Telemetry Health Visualization
Telemetry Health Visualization
I was the UX and UI designer on the project. I did competitive research, created user flows, functional specifications, visual design, and animatics.
The Design Problem
Cognitive Threat Analytics is a cloud-based product that analyzes user and device behavior, and web traffic, to discover anomalies in the infrastructure. To show telemetry configuration, the endpoints connections, and the health information of the telemetry collectors in stable solutions such as tables and chaotic health monitoring charts was no longer an only solution as it takes a lot of time for a user to process it.
The Target Users
Security Analyst: to detect and prevent network threats to an organization.
Administrator: Security team vs. network connectivity team, who configure distribution engine/ telemetry sources and making sure that it is working properly.
Cisco technical and customer support to help customer troubleshoot, and to sell. Operation staff, and support staff.
Other users who are using the threat defense, to be informed when system/ telemetry is down.
The Competitive Research
I did the competitive research on health monitoring, the most common views were, charts, table, and topology. These views are inherently flawed in the volume of data they represent. The information user finds useful is camouflaged by a large amount of data.
Goals & Objectives
The primary goal of the visualization was troubleshooting.
Objectives that came with this goal:
To help understand the complex workflow involved routers, switches and locations, I mapped workflows on paper and whiteboard. Doing so helped me to understand the particular points where visualization could help minimize the complexing in the network as well as highlight opportunities where we could try to innovate.
I taped into looking for inspiration outside the world of switches and routers. The moodboard and design books helped me to put unstructured dataset into cognitive perspective which led to sketching.
Design principles and the content prioritization framework helped to create visibility into my decision‐making process and galvanize the team to share in the vision.
I followed Golden Ratio to create not only harmony and proportion, but also consistency throughout the visualization. It created a visual narrative for the user.
Designed the data visualization following one of the Gestalt's Principles of perception - closure used to reduce complexity. It creates a flow of information, provides clear and immediate feedback.
Started with the hierarchies as they are simple way to visualize and understand complex flow.
The principle of continuity dictates that once the eye begins to follow something, it will continue traveling in that direction until it encounters another object. This helps the viewer move through the information instead of looking off the edge
Initial conceptualization consists of a lot of lines to show the physical connection between each device, which eliminates the advantages of processing data visually.
By assuming the network connections are intact, we no longer need to illustrate physical connections. By removing this layer of complexity, it simplifies the network diagram to uncover the flow of data and status of the endpoints. This removes the cognitive load allowing the user a more holistic view of the network and removes distracting, extraneous details.
Focusing on the network elements allows them to be visualized and arranged in a manner other than their physical connection to one another. This model shifts the emphasis to the data flow between network elements. Useful information such as geolocation, data flow, bytes transferred, endpoint status, and type of traffic can be a layer on top of one another and progressively disclosed to not overwhelm the user with data. That gives a view of the network framed by the user showing the information they want to see.
To explore the visualization further, I used the same pattern for different data sets.
During the user testing, data visualization was well received. Users ask was to implement the visualization in the product, though due to time constraints and resources we couldn't build it on time.