ParaViewWeb 2.2 Eases App Development

ParaViewWeb is a JavaScript library. It serves as a development framework that builds applications for web-based, interactive scientific visualization inside a web browser. These applications can leverage a Visualization Toolkit (VTK) and/or ParaView backend to process and render large data. The applications can also be used on a static web server like Apache or NGINX, on a high-performance HTTP server, or with a command line-based application using a browser.

In the past, ParaViewWeb was primarily viewed as a single application, Visualizer. Visualizer provides the majority of ParaView Qt application features within a web user interface (UI). The misconception of ParaViewWeb centered on the fact that developing new ParaViewWeb-based applications required a significant amount of web UI development. Nevertheless, many applications use ParaViewWeb such as LightViz, ArticViewer, DataViewer (in progress), SimPut and HPCCloud.

The release of ParaViewWeb 2.2 refactored the library and provided many new web-ready features such as a common data model, visualization components, functionality for interaction, UI widgets, methods of accessing data, and a variety of rendering viewers. With these features, ParaViewWeb goes a long way to make the development of web-based applications with scientific visualization easier.

Blog_ButtonTo provide a more web-centric software process, ParaViewWeb left the ParaView repository. With this separation, ParaViewWeb offers the modern web environment that developers expect with capabilities that include the following:

  • continuous integration via Travis CI;
  • linting to capture potential errors and enforce style guidelines;
  • browser-based testing with Karma, Tape and Nightmare;
  • WebPack module bundling;
  • transpiling to version ECMAScript 5; and
  • automatic publication on NPM.

ParaViewWeb also contains support for next-generation JavaScript (ECMAScript 6 and ECMAScript 7), and it has a dedicated documentation website on Github.io. Although ParaViewWeb has become independent, it remains capable of leveraging the state-of-the-art features contained within the ParaView framework. We have numerous demonstrations in the works to showcase these features at The International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage and Analysis (SC16). Please come see us at the Kitware booth (#3437) to learn more about the capabilities of ParaViewWeb and how you can utilize them to develop your own web-based scientific visualization applications.

Questions or comments are always welcome!