Determining the Role of Geospatial Technologies For Stigmergic Coordination in Situation Management: Implications of the Wireless Grid

Here’s a nice poster from Janet Marsden at Syracuse:

Abstract — Geospatial technologies in conjunction with wireless grids will offer a context for locating and coordinating team activities in such a way that the nature of each team member’s effort may be known and understood by other members. This constructed group knowledge enables teams to respond to unforeseen and emergent contingencies and act in concert through the active interpretation of shared artifacts alone without prior planning and coordination. Stigmergic or sematectonic coordination refers to how an individual behaves as part of a collaborative team engaged in a complex task, such as emergency response (i.e. where the task is of such complexity that a coordinated team effort is required to accomplish it). Human stigmergic coordination emerges on the basis of how tasks and goals are structured and understood between the members of the team. Geographically coded information, generated and shared dynamically, gives teams maps of each others’ activities, plus remotely sensed data. The major function of the geospatial technology repository and interface is to provide dynamic knowledge of group activities in real time. Environmental changes reveal new dependencies for adaptive collaboration as conditions on the ground evolve, enabling participants to track the evolution of each other’s work and mutually adjust to it in a timely manner.

Index Terms — geospatial technology, virtual collaboration, wireless grids, complex systems, situation management.