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SearchTools.com: Related Topics

Visualization & Clustering Tools


When people say "visualization", they mean two things. One is simply to use graphical elements carefully in displaying results of searches. The other is attempting to display the search results graphically, in two or three dimensions, grouped by topic or category. Both approaches are meant to take advantage of the human capacity to process visual information quickly and efficiently. Good visualization should integrate the natural and technical world, use natural intuition, spatial cues and perception.

Most experiments with visualization as graphic display of search results have not succeeded, perhaps because they are attempting to combine graphical displays with text concepts, perhaps because most people are searching for individual items rather than a topic or category. However, some people are so visually-oriented that they pour their time and effort into developing these systems. Although visualization search products have not succeeded, the fervor of the researchers and developers indicates that for those people, and for the rest of us in some circumstances, visualization is compelling and valuable.

Research & Articles

Searching on the Right Side of the Brain SearchDay; June 18, 2001 by Chris Sherman
Contrasts two public visual search sites, Map.net and WebBrain.com. Map.net provides conceptual relationships with graphic elements, such as category box size, and the color and size of site circles. WebBrain shows an association map, highlighting the relationships between categories and subcategorizes.

The Information Doors Workshop on Hypertext and Information Retrieval at the ACM HyperText 2000 Conference

Presenting Search Results: Design, Visualization, and Evaluation John Cugini, Information Technology Laboratory National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) at the Information Doors conference, May 2000
 
Describes how search results visualization engines work and how they can be evaluated.
 
The Ranking of Query Refinements in Interactive Web-based Retrieval R. McArthur and P.D. Bruza

Design of 3-D Visualization of Search Results: Evolution and Evaluation John Cugini and Sharon Laskowski (NIST) Proceedings of IST/SPIE's 12th Annual International Symposium: Electronic Imaging 2000: Visual Data Exploration and Analysis(SPIE 2000), San Jose, CA, 23-28 January 2000
Clear description of experiments in providing 2-D and 3-D clustering of search results on a limited data set. Good example pictures and descriptions of the strengths and weaknesses of each approach.
 
 
User Interfaces and Visualization in Modern Information Retrieval Marti Hearst, 1999
Valuable academic study of interfaces for information retrieval and searching, including graphical overviews and visualization. Chapter of the Modern Information Retrieval book. Support the SearchTools site: buy the book from Amazon or FatBrain.com and we'll get an affiliate fee.
 
 
Readings in Information Visualization: Using vision to think Stuart K. Card, Jock D. MacKinley and Ben Shneiderman (Morgan Kaufman Publishers, January 1999).
Classic papers in the field of Information Visualization, all about using graphics and icons to represent information. See more (and support this site) at Amazon or Fatbrain bookstore.
 
Interactive 3D Visualization for Document Retrieval John Cugini, Christine Plato, Sharon Laskowski, Proceedings of the Workshop on New Paradigms in Information Visualization and Manipulation , ACM Conference on Information and Knowledge Management (CIKM '96), November 1996.

Playing Charades With Your Web Search Engine InternetWorld March 16, 1998, by Nate Zelnick
Analysis of the problems of expressing relationships between concepts, such as the Thinkmap approach.

 

Products

Antarctica Visual Net
Uses a map metaphor to display and browse large data sets, including search results.
Report: Unstructured Data Management: the elephant in the corner (guest or customer access required) the451 Report, November 2002 by Nick Patience and Rachel Chalmers
Discusses the business aspects of the company, markets (enterprise storage and supply-chain management), competition and the technology. Product could be a significant value for the chosen markets, but sales are challenging.
Autonomy
Creates concept maps and topic clusters without human intervention.
 
Article: Knowledge managers get help: Autonomy, Vignette link tools Infoworld, January 11, 1999 by Emily Fitzloff
Autonomy's technology can automatically categorize data stored in Vignette's StoryServer
Article: Knowledge managers get help: Autonomy, Vignette link tools Infoworld, January 11, 1999 by Emily Fitzloff
Autonomy's technology can automatically categorize data stored in Vignette's StoryServer
Article: See It! Knowledge Management CIO Magazine, June 15, 1998 by Tom Field
Describes Autonomy's Probabilistic Concept Modeling tools in the context of data visualization.
Article: Infonauts: Mike Lynch Interview Upside, October 29, 1998
Interview with Autonomy's CEO, Mike Lynch, describing the origins and background of the company and summarizing the various technologies.  
 
ClearForest
Visualization of relationships based on entity identification using statistical and structural analysis, and semantics, linguistic patterns based on domain-specific "rulebooks" such as health, law, or financial services.
Report: Unstructured Data Management: the elephant in the corner (guest or customer access required) the451 Report, November 2002 by Nick Patience and Rachel Chalmers
Discusses the business aspects of the company, competition and the technology.
 
Concept Map (Conceptual Dimensions) 
Works with Verity
 
Inxight Star Tree and Table Lens
 
Entrieva (formerly Semio)
Data mining software uses linguistic analysis and rules to extract concepts from textual information and displays the concepts and relationships in a 3d map. Creates taxonomies based on fitting content into existing categories in the fields of defense, drugs, health care and technology.
Report: Unstructured Data Management: the elephant in the corner (guest or customer access required) the451 Report, November 2002 by Nick Patience and Rachel Chalmers
Discusses the business aspects of the company, pricing, markets, competition and the technology. The recent acquisition is a cause for concern, but also an opportunity to create more standard APIs and support Web Services.
Report: Taxonomy & Content Classification: Delphi Group Report (guest or customer access required) Delphi, April 11, 2002
Vendor-submitted information covers linguistic analysis, concept extraction and statistical clustering techniques. Works with lexicons and existing taxonomies. Comes with vertical market taxonomies and thesauri.
Article: Semio Brings Concepts To Web Search System WebWEEK, 1997/02/03 by Jeremy Carl
Describes Semio's attempt to improve text searching by viewing conceptual relationships in a 3-D model.
 
TheBrain
Java software provides content visualization along with federated text search and indexing, collaboration tools, "knowledge model".
Report: Unstructured Data Management: the elephant in the corner (guest or customer access required) the451 Report, November 2002 by Nick Patience and Rachel Chalmers
Discusses the business aspects of the company, markets (mainly call centers), competition and the technology.
Thinkmap
A tool for displaying complex information using an animated multidimensional display designed for user interaction using Java.
Article: Three-Dimensional Data Space Is In This Architect's Search Plan InternetWorld March 16, 1998, by Andrew Marlatt.
Interview with Marc Tinkler, designer of the Thinkmap system, who describes the concepts and ideas behind the program. It's designed as a toolkit for data providers to display moving information designs.
 

Resources

Open Directory Information Visualization Listings
Products and sites about visualization for various kinds of information and data sets.

Page Updated 2003-05-27