WWW95: visualizing the Web with the navigational view builder

  1. abstract
  2. overview diagrams are one of the best tools for orientation and navigation in hypermedia systems. however, constructing effective overview diagrams is a challenging task. this paper describes the Navigational View Builder, a tool which allows the user to interactively create useful visualizations of the information space.

  3. my comment
  4. sougata mukherjea from the college of computing of the georgia institute of technology atlanta, USA showed how difficult it is to create a graphical overview of the information space. he explained the four strategies they use to form effective views:
    1. binding (bind attributes to visual properties, e.g. colors)
    2. clustering (combine multiple documents into one graphical object)
    3. filtering (display only documents that are of interest to the user)
    4. hierarchization (create a visual hierarchy)

    it is obvious that a large information space cannot be displayed with traditional diagrams using nodes to represent documents and lines to represent links, because the picture gets cluttered with boxes and lines and becomes completely useless. if one or more of the above mentioned strategies are applied to the diagram, the amount of information can be reduced and more useful pictures will result. such graphical representations of the information space allow fast and efficient navigation.

    the only trouble with that system is, the properties of the HTML documents are not stored in the document itself, but they have to be entered manually. therefore the view of the information space presented by the navigational view builder may not be up to date. nevertheless i liked the various graphical presentations of the information space. once the information about the links and the properties of the documents is stored in a database, such visualization tools might become even more important and useful.

this paper is available on the Web.
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visualizing_web / 04-may-95 (ra) / reto ambühler