Computer Science

ECS 163 Information Interfaces

ECS 163 INFORMATION INTERFACES (4 units)

Format
Lecture: 3 hours
Discussion: 1 hour

Catalog Description:
Art and science of information visualization and interfaces for information systems. Design principles of human-computer interaction. Visual display and navigation of nonspatial and higher dimensional data. Implementations, performance issues, tradeoffs, and evaluation of interactive information systems

Prerequisites: Course 60

Credit restrictions, cross listings: None

Summary of course contents

  1. Introduction
    1. Taxonomies
    2. Multidimensional and Multivariate Data
    3. Visual Interpretation of Quantitative Data
    4. The Process of Visualization
    5. Principles of Human-Computer Interaction
  2. Perception
    1. Space, Depth
    2. Color, Texture
    3. Pattern, Shape and Motion
  3. Visual Navigation Techniques
    1. Direct Manipulation
    2. Multiple Views
    3. Lens and Distortion
    4. Focus+Context
    5. Data Flow
  4. Visual Interface Design
    1. Cognition, Mental Models, Memory, and Attention
    2. Styles and Layout
    3. User-Centered Designs and Tasking Analysis
    4. Evaluation and Usability
  5. Graph Visualization
    1. Graph Drawing Algorithms
    2. Network Analytics
    3. Interactive Visualization
  6. Web Data, Text and Document Visualization
    1. Data Mining and Knowledge Discovery
    2. Web-based Interfaces for Information Retrieval
    3. Visual Recommendation

Students will work individually or in small groups on the design and implementation of user interfaces and information visualization techniques based upon the principles presented in the classroom. These projects are designed to reinforce and complement the lecture material. Students will design, implement and test their solutions mainly in a desktop environment.

ites: Course 60The projects involve the design, implementation, and evaluation of programs that focus on various concepts in visual-based, human-computer interaction. The facilities used for these programming projects resemble those that would be found in industry to the extent possible, given the academic constraints. The project assignments define performance specifications and constraints, and outline a general approach to the problem. However, design and implementation details are left to the students. Lectures discuss general concepts of information visualization and visual interfaces, and design choices available to programmers, in terms of the model used, the design of the algorithms to implement the model, the appropriate tools to generate for particular interface needs, and performance issues and tradeoffs. Discussion sections fill in the details of the different models used by the student and describe system tools that can be used with the projects. Projects are graded based on design, performance, and documentation. Examination questions are based on design methods discussed in lectures and from the projects.

Goals: Students will: (1) learn the principles of human-computer interaction, information visualization and visual interface design; (2) learn how to select/design effective visualization techniques and associated visual interfaces for extracting key information from large data streams, analyzing complex relationships and conveying ideas clearly; (3) gain experience in designing, implementing and evaluating graphical interfaces and interaction techniques for information navigation tasks.

Illustrative reading
C. Ware, Information Visualization: Perception For Design, 3rd edition, Morgan Kaufman, 2012

Computer Usage:
Students will work individually or in small groups on the design and implementation of user interfaces and information visualization techniques based upon the principles presented in the classroom. These projects are designed to reinforce and complement the lecture material. The students will design, implement and test their solutions mainly in a PC environment.

Engineering Design Statement:
The projects involve the design, implementation, and evaluation of programs that focus on various concepts in visual-based, human-computer interaction. The facilities used for these programming projects resemble those that would be found in industry to the extent possible, given the academic constraints. The project assignments define performance specifications and constraints, and outline a general approach to the problem. However, design and mplementation details are left to the students. Lectures discuss general concepts of information visualization and visual interfaces and design choices available to programmers, in terms of the model used, the design of the algorithms to implement the model, the appropriate tools to generate for particular interface needs, and performance issues and tradeoffs. Discussion sections fill in the details of the different models used by the student and describe system tools that can be used with the projects. Projects are graded based on design, performance, and documentation. Examination questions are based on design methods discussed in lecture and from the projects.

ABET Category Content:
Engineering Science: 2 units
Engineering Design: 2 units

GE3: Science & Engineering, Visual Literacy

Justification for Visual Literacy:  This course teaches students to understand and interpret patterns of visual material. Its assignments also give students techniques for recording and conveying visual evidence. Students are tested throughout on their ability to interpret visual data accurately and observantly.

Overlap: None

Instructors: N. Amenta and K. Ma

History: 2012.10.21 (K. Ma): change prereqs (175 no longer listed as recommended) and small modification to course description. Updated text.  Prior version by K. Ma (October 2006)

Outcomes

1

X

an ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, computing, and engineering

2

X

an ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data

3

X

an ability to design, implement, and evaluate a system, process, component, or program to meet desired needs, within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability

4

X

an ability to function on multi-disciplinary teams

5

 

an ability to identify, formulate, and solve computer science and engineering problems  and define the computing requirements appropriate to their solutions

6

 

an understanding of professional, ethical, legal, security and social issues and responsibilities

7

X

an ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences

8

X

the broad education necessary to understand the impact of computer science and engineering solutions in a global and societal context

9

X

a recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in life-long learning

10

X

knowledge of contemporary issues

11

 

an ability to use current techniques, skills, and tools necessary for computing and engineering practice

12

X

an ability to apply mathematical foundations, algorithmic principles, and computer science and engineering theory in the modeling and design of computer-based systems in a way that demonstrates comprehension of the tradeoffs involved in design choices

13

X

an ability to apply design and development principles in the construction of software systems or computer systems of varying complexity

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