My University Projects

This site is under current construction ;-) Here you will find pointers to my bigger and smaller projects I am or was involved in at university and some demo programs that I wrote to make my life a bit easier for various reasons.

Collaborative Information Visualization in Co-located Environments
My PhD research is about the support of collaborative work around visual displays of information such as diagrams, graphs, or other complex representations. My goal is to find out how people collaboratively analyze information and what this means for the design of visualization environments for collaborative work.

Go to the project page
Visual Analysis Processes
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Cambiera: Visual Analytics on the Surface
During my internship at Microsoft Research with Danyel Fisher and Kori Inkpen (Quinn) I built a tabletop visual analytics tool that supports individual and collaborative information foraging activities in large text document collections. Check out the Project Page here
Social Visualization
KeyStrokes - Personalizing Typed Text Through Visualization
This project was motivated by the fact that over the last couple of years we have almost completely switched to electronic text communication as opposed to hand-writing messages. We felt that electronic text communication lacks a lot of the character of hand-writing. Our project aimed at bringing this character back into the electronic text by creating visualizations of writing characteristics that can then be sent alongside the text.

For more information go to the project page.

Hierarchical Data Visualization
PhylloTrees - Phyllotactic Patterns for Tree Layout
We explored the use of nature’s phyllotactic patterns to layout hierarchical data. These patterns occur naturally in many plants and provide a non-overlapping, optimal packing when the total number of nodes is not known a priori. PhylloTrees are particularly useful for the display of large, deep, and dynamically changing data sets. For more information go to the project page
ArcTrees - Visualizing Relations in Hierarchical Data
ArcTrees a new interactive visualization technique that integrates imposed relations with the hierarchical data structure. The display of relations between data items in tree structures is commonly solved by grouping items according to color, shape, proximity, size, etc. ArcTrees represents relations using direct connections. These have been shown to be a stronger grouping principle than proximity, color, size, or shape. For more information go to the project page.
Information Visualization Evaluation
Heuristic Evaluation of Information Visualization
Heuristic evaluation is a well known discount evaluation technique in human-computer interaction (HCI) but has not been used in (InfoVis) to the same extent. We explored the issues of heuristic evaluation for InfoVis in this project and describe issues related to interpretation, redundancy, and conflict in heuristics. For more information go to the project page.
Non-Photorealistic Rendering
Non-Photorealistic Rendering in Context: An Observational Study
Pen-and-ink line drawing techniques is often used in artistic, technical, and scientific illustration. In non-photorealistic rendering (NPR) researchers have tried to reproduce these traditional pen-and-ink techniques for rendering 3D objects. However, formal evaluation and validation of these techniques is very rare. We ran an observational study to examine assessment of hand-drawn pen-and-ink illustrations of objects in comparison with NPR renditions of the same 3D objects. More information on the study can be found here.
NPR Lenses
In this project we used interactive lenses for the manipulation of NPR line drawings from 3D models. The model could be rotated interactively, the lines were updated, and then the lenses were applied to it to create individual effect. This webpage gives a bunch of examples of pictures that were created with this technique.
User-Supported Interactive Illustration of Text
I did part of this work for my Laborpraktikum in Magdeburg. I developed an NPR server that handled the transfer and creation of images for illustration of text. A user (client) could send a request to a machine that hosted a catalouge of 3D models that could be looked at and rendered in different NPR styles. If the user was satisfied it could be dragged to and directly embedded in the document that the user was working on. For more information go to the project page.
Utility Projects
Video Coding Tool
I did several qualitative studies during my PhD and couldn't find the right (or a free) tool that would let me transcribe two videos at once. This software is a second iteraction of my first coding tool, now written in WPF.Go to the project page.
Color To OpenGL
I do a lot of coding in OpenGL and I haven't been able to find a good colour chooser that will let you copy out the colour as a code snippet. This one returns the colour in 0 to 1 range. The source code is free for anyone to use. Go to the project page.
In an effort to get my head wrapped around WPF I built a little FontViewer program. It will let you view all the fonts on your system in 4 different sizes with a user-specified text. Download the .exe - built on Windows Vista for .NET 3.5 or download the .xaml. This is based on a tutorial from Sams Teach Yourself WPF in 24 hours.