How to Layer a Directed Acyclic Graph

  • Patrick Healy
  • Nikola S. Nikolov
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 2265)


We consider the problem of partitioning a directed acyclic graph into layers such that all edges point unidirectionally. We perform an experimental analysis of some of the existing layering algorithms and then propose a new algorithm that is more realistic in the sense that it is possible to incorporate specific information about node and edge widths into the algorithm. The goal is to minimize the total sum of edge spans subject to dimension constraints on the drawing. We also present some preliminary results from experiments we have conducted using our layering algorithm on over 5900 example directed acyclic graphs.


  1. 1.
    G. Di Battista, A. Garg, G. Liotta, R. Tamassia, E. Tassinari, and F. Vargiu. An experimental comparison of four graph drawing algorithms. Computational Geometry: Theory and Applications, (7):303–316, 1997.zbMATHMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Fr. Brandenburg, Ul. Brandes, M. Himsolt, and M. Raitner. Graph-drawing contest report. In Joe Marks, editor, Graph Drawing: Proceedings of 8th International Symposium, GD 2000, pages 410–418. Springer-Verlag, 2000.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    E. G. Coffman and R. L. Graham. Optimal scheduling for two processor systems. Acta Informatica, 1:200–213, 1972.CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    P. Eades and K. Sugiyama. How to draw a directed graph. Journal of Information Processing, 13(4):424–437, 1990.zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    E. Gansner, E. Koutsofios, S. North, and K. Vo. A technique for drawing directed graphs. IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, 19(3):214–229, March 1993.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    K. Sugiyama, S. Tagawa, and M. Toda. Methods for visual understanding of hierarchical system structures. IEEE Transaction on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, SMC-11(2):109–125, February 1981.CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrick Healy
    • 1
  • Nikola S. Nikolov
    • 1
  1. 1.CSIS DepartmentUniversity of LimerickLimerickRepublic of Ireland

Personalised recommendations