Immersive visualization with bar graphics

Quang Quach, Bernhard Jenny

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Augmented reality (AR) enables the creation of immersive situated visualizations. These visualizations blend with the real world so that the user perceives the virtual objects as physically present. We propose two novel immersive situated visualizations for geospatial quantitative point data that link AR bar graphics in the real environment with a virtual AR chart or map. The Egocentric Bar Chart combines virtual bars placed in a real landscape with a virtual 360° bar chart arranged around the user. The Circular Map with Bars combines bars in a real landscape with a 360° virtual map showing bar graphics. These visualizations are designed for inspecting the location and attributes of individual points, as well as understanding the spatial and non-spatial patterns of a set of points. We conducted a study with 12 participants to evaluate reading accuracy and efficiency of the two visualizations, with a view from a skyscraper at the center of the Melbourne metropolitan area. To better control confounding factors, the study used a virtual environment instead of an AR setup. We found that the two suggested visualizations performed better than bars placed in a landscape, and received positive feedback from study participants. The Egocentric Bar Chart visualization was most accurate when estimating and comparing values, and we identified promising improvements for the Circular Map with Bars visualization. Our results demonstrate the potential of AR technology for the communication of geospatial point data with immersive situated bar graphics in an outdoor environment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)471-480
Number of pages10
JournalCartography and Geographic Information Science
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jun 2020


  • augmented reality
  • embedded visualization
  • Immersive situated visualization
  • thematic cartography
  • virtual reality

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