Import options dialog

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visone can import network data from comma-separated value (CSV) files. Since these do not come with an unequivocal specification of how to interpret them, some choices must be made. Therefore, whenever you open a CSV file via the file menu, visone shows you the import options dialog.

Contents

Data formats

The import options dialog is able to handle four types of data formats:

A brief introduction to these four data formats is given in the data input tutorial. To select the data format, use the topmost drop-down menu (data format). After selecting the data format, the import options dialog displays the appropriate options for interpreting the data. In the upper part, the import options dialog shows the different options for interpreting the data of the chosen data format. These options vary depending on data format. For each data format the available options will be described in the following sections. The middle part of the import options dialog (file format) remains the same for all data formats and contains the different options of reading the file format (see last section for a detailed description). The bottom part of the dialog shows the table in the way that it will be interpreted with the current settings (preview). This part allows you to recognize whether the options are set correctly.

Note that the import options dialog is designed to create nodes and links from a given data format. To add node and link attributes to a given network, use the attribute manager. A detailed description of adding attributes is also given in the data input tutorial.


Adjacency matrix files

To open an adjacency matrix, use the file menu, click on open..., select files of type CSV files (.txt, .csv) in the file chooser, navigate to the file you want to open, and click on the ok button. If adjacency matrix is selected as data format in the topmost drop-dowm menu, the import options dialog is as shown below (with a preview displaying your data).

Import options dialog adjacency matrix.png

The semantics of the various data format options is explained in the following. The file format options are explained in the last section.


Link list files

To open a link list, use the file menu, click on open..., select files of type CSV files (.txt, .csv) in the file chooser, navigate to the file you want to open, and click on the ok button. If link list is selected as data format in the topmost drop-dowm menu, the import options dialog is as shown below (with a preview displaying your data).

Import options dialog link list.png

The meaning of the data format options regarding network type, header and directed edges are the same as when reading adjacency matrices (explained above). The most crucial difference is that in the first row of the preview area you select two specific columns, one containing the source of the link (indicated by the label source in the very first row) and one containing the target of the link (indicated by target). The other columns contain link attributes that you might choose to import (if set to enabled) or ignore (if set to disabled).

In the example above (see the tutorial on Wikipedia edit networks to learn more about this data), the column with the header ActiveUser contains the link source and the column labeled Target contains the link target. The other columns (WordCount, InteractionType, etc) hold the values of various link attributes that are newly created if not already in the network. Note that the type of these attributes can be set to be text, integer, decimal, etc in the second row of the preview area.

If the links in a link list have associated time-information (encoding when the interaction happened) - or if the order in the file is meaningful und could be interpreted in the sense that interaction on the begining of the file happened earlier - you might consider opening them as event list files (this is illustrated in the tutorial on event networks).

The file format options are explained in the last section. Note that nodes in the link list will be consecutively numbered, according to their first appearance in the link list.


Adjacency list files

To open an adjacency list, use the file menu, click on open..., select files of type adjacency list files (.txt, .csv) in the file chooser, navigate to the file you want to open, and click on the ok button. If adjacency list is selected as data format in the topmost drop-dowm menu, the import options dialog is as shown below (with a preview displaying your data).

Import options adj list.png

The check box directed edges is used to choose between directed and undirected networks.

The other available options are file format options (explained in the last section). Note that since the line length in an adjacency list often varies, not checking the merge empty cells checkbox ist a frequent source of error when importing this data format.


Node list files

A node list is a list of all nodes with their attribute values and has the same format as an attribute table (see example below).

 id;age;smokes
 A;23;false
 B;28;true
 C;19;true
 D;27;false

To open a node list, use the file menu, click on open..., select files of type CSV files (.txt, .csv) in the file chooser, navigate to the file you want to open, and click on the ok button. If node list is selected as data format in the topmost drop-dowm menu, the import options dialog is as shown below (with a preview displaying your data). Importing a node list means to create a network of isolated nodes. In this case is it possible to add node attributes while creating the network, using the header checkbox (shown below).

Import options node list.png

File format

To read the comma-separated value (CSV) file correctly, visone needs some information about the used file format:

Import Options Dialog FileFormat.png

  0  7 12 11 10  4 13 14 15 16  3  9  1  5  8  6  2
  8  0 16  1 11 12  2 14 10 13 15  6  7  9  5  3  4
 13 10  0  7  8 11  9 15  6  5  2  1 16 12  4 14  3
 ...

where the cell delimiter (the SPACE character) is sometimes repeated to enhance (human) readability.

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