Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Reaction: Automating the design of graphical presentations of relational information

This paper mainly deals with the idea of developing an application independent presentation tool that automatically designs graphical presentation. This process of automating the design of graphical presentation is explained diagrammatically through figure one where the presentation tool is provided the data by the application and the effective graphical image is generated by the tool. I think this a great idea. Having a tool that automatically generates graphics when provided with data is something that is necessary. The author has also described the problems involved in this design and has given few examples which are quite close to such a system.

I found the para on effectiveness very interesting. I absolutely agree with the author when he says that unlike expressiveness which depends on syntax and semantics of graphical languages, effectiveness also depends on the capabilities of the perceiver! I think this is something that cannot be controlled. Every person has a different way in which he perceives things. Therefore it is necessary that one must conjecture a theory of effectiveness that is both intuitively motivated and consistent with the current empirically verified knowledge of human perceptual capabilities.
Rest of the paper describes how an effective and expressive graphical representations can be created by providing an algorithm and giving numerous examples.