Deep diffs: visually exploring the history of a document

Ross Shannon, Aaron Quigley, Paddy Nixon

Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookConference contributionpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Software tools are used to compare multiple versions of a textual document to help a reader understand the evolution of that document over time. These tools generally support the comparison of only two versions of a document, requiring multiple comparisons to be made to derive a full history of the document across multiple versions. We present Deep Diffs, a novel visualisation technique that exposes the multiple layers of history of a document at once, directly in the text, highlighting areas that have changed over multiple successive versions, and drawing attention to passages that are new, potentially unpolished or contentious. These composite views facilitate the writing and editing process by assisting memory and encouraging the analysis of collaboratively-authored documents. We describe how this technique effectively supports common text editing tasks and heightens participants’ understanding of the process in collaborative editing scenarios like wiki editing and paper writing.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAVI '10: Proceedings of the International Conference on Advanced Visual Interfaces
EditorsGiuseppe Santucci
Place of PublicationUnited States
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Number of pages4
ISBN (Print)9781450300766
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Conference on Advanced Visual Interfaces (AVI 2010) - Rome, Rome, Italy
Duration: 26 May 201028 May 2010


ConferenceInternational Conference on Advanced Visual Interfaces (AVI 2010)
Abbreviated titleAVI 2010


Dive into the research topics of 'Deep diffs: visually exploring the history of a document'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this