Magazine article Information Today

Visualization Gets Noticed

Magazine article Information Today

Visualization Gets Noticed

Article excerpt

After several years of hearing about the promise of visualization tools and interfaces, it looks like we're moving beyond the simply "interesting and cool technology" stage to some solid, useful implementations. Last fall, I reported on Antarctica Systems' upgrade to version 4.0 of its Visual Net software, which provides a map interface to all kinds of information. Visual Net is being used to get information out of big databases (like those built using IBM) or SQL software as the interface for some enterprise resource planning installations and inventory systems. It's also being applied in some search environments, such as libraries, government applications, and search engines.

Companies like ClearForest and Inxight are also providing practical applications, often partnering with other technology companies. I recently reported in a NewsBreak about the debut of Grokker 2 (http://www.infotoday.com/newsbreaks/ nb031222-3.shtml), a desktop software application from Groxis, Inc. that's available for just $49. Grokker 2 organizes and provides a visual map of search results, making it easy to discover, explore, and organize the information. The maps use size, shape, color, and order to present information in a dynamic contextual setting. Grokker can search the Web, Amazon, and PC or networked hard drives.

KartOO recently announced a new version of its free visual search tool. KartOO is a metasearch engine that presents results in a series of interactive maps using FlashPlayer. …

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