Once upon a time in Bio-Medical Data Visualization: Reflections on Research Before and During Pandemic
Research in visualization is often motivated by the endeavor to improve on the illustration of data: in order to better communicate data to others and to gain deeper insights into complex datasets, possibly from a variety of data sources. In the medical domain, the data can include for example patient data, health records as well as biologic data such as genome. Insights to be obtained from data may relate inter alia to the spreading of diseases, evolutionary analysis and virus mutations. The tasks include both retrospective analysis for finding the patient zero and modelling the spreading of a disease, as well predictive modelling of virus mutations and future disease spreading. The COVID-19 pandemic has confronted this general motivation for our research to a need for practical solutions. Infection control experts needed to quickly gain insights into novel datasets and to communicate the insights to colleagues and to a broader public, requiring quick and efficient visualization solutions.
New methods, tools, and methodologies have popped up from basic and from applied research. New data was collected, model results were produced that required rapid analysis. Multi-disciplinary teams worked and applied solutions to the new challenges resulting from the pandemic. The rapid response was only possible by leveraging on the experience and past research. Thus, the talk will take a larger historical perspective and present specific solutions from own experience, including reflections on data, task and user triangle as well as the challenges of multidisciplinary working styles.
Tatiana von Landesberger is a full professor of Computer Science – Visualization at University of Cologne, Germany. She received a PhD in 2010 and finished her habilitation in 2017 at TU Darmstadt, Germany. Her research focuses on information visualization and visual analytics of spatio-temporal and network data from various domains such as biology, medicine, finance, transportation, journalism or meteorology. Her recent research addresses the challenges of perception and cognition of visualization as well as visual analysis of disease spreading. She regularly publishes at top international conferences and has received multiple awards. Tatiana has served in program committees and organization committees for IEEE VIS, EuroVis, VMV and other venues. Recently, she was full paper chair at EuroVis and is now member of EuroVis steering committee and associate editor of Computer Graphics Forum.