Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Reactions: Task Taxonomy for Graph Visualization

This is indeed very interesting paper which somewhat highlights the facets of HCI. In Human Computer interaction there's a very well known concept of GOMS model which is used to rapidly evaluate the usability of the system. In this model we split tasks for usability evaluation into (Goals, Operators, Methods and Selection) rules.

I found this paper to be quite similar where we split graph visualizations into list of low level tasks and analyze them. Authors classified these tasks into four different categories based on its topology, atrribute, browsing and overview tasks. Authors have done a very good research on the topic and were able to provide the results based on their empirical research and not by the assumptions.

I sincerely feel that this is a great step towards visualization. If we compare this model to the psychological one, indeed, human mind does better when we have pre defined small goals in hand. This is a great idea for anyone who wants to develop/evaluate a new sort of visualization first understanding the small tasks and goal that a user would need to achieve.