to building CSCW applications, one approach has been the provision of reusable components and infrastructures that deal with factors such as synchronization, communication and access control. In particular; regarding the CSCW applications necessity ofusing context information to adapt their services following users and groups needs, the literature has reported the provision of models and associated implementations that allow applications to specify, share and report relevant context information. We propose that context-aware CSCW applications can take advantage of the benefits provided by Web Services, alleviating differences in heterogeneous environments and allowing the interchange ofinformation between applications and infrastructures. We present the Context Kernel Web Service, which models classic dimensions for context information. We also show how typical operations demanded by CSCW applications can use the Context Kernel Web Service to store, retrieve and exchange context information via the Web.

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