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Email as a habitat: an exploration of embedded personal information management


Email has become more like a habitat than an application. It is used for a wide range of tasks such as information management and for coordination and collaboration in organizations. Our research shows that email is the place in which a great deal of work is received and delegated and is a growing portal for access to online publications and information services. Indeed, users have been seen to co-opt email as a personal information management (PIM) tool. This follows from what we have found to be a common tendency of knowledge workers, which is to embed personal information management directly into their favorite workspaces. In this article, we explore further these new and unanticipated uses that are made of email, and suggest potential design ideas to support them better. We present the findings from four months of fieldwork conducted at three companies.

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Ducheneaut, N. ; Bellotti, V. Email as habitat: An exploration of embedded personal information management. ACM Interactions. 2001 September-October; 8 (5): 30-38.


Copyright © ACM, 2001. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of ACM for your personal use. Not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Interactions http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/382899.383305