Exploring the relative importance of crossing number and crossing angle

Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
VINCI 2010: 3rd Visual Information Communication - International Symposium, 2010
Issue Date:
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Recent research has indicated that human graph reading performance can be affected by the size of crossing angle. Crossing angle is closely related to another aesthetic criterion: number of edge crossings. Although crossing number has been previously identified as the most important aesthetic, its relative impact on performance of human graph reading is unknown, compared to crossing angle. In this paper, we present an exploratory user study investigating the relative importance between crossing number and crossing angle. This study also aims to further examine the effects of crossing number and crossing angle not only on task performance measured as response time and accuracy, but also on cognitive load and visualization efficiency. The experimental results reinforce the previous findings of the effects of the two aesthetics on graph comprehension. The study demonstrates that on average these two closely related aesthetics together explain 33% of variance in the four usability measures: time, accuracy, mental effort and visualization efficiency, with about 38% of the explained variance being attributed to the crossing angle. Copyright © 2010 ACM.
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