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About collaboration

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Ensembling is about working together to produce publications, whether on paper or in electronic form.
The working space is divided into projects: each of the folders you see at the top level is a project. A project might be used to prepare one publication or a rolling set of publications. What makes a project distinct, however, is that it determines the group of people who work together. For any one project these are your colleagues. You might be working on different projects with different colleagues.
Colleagues have differing rôles as you would expect within a document preparation environment. Some people do the proof reading while others deal with page layout or sub-editing. Even if you are participating in several projects, you may be an editor for one project but a proof reader in another. Your rôle determines what facilities Ensembling presents to you.
A project progresses through various stages: workflow or document lifecycle. A simple project may just be a collection of letters, say, one folder for each. A more complicated project might be divided into a set of different publications. For example, the project team may be producing two magazines, so there would be folders for each. Those magazines are in turn divided into editions (January, February etc for example), and each edition into articles which might bring together the words and pictures for the article. As the project progresses files will be produced which composite the articles into a complete publication. Eventually, a finished file may be made available externally - for example for a printer to pick up.
As each stage progresses, materials become redundant - there's no point in changing or commenting on some raw text in a Word document if it has already been incorporated into a Quark XPress layout. Therefore, you can lock a document so no further changes can be made. The same mechanism allows for final approval of the finished piece.
As all this is going on you can keep tabs on it by setting a watch. This will send email to you whenever a document or anything in a folder changes. Because a project is also a folder, you can see changes to a whole project if you want. For example, you may want to see when the next edition's folder is made.
One or more folders can be designated as a dead letterbox. This means the folder is assigned both a public URL and email address which anyone who knows the URL or email address (which can include a random number to avoid spam) can upload or email documents to.