Abstract 1 1 Introduction 2

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State of the art paper

Integrated Document Space Navigation Tools

Wasu Chaopanon

February, 2000

Table of contents

Abstract 1

1 Introduction 2

2 Documents, Document Attributes and Document Spaces 4

2.1 Documents 4

2.2 Other Aspects of Documents 9

2.2.1 Content and Document Encoding 9

2.2.2 Document Attributes (Metadata) 10

2.2.3 Document Relations 14

2.3 Document Spaces, a Hierarchy 15

2.4 Major Document Systems and Their Requirements 16

2.4.1 File Systems 16

2.4.2 Information Retrieval Systems 19

2.4.3 Hypertext Systems 22

2.4.4 The World Wide Web 23

2.4.5 Structured Documents 26

2.4.6 Other Systems 29

3 Navigation 31

3.1 Navigation in Physical Space 32

3.2 The Questions Answered by Navigational Tools 33

3.3 Navigation in Document Space 35

3.4 Problems of Navigation in Document Space 37

3.5 Navigation tools in Document Spaces 39

3.5.1 Locomotion Provider 40

3.5.2 Objects and Object Information 41

3.5.3 Position Indicators, Paths and Trails 41

3.5.4 Overview Diagrams and Maps 43

3.5.5 Search Engines and Filters 44

4 User Interfaces for Document Space Navigation 46

4.1 Limitations of the Human Visual System and of Computer Displays 46

4.1.1 Human Visual System Limitations 46

4.1.2 Computer Display System Limitations 48

4.2 User Interface Design Options 49

4.2.1 Design Approaches to Document Space Presentation 49

4.2.2 Mapping Document Attributes to Display Spaces 50

4.2.3 Mapping Issues: Attribute and Display Interactions 54

4.2.4 Interaction 56

4.2.5 Multiple-Views 58

4.2.6 Sample Interaction Techniques 59

4.3 Example of a Document and Document Space User Interface for Navigation 60

4.3.1 Document Display 60

4.3.2 Displaying a Document Collection 63

4.3.3 Displaying a Document Set 65

4.3.4 Displaying the Document Universe 67

4.3.5 Displaying Navigation Information 67

5 Integrated Document Space Navigation Tools 69

5.1 The Basic Model: Data/State Sharing 69

5.2 Document Space and Navigation Data 70

5.3 Presentation Level 72

5.4 Synchronization and Data Interchange 76

6 Summary and Research Implication 78

Appendix A: Examples of Navigation Tools 80

Butterfly: Organic Citation Searching 81

CASCADE: Computer Augmented Support for Collaborative Authoring and Document Editing 82

Cheops Hierarchy Browser 84

Cone Trees 85

Connex 86

Data mountain 87


FilmFinder 89

Galaxies of News, Personalized Galaxies of Information 90

Galaxies 91

Hyperbolic Browser 92

InfoBUG 94

LyberWorld 95

Magic Lens™ 97

Information Mural 98

NoteCards 100

PAD, PAD++ 102

Rainbows 104

SeeSoft™ 105

Sitemap 106

TileBars 107

Tree-Maps 108

Value bar 109

VIBE 110

WebBook™ and Web Forager™ 112


WebTOC 115

WWW3D 116

Appendix B: Research Design 117

Introduction 117

Hypothesis 119

Design 120

Reference List 123

List of Tables

Table 1: Document Processing 8

Table 2: Duplin Core elements 14

Table 3: Summary of discriminable categories vs. visual sense of objects dimension. 47

Table 4: Comparisons of Coding Methods 47

List of Figures

Figure 1 Samples of presenting a hierarchical structure. 64

Figure 2: A taxonomy of multiple window coordination (North & Shneiderman, 1997) 74

Figure 3: Samples of presenting window relations 75


Designing user interfaces is a challenging job. Interfaces to aid the navigation of document spaces have been the subject of an increasing number of research studies. This paper addresses the concept of “document spaces” and “navigation.” Various interface designs are explored. The movement toward integrated interface designs for navigation at multiple levels of a document space is also explored.


The amount of electronic information is increasing dramatically. The ubiquity of computers coupled with the development of networks is facilitating the generation and distribution of information. The number of Web pages already exceeds 800 million (Lawrence & Giles, 1999), and is growing at an exponential rate (Myers, 1993). Some have suggested that ultimately a Web page may be only read once -- by its owner -- because that the rate of the World Wide Web growth exceeds the user-reading rate. It is increasingly difficult to find information in this massive information space.
Researchers are looking at tools to manage the various information spaces. This paper focuses on one subset of tools, navigation tools, as one method of finding information. Further, the focus is on one type of information space -- a document space. There are not many papers which explicitly define a document space. As a result, studies of the effectiveness of various tools may be confusing, if in reality these tools are operating on very different kinds of document spaces. A document space has many special properties and attributes. A careful review of what is meant by a document space and a classification of the various subspaces will give some hints for design of suitable navigation tools. Examples of existing systems related to a document space will be presented. The notion of what constitutes a document space will be discussed.
From the very first library at Alexandria to the electronic repositories on the Web, it has been clear that browsing is one method people like to use to find information. The space, place, and movement metaphor is easy to understand. The knowledge of location and place can be easily obtained by most users with little conscious attention. For this reason, navigation is one of the activities that is likely to take place in any document space. The design of improved navigational tools will contribute to the overall efficiency and effectiveness of applications. The navigation concept will be investigated in detail by exploring the concept of navigation in the physical world and comparing that to the concept of navigation in a document space. Both the functionality and information provided by various types of navigation tools will be addressed.
The document space and the navigation process meet at the user interface. There are many ways to present and interact with the interface. Presentation and interaction techniques are explored in order to speculate on the scope of the navigation tool design space.
There are already many kinds of navigation tools. In order to improve their effectiveness, integration among tools is proposed as a key factor. The idea comes from Spring, Morse, and Heo (1996) who discussed a set of interrelated tools that play a role in different phases of navigation. Many empirical studies show that an addition navigation tool increases effectiveness in navigation (Nielsen, 1989;Wright & Lickorish, 1990). How navigation tools might be integrated will be investigated.
Preliminary Definition of Terms

Many terms used in information science literature have multiple meanings. The terms, as used in this paper, are defined below. The definitions for some terms will be expanded in later sections. Preliminary definitions are given as follows:

Document: an artifact in some symbolic form which is generated to convey communication.

Document Space: a collection of documents which have some common attributes.

Navigation: a process of moving in space including mental perspective.

Navigation tools: tools that help us in navigation. These include tools to navigate and tools that give information for navigation.

Application: a collection of tools to support some general job.

Tool: a specific software tool with a user interface for one specific task.

User Interface: a presentation and a set of interactions under the control of software that can be perceived and known by users.

Presentation: a mapping of internal data in the system to output devices of the computer system. The presentation includes visual display and sound. In this paper, it will be addressed in terms of the visual perspective only.

Interaction: the action between user and software. The action may or may not be acknowledged by software. For example, a user may look at a screen and this would be an interaction but there would be no input to the software system.

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