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Column-Based Graph Layouts

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Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNTCS,volume 7704)


We consider orthogonal upward drawings of directed acyclic graphs (DAGs) with nodes of uniform width but node-specific height. One way to draw such graphs is to use a layering technique as provided by the Sugiyama framework [10]. However, to avoid drawbacks of the Sugiyama framework we use the layer-free upward crossing minimization algorithm suggested by Chimani et al. and integrate it into the topology-shape-metric (TSM) framework introduced by Tamassia [11]. This in combination with an algorithm by Biedl and Kant [2] lets us generate column-based layouts, i.e., layouts where the plane is divided into uniform-width columns and every node is assigned to a column.

We show that our column-based approach allows to generate visually appealing, compact layouts with few edge crossing and at most four bends per edge. Furthermore, the resulting layouts exhibit a high degree of symmetry and implicitly support edge bundling. We justify our approach by an experimental evaluation based on real-world examples.


  • Directed Acyclic Graph
  • Outgoing Edge
  • Incoming Edge
  • Edge Segment
  • Edge Crossing

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Betz, G., Doll, C., Gemsa, A., Rutter, I., Wagner, D. (2013). Column-Based Graph Layouts. In: Didimo, W., Patrignani, M. (eds) Graph Drawing. GD 2012. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 7704. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.

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  • Publisher Name: Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-642-36762-5

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-642-36763-2

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