Publication | ACM SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2017

WeBuild

Automatically Distributing Assembly Tasks Among Collocated Workers to Improve Coordination

Abstract

WeBuild: Automatically Distributing Assembly Tasks Among Collocated Workers to Improve Coordination

Ailie Fraser, Tovi Grossman, George Fitzmaurice

ACM SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2017

Physical construction and assembly tasks are often carried out by groups of collocated workers, and they can be difficult to coordinate. Group members must spend time deciding how to split up the task, how to assign subtasks to each other, and in what order subtasks should be completed. Informed by an observational study examining group coordination challenges, we built a task distribution system called WeBuild. Our custom algorithm dynamically assigns subtasks to workers in a group, taking into account factors such as the dependencies between subtasks and the skills of each group member. Each worker views personalized step-bystep instructions on a mobile phone, while a dashboard visualizes the entire process. An initial study found that WeBuild reduced the start-up time needed to coordinate and begin a task, and provides direction for future research to build on toward improving group efficiency and coordination for complex tasks.

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Associated Autodesk Researchers

C. Ailie Fraser

UC San Diego

Tovi Grossman

University of Toronto

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