Homepage of the FRODO TaskMan



For more information you can contact Heiko Maus

further links:

FRODO project, DFKI Knowledge Management Department

17.06.04: added presentation about TaskMan architecture and evaluation results (see Presentations)
16.09.04: added KI publication
22.11.04: added gnowsis and some remarks on the predecessor project KnowMore
20.07.05: added some recent publications
06.03.06: we were at the CeBit with the TaskNavigator
11.12.06: some more publications and a projects section
14.03.08: a finished Ph.D. in the publications section


Knowledge-intensive activities can typically not be modeled sufficiently by classical,
static process models and workflows. To enable a process-oriented knowledge management
approach under these circumstances, the concept of weakly-structured workflows has been developed.

This approach integrates process modeling and workflow enactment and facilitates active information
support in dynamically changing process environments. Furthermore, the approach allows process knowledge
itself to be used as a valuable resource in knowledge management.

The FRODO TaskMan is a demonstrator for this concept of weakly structured workflows.
It is an agent-based workflow management system integrated in organizational memory information systems.

The TaskMan was developed within the FRODO project at the DFKI Knowledge Management Department.

(update) Currently, we refer to this concept as agile knowledge workflow to stress both parts of this concept,
namely a flexible workflow approach (therefore agile) and the connection to business process-oriented knowledge management.

TaskMan prototype

A screenshot of the user interface:
On the left hand side there is the workflow (with task hierarchies) and on the right hand side
the task manager which allows to model and work on the task.

TaskMan - workflow and task in progress

Here is a  figure showing our workflow agent society with some of the used speechacts:

workflow agent society with some speechacts

We did an evaluation of the FRODO Taskman. We published the results in a paper and here you can find some pictures.

Used tools

Tools we used for the development of the FRODO TaskMan


The TaskNavigator is the web-based successor of the FRODO TaskMan.
see, e.g., the CIKM paper

At the CeBit 2006, we presented the successor TaskNavigator. You'll  find infomaterial in the DFKI Newsletter (german / engl )



Publications related to weakly-structured workflows and the FRODO TaskMan


Exploiting User and Process Context for Knowledge Management Systems

Ludger van Elst, Andreas Abecker, Heiko Maus

In Workshop on User Modeling for Context-Aware Applications
at the 8th International Conference on User Modeling, Sonthofen, Germany.
( PDF, slides )

Anforderungen an die Workflow-Unterstützung für wissensintensive Geschäftsprozesse

 Sven Schwarz, Andreas Abecker, Heiko Maus, Michael Sintek

 Workshop  "Geschäftsprozessorientiertes Wissensmanagement"
 im Rahmen der  1. Konferenz Professionelles Wissensmanagement (WM2001)
 vom 14. - 16. März, Baden-Baden
 ( PDF )

  beide Veröffentlichungen sind als Extended Abstracts erschienen in

Gerd Stumme, Hans-Peter Schnurr, Steffen Staab, Rudi Studer, York Sure (Hrsg.)
Professionelles Wissensmanagement
(ISBN 3-8265-8611-5)

FRODO: A Framework for Distributed Organizational Memories.
Milestone M1: Requirements Analysis and System Architecture.

 Andreas Abecker, Ansgar. Bernardi, Ludger van Elst, Andreas Lauer, Heiko Maus, Sven Schwarz, and M. Sintek. 
 DFKI Document D-01-01, DFKI GmbH, March 2001.

Workflow Context as a Means for Intelligent Information Support

 Heiko Maus
 in Springer LNAI 2116: V. Akman, P. Bouquet, R. Thomason, R.A. Young (Eds.):
  Modeling and Using Context. Third International and Interdisciplinary Conference, CONTEXT, 2001, Dundee, UK, July 27-30, 2001. Proceedings
  (preliminary version , PDF)
  (Springer LINK online version )
conference page: CONTEXT'01 


Artikel im DFKI Newsletter zur CeBit'02: FRODO Taskman

Konzepte zur Gestaltung von Unternehmensgedächtnissen

Andreas Dengel, Andreas Abecker, Ansgar Bernardi, Ludger van Elst, Heiko Maus, Sven Schwarz, Michael Sintek
Zeitschrift KI - Künstliche Intelligenz , Thema Wissensmanagement, 1/02, S. 5-11. 
Abstract. (Draft,pdf)


