Visualization of Variation and Variability

PhD thesis from Delft University of Technology - December 2014
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As datasets grow in size and complexity, the importance of comparison as a tool for analysis is growing. We define comparison as the act of analyzing variation or variability based on two or more specific instances of the data. This thesis explores a number of cases spread across the range of comparisons, from variability within one entity through variability between two or more entities to variability within a population. For each of these we present an exploration tool, combining interaction with high-performance visualization rendering techniques, with the aim of providing more insight into a given dataset. We explore how different aspects of an application designed for interactive visual analysis can aid the user. This concerns both their initial exploration of a new dataset, as well as their ability to drill down into their discoveries and investigating the underlying details. For instance, multiple linked views can be used to combine highly abstract general-purpose views with highly problem-domain specific views in order to allow a user to translate abstract discoveries into the specific concepts used in their profession. Interactive composition can be applied to quickly focus on areas of interest, suppressing details which may not be relevant at the moment

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BibTex references

@PhdThesis { Bus14,
  author       = "Busking, Stef",
  title        = "Visualization of Variation and Variability",
  school       = "Delft University of Technology",
  month        = "December",
  year         = "2014",
  url          = ""

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