Nicole Yankelovich




When: 2007.

What: Portable telepresence device and remote control app intended to provide remote meeting participants a better way to participate in distributed meetings.

Where: Collaborative Environments Group, Sun Microsystems Laboratories..

How: Principal Investigator. Tasks included project/people management, user research, hardware design including use of 3D modeling tool, interaction design, user testing, paper writing, and software demonstrations.

About the Project

Of all the collaboration systems I designed, the Porta-Person prototype provided the best user experience for remote collaborators. The demo video shows two versions of the prototype that the Collaborative Environments team in Sun Labs built. The stereo microphone “ears” on the device provided an amazing sensation of being in a remote conference room. With a headset on, the user could hear where people were in the room relative to the device.

This is one of several projects inspired by the data collected from an extensive corporate-level “voice of the customer” project I participated in looking at the problems Sun employees and Sun customers had related to distributed meetings. The User Research page describes the study. This device addresses a number of the top problems remote attendees have in distributed meetings, including being forgotten about and not being able to hear the conversation clearly.

Related Publication

Porta-person: telepresence for the connected conference room
N Yankelovich, N Simpson, J Kaplan, J Provino
CHI’07 extended abstracts on Human factors in computing systems, 2789-2794


This entry was posted on June 12, 2013 by in Collaboration.
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