Internationales Graduiertenkolleg „Soft Condensed Matter Physics of Model Systems“ (IRTG 667)


Soft condensed matter science is a still increasingly important interdisciplinary field of research. It deals with various generally heterogeneous materials such as colloidal suspensions, polymer solutions and gels, emulsions, liquid crystals, foams and most biological matter. A major concern of soft condensed matter science is to obtain a better understanding of the macroscopic physical properties (e.g. rheological, viscoelastic, optical, electric and magnetic, wetting, etc.) of such materials based on the structure and interactions on molecular, macromolecular and often even larger length scales. Because of the softness of these materials fluctuations and disorder are very significant and their proper theoretical description may be rather subtle. Recent progress in the field of soft condensed matter physics originates from the development of novel experimental and theoretical methods combined with the increasing use of numerical simulations. It also strongly benefits from the chemical synthesis of novel materials with specifically designed properties. The growing knowledge of the physics of soft condensed matter also impacts on the understanding of many biological processes and biomaterials and, as a natural consequence, many soft matter scientists move more and more into biological or bio-inspired topics. The research of this IRTG focuses on the structural, rheological, optical and magnetic properties of model systems of soft matter. These include single synthetic and biopolymers such as DNA, polymer melts and gels, membranes, giant vesicles and artificial cells, foams, colloidal suspensions, colloidal crystals and levitated granular matter. This research involves many collaborations, links and comparative studies between experiment, theory and numerical simulation

  • FB Physik
Strobelt, Hendrik (2012): Visualization of Large Document Corpora

Visualization of Large Document Corpora


Documents appear to us regularly in daily life in various designs and lengths to serve different purposes. We are used to read novels, news papers, advertisement flyers, instruction manuals, bus tickets, tube maps, etc. In addition, a lot of professional life is based on browsing through and understanding of documents. Methods to reduce stacks of printed paper on our desks and to allow bigger scalability then an office room would offer are the driving research objects of this thesis. As casual as this vision sounds as profound and manifold are the research question related to it.

The thesis at hand covers topics from content acquisition to interaction with visualizations. A compact introduction motivates document visualization from different view points and discusses former efforts. As preliminary for later use, specific methods for content extraction from document files are depicted. Document Cards use this content to represent a documents textual and image highlights as rich representatives of small scale. The cards are intended to be used in larger application to replace dots in collection browsers. For higher abstraction, tag clouds can summarize document collections. How CDTE Tag Clouds can reflect content and context changes of dynamically evolving collections is depicted in the corresponding chapter.

A common and important visual variable which is used in all visualizations in this thesis is position. Positions of data representatives can express closeness, reveal groupings, and help building mental maps. When dimensional objects like text snippets or Document Cards represent entities at specific positions, overlap can occur resulting in visual clutter. A review and evaluation on practical methods to remove overlap leads to the invention of Rolled-Out Wordles, a simple but effective method in dense visualization scenarios. The last chapter describes a design study, an interaction paradigm, and challenges of interdisciplinary work. HiTSEE for KNIME allows biochemists to observe structure activity relationship for high throughput screening experiments as integration into the KNIME platform. Although being based on biochemical data and tasks, the fundamental methods for visualization and interaction are applicable to a wide range of systems of large data visualization, including document collection browsing.

Finally, a conclusion summarizes insights and describes future work ideas.

Origin (projects)

Further information
Period: 01.07.2001 – 30.06.2010