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Prefuse is a set of software tools for creating rich interactive data visualizations in the Java programming language. Prefuse supports a rich set of features for data modeling, visualization, and interaction. It provides optimized data structures for tables, graphs, and trees, a host of layout and visual encoding techniques, and support for ani…
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README.md

prefuse

beta release - initial release february 2006, current release 2007.10.20

This repository was initially created from the release available at http://downloads.sourceforge.net/prefuse/prefuse-beta-20071021.zip

INTRO

prefuse is a Java-based toolkit for building interactive information visualization applications. Prefuse supports a rich set of features for data modeling, visualization, and interaction. It provides optimized data structures for tables, graphs, and trees, a host of layout and visual encoding techniques, and support for animation, dynamic queries, integrated search, and database connectivity. Prefuse is written in Java, using the Java 2D graphics library, and is easily integrated into Java Swing applications or web applets.

Prefuse is a creation of the UC Berkeley Visualization Lab http://vis.berkeley.edu/. Prefuse is licensed under the terms of a BSD license, and can be freely used for both commercial and non-commercial purposes.

STRUCTURE

The toolkit distribution uses the following organization:

+ prefuse
|-- build  Directory where compiled classes and jar files are placed
|-- data   Various example data files used by the demo applications
|-- demos  Demo applications and applets showing the toolkit in use
|-- doc    Documentation. The Javadoc API files reside here once generated
|-- lib    Third-party libraries useful with prefuse and their licenses
|-- src    The source code for the prefuse toolkit
|-- test   JUnit tests for the toolkit (still a bit sparse at the moment)

REQUIREMENTS

prefuse is written in Java 1.4, using the Java2D graphics library. To compile the prefuse code, and to build and run prefuse applications, you'll need a copy of the Java Development Kit (JDK) for version 1.4.2 or greater. You can download the most recent version of the JDK from http://java.sun.com/j2se/1.5.0/download.html.

We also recommended (though by no means is it required) that you use an Integrated Development Environment such as Eclipse (http://eclipse.org). Especially if you are a Java novice, it will likely make your life much easier.

BUILDING

prefuse uses the Ant system from the Apache Group to compile the files. Ant is bundled with this distribution, and can be run using the build.bat script (in Windows) or the build.sh script (in UNIX). For example, running build.bat usage will provide a list of available commands, build.bat all will compile the toolkit and demos into jar files, running build.bat api will generate the html API documentation for the toolkit in the doc directory.

Alternatively, you can use the Eclipse integrated development environment (available for free at http://ww.eclipse.org) to load the source files, then Eclipse will compile the software for you. Within Eclipse, right-click the background of the "Package Explorer" panel and choose "Import". Then select "Existing Projects into Workspace". In resulting dialog, click the radio button for "Select archive file" and browse for the prefuse distribution zip file. The "prefuse" project should then appear in the area below. Now just click the "Finish" button to import the project and build it. Once prefuse has been loaded as a project within Eclipse, you can then run various demos directly from within Eclipse by right-clicking the class file for a demo (e.g., demos/prefuse.demos.GraphView.java) and selecting "Run >> Java Application" from the menu.

MORE

Additional information and preliminary documentation, a gallery of featured prefuse applications, and more, were available at the prefuse website, which is no longer available since 2018. A snapshot can be found at https://web.archive.org/web/20181215222711/http://prefuse.org/.

SourceForge hosts a help forum: https://sourceforge.net/p/prefuse/discussion/343013/

StackOverflow questions: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/tagged/prefuse

Academic publication by the initial developers: http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1054972.1055031

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