VisSnippets: A Web-based System for Impromptu Collaborative Data Exploration on Large Displays

July 26, 2020

Honorable Mention - Application Software, Suppport, and Outcomes Track


The VisSnippets system is designed to facilitate effective collaborative data exploration. VisSnippets leverages SAGE2 middleware that enables users to manage the display of digital media content on large displays, thereby providing collaborators with a high-resolution common workspace. Based in JavaScript, VisSnippets provides users with the flexibility to implement and/or select visualization packages and to quickly access data in the cloud. By simplifying the development process, VisSnippets removes the need to scaffold and integrate interactive visualization applications by hand. Users write reusable blocks of code called 'snippets' for data retrieval, transformation, and visualization. By composing dataflows from the group's collective snippet pool, users can quickly execute and explore complementary or contrasting analyses. By giving users the ability to explore alternative scenarios, VisSnippets facilitates parallel work for collaborative data exploration leveraging large-scale displays. We describe the system, its design and implementation, and showcase its flexibility through two example applications.