Graph visualization continues to be a major challenge in the field of information visualization, meanwhile gaining importance
due to the power of graph-based formulations across a wide variety of domains from knowledge representation
to network flow, bioinformatics, and software optimization. We present the Open Semantic Network Analysis Platform
(OSNAP), an open-source visualization framework designed for the flexible composition of 2D and 3D graph layouts.
Analysts can filter and map a graph’s attributes and structural properties to a variety of geometric forms including shape,
color, and 3D position. Using the Provider Model software engineering pattern, developers can extend the framework with
additional mappings and layout algorithms. We demonstrate the framework’s flexibility by applying it to two separate
domain ontologies and finally outline a research agenda to improve the value of semantic network visualization for human
insight and analysis.
The field of Information Visualization is concerned with improving how users perceive, understand, and interact with visual representations of abstract information. Immersive Virtual Environments (VEs) excel at a greater comprehension of spatial information. This project addresses the intersection of these two fields known as Information-Rich Virtual Environments (IRVEs) where perceptually realistic information, such as models and scenes, are enhanced with abstract information, such as text, numeric data, hyperlinks, or multimedia resources. IRVEs present a number of important design challenges including the management, coordination, and display of interrelated perceptual and abstract information. We describe a set of design issues for this type of integrated visualization and demonstrate a coordinated, multiple-views approach to support 2D and 3D visualization interactions such as overview, navigation, details-on-demand, and brushing-and-linking. In the CAVE, spatial information in a VE is interactively linked to embedded visualizations of related abstract information. Software architecture issues are discussed with details of our implementation applied to the domain of chemical information visualization. Lastly, we subject our system to an informal usability evaluation and identify usability issues with interaction and navigation that guides future work in these environments.