Graph Studio is a visual editor for network data. Using Graph Studio, you can create entities, connect them by mapping relationships, edit styles and visualization layout — and see it all in real-time. With Graph Studio, you can import an Excel spreadsheet to generate a visualization, and export your visualization back into a spreadsheet.

There are two ways of making network visualizations in Graph Studio: 1) editing within Graph Studio itself using our visual editor or 2) editing in an Excel spreadsheet, and then importing the spreadsheet to Rhumbl.

For beginners, we recommend first working through the next section of creating a map with Graph Studio, then next continuing with the example of importing a spreadsheet.

Visual editing

Let's go through creating a first map in Graph Studio to see the basics of editing within Graph Studio.

Start by clicking on New map on your home dashboard and select the first option of Make a fresh map. There are two ways of making maps: 1) stamping out a map from an example template like we're doing now, or 2) uploading an Excel spreadsheet.

In the next screen, you'll see the option to choose a data template:

choose an example to start your network visualization

These examples are only here to get you started; the data is fully-editable. In this tutorial we'll select the first example — Education. The next screen allows you to select a color scheme. This color scheme is fully-editable as well, so for now, just choose a color scheme that you find most appealing. We'll go with the “Light” scheme.

choose a color scheme for your network visualization

You've created your first map!

Making entities

One of the fundamental ideas of the network visualization is the idea of entities. An entity is a thing of importance in your data. Entities can be visualized as nodes on the map, or they can be grouping entities. Group-type entities are not visualized on the map — they serve only as a “container” to hold other entities. Read more on the fundamentals of entities and entity types.

Notice that in the Education example, we have 3 entity types: uber group, department and subject. You can rename these entity types, but you cannot change whether they are a node-type or group-type entity.

Let's create a new entity type named teacher, and make that a node-type entity:

create a new entity type

Now, let's create a new entity of type teacher. Click on the Edit entities button to pop open the panel, click Add entity, and create an entity named spongebob squarepants. Specify the entity type as teacher (the entity type we just created).

create a new entity

Hit Save. If you look to your map now, there is a red node, and if you hover over it, you should see spongebob squarepants.

created a new node

The reason why it's red is because it's easy to tell that this is a newly-created entity. This is very useful for when you're working on maps with more than one person, and you want to see what's changed.

Important! At this point, the changes you've made are not permanently saved. If you refresh the page or close the window, those changes are lost. To permanently save them, click the Save button on the menu panel:

save network visualization

Making relationships

Thus far, you've created one entity type (teacher), and created a node that is of that type. Another fundamental concept in a graph visualization is the idea of relationships between entities. Let's make some connections to and from spongebob.

First, look at the Relationships summary. There are already three existing relationship types. The first one is special and it is called HAS_PARENT_OF — it is a parent-type relationship: parent-type relationships describe how entities are grouped. Read more on the fundamentals of relationships and relationship types.

We'll add a parent relationship going from spongebob to Math. Click on Add relationship:

draw relationship between node and group

Click Save. On first glance, nothing seems to have happened: the map still looks the same! That's because you need to tell Rhumbl to regenerate the layout for you by clicking on the Refresh button. Wait for it...and the new node is now grouped under its new parent Math:

refreshed network visualization

Now let's add a new relationship type. Create a new relationship type and call it teaches. This relationship is a directed relationship because the direction matters — a person can teach a subject, but a subject cannot teach a person.

make new relationship type

Now let's add a new relationship type. Create a new relationship type and call it teaches. This relationship is a directed relationship because the direction matters — a person can teach a subject, but a subject cannot teach a person.

We'll now create another relationship, pointing from spongebob to Differential Equations, of type teaches. After creating this relationship, you should see the new relationship in red:

created new relationship

And as before, to see how this new edge may affect the layout, hit Refresh to regenerate the visualization layout.

That's it! That's how you create a map using the visual editing method. Next, we'll talk about creating a map using the spreadsheet editing method.

Spreadsheet editing with the Adjacency List format

With the spreadsheet editing method, you edit an Excel spreadsheet on your computer, and then upload that spreadsheet to Graph Studio.

The spreadsheet must be in one of the following formats: Adjacency List or Adjacency Matrix. Many users have reported finding the Adjacency List a bit more intuitive, so we'll start with that one for this tutorial.

In this quickstart, we'll walk through an example using the Adjacency List template. This example describes how classes organized into different departments in a school are related.

Step 1 To start, download the Adjacency List example. Then, go to the Dashboard, click on create New Map and select Upload a Rhumbl spreadsheet.

upload your graph data

The Adjacency List format lists each entity in each row, and columns of the entity across in columns. Let's take a look at this first row in the spreadsheet:

id type name
SCH School type

This first row describes an entity whose id is SCH, name is School whose type is School. These three properties are required. Read for more detail on spreadsheet columns.

Step 2 Then, upload your data as prompted. You will see the following parsed result:

Create network visualization through uploading your excel spreadsheet

This tells you that Rhumbl has understood from the spreadsheet that there are 7 entities total, and amongst those 7 entities, there are 11 relationships. What are those relationships?

There are two corequisite relationships, parsed from these cells in our spreadsheet:

corequisite relationships in network visualization

This says that the mech has a corequisite of calc-1 and em has a corequisite of calc-2.

We also have 6 prerequisite relationships: prerequisite relationships in network visualization

We also have a bunch of belongs to relationships. They say that that each entity belongs to one group. The only entity that doesn't have a parent group is the root entity, which in our case is the School entity. This row says that Department X is under the School.

parent relationships in network visualization

Now that we've gone over what these mean, let's move on. Hit the Next button to choose styles.

Rhumbl provides you with a few different color schemes. You can change specific colors later, but for now, we'll just pick the Dark scheme.

choose a color scheme to apply to your network visualization Simple network visualization of an example school and courses

There you go! Those are the two main ways of making a graph visualization: either via the visual editor or through editing a spreadsheet. We suggest jumping in to make a map, or checking out a few spreadsheet examples.