Monday, September 19, 2011

Reaction: Toward a Deeper Understanding of the Role of Interaction in Information Visualization.

This paper is yet another attempt to express the taxonomies of Information visualization interaction with regard to the other frameworks which are quite subtle and are not much expresssive. According to the authors, Information Visualizations are majorly made of two components - representation and interaction. However , out of these , the representation component has received vast majority of attention in Infovis research.

Corelating Information Visualization with Visual Analytics sounds quite interesting to me. I too think that both of them share common goals and the science of interaction involved, as author mentions, does share similar merits . Though I'm not sure if Visual Analytics should be mostly expressed in terms of data rather than more of visualizations.

The seven categories actually looks similar to the categorizations that were made in the previous papers. I particularly found Reconfiguration interaction very interesting. Author says that by changing the spatial arrangement of representations we can reveal the hidden characteristics of data and relationships between them. As far as what I think, this seems to be quite trivial for reconfigurations like sorting and rearranging colums, however I believe associating reconfigurations with information visualizations ain't an easy task .

For example, let's take a simple bar graph (time vs quantity) representing some statistical data. Now if we reconfigure this, it may first sound good to have linear and sorted representation of bar graphs but on the other hand this may garble the timeline and hence the overall information visualization may not make much sense to analyze.

Overall, I found this paper to be quite helful for anyone to understand and efficiently design interaction for information visualizations.