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Eben Haber


Publications by Eben Haber (bibliography)

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Kandogan, Eser, Bailey, John, Maglio, Paul P. and Haber, Eben (2008): Policy-based IT automation: the role of human judgment. In: Proceedings of the 2008 Symposium on Computer Human Interaction for the Management of Information Technology 2008. p. 9. Available online

Policy-based automation is emerging as a viable approach to IT systems management, codifying high-level business goals into executable specifications for governing IT operations. Little is known, however, about how policies are actually made, used, and maintained in practice. Here, we report studies of policy use in IT service delivery. We found that although policies often make explicit statements, much is deliberately left implicit, with correct interpretation and execution depending critically on human judgment.

© All rights reserved Kandogan et al. and/or ACM Press

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Bailey, John, Kandogan, Eser, Haber, Eben and Maglio, Paul P. (2007): Activity-based management of IT service delivery. In: Proceedings of the 2007 Symposium on Computer Human Interaction for the Management of Information Technology 2007. p. 5. Available online

Growth, adaptability, innovation, and cost control are leading concerns of businesses, especially with respect to use of information technology (IT). Though standards such as the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) offer the potential for cost savings through the use of formal processes and best practices, such top-down approaches tend to be either highlevel - often far removed from the actual work - or low-level - often inflexible given the rapid pace of technology and market change. We conducted field studies to examine work practices in IT service delivery. Our results suggest that unstructured work activities comprise a significant and vital portion of the overall work done by people in IT service delivery. These activities include negotiating work items and schedules, seeking and providing information and expertise, and using and sharing custom tools and practices. Unstructured activities are conducted in parallel to formal, structured IT service processes, but are not well supported by existing integrated tooling. Thus, they are not easily accounted for and rarely result in reusable assets or feedback to improve the formal IT processes. Based on these findings, we propose an administrator workspace aimed specifically at blending structured and unstructured work activities to support effective, reusable, and quantifiable IT service delivery.

© All rights reserved Bailey et al. and/or ACM Press

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Kandogan, Eser, Haber, Eben, Barrett, Rob, Cypher, Allen, Maglio, Paul P. and Zhao, Haixia (2005): A1: end-user programming for web-based system administration. In: Proceedings of the 2005 ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology 2005. pp. 211-220. Available online

System administrators work with many different tools to manage and fix complex hardware and software infrastructure in a rapidly paced work environment. Through extensive field studies, we observed that they often build and share custom tools for specific tasks that are not supported by vendor tools. Recent trends toward web-based management consoles offer many advantages but put an extra burden on system administrators, as customization requires web programming, which is beyond the skills of many system administrators. To meet their needs, we developed A1, a spreadsheet-based environment with a task-specific system-administration language for quickly creating small tools or migrating existing scripts to run as web portlets. Using A1, system administrators can build spreadsheets to access remote and heterogeneous systems, gather and integrate status data, and orchestrate control of disparate systems in a uniform way. A preliminary user study showed that in just a few hours, system administrators can learn to use A1 to build relatively complex tools from scratch.

© All rights reserved Kandogan et al. and/or ACM Press

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