Large Diagrams Visualization

Our research focuses on effective visualization of large system component models. New methods of the visualization should bring clarity of represented data, and we want to achieve this by automatic simplification of the model representation based on component clustering. Metrics on the underlying graph data should be also involved in parametrizing the visualization. In close link we work on methods that support user interaction with the model for better customization of the diagram, to ease understanding.

The proposed technique reduces the diagram visual clutter by removing the components with a large number of connections from the main diagram into a so called separated components area (abbreviated to SeCo) and are replaced by proxy symbols. User interaction within the diagram as well as SeCo highlights the related bindings and components in both views.

Tools and Experiments

We implemented the above mentioned technique as a web application called CoCA-Ex (Complex Component Applications Explorer). CoCA-Ex works on top of the ComAV platform (Component Application Visualizer) which creates the model of the application and CoCA-Ex tool shows the application diagram in the webpage. Demonstration of the tool is shown in a screencast, and we provide a corpus of test data files to be uploaded to the CoCA-Ex server. The corpus needs to be extracted and components (.jar files) uploaded.

The tool can be also downloaded as a Java EE WAR file and deployed to a Java EE server (e.g. Apache Tomcat). In a case of own installation, it is necessary to configure the storageLocation attribute for uploaded files in a configuration file (cocaex.war/WEB-INF/configuration.properties).