3D Genetic Topology (requires Java)
(a work in progress - for SyStemma, LLC)

The above visualization is a work-in-progress. It shows a variation of the classic genogram, used in family research, extended into 3 dimensions, where the third dimension (vertical) is time. It borrows some of the conventions of the genogram, such as squares and circles representing males and females, but diverges in other ways. Family researchers James H. Amodio and Tom Schur approached Jeffrey Ventrella in the late 80's, with an idea to solve a problem that they frequently encountered: after working with a family for many years, their 2D genograms were becoming very crowded, and complex. They wondered if some of this visual information could be opened up and expanded into the third dimension, and displayed in a computergraphic model.

Thus began a research project, based in what was then the Advanced Graphics Research Lab at Syracuse University. This resulted in a researh paper, an original 3D program running on an SGI IRIS workstation, and a centerpiece for the Syracuse Family Center. The visualization was recently revived, via "Systemma, LLC", whose aim is to further explore this technique, from the standpoint of Family Systems Theory, invented by Murray Bowen, known as "Bowen Theory."

The above 3D model is a bare-bones framewok, and in no way represents the vast potential of using such a technique to visualize multi-generational family process. Nonetheless, we have chosen to display this unfinished work, so that we, and others, can tool around with it. Perhaps we may get some feedback for new ideas. If this is interesting to you, and if you have ideas for how this visualization could help you, either for your own family genealogy purposes, or for research in any field which follows the process of a sexually reproducing species, contact either:

James H. Amodio (jamodio@twcny.rr.com)
Jeffrey Ventrella (Jeffrey@Ventrella.com)

(c)copyright 2005, by James H. Amodio and Jeffrey Ventrella, Systemma, LLC