Welcome to VisWeek 2011!

Discovery Exhibition

The Discovery Exhibition is a conference venue in which we share stories about the impact that visualization research has had on the end-user community.

In order to help us distribute more broadly how visualization impacts people's work or lives, leads to decisions being made, or actions being taken. VisWeek has been hosting the Discovery Exhibition since 2009. In contrast to a common academic contribution at a conference, however, the goal of an entry to the Discovery Exhibition is not to describe a visualization or vis tool per se, but to share which impact it had on the people using it.

Sharing these stories with the community will help us all improve our understanding about the role of visualization in work, research, entertainment, and many other areas, after it has moved out of the research realm. To encourage publishing reports about the application of visualization systems to real world problems, we specifically allow submissions that report the impact of “previously published work” on its user community.

Accepted authors will benefit from the following opportunities to present their work:

  • A 2~4 page summary will be published and permanently archived on our website: www.discoveryexhibition.org.
  • Their work will be displayed as a poster throughout the conference.
  • A short oral presentation of their work at a plenary fast-forward session.


The content of a discovery submission is not about a visualization tool itself. Instead it has to focus on the impact that the use of the tool or the visualization has had on a specific user group. Successful submissions have to focus on the insights, discoveries, or general stories of visualization use in any domain or data. The description should show a real user community. For example, an entry could talk about insights made by a group of environmental scientists trying to find a cause of global warming using a specific visualization tool, and about the discovery process (i.e., how they made the discovery). The entry should provide information on the impact that insights (or findings) have had. It is OK to use existing tools. Indeed, we strongly encourage students to even study the impact of tools built by others such as ManyEyes, Tableau, or Excel! If necessary, the datasets can be anonymized, but no synthetic data is allowed. Submissions could, for example, include information on:

  • What discoveries have users made? What have they learned about their data that they did not know before? What insights have they gained?
  • What impact did the findings, insights, or discoveries have on their community?
  • What surprising uses of visualization tools were seen? Were tools re-appropriated to answer very different questions than they were designed for?
  • What was necessary to integrate a system or tool into everyday work practices? What were the obstacles to introducing new visualization technologies (if any)?


Discovery exhibition authors must submit a 2-4-page summary about their impact stories in the VGTC conference two-column format. The formatting guidelines and templates are available at http://www.cs.sfu.ca/~vis/Tasks/camera.html.

The summaries should focus on: the domain and data, the insights/discoveries/findings and the process in which they were acquired, the impact of visualization use, as well as representations, interactions, and tools used if any. Since we focus on discoveries and impact of visualization, at least half of your entry is required to be dedicated to these points. This means you can only use less than half of your paper to present your tool itself – focus has to be placed on the impact stories.

Optional video submissions that explain your contribution are also allowed. Please follow the VisWeek formatting guidelines at http://www.cs.sfu.ca/~vis/Tasks/supplement.html.

Authors whose entries are accepted for Discovery Exhibition will be asked to refine their summaries based on the feedback from reviewers and to submit an accompanying poster. The posters themselves have no predefined formatting, but dimensions may not exceed A0 paper size (841mm x 1189mm / 33.1" x 46.8"). Discovery Exhibition co-chairs will provide some feedback on the poster to give a chance to improve it to fit well in this venue. Authors of accepted entries should bring an explanatory hardcopy poster for display during VisWeek. At least one of the authors should be available at the poster to discuss their work during the scheduled evening poster session.


Please submit your entry to the following address: discovery_exhibition@visweek.org.

If you plan to submit videos, please upload them to a web server and send us a link to download the file.


The contest chairs will judge entries based on significance of their impact stories and suitability for the venue (i.e., whether they meet the submission criteria). We will give out awards in two or three categories (e.g, Discovery Exhibition Award, Best Student Entry Award, Best Industry Entry Award) depending on the quality and number of submissions in each category. 

Authors will receive reviews of their submission. Authors of all accepted entries are required to address all mandatory suggestions and conditions of acceptance prior to submitting final version.


Submission deadline: July 15th, 2011
Notification date: August 19th, 2011
Final Submission of Revised Summaries: September 2, 2011
Submission of Fast Forward Materials and Poster: September 30, 2011


Please check the discovery exhibition website at www.discoveryexhibition.org for updated information on submission templates, dates, FAQ, and examples. Please contact the discovery exhibition co-chairs at discovery_exhibition@visweek.org for questions about Discovery Exhibition.

Florian Mansmann, Universität Konstanz
Jinwook Seo, Seoul National University