Yes, I’ve been away for some time, but no, it wasn’t hibernation at all! My previous blogpost was from November 2015. Then I decided it was time to switch from Dutch to English, to reach a broader audience.
More important however, was the discovery VRML-plugins (or any plugin for that matter) are a real hurdle for people to accept the spatial graphs. A lot of people looked at the pictures and the movies I posted, but only a few people went through the effort of installing a viewer or plugin to be able to look at the original 3D-graph and manipulate it. The previous generation of VRBI-generators created graphs in VRML-format, needing those plugins or viewer and to be honest: I did not like the idea to depend on third parties myself.
So I took some time to learn about the new WebGL and X3DOM standards and discovered interesting things. Basically it’s all about VRML’s successor, X3D being embedded in HTML. Since only technicians will like the story I will not discuss my journey in depth, but after about six month of hard work I am proud to present a whole new type of VRBI-generator!
Why am I proud of it? Well, not because I redeveloped the generator (I’ve been improving it for years now), but because the output is in html-format. Or, to put it simply: it now generates normal webpages, to be shown directly in a modern web-browser!
Let´s start with a simple illustration. If a 3D-image is projected to a surface it becomes flat and loses information. Now, with Big Data around, data-sets are so complex that we cannot afford to lose too much information anymore and we have to move to spatial graphs to support visual mining.
The dome is a nice example. A dome can be cut in slices or can be projected at once. The first approach presents a lot of smaller and larger ellipses. The second method will provide some scattered ellipsoid cloud of dots. Both ways we will only see a part of the real structure.
Below, I put some screenshots of a spatial graph, created by the new generator VR_BOX3D. The input was calculated in a mathematical way. The generator was able to present the values as a 3D picture in html.
So apart from the screenshots now the full spatial graph will be shown directly in your web-browser when you click the link (or download the file first by right-clicking)!
To experience the full power of a spatial graph, click on the screen and then move your mouse to manipulate the graph: rotating and tilting is done easily. Translation is done by right-clicking and moving. Double clicking will change the origin. To return to the starting position, just refresh your screen!
That’s it for now. I hope you like the output of the new generator. A free demo-version, able to read five coordinates from an input-file (and creating a spatial graph with up to five balls) is coming soon. It will have the full functionality, with only the number of balls (data-points) being limited to five. For more information about vrbi, visit vrbi.eu