Multi-Perspective Information Visualisation of Linked Data for Humanities Research

Academic Advisor: Jesse Benjamin
Discipline: information visualization, linked data, semantic technologies, interaction design
Degree: M.Sc.
Project:

Requirements:

  • Good Knowledge of JavaScript, HTML, CSS
  • Proficiency in German & English

Contents

This thesis is related to Project IKON which seeks to provide the researchers at a research museum with (1) Wiki-based read and write access to research project information, (2) insights about potentials for knowledge transfer powered by linked data and (3) interactive visualisations of these networked sources of knowledge. 

Linked Data can be used by research organisations to display data to users among staff, visitors or other parties. While the flexibility of the underlying Subject-Predicate-Object-structure (i.e., "triple") allows for manyfold data arrangements, these applications are often passive when it comes to user interaction in terms of actionable data. Though viewing data is often interactive (from adding to reorienting data in a given visualisation), this rarely transcends the visual structure of the "triples", i.e. interconnected two-sided triangles. There is a distinct disparity between this common visual approach on the one hand and the actual possibilities Linked Data offers. Furthermore, there is a lack of interaction design strategies that support the exploration, foraging and creation of new knowledge within an existing visualisation, as opposed to a manual data-entry solution in a given database.

The objective of this thesis is to develop a prototypical information visualisation as a web application. It should allow the user to shift foci and perspective on various aspects of the provided linked data. A coherent, interactive and high-quality approach to information design is essential.

With regards to the socio-technical approach of this research group and the scope of the connected project, this thesis should also consider issues such as collaborative sensemaking or more speculative concepts such as group cognition.

This thesis should achieve:

  • The proposal must include an outline of an appropriate research question and methodology to be used.
  • Critical Literature Review
  • Developing a Information & Interaction design concept
  • Evaluated High-fidelity-Prototype (i.e. a fully actionable simulation of a useable system) in JavaScript/HTML/CSS
    • Support for writing to a linked data store
  • Analysis of implementation regarding socio-technical parameters
  • Thorough documentation

References

Berners-Lee, T., Hendler, J. and Lassila, O. The Semantic WebScientific American284 (5). 35-43.

A.-S. Dadzie, E. Pietriga, Visualisation of Linked Data – RepriseSemantic Web Journal (SWJ), Introduction to the special issue on Linked Data Visualization, Volume 8, Number 1, pages 1-21, 2017. http://content.iospress.com/articles/semantic-web/sw249

M. Dörk, C. Pietsch, and G. Credico, One view is not enough, Information Design Journal, 23, 39-47 (2017), https://uclab.fh-potsdam.de/wp/wp-content/uploads/idj2017-proof.pdf

Stahl, G. From Intersubjectivity to Group CognitionThe Journal of Collaborative Computing and Work Practices25 (4). 355-384.