Laboratory of Computer and Information Science / Neural Networks Research Centre

Helsinki University of Technology → Faculty of Information and Natural Sciences →
Department of Information and Computer Science → Teaching →
T-61.5010 Information visualization → 2008 → Term project


Term project 2008 - T-61.5010

To pass the course you must pass the examination and complete the term project. The project will be graded on the scale rejected, passed and passed with distinction.

The project consists of two tasks. Detailed instructions are given below, this is just a brief overview. In the first task you must in your own words summarize a given scienfic article about visualization. The second task is about using the techniques discussed in the course to visualize some phenomena of your choice in a real data set. To complete the project you must fulfill the general and specific requirements given below.

When working on the term project you may need information that has not been discussed in the lectures. If you have any questions you can contact the assistant or the lecturer for hints, guidance or references. The course newsgroup opinnot.tik.t615010 should used for questions that might be relevant for all students.

The exercise work will be graded within a month of the deadline. A passed exercise work will be valid for one year after the original deadline.

General requirements

  1. The term project should be completed by one person. However, discussing it with others is encouraged.
  2. The deadline is 13 March 2008.
  3. To pass the exercise work you must perform both tasks given in the "specific requirements" section.
  4. To pass with distinction you have to carry out the requirements exceptionally well.
  5. Accepted languages for the report are Finnish, Swedish and English.
  6. Reports submitted after the final deadline will be rejected. If you have a very good reason that causes you to miss the final deadline you can request an extension. The extension must be requested well in advance before the deadline.
  7. If you submit the exercise work report in time, but don't pass, you will have a chance to supplement your work after the deadline. The supplemented project works will not be eligible for the higher grade, "passed with distinction".
  8. Each exercise work report should contain a section that comments on the difficulty of the project and an estimate of the time used for completing it.
  9. Documentation should be in a format readable with generally available tools. Preferred formats are Postscript and PDF. However, HTML and plain text are accepted as well. Word documents are also accepted, but it is the responsibility of the student to make sure the document looks appropriate when opened in OpenOffice.

Specific requirements

Task 1

Write a summary (roughly 1000 words) of the paper The Value of Visualization, Jarke J. van Wijk, Infovis 2005.

The task is to produce a self-contained document that can be understood by anybody who has taken this course but hasn't read the actual paper by van Wijk. Concentrate on the important parts of the paper, do not try to discuss everything in the 1000 words! You can use images in the summary to clarify important concepts, but if you do, make sure they are referenced in the text and have a proper caption. You can also use images from the original article, but if you do so, please indicate the source clearly. And do not use images simply to make your summary look more interesting, they must work in conjunction with the text.

Task 2

Download one of the data sets listed below and visualize some interesting phenomena in the data. Write a short (3-5 pages) report that describes your approach, obtained results and the methods you used.

The purpose is not to do an analysis that covers the data from all possible angles. Focus on one or two aspects and try to make a clear visualization of them. In some cases the data descriptions mention tasks for which the data was originally published. Do not care about these! Try to relate your work to the topics discussed in the course, i.e., Tufte's principles, Gestalt laws, etc., when preparing the visualizations. Also, make sure your images convey at least some of their information when printed on a black and white laser printer.

Give your work an appropriate title, don't call it "Project Report". If you have investigated for example the effect of gender and ethnicity on the income level, please mention this somehow in your title.

The use of available visualization tools (e.g. Matlab, R, Inkscape, (Open)Office, etc.) is encouraged. However, implementing your own scripts and small programs for processing the data will be necessary. Do not hand in any programs or source code you may have written! They will not be graded.

Submission instructions

Save your summary to a file called summary_12345X.pdf and the visualization report to a file called report_12345X.pdf. (Replace pdf with the appropriate extension if you are not using pdf.) Make sure your full name, student number and email address appear in both documents! Send the files as email attachments to with the subject line
infovis 2008, deliverables, 12345X
Replace 12345X with your student number!

You are at: CISTeachingT-61.50102008 → Term project

Page maintained by, last updated Friday, 14-Mar-2008 14:12:20 EET