Overall, the impressions towards stereoscopically perceivable
3D data visualizations were highly favorable. Multiple
participants acknowledged that such 3D visualizations of
network topology could assist in their understanding of the
networks they use daily.
Please see videos of the layouts at: https://coda.ee/IFACHMS
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
We argue that there is a need for structured evaluation of
visualizations that are created based on an analyst’s
internalized understanding of a dataset. Current technology is
good enough for stereoscopically perceivable (3D) data
visualizations; preliminary work also demonstrates that
through purposeful interaction with subject matter experts it is
possible to identify the core concepts of their mental models
for relevant datasets, and to create matching data-shapes for
Further research is needed to understand, how generalizable
are the data-shapes over different types of networks, cyber
operations, analyst past training and other individual
differences. However, the benefits of harnessing human
visual-perception for cybersecurity can provide that much
needed advantage to cyber defenders.
Further research is needed to understand what specific 3D data
shapes would be useful, and for which datasets (e.g. other than
computer network topology) should we create additional 3D
visualizations for, that would be helpful for analysts’ tasks and
would enable us to test the usefulness of those visualizations
in working environments.
Follow-up studies should also evaluate operator performance
in 3D environments, be it then for collaboration, situational
awareness, data analysis or other cybersecurity related task.
VRDAE team Barry Byrd, Alexander Rieschick.
VIDS team Joshua Edwards, Gregory Shearer.
For all the hints, ideas and mentoring, authors thank Alexander
Kott, Jennifer Cowley, Jaan Priisalu and Olaf Manuel
This research was partly supported by the Army Research
Laboratory under Cooperative Agreement Number (CA)
W911NF-16-2-0008. The views and conclusions contained in
this document are those of the authors and should not be
interpreted as representing the official policies, either
expressed or implied, of the Army Research Laboratory or the
U.S. Government. The U.S. Government is authorized to
reproduce and distribute reprints for Government purposes
notwithstanding any copyright notation herein.
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