Authors: Lane Harrison, Fumeng Yang, Steven Franconeri, Remco Chang
Abstract: Despite years of research yielding systems and guidelines to aid visualization design, practitioners still face the challenge of identifying the best visualization for a given dataset and task. One promising approach to circumvent this problem is to leverage perceptual laws to quantitatively evaluate the effectiveness of a visualization design. Following previously established methodologies, we conduct a large scale (n=1687) crowdsourced experiment to investigate whether the perception of correlation in nine commonly used visualizations can be modeled using Weber's law. The results of this experiment contribute to our understanding of information visualization by establishing that: 1) for all tested visualizations, the precision of correlation judgment could be modeled by Weber's law, 2) correlation judgment precision showed striking variation between negatively and positively correlated data, and 3) Weber models provide a concise means to quantify, compare, and rank the perceptual precision afforded by a visualization.