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(computer science)
Multiuser software that supports information sharing through digital media, such as electronic mail and messaging, electronic meeting systems and audio conferencing, group calendaring and scheduling, workflow process diagramming and analysis tools, and group document handling including group editing.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


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Software that supports multiple users working on projects both locally and remotely. Also called "collaboration software," groupware is more than just allowing access to the same data for many people. Groupware provides a mechanism that helps teams coordinate and keep track of tasks. Any worthwhile groupware product is able to perform many functions within the same application and menus.

Lotus Notes, which debuted in 1989, is often considered the father of groupware. Today, Slack software is widely used for collaboration. See IBM Notes and Slack.

Groupware Is Comprehensive
Groupware includes any combination of document sharing, calendaring, scheduling, contacts, task management, threaded discussions, email and conferencing (data, audio and video). Workflow may also be part of groupware, which allows messages and documents to be routed to the appropriate users,

From Simple to Complex
The Internet focused attention on groupware because of the ease with which data could be shared. However, as files became widely distributed, security and synchronization problems surfaced. Access control and replication became issues. What started out as a simple way to distribute data wound up requiring the integration of many more functions and controls. See workflow, contextual collaboration, collaborative browsing and wares.

Groupware and Workflow
Groupware focuses on the information being processed and enabling users to share it. Workflow emphasizes the process, which acts as a container for the information. Groupware is "information centered." Workflow is "process centered." (Illustration courtesy of Delphi Consulting Group, Inc.)
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References in periodicals archive ?
Fujitsu will also provide technical assistance to integrate each existing system's authentication mechanism and data records as well as a variety of groupware.
These activity records include groupware activity logs, onscreen videos, and activity video as detailed below:
SuSE Linux Openexchange Server 4.1 will be generally available on November 17 and will cost from $1,240 with a base license for 10 groupware clients and unlimited email clients.
Life sciences companies use common groupware suites that lend themselves to KM, such as Lotus Notes and Microsoft Exchange.
"Diyixian is proud to offer a new breed of managed hosting service that features AMD's new line of AMD Athlon MP processors and Magically's top messaging and groupware solution," said Lap Man, CEO of Diyixian.
This study in electronic collaboration usage and implications extends what has already been done in groupware and group collaboration systems.
The applications most often integrated with the portal software are groupware, customer relationship management and enterprise resource planning applications.
The collaborative groupware can also be used to make data available across networks.
Magic Notes automatically saves notes whenever changes are made and includes a newly updated Net Send feature, allowing the program to be used as a groupware application for a LAN setting such as a small business or home network, or over the Internet.