بيئات العمل التعاوني للتجاربِ (في المختبرات الهندسية) عن بعد (على شبكة الإنترنتِ)
Collaborative Working Environments for Web-Based Remote Experimentation
إيمان محمد محمود عبدالغني
Eiman Mohammed Mahmoud AbdAlghani
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Collaborative working environments for distance education can be considered as a more generic form of contemporary remote labs. Nowadays, the majority of existing real laboratories are not constructed to allow the involved participants to collaborate in real time. To make this revolutionary learning environment possible we must allow the different participants to communicate and to coordinate with each other in a productive manner. Production rate and efficiency gained through synchronous communication and coordination between the different partners, which mean that users can carry out an experiment simultaneously. Within this process, coordination can be accomplished by chat tools. In recent times, multi-user environments are successfully applied in many applications such as air traffic control systems, team-oriented military systems, chat-text tools, and multi-player games. Thus, understanding the ideas and techniques behind these systems could be of great importance of the contribution of ideas to our e-learning environment for collaborative working. In this thesis, collaborative working environments from theoretical and practical perspectives are considered to build an effective collaborative real laboratory, which allows two students or more to conduct remote experiments at the same time as a team. In order to achieve this goal, we have proposed distributed system architecture to enable the collaborative work among students. This system is organized into subsystems and components and allows the end-users (tutor and students) to interact with the system through a web-based user-interface, enabling them to complete their tasks; however, this architecture have been built around an existing laboratory components and equipments in a general university/ engineering college. Unfortunately, there are many problems that still exist in remote experiments of engineering studies, such as not finding the proper assistance while performing an experiment, distracting students working on an experiment because of not finding a proper feedback from other students, and inequality in task division between them. Therefore, the students will lose motivation and the experiment could fail, leading to ineffective learning. The architecture applied to this system follows the simplest client-server architecture, where an application is organized as a server and a set of clients. Enabling students to obtain an automated help by either a human tutor or a rule-based e-tutor for the purpose of student support in remote experiment environments, we had to facilitate a synchronous interaction between students and tutor achieved by chat tool. Effective collaboration between students is obtained by using color coding to distinguish their contributions from each other. The software-technical implementation of the system have been realized by using the powerful Microsoft .NET, which offers a complete integrated developmental environment (IDE) with a wide collection of products and technologies. As a result of the software and hardware development process was a web-based collaborative working environment, which can be interactively used by students through a web-based user-interface. This GUI facilitates the remote control and access of various instruments and experiment setups. Groups of students are now independently able to coordinate and to implement the experiment at any time and from anywhere, including regulating the work positively.