FRODO Abschlussbericht - A Framework for Distributed Organizational Memories

Andreas Abecker, Ansgar Bernardi, Ludger van Elst, Andreas Lauer, Heiko Maus, Michael Sintek, Sven Schwarz

Weakly-structured Workflows for Knowledge-intensive Tasks: An Experimental Evaluation

Ludger van Elst, Felix-Robinson Aschoff, Ansgar Bernardi, Heiko Maus, Sven Schwarz
in Knowledge Management for Distributed Agile Processes: Models, Techniques, and Infrastructure  (KMDAP2003) at WETICE-03
(draft pdf)


FRODO: Ein Agentenframework für verteilte Unternehmensgedächtnisse
Ansgar Bernardi,Andreas Dengel, Ludger van Elst, Andreas Lauer, Heiko Maus, Sven Schwarz
Zeitschrift KI - Künstliche Intelligenz, 3/04, S. 59-61. 


Leveraging Passive Paper Piles to Active Objects in Personal Knowledge Spaces

Heiko Maus, Harald Holz, Ansgar Bernardi, Oleg Rostanin
In: Workshop on Intelligent Office Appliances (IOA 2005)
in Proceedings of  3rd Conference Professional Knowledge Management: Experiences and Visions, April 10-13, 2005. ISBN 3-00-016020-5
(slides, draft )

A Lightweight Approach for Proactive, Task-Specific Information Delivery

Harald Holz, Heiko Maus, Ansgar Bernardi, Oleg Rostanin
In: Proceedings of I-KNOW '05 - Special Track on Business Process Oriented Knowledge Infrastructures (BPOKI).

TEAL - Task Embedded Adaptive e-Learning

Oleg Rostanin, Harald Holz
In: Proceedings of I-KNOW '05ProLearn workshop on professional learning

From Lightweight, Proactive Information Delivery to Business Process-Oriented Knowledge Management

Harald Holz, Heiko Maus, Ansgar Bernardi, Oleg Rostanin
In: Journal of Universal Knowledge Management. Special Issue on Knowledge Infrastructures for the Support of Knowledge Intensive Business Processes. Volume 0 / Issue 2
issue's webpage , pdf )


Project TEAL: Add Adaptive e-Learning to your Workflows

Oleg Rostanin, Carsten Ullrich, Harald Holz, Shenwei Song
In Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Knowledge Management (I-KNOW '06) - Special Track IWL '06 on "Integrating Working and Learning", 6th September, Graz, Austria, 2006.( pdf )

Task-based Process Know-how Reuse and Proactive Information Delivery in TaskNavigator

Holz, Harald, Rostanin, Oleg, Dengel, Andreas, Maeda, Kaoru, Suzuki, Takeshi, Kanasaki, Katsumi
In Proc. of the ACM Fifteenth Conference on Information and Knowledge Management (CIKM 2006), Arlington, USA, pp. 522 - 531, 2006, ISBN: 1-59593-433-2. DOI: 10.1145/1183614.1183689


Workflow-Kontext zur Realisierung prozessorientierter Assistenz in Organisational Memories

Heiko Maus
Ph.D. Thesis/Dissertation, TU Kaiserslautern, 2007. Verlag dissertation.de (Info )

Relations to the predecessor project KnowMore

The FRODO TaskMan extends the approach taken in KnowMore.

KnowMore supports workflows with knowledge-intensive tasks enacted within a workflow activity. KnowMore focussed
on traditional workflow systems (let's say according to WfMC) with strongly-structured workflows.
There is no issue of flexibility on the workflow level.

Now FRODO introduces the concept of weakly-structured workflows which on the one hand coveres all
support of knowledge intensive tasks of the KnowMore-scenario.
But, the main focus of the TaskMan is to support knowledge work whith means of the workflow paradigm:
The FRODO TaskMan allows modification of the workflow during runtime (delete, add, modify tasks, change the control flow).
Furthermore, detail tasks (by hierarchical decomposition) if needed.

With that approach we get various instances for distinct problems which can be used in similar tasks as either
information support (what has been done?) or modelling support (how has this been done? Use it!)

The main idea is to provide the knowledge worker a tool where he is able to mange his work as well as
collaboratively work on processeses in a team and evolve process-know-how.

Projects using TaskMan resp. follow-ups

last modified: June 11th, 2008, HM