City Research Online

Visual analysis of social networks in space and time using smartphone logs

Slingsby, A., Beecham, R. & Wood, J. (2013). Visual analysis of social networks in space and time using smartphone logs. Pervasive and Mobile Computing, pp. 848-864. doi: 10.1016/j.pmcj.2013.07.002


We designed and applied novel interactive visualisation to investigate how social networks - derived from smartphone logs - are embedded in time and space. Social networks were identified through direct calls between participants and calls to mutual contacts of participants. Direct contact between participants was sparse and deriving networks through mutual contacts helped enrich the social networks. Our resulting interactive visualisation tool offers four linked and co-ordinated views of spatial, temporal, individual and social network aspects of the data. Brushing and altering techniques help us investigate how these aspects relate. We also simultaneously display some demographic and attitudinal variables to help add context to the behaviours we observe. Using these techniques, we were able to characterise spatial and temporal aspects of participants' social networks and suggest explanations for some of them. We reflect on the extent to which such analysis helps us understand social communication behaviour.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: Award winner - third prize in the Open Nokia Mobile Data Challenge.
Publisher Keywords: Visual analytics, data visualisation, exploratory analysis, information visualisation
Subjects: Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z665 Library Science. Information Science
Departments: School of Science & Technology > Computer Science
School of Science & Technology > Computer Science > giCentre
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