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CoPlot's Graph Objects
(plot data and equations on
XY, 3D, triangle, and polar graphs,
and on orthographic, mercator, and conic maps)
Great Scientific Graphs
CoPlot's graphs have many features which were
designed specifically to meet the needs of
scientists and engineers, including
These are described and illustrated below.
Since graphs are
one of the standard types of drawing objects in CoPlot, you
can put as many Graph objects on a drawing as you want.
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7 Graph Types
CoPlot has 7 basic graph types:
XY, 3D, Triangle, Polar, Orthographic, Mercator, and Conic.
On each graph, you can plot as many datasets
and equations as you want.
A legend is generated automatically for the graph,
but you can control its location and appearance.
 XY Graph 
XY is the most common type of graph.
 3D Graph 
The 3D graph can be rotated to any angle
and tilted up or down
so that you can get any view of the graph.
 Triangle Graphs 
are useful for plotting
various mixtures with 3 components (for example,
soil is made up of sand, silt, and clay).
There is an option in the program to change the
axis arrangement of triangle graphs (for example,
for USDA soil classification charts).
 Polar Graphs 
plot data and equations in
polar coordinates (angle and radius, instead of x and y).
 Orthographic 
is a common map projection for the entire world.
 Mercator 
is a common map projection for the entire world or portions of it.
 Conic 
is a common map projection for smaller portions of the world.
Maps 
The Orthographic, Mercator, and Conic graph types are
common map projections.
CoPlot comes with special world map data files so
you can generate maps of all or part of the world
with these graph types.
CoPlot also comes with special
detailed map data files for the U.S.
(derived from the USGS Digital Line Graph Data)
with lake, river, state, county, city, park,
and road information (but not city street information),
so you can make maps of areas as small as a few
miles across.
But otherwise, the Orthographic, Mercator, and Conic graph
types are just like
other types of graphs, so you can plot your
latitude longitude data on top of the
map data. Since you can set the axis ranges to any
values you want, you can easily make a map of any
part of the world. There is even a "wizard"
(Graph : Make Map) that lets you
specify a place name (for example, "Germany")
and then makes a map centered
on that place.
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40 Data Representations
For each dataset on each graph, you
will specify an X column, a Y column, perhaps a Z column,
and a set of attributes describing how the data should
be plotted. There are about 40 basic data 'Representations'
(ways to draw the data, including lines, markers, filled areas,
various types of bars, contour lines, 3D surfaces, etc.).
The Representations can be
further customized in an infinite number of ways
by changing the color,
line type, line width, marker type, fill type,
background color, etc.).
Here are some of the line and marker representations.
These graphs also show some variations of the graph axis
attributes.
Here are some of the surface representations.
("Contour Lines" is somewhat cluttered because the graph is so small.)
Here are some of the bar representations.
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18 Equation Representations
For each equation that you plot on each graph, you
will specify the actual equation
and a set of attributes describing how the equation should
be plotted.
On any type of graph, the equation can reference x
(for example, "0.1 + 1.3*x  0.9*x^2").
On contour and 3D graphs, the equation can reference x and y
(for example, "0.1 + 1.3*x  0.2*y + 0.9*x*y").
Equations can use the many builtin functions (for example,
abs, acos, asin, atan, cos, cumNorm, ln, log, norm, round, sign0, sign1,
sin, sqr, sqrt, tan, trunc) and constants (e, pi).
There are 18 equation 'Representations'
(ways to draw the equation, including: lines, fill above, fill below,
fill to zero, variations of contour lines, and variations of
2D and 3D surfaces).
The Representations can be
further customized in an infinite number of ways
by changing the color,
line type, line width, fill type,
background color, etc.).
Here are some of the equation representations.
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Flexible Attributes
Each dataset, each equation, and each other part of the graph
(for example, the X Axis primary tick marks,
or the Y Axis grid lines)
can be further customized by changing their color,
line type, line width, marker type, fill type,
background color, etc.
For example,
the line width for one dataset might be
different from the line width for another dataset.
 Color  You can pick colors from a predefined
palette of 142 colors,
or you can specify any of 16.7 million custom colors
(256 levels of red, green, and blue).
 Line Width  You can set the width of any line
to any width (not just a few preset line widths).
 Line Types  You can select the dotdash pattern
from over 30
different dotdash patterns. And you can even
specify how long the dots and dashes are.
 Marker Types  For each dataset, you can choose
from 90 different marker types (see samples to the right).
Or, you can use
any character in any font (for example, ASCII, Greek,
Map symbols, and Weather symbols).
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Asymmetric and Horizontal Error Bars
The upper and lower error values are
specified separately, so you can have asymmetric
error bars or turn off individual error bars.
You can also specify right and left error
values and get horizontal error bars.
And you can turn off the caps at the ends of the error bars.
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12 Axis Types
For each axis on each graph, you
can choose from 12 different types of axes: linear,
log, pi, date, time, degrees, normal probability,
standard deviation, probit, etc.
For example, this makes it easy to make a loglog graph.
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150 Number Formats
For axis labels and marker labels,
you can choose how numbers are formatted.
There are 19 format categories
(general format,
scientific notation, engineering notation,
date, time, degree,
multiple of pi, hexadecimal, binary, etc.)
and over 150 total formats.
Many people outside the U.S. will be happy
to hear that you can choose whether to use
a period or a comma as the decimal point.
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