On mapping goals and visualizations: Towards identifying and addressing information needs

Marcelo SchotsClaudia Werner

The design of visual metaphors and the development of visualization tools have a key difference: while the former is a creative process to produce novel and generic approaches, the latter is a goal-oriented process. Ensuring that a tool properly maps the data required to achieve its goals into visual attributes is not trivial, since there are several abstraction gaps to be addressed. The mapping structure presented in this paper aims to provide developers of visualization tools with a focused and cautious decision making. Its use in the design of Zooming Browser, a tool for performing software reuse analytics, enabled to check if the tool could help answering the established questions before evaluating it with the intended audience (i.e., stakeholders).

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