DXR: A Toolkit for Building Immersive Data Visualizations

DXR: A Toolkit for Building Immersive Data Visualizations

Sicat R, Li J, Choi J, Cordeil M, Jeong W, Bach B, and Pfister H.

(IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics (Proceedings IEEE Information Visualization 2018), 2018.)

This paper presents DXR, a toolkit for building immersive data visualizations based on the Unity development platform. Over the past years, immersive data visualizations in augmented and virtual reality (AR, VR) have been emerging as a promising medium for data sense-making beyond the desktop. However, creating immersive visualizations remains challenging, and often require complex low-level programming and tedious manual encoding of data attributes to geometric and visual properties. These can hinder the iterative idea-to-prototype process, especially for developers without experience in 3D graphics, AR, and VR programming. With DXR, developers can efficiently specify visualization designs using a concise declarative visualization grammar inspired by Vega-Lite. DXR further provides a GUI for easy and quick edits and previews of visualization designs in-situ, i.e., while immersed in the virtual world. DXR also provides reusable templates and customizable graphical marks, enabling unique and engaging visualizations. We demonstrate the flexibility of DXR through several examples spanning a wide range of applications.

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