An immersive approach to the visual exploration of geospatial network datasets

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PubDate: December 2016

Teams: Tianjin University;The University of Texas at Dallas

Writers: Meng-Jia Zhang;Jie Li;Kang Zhang

PDF: An immersive approach to the visual exploration of geospatial network datasets

Abstract

Classic geospatial network visualization tends to limit itself to 2D representation by organizing edges and nodes on a 2D map or the external surface of a traditional globe model. Due to the visual clutter caused by a large amount of edge crossings and node-edge overlaps, efficient exploration of geospatial network visualization becomes challenging when the positions of the nodes in the network data are unchangeable as they carry useful geographical information. This paper proposes the Sphere Immersive Model and a dedicated VR interaction method for the intuitive exploration of geospatial networks. To reduce visual clutter and reveal network patterns, we also propose a parametrizable 5-step 3D edge bundling algorithm and an approach to avoiding collision of network edges with the viewpoint. Our SIM and 3D edge bundling approaches have been implemented for an Oculus Rift environment. We demonstrate the usefulness of our approach with a case study on a real-world network dataset.

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