Bio-data visualisation: Tree Clustering
June 2018 – September 2018
Main tasks: Developing web tool, conducting user testing
Role: Research assistant
Company: Aalto University | HICT
Visualising data can be extremely helpful in understanding it, but current popular graphs are often not enough for complex data systems. Making data visualisations more understandable and usable was one of the topics of interest of the User Interfaces group at Aalto University. The project I got involved in aimed to increase the ease of clustering families of bacterias with phylogenetic trees. This could help eg. biologists, who research cancer-related issues
The next responsibility was the user testing itself. I started with writing the qualitative questionnaire and the needed consent and information forms. Then, I prepared the lab for good experiment conditions and started inviting participants. During the experiment, I collected both qualitative data, via short interviews with the participant, as well as quantitate data from the tool and eye-tracking device. After collecting and cleaning the data, I made an initial analysis with python.
Our main goal was to check if our tool is increasing the easiness of the perception of the bacteria families on the phylogenetic trees. Thanks to my work on preparing the tool, data collecting scripts and experiment itself, we managed to receive valuable data from around 20 participants who took part in the testing sessions. Results of my work were much appreciated by the research team and used for the last improvements of the tool.