Undergraduate Research at the Vis Center

Week Two (Vis U)

So far so good.

This week we spent some time discussing what is “research”.  Wikipedia defines research as “creative work undertaken systematically to increase the stock of knowledge”. This is a very vague definition.

Most of the day to day things that we do here are very applicable. The question “Are we doing research?” has been raised. Earlier this week we were introduced to the three I’s of research.  For work to be considered research it must fulfill all three requirements.




Our research does fulfill all the requirements to pass the three I’s of research test.

The research statement that pertains to my section of the project is

“Developing an interactive and flexible cross platform system that visualizes data.”

Right now I am still working on the server side of the application. The computer that I do most of my work is in the basement, but I control it by a secure shell (ssh). Through the ssh connection I can control the remote server the same way I would control a local Linux machine. It is odd to think I have never seen the computer (server) that I have worked on for the last two weeks.


Django is  a internet framework that we have chosen to use for the info forest project. Django allows us to use python scripts to write the HTTPS responses. This makes the info forest system very flexible. If more content becomes available, it will be easy to modify the scripts.