Data Visualization in VR
Design Research / Concept Exploration
Analysing and looking for patterns/trends in data takes a lot of intensive effort, specially more on the limited flat screens which are not apt for visualizing large data sets. Virtual reality provides 360 degrees of space to visualize, analyze and research for patterns. The brief of this project was to research and come up with ways in which large data can be visualized in the VR 3D space that aids data interpretation.
With the obvious possiblity of visualizing data in a 3 dimensional space, VR offers more ways (degrees of freedom) by which data plotting and visualization can be done.
The above concept shows plotting data and viewing it in z-space inside VR. How about VR providing new methods to visualize data? Waht if we could Chunk, plot,filter, probe and interact with big dataset (ex. product sales data as shown). The below concept explores this possibility taking its cues from 2D tree map plotting and giving a Z-space to it.
Different ways of interacting with the data set was also explored such as probing each data samples of the total population, filtering out to interpret particular range of data sets, representing data flow trend in the z-space (for example, profit in the positive z-axis and loss in the negative Z). Some of these interaction concepts are shown in the concept renders below. The basic visualisation idea is similar to a tree map in which each category of dataset is shown as the proportion of rectangular space it occupies in the whole data.
Expand and flip through the data as shown above to probe the data set in multiple perspectives/vantage points. Filter through a large data set intitutively as shown below. The dataset here shows the monthly sales of different products for a company which is highlighted in colors in the dataset. The data is chunked and visualised in a treemap structure for every month of sales vertically with each year sales stacked parallely.
More data visualization concepts were explored and still in progress as a personal project in data visualisation for 3D. Prototyping some of the concepts will be done soon. Some of the take-aways of the design reserach is listed below.