P4: Portable Parallel Processing Pipelines for Interactive Information Visualization

Jianping Kelvin Li, Kwan-Liu Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


We present P4, an information visualization toolkit that combines declarative design specification and GPU computing for building high-performance interactive systems. Most of the existing information visualization toolkits do not harness the power of parallel processors in today's mainstream computers. P4 leverages GPU computing to accelerate both data processing and visualization rendering for interactive visualization applications. P4's programming interface offers a declarative visualization grammar for rapid specifications of data transformations, visual encodings, and interactions. By simplifying the development of GPU-accelerated visualization systems while supporting a high degree of flexibility and customization for design specification, P4 narrows the gap between expressiveness and scalability in information visualization toolkits. Through a range of examples and benchmark tests, we demonstrate that P4 provides high efficiency for creating interactive visualizations and offers drastic performance improvement over current state-of-the-art toolkits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalIEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics
StateAccepted/In press - Sep 18 2018


  • data exploration
  • Data models
  • Data visualization
  • GPU computing
  • Grammar
  • Graphics processing units
  • information visualization
  • interactive visualization
  • parallel data processing
  • Programming
  • Rendering (computer graphics)
  • Visualization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Signal Processing
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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