Satchel: Providing Access to Any Document, Any Time, Anywhere
Mik Lamming, Marge Eldridge, Mike Flynn, Chris Jones, David Pendlebury
Current solutions for providing access to electronic documents while away from the office do not meet the
specific needs of mobile document workers. We describe "Satchel", a system that is designed specifically to
support the distinctive features of mobile document work. Satchel is designed to meet the following five
high-level design goals: (1) easy access to document services; (2) timely document access; (3) streamlined
user interface; (4) ubiquity; and (5) compliance with security policies. Our current prototype uses a Nokia 9000
Communicator as the mobile device; it communicates to the rest of the Satchel system using wireless
communications, both infrared and radio. A fundamental concept is the use of tokens, or smallsecure
references, to represent documents on hte mobile device. The mobile client only transmits small tokens over
the wireless channels, leaving the wired network to transmit the contents of documents when, and only when,
they are required. Another fundamental Satchel concept is the highly specialized and context-sensitive user
interface on the mobile device.The use's interactions are streamlined because of this specialization and through
the use of contextual information gained by using infrared communications.We report the results of a trial of
Satchel that was carried out within our own company, and discuss how well Satchelmet our design goals.
We call Satchel a "document appliance" because it provides a streamlined sloution to the problem of remote
document access - it aims to support only a limited set of activities, but supports them very well.
Mik Lamming, Marge Eldridge, Mike Flynn, Chris Jones & David Pendlebury. Satchel: Providing access to any document, any time, anywhere. ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction, Vol. 7, No. 3, September 2000, Pages 322-352.
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