<XML><RECORDS><RECORD><REFERENCE_TYPE>0</REFERENCE_TYPE><REFNUM>6619</REFNUM><AUTHORS><AUTHOR>Ware,C.</AUTHOR><AUTHOR>Purchase,H.C.</AUTHOR><AUTHOR>Colpoys,L.</AUTHOR><AUTHOR>McGill,M.</AUTHOR></AUTHORS><YEAR>2002</YEAR><TITLE>Cognitive Measurements of Graph Aesthetics</TITLE><PLACE_PUBLISHED>Information Visualization 1(2)</PLACE_PUBLISHED><PUBLISHER>N/A</PUBLISHER><PAGES>103-110</PAGES><LABEL>Ware:2002:6619</LABEL><ABSTRACT>A large class of diagrams can be informally characterized as node – link diagrams. Typically nodes represent entities, and links represent relationships between them. The discipline of graph drawing is concerned with methods for drawing abstract versions of such diagrams. At the foundation of the discipline are a set of graph aesthetics (rules for graph layout) that, it is assumed, will produce graphs that can be clearly understood. Examples of aesthetics include minimizing edge crossings and minimizing the sum of the lengths of the edges. However, with a few notable exceptions, these aesthetics are taken as axiomatic, and have not been empirically tested. We argue that human pattern perception can tell us much that is relevant to the study of graph aesthetics including providing a more detailed understanding of aesthetics and suggesting new ones. In particular, we find the importance of good continuity (i.e. keeping multi-edge paths as straight as possible) has been neglected. We introduce a methodology for evaluating the cognitive cost of graph aesthetics and we apply it to the task of finding shortest paths in spring layout graphs. The results suggest that after the length of the path the two most important factors are edge crossings and continuity, and we provide cognitive cost estimates for these parameters. Another important factor is the number of branches emanating from nodes on the path.</ABSTRACT></RECORD></RECORDS></XML>