http://www.dagstuhl.de/12261

### June 24th – June 29th 2012, Dagstuhl Seminar 12261

# Putting Data on the Map

## Organizers

Stephen G. Kobourov (University of Arizona – Tucson, US)

Frank van Ham (IBM Software Group – Netherlands, NL)

Alexander Wolff (Universität Würzburg, DE)

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## For support, please contact

## Documents

Dagstuhl Report, Volume 2, Issue 6

List of Participants

Shared Documents

Dagstuhl Seminar Schedule [pdf]

## Summary

Visualization allows us to perceive relationships in large sets of interconnected data. While statistical techniques may determine correlations among the data, visualization helps us frame what questions to ask about the data. The design and implementation of algorithms for modeling, visualizing and interacting with large relational data is an active research area in data mining, information visualization, human-computer interaction, and graph drawing.

*Map representations* provide a way to visualize relational data
with the help of conceptual maps as a data representation metaphor.
In a narrow sense, a map
representation of a graph is a contact graph representation where the
adjacency of vertices is expressed by regions that share borders.
Such representations are, however, limited to planar
graphs by definition. We can extend the notion of a map representation
to non-planar graphs by generalizing the idea as follows: clusters of
well-connected vertices form countries, and countries share borders
when neighboring clusters are tightly interconnected.

*Information spatialization and cartograms* also connect the
notions of data with those of maps. Cartograms redraw an existing
geographic map such that the country areas are proportional to some
metric (e.g., population), an idea that dates back to a paper by Raisz
in 1934 and is still popular today. *Spatialization* is the process of
assigning two- or three-dimensional coordinates to abstract data
points, ideally such that the spatial mapping has much of the
characteristics of the original high-dimensional
space. Multi-dimensional scaling or principal component analysis are
techniques that allow us to spatialize high-dimensional
data. Techniques like information landscapes can then be used to
convert the resulting two-dimensional coordinates into meaningful
three-dimensional landscapes.

Providing efficient and effective data visualization is a difficult challenge in many real-world software systems. One challenge lies in developing algorithmically efficient methods to visualize large and complex data sets. Another challenge is to develop effective visualizations that make the underlying patterns and trends easy to see. And finally, we need to allow users to interactively access, analyze, and filter these patterns in an intuitive manner. All of these tasks are becoming increasingly more difficult due to the growth of the data sets arising in modern applications, as well as due to their highly dynamic nature.

## Classification

- Data Structures / Algorithms / Complexity
- Networks
- Computer Graphics / Computer Vision
- Interdisciplinary

## Keywords

- Information visualization
- Geovisualization
- Geographic information systems
- Cartography
- Human-computer interaction
- Graph drawing
- Cartographic generalization
- Schematic maps
- Graph theory
- Computational geometry