Force diagram

Clicking the Visualise icon brings up an interactive node diagram known as a ‘force diagram’ (the movement and position of the bubbles is controlled programmatically by setting (metaphorical) force values, such as elasticity, gravity, etc, on each node). These diagrams enable the user to move through the data discovering relationships between people, organisations and research. A force diagram is illustrated below.

The diagram has the following components and behaviours:

  1. Data Nodes (different coloured circles with icons representing data objects). There are two kinds of node:
    1. Individual data node – a single object. A collection of attributes about one thing.
    2. Aggregation data node – a collection of individual nodes. Aggregation nodes are labelled with a number, which is the number of individual nodes that make up the collection.
  2. Links (lines connecting the nodes) – depict relationships between data objects (nodes).
  3. Tool Panels (panels above diagram) – provides the user with ability to control what the diagram displays.

Node Behaviour

Mouse-over And Detail Click

Moving the mouse over a node displays summary information about node and a clickable ‘Detail’ button, which brings up either more information about the node (for individual nodes), or a list of the nodes making up an aggregation node. The picture below illustrates mouse-over individual data node tool tip (left) and mouse-over tool tip for aggregation data node (right).

Individual node shows summary information about the research area and the Aggregation node shows number of related [grant] nodes.

The following pictures illustrate the different behaviour of the Detail button for individual and aggregation nodes.

Aggregation node displays list of nodes available for user to place on diagram (check boxes to select).

Individual node displays detailed information for grant (in this example).

Node click

Clicking an aggregation node (the node itself – NOT the detail button) has no effect. For individual nodes, clicking introduces new nodes to the diagram. The new nodes will be ones that are related to the clicked node. Clicking the same node a second time will hide related nodes.

Start diagram. Grant at centre with Related nodes shown.

Click on Scheme (arrowed) node to display nodes related to Scheme.

Click Scheme node a second time and related nodes disappear.

Choices made in the Control panel affect which related nodes are displayed when a node is clicked. See section 3.3.

If the diagram has been accessed following a simple search and is centred on a grant node, the search term acts as a filter on the displayed nodes. Only related nodes relevant for the search term will be displayed. There is a message in the Control Panel to inform the user whether or not the search term is acting as a filter, either:

All related nodes are shown in the diagram.


Only related nodes associated with search term ('graphene') are currently displayed.Tick box to show all related nodes irrespective of search term.

Node Links

Mouse over links

Links represent relationships between nodes. Moving the mouse onto a link will show the user the nature of the relationship between the linked nodes. Most relationships are created, because of research grants.

Links are also highlighted on mouse-over. In the picture below, moving the mouse over a link shows an organisation’s relationship to a grant (partners_on) and the link itself is highlighted. Red arrow points at highlighted link.

For more information on what the link mouse over tool tips mean click this link

Tool Panels

The following diagrams illustrate how to change the Tool Panels display.

Panel open – options for filtering diagram

Panel closed – provides larger canvas for expanding diagram


Display Options Panel

The Display Options Panel enables you to decide which nodes will be displayed in the diagram at start and after a node is clicked. You can exclude all node types from the diagram, except grants.

This behaviour is implemented on all nodes currently displayed and after node clicks in the diagram.


Save Diagram Panel

The Save Diagram panel offers you the option to save the currently displayed diagram to continue editing later or so it can be shown to others.
When you click the Save Diagram button a text box will be display with your unique link to reload this diagram.
Which can be given to anyone you wish to see your diagram and upon opening it in their web browser they will be shown your diagram exactly as you saved it and they can continue to swim through the data and alter it as they wish (this will not overwrite the original and they must save themselves and send you the link if they wish to pass it back or onto anyone else)