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The effect of instructions on distance and similarity judgements in information spatializations


Fabrikant, Sara I; Montello, D R (2008). The effect of instructions on distance and similarity judgements in information spatializations. International Journal of Geographical Information Science, 22(4):463-478.

Abstract

We investigate the relationship of perceived distances to judged similarities between document points in various types of spatialized displays. Our findings suggest that the distance–similarity relationship is not as self-evident to viewers as is commonly assumed in the information visualization literature. We further investigate how participants interpret instructions to judge distances when those instructions do or do not specify the type of distance. We find that in all types of spatialization displays, there is no significant difference between default and direct judgements of distance; people clearly interpret default distance instructions to refer to direct (straight-line) distance. These findings provide direct
evidence on the conditions under which people employ distance when assessing similarity between data objects in various types of spatialized views and, when they do, which type of distance. They also give insight into how people explore
the similarity of geographic features depicted in cartographic maps or GIS displays.

We investigate the relationship of perceived distances to judged similarities between document points in various types of spatialized displays. Our findings suggest that the distance–similarity relationship is not as self-evident to viewers as is commonly assumed in the information visualization literature. We further investigate how participants interpret instructions to judge distances when those instructions do or do not specify the type of distance. We find that in all types of spatialization displays, there is no significant difference between default and direct judgements of distance; people clearly interpret default distance instructions to refer to direct (straight-line) distance. These findings provide direct
evidence on the conditions under which people employ distance when assessing similarity between data objects in various types of spatialized views and, when they do, which type of distance. They also give insight into how people explore
the similarity of geographic features depicted in cartographic maps or GIS displays.

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3 citations in Web of Science®
3 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography
Dewey Decimal Classification:910 Geography & travel
Uncontrolled Keywords:Cartography; Computer Science (General); Earth Sciences; Geographic Information Systems; Location Based Services; Navigation; Systems & Computer Architecture of Databases; Topography; Transport Geography
Language:English
Date:June 2008
Deposited On:07 Jan 2009 13:47
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:43
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:1365-8816
Publisher DOI:10.1080/13658810701517096
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-8419

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