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This paper presents a study which evaluates the use of a tree visualisation (icicle tree) to encode the hierarchical structure of source code. The tree visualisation was combined with a source code editor in order to function as a compact overview to facilitate the process of comprehending the global structure of a source code document. Results from our study show that pro- viding an overview visualisation led to an increase in accuracy and a decrease in completion time when participants performed counting tasks. However, in locating tasks, the presence of the visualisation led to a decrease in participants’ performance.
Bacher, I., Mac Namee, B., & Kelleher, J. (2016). Using icicle trees to encode the hierarchical structure of source code, EuroVis 2016: 18th. 18th EG/VGTC Conference on Visualization, 6-10 June 2016, Groningen, the Netherlands.