International Journal of Geographical Information Science ( IF 3.733 ) Pub Date : 2019-06-21 , DOI: 10.1080/13658816.2019.1594823 Samuel Stehle; Rob Kitchin
City dashboards have become a common smart city technology, emerging as a key means of sharing and visualising urban data for the benefit of the public and city administrations. Operating as the front-end of many cities’ data stores, dashboards display and benchmark indicators relating to city operations, characteristics, and trends, displayed through interactive visual representations of spatial and temporal patterns. Many dashboards collect, archive, and present data collected in real-time, as well as more traditional time-sliced administrative data. In this paper, we evaluate the techniques that dashboards employ to present real-time data to dashboard users. Our analysis identifies two factors that shape and differentiate real-time visual analytic tools: the dynamic nature of the data, how they are refreshed, and how the realtimeness of the data is communicated to the user; and how the tool enables archival comparison. We assess dashboard design according to the strategies used to address specific challenges associated with each factor, specifically change blindness and temporal pattern detection. We conclude by proposing effective techniques for city dashboard design.