imMens is a system designed to support interactive visual exploration of large data sets with billions or more elements. The scalable visual representations are based on binned aggregation and support a variety of data types: ordinal, numeric, temporal and geographic. To achieve interactive brushing and linking between the visualizations, imMens precomputes multivariate data projections and store these as data tiles. The browser-based front-end dynamically loads appropriate data tiles and uses WebGL for data processing and rendering. In benchmarking tests, imMens is able to sustain 50 frames-per-second brushing & linking among dozens of visualizations, with invariant performance on data sizes ranging from thousands to billions of records.


imMens is designed to work on modern graphics cards. Machines with an integrated graphics card, such as MacBook Air, may not be able to provide a satisfactory interactive experience. We recommend using machines with a dedicated graphics card (e.g. MacBook Pro) and a browser that supports WebGL (e.g. Google Chrome).

4.5 million user checkins on Brightkite
35.6 million flight delays in the U.S. from 1989 to 2008
10K to 1B synthetic data points visualized as scatterplot matrices (SPLOM)


We published a full paper at EuroVis 2013, available here.


Source code and documentation are available on GitHub (coming soon).