“Spreadsheets for images” by Levoy

  • ©Marc Levoy

Conference:


Type:


Title:

    Spreadsheets for images

Presenter(s)/Author(s):



Abstract:


    We describe a data visualization system based on spreadsheets. Cells in our spreadsheet contain graphical objects such as images, volumes, or movies. Cells may also contain widgets such as buttons, sliders, or curve editors. Objects are displayed in miniature inside each cell. Formulas for cells are written in a general-purpose programming language (Tcl) augmented with operators for array manipulation, image processing, and rendering.Compared to flow chart visualization systems, spreadsheets are more expressive, morescalable, and easier to program. Compared to conventional numerical spreadsheets, spreadsheets for images pose several unique design problems: larger formulas, longer computation times, and more complicated intercelldependencies. In response to these problems, we have extended the spreadsheet paradigm in three ways: formulas can display their results anywhere in the spreadsheet, cells can be selectively disabled, and multiple cells can be edited at once. We discuss these extensions and their implications, and we also point out some unexpected uses for our spreadsheets: as a visual database browser, as a graphical user interface builder, as a smart clipboard for the desktop, and as a presentation tool.

References:


    1. Haeberli, Paul, ”ConMan: A Visual Programming Language for Interactive Graphics,” Computer Graphics (Proc. SIGGRAPH), Vol. 22, No. 4, Atlanta, Georgia, August, 1988, pp. 103-111.
    2. Microsoft Corporation, Excel User’s Guide 2, Microsoft Corporation, Document Number XL26297-1092, 1992.
    3. Ousterhout, John K., ”Tcl: An Embeddable Command Language,” Proc. 1990 Winter USENIX Conference.
    4. Ousterhout, John K., ”An X11 Toolkit Based on the Tcl Language,” Proc. 1991 Winter USENIX Conference.
    5. Palaniappan, K., Hasler, A.F., Manyin, M., ”Exploratory Analysis of Satellite Data Using the Interactive Image Spreadsheet (IISS) Environment,” Preprint volume of the 9th Internation Conference on Interactive Information and Processing Anaheim, California, January, 1993, pp. 145- 152.
    6. Piersol, K.W., ”Object Oriented Spreadsheets: The Ana-lytic Spreadsheet Package,” Proc. OOPSLA ’86, Sep-tember, 1986, pp. 385-390.
    7. Silicon Graphics Inc., IRIS Explorer User’s Guide and IRIS Explorer Module Writer’s Guide, Silicon Graphics Inc., Document numbers 007-1371-020 and -1369-, 1992-1993.


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