Throughout the history of computer information retrieval, timelines
have been represented as simple lists. However, this approach can be
improved through the use of techniques which take into account other
information which can be gleaned from this data. The use of temporal
information visualization has two fundamental qualities that
distinguish it from standard simple lists: (1) the fact that temporal
events can be either simultaneous or overlapping and (2) the
underlying multiple scales of temporal data which require both precise
and gross measurements (ranging from one second to multiple
Some examples of temporal visualization include animations, project
timelines, lifelong timelines, video representation, and video
manipulation. Each of these examples takes data that is modified over
time and presents views that can be quickly and dynamically altered
based upon the specific time frame and information that is desired for
viewing. This allows the user to have greater control over the
information than was presented in a typical static rendering of the
data. Specifically, the user can manipulate time and change the
temporal order of the information being viewed so they can find new
patterns and/or visions.
Viewing events or data in sequence and/or varying the order of those
events or data.
Manipulating hypothetical planning of personal or corporate activities.
Viewing and creating historical overviews of events or data.
Finding temporal inconsistencies and/or undesirable relationships in
events or data.
Lifelines University of Maryland - a resource for visualizing medical
patient records. Also, there is the 1995 version of the project found
Animation System Georgia Tech - A general purpose animation system
suited to building animations of programs, algorithms, and computations.
Choreographer Washington University in St. Louis - Graphical and
interactive tool that supports the visualization of parallel and
distributed programs from a variety of temporal perspectives.
Yale - A software architecture that seeks to manage documents and electronic
VideoStreamer MIT Media Lab's new way of working with video time
through a video streamer and video scrapbook.
Simulation Cornell and Princeton - A joint collaboration that
provides a simulation that models the growth of a forest.
Worlds Technologies' Lifestreams technology which seeks to simplify
information management with a time-ordered view of documents and data
Allen, J.F. Maintaining knowledge about temporal
intervals. Communications of the ACM, 26(11), 832-843, 1983.
Ueda, Hirotada, Miyatake, Takafumi, Sumina, Shigeo, and Nagasaka,
Akio. Automatic structure visualization for video editing. CHI '93:
Conference proceedings on Human factors in computing systems, pages
Repenning, Alex and Sumner, Tamara. Programming as problem solving: a
participatory theater approach. AVI '94: Proceedings of the workshop
on Advanced visual interfaces, pages 182-191, 1994.
Akutsu, A., Tonomura, Y. Video tomography: an efficient method for
camera work extraction and motion analysis. Proceedings of the second
ACM international conference on Multimedia '94, pages 349-356, 1994.
Robertson, George G., Card, Stuart K., Mackinlay, Jock D. Information
Visualization using 3D interactive animation. Communications of the
ACM, vol. 36, no. 4, April 1993. - includes information on the
"Perspective Wall" project.