Representation versus information

Alignments can be represented graphically: by lines connecting the symbol of a target location with the symbols of one or more source locations. This possibility enables graphical mapping tools as offered by various products (e.g. [1]). But while graphical representation is very helpful for human understanding and can facilitate human decisions, it is only a representation and cannot be equated with the information content provided by the alignments. Technically speaking, it is a frontend used for collecting information, to be distinguished from the information itself.