Sunday, September 18, 2011

Reaction: A Review of Overview Detail, Zooming, and Focus Context Interfaces

I found the criticisms of switching between an overview and detail view interesting, as I would not have thought that the mental toggle between these two views would be noticeably costly to the viewer. More details about the time/concentration cost would be interesting. The criticisms about zooming to show detail I would disagree with in that I feel it is heavily dependent on the data being shown (and zoomed) and the implementation. I have experienced some visualizations that were disorienting while zooming and others that were not in the least. Usually these present some sort of minimap to aid in navigation once zoomed which highlights the portion zoomed in on.
I am happy that the author took advised to whichever method makes sense for the data and method that is being presented. Overall the author did a fantastic job of presenting four different interaction interfaces for showing data in a simplified and more detailed form, with both the pros and cons of each. I also quite enjoyed that the author gave popular real world examples of each type.