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Issue No. 06 - November/December (2009 vol. 15)
ISSN: 1077-2626
pp: 1033-1040
Melanie Tory , University of Victoria
Colin Swindells , University of Victoria
Rebecca Dreezer , McMaster University
Spatialization displays use a geographic metaphor to arrange non-spatial data. For example, spatializations arecommonly applied to document collections so that document themes appear as geographic features such as hills. Many common spatialization interfaces use a 3-D landscape metaphor to present data. However, it is not clear whether 3-D spatializations afford improved speed and accuracy for user tasks compared to similar 2-D spatializations. We describe a user study comparing users’ ability to remember dot displays, 2-D landscapes, and 3-D landscapes for two different data densities (500 vs. 1000 points). Participants’ visual memory was statistically more accurate when viewing dot displays and 3-D landscapes compared to 2-D landscapes. Furthermore, accuracy remembering a spatialization was significantly better overall for denser spatializations. Theseresults are of benefit to visualization designers who are contemplating the best ways to present data using spatialization techniques.
Information interfaces and presentation, screen design, evaluation / methodology, user / machine systems, software psychology, landscape visualization.

C. Swindells, R. Dreezer and M. Tory, "Comparing Dot and Landscape Spatializations for Visual Memory Differences," in IEEE Transactions on Visualization & Computer Graphics, vol. 15, no. , pp. 1033-1040, 2009.
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