In this paper, a system called Caretta that integrates personal and shared spaces to support face-to-face collaboration is described. We use PDAs and a multiple-input sensing board for personal and shared spaces, respectively. Users of Caretta can discuss and negotiate with each other in the shared space by manipulating physical objects, while they individually examine their ideas in their own personal spaces. Caretta allows users to participate in group activities interchangeably and seamlessly using both these spaces. Caretta is applicable to various collaborative tasks. In this paper, it supports users in urban planning tasks. User studies of Caretta demonstrated that it allowed users to collaborate in a flexible fashion: users could work individually in their personal spaces at their own pace, cooperatively work together in the shared space, and smoothly transition between both of the spaces.
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