Map Line Ups: Using Graphical Inference to Study Spatial Structure

Roger Beecham, Jason Dykes, Cagatay Turkay, Aidan Slingsby and Jo Wood, City University London, UK

Hadley Wickham et al. introduced the idea of graphical inference to Infovis during VisWeek 2010. They set up a distinction between the sceptical approach to data analysis undertaken by statisticians and the more swashbuckling approaches taken by Infovis researchers. Their techniques for graphical inference attempt to bridge these divides by provid[ing] tool[s] for skepticism [sic.] that can be applied in a curiosity driven context. We wish to evaluate one such technique, the line-up method, and suggest guidelines for its use. We’ll discuss some substantial challenges for spatial data analysis that we hope to address through experimental research.