Carpeno: Interfacing remote collaborative virtual environments with table-top interaction

Holger Regenbrecht, Michael Haller, Joerg Hauber, Mark Billinghurst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Creativity is enhanced by communication and collaboration. Thus, the increasing number of distributed creative tasks requires better support from computer-mediated communication and collaborative tools. In this paper we introduce 'Carpeno', a new system for facilitating intuitive face-to-face and remote collaboration on creative tasks. Normally the most popular and efficient way for people to collaborate is face-to-face, sitting around a table. Computer augmented surface environments, in particular interactive table-top environments, are increasingly used to support face-to-face meetings. They help co-located teams to develop new ideas by facilitating the presentation, manipulation, and exchange of shared digital documents displayed on the table-top surface. Users can see each other at the same time as the information they are talking about. In this way the task space and communication space can be brought together in a more natural and intuitive way. The discussion of digital content is redirected from a computer screen, back to a table where people can gather around. In contrast, collaborative virtual environments (CVE) are used to support remote collaboration. They frequently create familiar discussion scenarios for remote interlocutors by utilizing room metaphors. Here, virtual avatars and table metaphors are used, where the participants can get together and communicate with each other in a way that allows behaviour that is as close to face-to-face collaboration as possible. The Carpeno system described here combines table-top interaction with a CVE to support intuitive face-to-face and remote collaboration. This allows for simultaneous co-located and remote collaboration around a common, interactive table.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-107
Number of pages13
JournalVirtual Reality
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2006


  • Collaborative work
  • CSCW
  • Table-top interfaces
  • Teleconferencing
  • Virtual environments


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