Research

Research activities are centered around four threads involving spatio-temporal analytics (i.e. relevance modeling, moving object representations, vague concepts formalization, spatialization, human navigation, etc.), interface design of large and small interactive displays (i.e., mobile cartography and location-based services, 3D stereoscopic wall displays, dynamic and interactive exploratory visualization tools, etc.), in addition to fundamental empirical evaluations of developed visualizations and tools based on theoretical underpinnings from geography, psychology and cognitive science (i.e., eye tracking studies and other human-subjects experiments).

Full project list from the UZH research database: http://www.research-projects.uzh.ch/

Examples of current research projects

«Mobile Geovisualization» – We study novel methods for presenting mobile users useful and usable geographic information for everyday situations. The main focus is on the assessment and representation of relevant geographic information for different users and the dynamic adaptation of geographic visualizations in different mobile usage contexts. Our objective is to provide more effective and efficient designs that guide mobile users' attention towards relevant information.

«Empirical evaluation of visuo-spatial displays» – In this line of research we are interested in investigating the effectiveness of interactive and dynamic geographic visualization displays for knowledge discovery and knowledge construction. Our empirical studies follow experimental design standards from cognitive science, but are additionally grounded on a solid design framework borrowed from cartography, computer graphics and computer vision to investigate how different (dynamic) visual variables, and various levels of interactivity affect people’s knowledge construction processes from static, interactive, dynamic, 2D and 3D displays.

«Foveation in 3D» – Bridging vision and visualization, we study biological as well as cognitive aspects of human vision, develop concepts and tecqniques inspired by this for visualization, and in particular geovisualization. Testing these techniques and concepts for validation, i.e. human-computer interaction with empirical experimentation, is a natural extention to our research interests. Foveation is a term that refers to one of these techniques in image and video processing domain which is developed based on how human fovea functions. We extend foveation to stereoscopic visualization and aim to investigate its potential for geographic information domain.

«Spatialization»  – We employ spatial analytical methods, digital geovsiualization techniques and geographic information technology for reorganizing and visualizing large databases. Map-like interactive user interfaces are utilized to visually explore dynamic information spaces.  Abstract concepts such as mental maps and socio-demographic information spaces can be explored as if they were real landscapes.  Our research at the interface of geographic information science, geovisualization and non-spatial information visualization, including spatial cognition, aims at improving better understanding of real, mental and virtual worlds.