Shakespeareʼs Complete Works as a Benchmark for Evaluating Multiscale Document-Navigation Techniques

  • Guiard Yves
  • Du Yangzhou
  • Fekete Jean-Daniel
  • Beaudouin-Lafon Michel
  • Appert Caroline
  • Chapuis Olivier


In this paper, we describe an experimental platform dedicated to the comparative evaluation of multiscale electronic-document navigation techniques. One noteworthy characteristics of our platform is that it allows the user not only to translate the document (for example, to pan and zoom) but also to tilt the virtual camera to obtain freely chosen perspective views of the document. Second, the platform makes it possible to explore, with semantic zooming, the 150,000 verses that comprise the complete works of William Shakespeare. We argue that reaching and selecting one specific verse in this very large text corpus amounts to a perfectly well defined Fitts task, leading to rigorous assessments of target acquisition performance. For lack of a standard, the various multiscale techniques that have been reported recently in the literature are difficult to compare. We recommend that Shakespeare's complete works, converted into a single document that can be zoomed both geometrically and semantically, be used as a benchmark to facilitate systematic experimental comparisons, using Fitts' target acquisition paradigm.