How many directed graph nodes are typically represented in the browser? I'm working with some large data-sets with nodes and edges more then 400,000. I'm wondering if I am going down a fruitless path trying to represent them in the browser via arbor.js or similar JS libraries. What's the most effective way to allow a large number(large relative to my domain of real estate transactions, maybe 1-10,000) of users to visualize and browse a large directed graph of up to 500,000 records?
Limiting what is shown on screen is a necessity with that large of a graph, not only for performance reasons, but you would cause information overload for users. depending on how this information is used there are a few different way to determine what to display.
If you need to show how to get from A to B.
- Show only nodes and edges on the "best" path(s) however best is determined.
If users need to navigate from node to node.
show only current node and connected nodes.
- Optionally only show incoming/outgoing connections
The Web is not really designed for this. Ryathal has the conventional Web solution, and if it's good enough you'll save yourself a lot of grief by using it instead of something fancier. The browser end shouldn't be too bad. You'll need a serious program on the server to locate and grab the right bits of the network, but you'll need that anyway.
I suspect what you want is a desktop app. Then you can devise a fancy display connected to megabytes of data. I'll state what I know about this approach and hopefully inspire people who know more to say something--or inspire you to stick with the conventional Web solution: