18 January 2010 Visualizing search results: evaluating an iconic visualization
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Abstract
Commercial websites offer many items to potential site users. However, most current websites display results of a search in text lists, or as lists sorted on one or two single criteria. Finding the best item in a text list based on multi-priority criteria is an exhausting task, especially for long lists. Visualizing search results and enabling users to perceive the tradeoffs among the results based on multiple priorities may ease this process. To investigate this, two different techniques for displaying and sorting search results are studied in this paper; Text, and XY Iconic Visualization. The goal is to determine which technique for representing search results would be the most efficient one for a website user. We conducted a user study to compare the usability of the two techniques. Collected data is in the form of participants' task responses, a satisfaction questionnaire, qualitative observations, and participants' comments. According to the results, iconic visualization is better for overview (it gives a good overview in a short amount of time) and search with more than two criteria, while text-based performs better for displaying details.
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M. Erfani Joorabchi, A. Dalvandi, H. Seifi, L. Bartram, C. D. Shaw, "Visualizing search results: evaluating an iconic visualization", Proc. SPIE 7530, Visualization and Data Analysis 2010, 75300G (18 January 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.840329; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.840329
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