Improving force-directed graph drawings by making compromises between aesthetics

Weidong Huang*, Peter Eadesy, Seok Hee Hongy, Chun-Cheng Lin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Many automatic graph drawing algorithms implement only one or two aesthetic criteria since most aesthetics conflict with each other. Empirical research has shown that although those algorithms are based on different aesthetics, drawings produced by them have comparable effectiveness. The comparable effectiveness raises a question about necessity of choosing one algorithm against another for drawing graphs when human performance is a main concern. In this paper, we argue that effectiveness can be improved when algorithms are designed by making compromises between aesthetics, rather than trying to satisfy one or two of them to the fullest. In particular, this paper presents a user study. The study compares effectiveness of drawings produced by two different force-directed methods, Classical spring algorithm and BIGANGLE. BIGANGLE produces drawings with a few aesthetics being improved at the same time. The experimental results indicate that BIGANGLE induces significantly better performance of humans in perceiving shortest paths between two nodes.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings - 2010 IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human-Centric Computing, VL/HCC 2010
Pages176-183
Number of pages8
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2010
Event2010 IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human-Centric Computing, VL/HCC 2010 - Leganes, Madrid, Spain
Duration: 21 Sep 201025 Sep 2010

Publication series

NameProceedings - 2010 IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human-Centric Computing, VL/HCC 2010

Conference

Conference2010 IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human-Centric Computing, VL/HCC 2010
CountrySpain
CityLeganes, Madrid
Period21/09/1025/09/10

Keywords

  • Aesthetic criteria
  • Effectiveness
  • Evaluation
  • Force-directed algorithms
  • Graph drawing

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    Huang, W., Eadesy, P., Hongy, S. H., & Lin, C-C. (2010). Improving force-directed graph drawings by making compromises between aesthetics. In Proceedings - 2010 IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human-Centric Computing, VL/HCC 2010 (pp. 176-183). [5635222] (Proceedings - 2010 IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human-Centric Computing, VL/HCC 2010). https://doi.org/10.1109/VLHCC.2010.32