Brussels / 31 January & 1 February 2015


Algorithmic Graph Drawing in TikZ

Graph drawing aims at computing pleasing layouts of graphs algorithmically. The talk will present a new framework, implemented in Lua and integrated into TikZ, that allows an easy implementation of graph drawing algorithms and that pays special attention to typography in this context.

Visualizing graphs is a time-consuming and complicated process, even when the to-be-drawn graphs have only a few nodes, and thus best left to special graph drawing algorithms. At the heart of every good such algorithm lies an efficient procedure for assigning canvas positions to a graph's nodes and the bend points of its edges. However, every real-world implementation of such an algorithm must address numerous problems that have little to do with the actual algorithm, like handling input and output formats, formatting node texts, or typesetting node texts and edge labels. In the talk I will present a new framework, implemented in the Lua programming language and integrated into the TikZ graphics description language, that aims at simplifying the implementation of graph drawing algorithms. Implementers using the framework can focus on the core algorithmic ideas and will automatically profit from the framework's pre- and post-processing steps as well as from the extensive capabilities of the TikZ graphics language and the TeX typesetting engine.


Photo of Till Tantau Till Tantau