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Chronologique Discussions 
  • From: guilhelm savin <guilhelm.savin AT>
  • To: users AT
  • Subject: Feedback
  • Date: Sun, 19 Sep 2010 11:11:19 +0200
  • Domainkey-signature: a=rsa-sha1; c=nofws;; s=gamma; h=mime-version:sender:date:x-google-sender-auth:message-id:subject :from:to:content-type; b=o4b6kCE6XavGGj+yHjkaIt7HFkfmm/uv3GGZST4SUMEdq8+P//7PO5N7+gLxVmZQtp eDaUoEPdWJppqiuMYRyy2pgUjlWk99DMyqHFXrPib2s5dya3RA4RKClOYo6qrR11MrNW G3JUAQPBjumG+b5ojooDDMpzXiCvOzTCJrXeE=

It seems a bit distribution problem happens, so I transfer this mail:

---------- Message transfr ----------
From:Michael Szell <michael.szell AT>
To:users AT
Date:Fri, 17 Sep 2010 13:36:11 +0100


this is a list of feedback on issues/feature suggestions for making
life easier for the gs user which I have encountered after my first
day of use. From what I have seen at the ECCS'10, gs has the potential
for becoming a standard tool for the visualization of evolving
networks, and the developers have done excellent work so far. Note: My
background is in maths/physics, my work is on social network analysis
(so I don't know anything about biological or other networks), and I
have no experience with Java.

1) Real time: Many datasets (e.g. mobile phone calls) come with
timestamps, and since human behavior is kind of "bursty" (very
heterogeneous in time), a feature is needed to incorporate this
real-time information, at least for the visualization (the "steps" of
gs are too poor for this). Here an example of such data:
SourceNodeID DestinationNodeID Timestamp(UNIX-time)
9993659 82423521 1182187454
9993659 82423521 1182193682
9993659 82423521 1182193693
51494778 14040501 1182195482
51494778 14040501 1182195500
51494778 14040501 1182195506
51494778 76170314 1182195560
A simple solution could be to give st an optional attribute "time",
then one could translate+include timestamps into the dgs format.

2) More tutorials: For example, a step by step setup of eclipse+gs
with a "hello world" example (as in the real-life ECCS tutorial), how
to visualize multi-edges, or how to export an animation into a movie

3) Relation types: In social networks, there are persistent relations
(e.g. friendship), which remain over some time and can eventually be
deleted, and there are one-time events such as writing an email. In
network studies these one-time events are usually accumulated over a
time window of some days, since e.g. an email you wrote to someone a
year ago is not relevant anymore. It would be great if there was some
function which adds a link, immediately deletes it, but in the
visualization it is shown as some kind of disappearing arrow (see
for an example). It could be realized by a new datatype, such as

4) A "sloppy" option (boolean parameter in addEdge() and
nextEvents()?) for handling of edge additions: Whenever one tries to
add an edge between non-existing nodes, an exception is thrown
("cannot make edge from 'A' to 'B' since node 'A' is not part of this
graph"). As a user I know that these nodes have been newly added with
the edge, and I don't want to bother adding them by hand. Removal of
nodes is already "sloppy": When I remove a node, edges connecting to
it are removed too - I don't need to remove the edges first (or do

5) Pajek format: Most people in my field use Pajek for visualizing
static networks. Support of the Pajek network format would maybe reach
more people (personally I think the format is ugly, but many people
use it).

I would love to use gs to create some videos with my data, but at the
current development stage it seems I would have to spend too much time
trying to find out how things work in gs and java, and writing
hacks/workarounds. But maybe in the near future! :)


Section for Science of Complex Systems
Medical University of Vienna

  • Feedback, guilhelm savin, 19/09/2010
    • <Suite(s) possible(s)>
    • Re: Feedback, guilhelm savin, 19/09/2010

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