An Interactive Approach for Exploration of Flows Through Direction-Based Filtering

, , , and . Journal of Geovisualization and Spatial Analysis 1 (1): 1 (2017)


This paper is concerned with the representation and exploration of flows, defined as spatial interactions between geographic locations. Flows are challenging to display in a comprehensible manner due to the nature of the data, which are characterized by many crossings and overlaps leading to clutter. A number of different strategies have been suggested for addressing this problem, which commonly involve reducing the search space, aggregating the data or simplifying the representations often at the cost of information loss or distortion of spatial context. We propose an interactive approach for exploring large and highly connected networks of flows without distorting the geographical space and without losing the context overview in the process. The approach is based on a flow-specific interaction technique for filtering the data by direction, that enables an analyst to successively identify underlying spatial arrangement patterns. We illustrate our approach through exploring flows of tourists and locals in the Greater London area.

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