Tag Archives: link map

Representing Directionality in Network Visualizations

Guess which link-map representation above is the most efficient for showing directionality? Information Aesthetics blog has an interesting article about the different techniques for showing the “from-” and “to-” of network charts.

Networks are often visualized using points and interconnecting lines, with triangular arrowheads at one or both ends to show any directionality between the different points. Although such a standard arrow representation seems intuitive, it can lead to problems in dense graphs that contain many incoming or outgoing relationships. Furthermore, since the arrowheads often have approximately the same size and aspect ratio as the small circles they connect, the graph as a whole might be perceived as cluttered with so much visual detail to the point of being distracting.

via What is the Best Way to Represent Directionality in Network Visualizations? – information aesthetics.


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YouTube – Gource – Software Version Control Visualization Tool

Gource – Software Version Control Visualization Tool.

In Gource, software projects are visualized as they break out different branches, and split into different subprojects. Active users fly around zapping each node, representing software updates. The whole visualized node-and-line structure swirls, bends, and bounces like a rubber band.

The best thing about Gourse is the kinetic detail to the visualization, making each structure look like a tree wafting in a breeze.

via YouTube – Gource – Software Version Control Visualization Tool.

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Density Mapping in Google Maps

Google API add-on lets you make heat maps inside a Google Map portal!

HeatMapAPI can be used over the Internet or as a .NET DLL that runs in a local environment and allows you to integrate heat map images into Google Maps or other GIS systems.  In this post we’re going to use HeatMapAPI to visualize the density of recent Starbucks store closures.  In a recent statement, Starbucks announced the closure of 600+ stores in the United States due to economic conditions.

In other news, we’d like to thank Starbucks for providing their easily-parsed list of closures. Most visualizations I’ve seen are using this dataset.

via Density Mapping in Google Maps with HeatMapAPI « GeoChalkboard.

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German Immigrants in the USA

A map of the USA showing where bars outnumber grocery stores.

Bars outnumber grocery stores

FloatingSheep, a fun geography blog, looks at the beer belly of America. One maps shows total number of bars, but the interesting map is the one above. Red dots represent locations where there are more bars than grocery stores, based on results from the Google Maps API. The Midwest takes their drinking seriously.


via Where Bars Trump Grocery Stores | FlowingData.

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Graceful Timelines

We’ve all seen the unreadable timelines created by some analysis software. The hard lines, the veering connections. The mis-sized and aliased fonts. These might be sufficient for experts, but in the fullness of time, other more polished options will arise. Now you can make those veering connections into swooping connections.

The cartoon site XKCD.com did a few timelines for very complicated movie plots (Lord of the Rings, Star Wars trilogy, etc), modeling them after the famous “Napoleon’s Russian Campaign” chart. Sample:

Napoleon in Middle Earth

Anybody who has tried to write a mega-selling spy novel knows that the hardest part about plotting is getting all the interactions and conflicts on one page. Now we have a super online tool to help us do just that.

Introducing cs448b Data Visualizationhttps://graphics.stanford.edu/wikis/cs448b-09-fall/FP-OgievetskyVadim.

See the project description. Here is a sample poster.

The interface for the online tool (which is available here):

Plotting out the latest Mossad exploit? Wanting to show hookups in a crime family? This might be the tool for you. Project creator Vadim Ogievetsky says,

My main goal is to implement an efficient and effective layout algorithm that, with the users help, would generate results similar to the hand crafted images shown above. The layout algorithm will use combinations of genetic algorithms and simulated annealing to achieve the goal.

via FP-OgievetskyVadim – cs448b – Data Visualization.

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NNDB: Tracking the entire world

If this doesn’t bring to mind Analyst’s Notebook and Palantir, what would? There have been many web-based link diagrammers released (tracking facebook friends, twitter topics, etc), but this one seems to be usable for generating actual results.

The NNDB Mapper is a visual tool for exploring the connections between people in NNDB, linking them together through family relations, corporate boards, movies and TV, political alliances, and shadowy conspiracy groups. Maps can be saved and shared for others to explore.

You start with a search, say, Lynx Gaede, 1/2 of the Nazi teenie-bopper twin band Prussian Blue. Here is her profile page on NNDB: http://www.nndb.com/people/053/000113711/

Then, click the NNDB Mapper in the top right corner.  http://mapper.nndb.com/start/?id=113711

You get a simple entity link map. Hover the mouse over April Gaede, the stage mom, and in the resulting dropdown, click “Expand 3 Nodes.” Then do the same with National Alliance, and you will see luminaries like Kevin Strom, founder of the National Vanguard.

In this way you can being uncovering connections between people. The database appears to be crowd-sourced, so it gets more useful and complete the more people use it. Neat.

The maps can get complicated. Here’s the New York Times link map.

via NNDB: Tracking the entire world.

While we’re on it, who are Prussian Blue? Here’s the documentary: http://www.archive.org/details/MichielSmit.comPrussionBlueMichielSmit.com

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