Creating a Graphical Tool for Non-Programmers to Use to Make Heatmaps

Nicholas Alicea, Akenpaul Chani, Lam Le, Hayata Suenaga, David Toth, Selam Van Voorhis, and Jessica Wooten

Volume 13, Issue 1 (April 2022), pp. 17–20

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  author={Nicholas Alicea and Akenpaul Chani and Lam Le and Hayata Suenaga and David Toth and Selam Van Voorhis and Jessica Wooten},
  title={Creating a Graphical Tool for Non-Programmers to Use to Make Heatmaps},
  journal={The Journal of Computational Science Education},
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Heatmaps are used to visualize data to enable people to quickly understand them. While there are libraries that enable programmers to create heatmaps with their data, scientists who do not typically write programs need a way to quickly create heatmaps to understand their data and use those figures in their publications. One of the authors is not a programmer but needed a way to generate heatmaps for their research. For a summer undergraduate research experience, we created a program with a graphical user interface to allow non-programmers, including that author, to create heatmaps to visualize their data with just a few mouse clicks. The program allows the user to easily customize their heatmaps and export them as PNG or PDF files to use in their publications.