Visualization is the process of representing data graphically and interacting with these representations in order to gain insight into the data. Traditionally, computer graphics has provided a powerful mechanism for creating, manipulating, and interacting with these representations. At IBM, graphics and visualization research addresses the problem of converting data into compelling, revealing, and interactive graphics that suit users' needs.
Our research includes studying visual analytics, developing languages and models of interaction with visualizations, designing novel information visualizations for smarter visual analytics, developing new representations of 3D geometry, strategies for collaborative and social visualization, and designing software systems that support a full range of display formats ranging from smartphones to immersive multi-display visualization environments.
Projects in Highlight
Many Bills is a web based visualization that aims to make congressional legislation easier to digest. It presents bills from the House and Senate organized into collections and split into sections which are color coded and labelled to indicate what topic each section is about. It also provides a set of features designed to make it easier to find interesting or unusual parts of bills and communicate your findings to others.
Many Eyes is a public web site that allows users to gather data, visualize it, and discuss their visualizations. We use the site as an experimental platform to test our hypotheses about the ability of visualizations to spur communication and social interaction, and how that activity may yield new insights into data.
People make a slew of large and small decisions that significantly impact their business and quality of life. For example, a hotel manager might analyze hotel transactions and customer feedback to decide on the hotel’s future promotion programs. Likewise, a potential customer may analyze and compare features and prices of similar products before making a purchase. Often specialized skills and elaborate infrastructure are required to examine data and derive meaningful and actionable insights, this however limits the ability of average users to take advantage of today’s analysis tools. The goal of n.Mind is visual analytics to support decision making for the masses. We are developing an intelligent collaborative visual analytic system called n.Mind, which enables a recipe-driven, interactive visual investigation. In this approach, users start with their analytic goals/tasks at a high level and focus on examining the analysis results, while the system handles the details from extracting the data, choosing the method of analysis, to creation of the right visualization. We are conducting research in several aspect of this, from modeling of users visual analytic tasks, to enabling collaborative use of analytic recipes, and devising a system with a strong foundation on a declarative visual analytics language.
IBM Spatiotemporal Visual Analytics Workbench is a software environment that supports spatiotemporal exploration by combining automatic algorithms with interactive visualization. We thereby aim at enhancing analysts' understanding of spatiotemporal events and movement, and allow correlation with external sources of information.
Electronic medical records contain a wealth of information that can help drive both healthcare policy decisions as well as individualized treatment plans. We are exploring various tools to help users analyze and visualize aggregated patient data. Our interative visual analysis tools are designed to help clinicians and medical administrators gain insights from historical data to better understand what treatments yield the best results in terms of both efficacy and resource efficiency. We have designed several interactive visualization prototypes to address different challenges within this domain, such as the Outflow visualization shown here which supports individualized temporal outcome analysis.
SaNDVis is a novel visual social network analytics tool that supports expertise location, team building, and team coordination in the enterprise. The interface integrates social position, evidence, and facets which allows users to reflect on existing relationships as well as build new relationships in an enterprise setting.