I have a grid that represents a grid of seats. Each seat has several different properties (for simplicities sake, lets say seats are Standard or Advanced, with Advanced seats being more expensive).
Based on some given criteria, several different possible seating plans are created. I need to show each of these seating plans, along with a summary (e.g. the total price for booking that particular plan, based on how many are Standard and how many are Advanced).
The system currently has something similar to this:
This has some obvious problems, the biggest being it doesn't handle overlapping seating plans very well.
Currently I have this as an improvement:
This handles overlapping seating plans a lot better. However, for the 80% case of non-overlapping seating plans, I think it is much harder to see how the seats group together.
Does anyone have any suggestions for further improvements? Most of the time there will be no overlapping seating plans, so I want it to be easy to see grouping for the common case, but it needs to handle up to 5/6 groups overlapping on the same seat. I can add some small dynamic behaviour such as highlighting groups/adding borders to groups on mouseover, but it also need to be clear on a static dead-tree printout.