Graph-Level Operations (GLOs)

Team Members: Chad Stolper, Minsuk Kahng, Zhiyuan Lin, Florian Forester, Aakash Goel, John Stasko, Polo Chau

     Graph-Level Operations: A High-Level Interface for Graph Visualization Technique - Stolper PhD thesis 2016
    GLO-STIX: Graph-Level Operations for Specifying Techniques and Interactive eXploration - IEEE InfoVis 2014

    VIDEO: GLO-STIX, InfoVis '14 (30 MB mp4, YouTube link)

Imagine that you have a giant bin of Legos in front of you. With those Legos you can build anything you want, from cars to planes to skyscrapers. By having a collection of building blocks that abstract away the low-level aspects of what you are building, you are able to build a much larger range of things.

Graph-Level Operations (or GLOs) are the building blocks of graph visualization. We have broken down graph visualization techniques into a small set of reusable components. We can use GLOs to specify the mappings between graph data and the visual representation of that data, sometimes referred to as "visualization techniques".

Using the set of GLOs that we have generated, we can specify seven canonical visualization techniques:

  • node-link diagrams,
  • scatterplots,
  • Matrix plots,
  • circle plots,
  • semantic substrates,
  • PivotGraphs,
  • and Arc diagrams

We have implemented the GLOs that we have identified into the GLO-STIX application. [Public Release Coming Soon!]

Our ongoing work includes identifying and implementing more operations to cover even more techniques. Current research avenues include data-related operations such as degree-of-interest functions and subgraph-related operations.

This research is supported by NSF Award IIS-1320537 (CGV: Small: Creating Information Visualizations without Programming), the U.S. Army Research Office (ARO) and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) under Contract Number W911NF-11-C-0088 and the XDATA program sponsored by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) and DARPA.