The interactivity is always around a focus point–a pivot point, a useful way for the user to be able to really grasp this connected data.
Shortcuts will be included for toggling the views such as ‘Document Citation Flow View’ or keyboard shortcut ‘p’ and People Citation Flow View’ keyboard shortcut ‘d’ to support fast flowing interactions.
Of course, other, wider views should be available as well, this post simply examines the left-right Flow view.
Centrally important though is the speed and ease of interaction (by a basically trained user). McLuhan pointed out that the difference in speed can itself transform one media into another. He used the example of showing a different picture 24 times transforms it from a still picture to a move.
This is why I advocate the Liquid View being instantly available from the word processing view, either as a module in the same app or at least as an instantly accessible local app, and not a web service. The visual change of the screen and the delay adds a significant cognitive load and slows down the user’s flow.
- User can choose which nodes to view, by what attribute.
- Users can create a fresh node easily, which is then stored.
- User can interact with nodes to extract further nodes or connections, as well as hide/show nodes and more and to assign what the nodes are, such as concepts, people and so on.
- User can layout the elements manually or choose automatically assisted layouts for simple alignments, by arbitrary attributes and by timeline.
- Attributes of nodes/metainformation includes their context/origins where available (such as where they were lifted from) and any tags and other annotations the user or system assigns.
- Connective line elements can be manually or programatically spawned
- Visual graph elements added by the user to clarify the layout includes text and lines/arrows.
- User can save layouts and quickly toggle between them.