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Software systems are often very complex because of their huge size and the tremendous number of interactions between their components. However, understanding relations between software elements is crucial to optimize the development and the maintenance process. A good way to ease this understanding of software relations is to use advanced visualization techniques to graphically see interactions between elements. Nevertheless representing those software relations is not an easy task and often leads to hard to understand clutter. We believe that combining both edge clustering techniques and real-world metaphors can help address this issue, producing easier-to-read visualizations that ease the cognitive process and thus significantly help understanding the underlying software. In this paper, we explain how we adapted the existing 2D Hierarchical Edge bundles technique to represent relations in a 3D space on top of city metaphors.
Date of Conference: 29-30 Sept. 2011