The concept of “representation” captures the signs that stand in for and take the place of something else . Visual representation, in particular, refers to the special case when these signs are visual (as opposed to textual, mathematical, etc.). On the other hand, there is no limit on what may be (visually) represented, which may range from abstract concepts to concrete objects in the real world or data items.
In addition to the above, however, the term “representation” is often overloaded and used to imply the actual process of connecting the two worlds of the original items and of their representatives. Typically, the context determines quite clearly which of the two meanings is intended in each case; hence, the term is used for both without further explanation.
Underneath any visual representation lies a mapping between the set of items that are being represented and the set of visual elements that are used to represent them, i.e., to...
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