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P2P systems are currently considered as an important and effective alternative to web-based centric approaches of groupware systems. Decentralisation, direct and interactive communication, personalization and context are among the features of P2P systems that could be beneficial to groupware systems. In particular, such features can support monitoring, awareness, social networking and scaffolding in group collaboration. In this work we present an analysis of advantages in using P2P networks to better support group collaborative processes. In our analysis, P2P groupware systems are conceived as a convergence of several views: contextual computing, social media and semantic web. The contextual computing is an important ingredient to capture the context of the collaboration in a multi-dimension way, including workspace context, documents and information context, time and location contexts, etc. The social media is also considered important for an effective collaboration of peer group, to support members with efficient and scalable communication techniques in social interaction among members. The semantic web concepts and use of languages such as RDF/S enable the representation and reasoning with the diverse range of information required by the P2P middleware and the awareness services. We focus in particular how to achieve event-based awareness in P2P groupware systems that includes different forms of awareness. The user and technical requirements are first derived with reference to Project-Based Learning in P2P learning environments, which is the learning setting that we consider in our work. We then present our computational model for supporting group awareness in such environments and discuss how it meets the identified user and technical requirements.
Date of Conference: 7-9 Sept. 2011