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ExPlates: Spatializing Interactive Analysis to Scaffold Visual Exploration



Visual exploration involves using visual representations to investigate data where the goals of the process are unclear and poorly defined. However, this often places unduly high cognitive load on the user, particularly in terms of keeping track of multiple investigative branches, remembering earlier results, and correlating between different views. We propose a new methodology for automatically spatializing the individual steps in visual exploration onto a large visual canvas, allowing users to easily recall, reflect, and assess their progress. We also present a web-based implementation of our methodology called ExPlatesJS where users can manipulate multidimensional data in their browsers, automatically building visual queries as they explore the data.