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Technical Report

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The primary purpose of information visualization is to act as a window between a user and the data. Historically, this has been accomplished via a single-agent framework: the only decision-maker in the relationship between visualization system and analyst is the analyst herself. Yet this framework arose not from first principles, but a necessity. Before this decade, computers were limited in their decision-making capabilities, especially in the face of large, complex datasets and visualization systems. This paper aims to present the design and evaluation of a mixed-initiative system that aids the user in handling large, complex datasets and dense visualization systems. We demonstrate this system with a between-groups, two-by-two study measuring the effects of this mixed-initiative system on user interactions and system usability. We find little to no evidence that the adaptive system designed here has a statistically significant impact on user interactions or system usability. We discuss the implications of this lack of evidence and examine how the data suggests a promising avenue for further research.