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Method and system for dynamically compute and display the workload of a user in a chat application

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000224976D
Publication Date: 2013-Jan-17
Document File: 3 page(s) / 82K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

A method and a system are disclosed for computing and making available the workload state of a user when he is using a chat application. The workload state is based on the user's activity in terms of open chat sessions and on the amount of exchanged messages in the recent time-frame. This allows anyone that is going to open a chat session with him to evalute in advance his responsiveness, for example through an animated gauge indicator positioned near the user's icon.

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Method and system for dynamically compute and display the workload of a user in a chat application

Chat applications are more and more used in working environments since they allow to quickly and easily reach people (often located remotely) for asking any kind of info.

Considering this widespread use it is common that a user is involved in multiple chat sessions with several people concurrently and it may happen that, because of this workload, the person is not able to follow all the chat sessions with a prompt response. In this situation having an additional person asking for a new chat session may not even be affordable.

Available chat applications already have some ways to flag the state of a user as "busy" or "not available" according to certain parameters that they are able to guess from the environment and/or if the user explicitly stated this state. Anyway none of the existing tools have mechanisms to provide a sort of continuous "workload state" of a user that can be leveraged by a remote person to understand the current load state of the recipient user; when such workload state is high the person starting a new chat should expect no response from that person or at least not a very responsive interaction.

The core idea described here is based on enhancing a chat application with the capability of associating a "workload state" to each user based on his activity in terms of open chat sessions and on the amount of exchanged messages in the recent time-frame.

When someone is going to open a chat session with another user he can see in advance the recipient's workload state, for example through an animated gauge indicator positioned near the user's icon.

The "workload state" information, if its value exceeds a pre-configured threshold, could also be used to prevent at all a user from starting a new chat session.

There are two main flows that this system has to cover:

The computation of the user's workload state


1.

The display of a user's workload state when someone is going to start


2.

a new chat session and/or when someone browses the list of available users

Computation of the user's workload state

The picture below shows a possible implementation of the "Workload Measurement Module" that is part of the chat client application.

That module continuously computes the user's workload state (as described below) and communicates it to the chat server so that it can be sent to any client asking for it.

The input events that can be taken into consideration are:


• Number of active chat sessions

1


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• The total number of incoming sentences that have not an outgoing one gives an idea of the work that has to be done by the user for the response.


• More an incoming sentence is length more time will be spe...