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The visualization of software systems allows a software developer to build a mental model of the program supporting her to better understand its design and functionality. This research aims at studying current visualization techniques and practices to propose a set of principles for designing effective software architecture visualization techniques, focusing on their support for program comprehension. The research will be carried out in three main phases. First, we will complement current works by proposing a taxonomy of visualization techniques. The second contribution will be to identify different requirements and characteristics of architecture visualization techniques. Finally, to evaluate software visualization's usability and effectiveness in practice, we will measure the performance of developers in terms of their percentage of the correct answers and effort developers spend to answer given questions. To compute the developer's effort, we will use eye-tracker's data.