Visualization, Human Systems, Information Systems

Period of Performance: 10/25/2013 - 01/29/2016


Phase 2 STTR

Recipient Firm

Systems & Technology Research
600 West Cummings Park Array
Woburn, MA 01801
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

University of New Hampshire
Office of Sponsored Research 51 College Road
Durham, NH 03824
Institution POC


We propose to develop a toolkit and environment for social media visualization, exploiting scientifically grounded design principles embodied in visual thinking design patterns (VTDP s). Much like software design patterns, VTDP s are reusable blueprints for design of new interactive visualizations: they describe the steps in the visual thinking process that capture operations occurring in a computer and in the human brain, and the interactions among them. VTDP s facilitate design and psychophysical assessment of cognitively effective visualizations that exploit multiple independent visual channels, including size, shape, color, orientation, texture, and motion, to maximize information gain while minimizing cognitive and visual memory workload. Unique features of our approach include 1) customization of VTDP s to analysis and monitoring of social media, 2) development of a toolkit for rapid construction of visualizations by composing and customizing reusable VTDP-based model elements, and 3) application of this toolkit to develop an environment for exploration and visualization of social media data and analysis products. This environment will provide compelling, cognitively efficient interactive visualizations of the structure and evolution of social media communities, and the content and dynamics of information flowing within them, with particular attention to memes embodying new, actively propagated concepts or ideas.