Mapping Networks with Your Fingers
Not everyone who works with telecommunications networks can read the complicated network diagrams used by engineers. But even nontechnical users need to be able to rapidly identify glitches and problems in the network. To address this need, Indiana University’s Global Research Network Operations Center (GlobalNOC) created WorldView, a real-time data visualization system with a multi-touch interface that was designed for technical and nontechnical users alike.
Integrated with Google Earth, it maps network connections and operating status, along with environmental phenomena that might could impact network operations. If an area of the network goes down, a user can check if there is a storm overhead and quickly identify possible causes of the outage. The team envisions applications for their tool beyond network mapping, including situational awareness and interactive mapping of educational outcomes.