Interactive visualization of multi-dimensional data in dairy production

D. Pietersma, J.P.H. Holthuis, J. Lacroix, K.M. Wade

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The objective of this study was to evaluate the potential usage, benefits, and limitations of using 3D graphics in an interactive exploration of multi-dimensional dairy data. A software prototype was, therefore, designed, consisting of two modules: a histogram to view joint frequency distributions for two dimensions of the data set at a time; and a scatter plot to explore clouds of data points plotted along three dimensions. A number of interaction techniques were implemented including chart zooming and translation, brushing of chart objects to display details, rapid attribute selection per chart coordinate, and dynamic data filtering. Chart rotation was implemented in order to analyze the 3D representations optimally. The feasibility of developing such prototypes was demonstrated in terms of data access, filtering, flexibility, and functionality under standard personal computer resources. However, performance tests with the 3D scatter plot revealed that in order for smooth interactions to occur, data needed to be limited to a few thousand records. The two resulting modules were seen as potentially useful in the support of various on-farm decision-making activities including the monitoring of cow performance for the most recent milk test, and the benchmarking of herd performance, based on annual economics and milk recording data
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1081-1088
JournalApplied Engineering in Agriculture
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2005


  • information visualization

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