A tiny tool that makes
collaboration tangible

Today, we often work seperated from each other across space and time, which can make online collaboration feel more ephemeral and less empathic. By imagining a collaborative project as a mountain that grows over time, ECHO makes it more tangible: we can reflect on our own position, map our collective paths onto it and be more aware of our team members’ wellbeing.

ECHO tries not to prescribe what constitutes a successful collaboration. But as a companion tool to a group project it can help to express the needs and values for how to work together. With a shared view on the project we can take better care of it and each other.

Basel, February 2021

How it works

Create a project. Open ECHO via the link above and choose Create New Project. Give your project a name. ECHO generates a unique URL for your project. Make sure to copy the link, you and your team will need it to access your project.
Next, add project members with their names. Each team member will individually track their process. You can also add and remove team members later (via the settings icon in the main screen).
When you open your project, you see the list of all project members. Choose your name to go to the input screen. Here you can add a new status update for yourself that will feed into your project mountain.
In the input screen, you are asked about your current progress and felt resistance in the project. Locate yourself in the diagram by pulling an arrow out from the blinking dot. Reposition the arrow until you are satisfied. Your last few entries will be shown as colored dots. Save your entry with the check mark button.
After saving, you move to your project’s mountain. Here you can see all the entries of your team members over time. Use the controls in the navigation bar to move around the mountain. You can always get to this view directly from your project’s main screen. There is a mountain button below the team list.
Now it's on you to arrange among yourselves how often you want to input updates, depending on the character of your team and project. Repeat this exercise in your team regularly to reflect on your personal process as well as to build up a shared view of the current mood, stress and balance within your project. The tool is meant to help you to address the state of your project, to react to imbalances early on, and to help each other out.
Tip: For quick access to your project, add a bookmark to the permalink of your ECHO project to your browser or smartphone home screen.
A note on your data: We wanted to keep the tool lightweight and easy to try out, without the need for user accounts. The only login to your data is your project's unique web address. There is no password, so anyone who knows your project URL can access it. Besides the nicknames of your group members and their data points for the mountain, we don't store other sensitive information. The tool is still experimental, so there might be changes in the future that could affect your stored data.