# TEXT-FILLED STACKED AREA GRAPHS Martin Kraus

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3 The automatic text layout was implemented in the computer algebra system Mathematica and processes the columns of the graph from left to right. Each column i is segmented into stacked sections in several steps. Note that the process has to look ahead one column in order to guarantee a consistent segmentation into genre segments for adjacent columns: The left and right edges of column i are segmented based on the number of titles in each genre for the year corresponding to the column and the following year, respectively. For each genre segment of column i from bottom to top, the number of text lines that can fit into the segment is computed based on the smaller of the heights at the left and right edge of a genre segment. Furthermore, the position of preliminary tilted lines are computed according to the preliminary geometry of the segment. The segment's text (i.e.\ an alphabetically sorted list of all game titles of a specific genre and year) is then word-wrapped to fill these lines. If the number of lines is not sufficient for the amount of text, the height of the segment is increased until the whole text can be placed into the segment. Thus, some segments (in particular those with a very small number of game titles) will be larger than they should be according to the vertical scale. The algorithm tries to compensate for this increased size by reducing the size of the segments on top of the current segment. The process is repeated for the next column i+1 to the right with the segmentation of the left edge (i.e. the edge between column i and column i+1) being initialized by the result of the previous step. This ensures that the segmentation of the edge between columns i and i+1 allows for enough space for all segments of column i+1. The new segmentation of the edge between column i and i+1 is used for the final layout of column i. In principle, it is possible that some segments are too small and have to be enlarged. This correction should not be compensated by reducing the heights of other segments in order to guarantee that the layout for column i+1 is not compromised. However, this case was not relevant in our example. For the layout of the following column i+1, the segmentation of the left edge between column i and column i+1 is now considered fixed as it has been taken into account when the layout of column i was computed. stacked area graphs. However, text-filled stacked area graphs are certainly not a universal solution to the general problem of integrating textual detail in information visualizations. Nonetheless, they are applicable to a wide range of data sets; examples in an academic environment include databases of personnel, students, publications, events, etc. The two main benefits of the proposed inclusion of a large amount of detail are that more information is available to readers and that readers might be able to personally relate to some of the details whereas the cumulative overview information alone would hardly provide more than anonymous numbers. Thus, the proposed technique will hopefully not only result in more useful but also more attractive visualizations. FUTURE WORK Future work should focus on a better design for labels of genres (or corresponding categories) and user studies to evaluate the proposed visualization. Based on this evaluation, the concept of text-filled shapes should be applied to further area graphs, including pie charts and flow maps, which presumably could also benefit from the inclusion of more textual detail. It turned out that it is crucial to compute the vertical distance between lines according to the slope of the lines. Furthermore, the distance between lines was varied by maximum 25 % to reflect an increase or decrease in the number of titles of a particular genre from one year to the next. While the automatic layout of the textual detail worked well, the genre labels were not positioned automatically. This was an unfortunate decision since it discouraged experimentation with alternative designs. CONCLUSIONS This work introduces text-filled stacked area graphs, which are based on an automatic layout of a large amount of meaningful textual detail in

4 REFERENCES Abramson, Daniel (1996). Maya Lin and the 1960s: Monuments, Time Lines, and Minimalism, Critical Inquiry, 22(4): All Media Guide (2011). All Game Guide, web page: last visited: May 9, Card, Stuart K.; Mackinlay, Jock D.; and Shneiderman, Ben (1999). Focus + Context in Stuart K. Card, Jock D. Mackinlay, and Ben Shneiderman (eds.), Readings in Information Visualization, Morgan Kaufmann Publishers, pp Tufte, Edward R. (1990). Envisioning Information, Graphics Press. Tufte, Edward R. (1997). Visual Explanations: Images and Quantities, Evidence and Narrative. Graphics Press. Tufte, Edward R. (2001). The Visual Display of Quantitative Information, 2nd edition, Graphics Press. Tufte, Edward R. (2006). Beautiful Evidence, Graphics Press. Garofalo, Reebee (2011). The Genealogy of Pop/Rock Music, author s web page: ; last visited: May 9, Harris, Robert L. (1999). Information Graphics, Management Graphics. Halvey, Martin J. and Keane, Mark T. (2007). An Assessment of Tag Presentation Techniques, in Proceedings of the 16th international conference on World Wide Web, WWW 07, ACM, pp Norman, Donald A. (2003). Why We Love (or Hate) Everyday Things, Basic Books. Shneiderman, Ben (1996). The Eyes Have It: A Task by Data Type Taxonomy for Information Visualizations in Proceedings of the 1996 IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages, IEEE Computer Society, pp Fig. 3 (next page). Two text-filled stacked area graphs covering in total 4896 PC game titles from the 1980s and 1990s in the All Game Guide (All Media Guide, 2011). Titles without genre information and titles in the home and compilation genre were not included. When printed on an A0 poster, the size of the small-typed text is about 1 mm; thus, the text is still readable. Fig. 4 (next but one page). A text-filled stacked area graph covering 9463 PC game titles from the 2000s in the All Game Guide (All Media Guide, 2011). (See also Fig. 3.)

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6 Martin Kraus: Journal Computer and Information Technology Journal of of Computer and Information Technology

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