Department of Computer Systems Engineering
Universidad de las Américas-Puebla
Cholula, Puebla 72820 México
In the future, information and communication technologies will be ubiquitous in such diverse settings as work, learning, commerce and entertainment. Computer applications and networked information repositories will transparently support and enhance human activities. Hardware, software and data in multiple media will allow people in remote locations to perform a wide range of communication- and data-intensive collaborative tasks, from scientific to business endeavors. User interfaces to computer applications and resources will evolve into more intuitive forms with the introduction of powerful metaphors and representations. New applications will provide users with helpful tools to perform an increasingly diverse set of tasks. Networked computers will constitute the stage in which software agents will perform missions delegated by users. Computers will unobstrusively mediate human communication and will also serve as a malleable medium for users to reify and disseminate their ideas.
In order to realize this scenario, fundamental research must be performed in areas such as human-computer interaction, computer-supported cooperative work, digital libraries, hypermedia systems, and distributed information retrieval. Ongoing projects involving complex and dynamic human and data relationships may well serve as testbeds for exploring promising technologies and experimenting with novel prototypes and solutions in the context of real problems and task settings.
Most of the potential benefits and problems of regularly producing, communicating and consuming digital information are only starting to be explored by researchers. The Laboratory of Interactive and Cooperative Technologies (ICT), based at Universidad de las Américas-Puebla (UDLA), is established to provide an enhanced environment for the focused investigation of technologies with potential to advance current knowledge and understanding of computer-supported human activities. The research emphases of ICT are in the areas of human-computer interaction (HCI), digital libraries (DLs) and computer-supported cooperative work (CSCW).
The major objectives of the Laboratory of Interactive and Cooperative Technologies (ICT) are the following:
ICT is open to internal and external collaboration with researchers from both academia and industry. Initial projects will be undertaken in collaboration with the Center for Botanical Informatics (CBI) of the Missouri Botanical Garden (MoBot), as stated in the cooperation agreement between Universidad de las Américas and MoBot for the creation of the ICT laboratory. Resources from CBI and Universidad de las Américas-Puebla will support work conducive to investigate fundamental problems and opportunities arising from large collaborative projects currently under way at MoBot.