Online Data Visualization Toolkit

Reference#: P01686

The power of the Internet as a Research tool is only now becoming apparent. The Scientific community is struggling to find ways to provide access to complicated data sets over the web. Each new mission or research project is faced with the same difficulty; how to provide a convenient and reliable interface so that data can be shared with other researchers and the public. In most cases a custom solution must be developed - an exercise that involves considerable time and effort. Although off the shelf products do exist, such as IDL, MatLab and PV-Wave, these have evolved from data analysis packages and are not well suited for the very different task of providing access to data over the World-Wide-Web. The images produced by these packages are optimized for traditional paper presentation rather than for viewing on a computer screen, and software developed using these packages must often be re-written when adapting them for use over the Internet.

This technology includes scripting software for generating web-based user interfaces, graphics libraries for producing high-quality screen and hard-copy output, and a variety of data processing tools. The software was developed in support of the SuperDARN project at JHU/APL ( The SuperDARN project has won considerable acclaim within the Space Physics community for the quality of its web site. The software has also been adopted for a number of other programs at JHU/APL. The software was written in ANSI C for speed, and has been ported to a variety of platforms, including LINUX, HP/UX, and Solaris. Work is underway to port the software to Java and to further develop its capabilities.

Ms. H. L. Curran
Phone: (443) 778-7262