EvalBench: A Software Library for Visualization Evaluation

W. Aigner, S. Hoffmann, A. Rind:
"EvalBench: A Software Library for Visualization Evaluation";
Computer Graphics Forum,32(2013), 3; S. 41 - 50.

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It is generally acknowledged in visualization research that it is necessary to evaluate visualization artifacts in order to provide empirical evidence on their effectiveness and efficiency as well as their usability and utility. However, the difficulties of conducting such evaluations still remain an issue. Apart from the required know-how to appropriately design and conduct user studies, the necessary implementation effort for evaluation features in visualization software is a considerable obstacle. To mitigate this, we present EvalBench, an easy-to-use, flexible, and reusable software library for visualization evaluation written in Java. We describe its design choices and basic abstractions of our conceptual architecture and demonstrate its applicability by a number of case studies. EvalBench reduces implementation effort for evaluation features and makes conducting user studies easier. It can be used and integrated with third-party visualization prototypes that need to be evaluated via loose coupling. EvalBench supports both, quantitative and qualitative evaluation methods such as controlled experiments, interaction logging, laboratory questionnaires, heuristic evaluations, and insight diaries.