ExoVis: Seeing an Overview and Details in 3D

Authors: 

Colin Swindells

Three-dimensional data (3D) sets can be difficult to view if the data density is high (e.g., in volume data sets such as 3D medical imaging). In addition, screen real-estate limits how much data can be seen at any given time. However, if we view the data sequentially (e.g., one slice at a time), it can be difficult to keep track of the current location and remember previously viewed data to make comparisons.

One solution to this problem is to simultaneously show multiple views of the data set: a general overview plus a small number of detailed views in areas of interest. ExoVis is a new type of overview and detail display. It shows details outside or surrounding ("exo") a global overview so that details and context may be viewed simultaneously. For example, the image shows a 3D overview of a medical imaging scan with details of a single slice off to the side. We have developed a prototype ExoVis system, and are currently comparing ExoVis to other display techniques through a series of user studies.