PivotPaths is an interactive visualization for exploring faceted information resources. During both work and leisure, we interact with many information spaces containing facets and relations, such as authors, keywords, and citations of academic publications, or actors and genres of movies. To navigate these interlinked resources, one typically selects items from lists resulting in abrupt changes from one subset of data to another. It can be difficult to see how facets and items relate and to comprehend the effect of interactions. In contrast, PivotPaths exposes faceted relations as visual paths in arrangements that invite the viewer to ‘take a stroll’ through an information space. Pivot operations are done through lightweight interactions triggering gradual transitions. The interface is designed for casual traversal of collections in an aesthetically pleasing manner that encourages exploration and serendipitous discoveries.
This project was carried out at Microsoft Research.