Creation of visualizationsbased on Linked DataAlvaro Gravesgravea3@rpi.edu - @alvarogravesTetherless World ConstellationRe...
Agenda• Challenges in Linked Data usage• How to create an LOD visualization?• User study• Conclusions2Thursday, June 20, 13
Challenges in LinkedData usage3Thursday, June 20, 13
Good and bad news aboutLinked Data• Good:• Billions of triples available on the Web• Lots of information about people, eve...
Who are the users?• People with domain expertise, not technical• Journalists• Scientists (Bio-, Chemo-, X-Informaticians)•...
Challenges• What is needed for non-technical users to consumeand explore Linked Data?• How can we empower domain experts t...
WhyVisualizations?• Visual inspection of datais helpful• Can help to detecttrends and outliers• It is easy to share andcon...
How to create anLOD visualization?8Thursday, June 20, 13
Visualization workflow92) Visualization step 3) Sharing step(optional)1) Query stepQuerywritingQuerytestingCreationg ofvisu...
Visualbox• “Easy Linked Datavisualizations”• Integrated environmentto create visualizationsbased on LOD• Makes use of avai...
1 - Existing visualizations2 - Query editor3 -Visualization Editor4 -Visualization helperVisualbox115 - Buttons for query ...
Mozilla Festival• TestedVisualboxagainst real users• Most of them neverheard about LinkedData12Thursday, June 20, 13
Feedback fromMozilla Festival• Positive: Most people evaluated it as a greatexperience for learning about Linked Data andv...
User study14Thursday, June 20, 13
User study• People with basic to medium knowledge ofSPARQL and Linked Data• Participants watched an introductory video• Us...
Results• Most of the time (5-10 min.) was focused oncreating and debugging SPARQL query• Once the query was ready, the res...
Participant’s feedback• Positive: Visualbox makes it easy to createvisualizations• Much easier than doing it from scratch•...
Possible solutions• Syntax assistance• Namespaces and prefixes• Improved syntax highlighting• Recommendations/suggestions b...
Conclusions• Creating LOD visualizations is a two-step process:• Query creation• Visualization development• Visualbox prov...
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Creation of visualizations based on Linked Data

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A common task with any relatively large amount of data is to create visual representations that help users to make sense of such data and observe trends that otherwise would be hard for them to appreciate. The creation of these visual- izations usually requires some knowledge in a programming language, making it difficult for non-technical savvy users to create visualizations. In this paper we present Visualbox, a system that makes it easier for non-programmers to create web visualizations based on Linked Data. These visualiza- tions can be accessed by any modern web browser and can be easily embedded in web pages and blogs. We describe how people can create visualizations using Visualbox and we show examples of work done by real users. Finally we present a study that shows that Visualbox makes it easier for users to create Linked Data-based visualizations.

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Creation of visualizations based on Linked Data

  1. 1. Creation of visualizationsbased on Linked DataAlvaro Gravesgravea3@rpi.edu - @alvarogravesTetherless World ConstellationRensselaer Polytechnic Institute1Thursday, June 20, 13
  2. 2. Agenda• Challenges in Linked Data usage• How to create an LOD visualization?• User study• Conclusions2Thursday, June 20, 13
  3. 3. Challenges in LinkedData usage3Thursday, June 20, 13
  4. 4. Good and bad news aboutLinked Data• Good:• Billions of triples available on the Web• Lots of information about people, events, places,etc.• Not so good:• Not a lot people outside the Semantic Webcommunity find it usable4Thursday, June 20, 13
  5. 5. Who are the users?• People with domain expertise, not technical• Journalists• Scientists (Bio-, Chemo-, X-Informaticians)• Novice Semantic Web students• People who want an easy/rapid way tounderstand certain aspects of LOD datasets5Thursday, June 20, 13
  6. 6. Challenges• What is needed for non-technical users to consumeand explore Linked Data?• How can we empower domain experts that lackexperience with Linked Data?6Idea: Use of visualizations cansimplify consumption of Linked DataThursday, June 20, 13
  7. 7. WhyVisualizations?• Visual inspection of datais helpful• Can help to detecttrends and outliers• It is easy to share andconsume for non dataexperts7Anscombe’s quartet“Attractions in Berlin”Thursday, June 20, 13
  8. 8. How to create anLOD visualization?8Thursday, June 20, 13
  9. 9. Visualization workflow92) Visualization step 3) Sharing step(optional)1) Query stepQuerywritingQuerytestingCreationg ofvisualizationSharingThursday, June 20, 13
  10. 10. Visualbox• “Easy Linked Datavisualizations”• Integrated environmentto create visualizationsbased on LOD• Makes use of availableSPARQL endpoints• Provides 14 types ofvisualizations out-of-the-box10Thursday, June 20, 13
  11. 11. 1 - Existing visualizations2 - Query editor3 -Visualization Editor4 -Visualization helperVisualbox115 - Buttons for query testing6 - Query testing results7 - Sharing buttonsThursday, June 20, 13
  12. 12. Mozilla Festival• TestedVisualboxagainst real users• Most of them neverheard about LinkedData12Thursday, June 20, 13
  13. 13. Feedback fromMozilla Festival• Positive: Most people evaluated it as a greatexperience for learning about Linked Data andvisualizations• Negative: Most people found hard to even startworking with SPARQL• Unsure about the syntax• Unsure “what’s in there” in an endpoint13Thursday, June 20, 13
  14. 14. User study14Thursday, June 20, 13
  15. 15. User study• People with basic to medium knowledge ofSPARQL and Linked Data• Participants watched an introductory video• Used think aloud approach• Three tasks, visualizations based on DBpedia• Ex-post subjective evaluation15Thursday, June 20, 13
  16. 16. Results• Most of the time (5-10 min.) was focused oncreating and debugging SPARQL query• Once the query was ready, the rest of theprocess was very short (1-2 min.)16Thursday, June 20, 13
  17. 17. Participant’s feedback• Positive: Visualbox makes it easy to createvisualizations• Much easier than doing it from scratch• Add features to power users• Negative: Creation of SPARQL query• One size does not fit all17Thursday, June 20, 13
  18. 18. Possible solutions• Syntax assistance• Namespaces and prefixes• Improved syntax highlighting• Recommendations/suggestions based on:• Endpoint’s content• What others have queried• Other existing visualizations18Thursday, June 20, 13
  19. 19. Conclusions• Creating LOD visualizations is a two-step process:• Query creation• Visualization development• Visualbox provides an integrated environment for thefirst step• It reduces the effort for the second step• There are open challenges in helping users to createSPARQL queries19http://visualbox.org - gravea3@rpi.edu - @alvarogravesThursday, June 20, 13

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