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CSc 630: Advanced Topics in Software Systems

Fall 2016: Visual Analysis of Software Systems

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This is a graduate seminar course covering research in visualization supporting analysis, development, and research across computing. As software and systems grow in scale and complexity, they can be difficult to understand, optimize, or debug. Visualization can be a powerful tool in these processes, but designing scalable representations and intuitive interfaces for computing data is challenging.

This course is aimed at early-stage graduate students, and thus experience with visualization is not required. Early class meetings will cover some foundation, but students are expected to independently fill knowledge gaps as needed in completing their chosen research project and the seminar write-ups.


A significant component of the course grade is the semester-long research project. With the aid and consent of the instructor, students will propose, implement, write-up and present a research project in systems visualization. Possible projects include designing a novel visualization tool for exploring a computing problem, developing a visualization technique in support of such tools, or conducting studies evaluating such visualization techniques.

Students are encouraged to select a research project supporting their thesis or dissertation research. For example, a student in machine learning might design a visual interface to streamline active learning or a student in networking might evaluate multiple network drawing algorithms. Students may optionally form a two-person team for their project for which there comeasurately increased expections.

Throughout the semester, students in this course will read, write review reports, and present papers.

The syllabus lists the full expections in detail and is available HERE.