Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Reaction: Attention and Visual Memory in Visualization

I find this paper to be particularly interesting as it delves deeply to how we perceive visualization. The paper used various experiments conducted in the past to describe different visual attributes. While some are intuitive, others are simply fascinating in that they produce results that deviates from our initial expectation. Inattentional blindness and attentional blink are two examples that are interesting because it suggests that while our eyes may capture a scene like a camera, our brain cannot process and analyze the image perfectly. As a result, this phenomenon among other visual attributes is perhaps the reason why magic and optical illusions exists.

This paper does a particularly good job at describing how to utilize our visual attributes. From the experiments the paper describe, the author draws out important pieces and formulate them as tips on how to provide effective visualization that can capture our attention quickly. I would be interested in further readings that would go into possible theories that explain the development of the visual attributes described in this paper.