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Keywords: parallel performance visualization, scientific visualization, visualization prototyping
A new design process for the development of parallel performance visualizations that uses existing scientific data visualization software is presented. Scientific visualization tools are designed to handle large quantities of multi-dimensional data and create complex, three-dimensional, customizable displays which incorporate advanced rendering techniques, animation, and display interaction. Using a design process that leverages these tools to prototype new performance visualizations can lead to drastic reductions in the graphics and data manipulation programming overhead currently experienced by performance visualization developers. The process evolves from a formal methodology that relates performance abstractions to visual representations. Under this formalism, it is possible to describe performance visualizations as mappings from performance objects to view objects, independent of any graphical programming. Implementing this formalism in an existing data visualization system leads to a visualization prototype design process consisting of two components corresponding to the two high-level abstractions of the formalism: a trace transformation (i.e., performance abstraction) and a graphical transformation (i.e., visual abstraction). The trace transformation changes raw trace data to a format readable by the visualization software, and the graphical transformation specifies the graphical characteristics of the visualization. This prototyping environment also facilitates iterative design and evaluation of new and existing displays. Our work examines how an existing data visualization tool, IBM's Data Explorer in particular, can provide a robust prototyping environment for next-generation parallel performance visualization.
Created: Thu Dec 12 12:34:50 1996
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