Graph setup dialog

About graph setup

The Graph setup dialog lets you apply a wide variety of graphing styles and options to the selected graph, or as the new defaults for all graphs in this model. It also lets you use or define graph templates, to apply a standard collection of styles and options to a graph.

When you display the result of a variable, it shows it as a table or graph, according to how you last viewed it. The first time you view a result, it appears as a graph, unless you changed the default result view in the Preferences dialog.

When displaying a graph, Analytica uses the default graphing settings, unless you have selected other settings for it. You can modify these with the Graph setup dialog.

To open the Graph setup dialog: First display a graph. Then do one of these:

The graph setup dialog has six tabs. All tabs show the template panel and these three buttons:

  • Apply: Apply any changes to settings to the current graph, and close the dialog.
  • Set Default: Save any changed settings on the current tab as the default for all graphs, and close the dialog. It does not affect any settings that you have not changed since you opened the Graph setup dialog. Changing a default affects all graphs that use the default, but not graphs for which you override the default (in the past or future).
  • Cancel: Close the dialog without changing or saving anything.

Chart Type tab

This tab shows options for modifying the style and arrangement of the graph.

Chapter7 12.png

Line style:

Chapter7 13.png Line segments join the data points.
Chapter7 14.png Line segments, with a symbol at each data point.
Chapter7 15.png A symbol at each data point with no lines.
Chapter7 16.png A pixel at each data point, with no line.
Chapter7 17.png A histogram or step function, with a vertical line and horizontal line from each data point to the next.
Chapter7 18.png A bar centered on each x value, with height showing the y value. Forces the graph to be discrete.

Swap horizontal and vertical: Check this box to exchange the x and y axes, so that x axis is vertical and y axis is horizontal. If x values are discrete with long labels, swapping axes gives a more easily legible bar graph.

3D effects: Check to use three-dimensional style to view graphs. For a bar graph line style, it offers the choice of Box or Cylindrical shapes for the bars.

Sort by data spread: Shows up in Analytica 5.0 or later when your independent axis (X-axis) is categorical. Causes the categories in the X-axis to be re-ordered in decreasing order of data spread (or increasing order when you reverse order in the Axis Ranges tab). This is extremely useful when creating Tornado charts, since it automatically orders your tornado bars for you.

Line style settings: Displays when you select a line style showing lines.

  • Area fill: Check to fill in the area beneath each line with a solid color. If there are multiple lines, the graph has a key index. It draws the fill areas from last to first element of the key index, which works well if the y values are sorted from smallest to largest over the key index. Otherwise, later values obscure earlier ones. Here’s an example.
Chapter7 19.png
  • Transparency: Drag the cursor to change transparency of fill colors between opaque and transparent. Transparency lets you see fill lines and areas that would otherwise be obscured behind others.
  • Line thickness: Select the thickness of lines to display. (Only for styles that show lines.)
  • Use separate color/symbol keys: Check to display two key index roles, one indicated by color and the other by symbol type or size.
  • Allow variable symbol size: Check to have the size of symbols vary with their value.
  • Symbol size: Enter a number to specify size of symbols in typographic points.
  • Min symbol size and Max symbol size: If you check Allow variable symbol size, use these fields to specify the range of symbol sizes from smallest and largest.

Bar graph settings: Displays when you select Bar graph line style:

  • Shape: Box / Cylindrical: When 3-D effects are on, different 3-D shapes for the bar prisms.
  • Enable bar outlines: (Analytica 5.0 or later). When on (default), a fine black line appears around the edges of the bars delineating their outline. (Note: If the bars get too narrow, the outline is automatically removed).
  • Stacked bars: Check to show bars stacked one on top of the other over the key index, instead of side by side. The values for each bar are cumulated over the key index.
  • Variable origin: Check if you want to set the origin (starting point) for each bar other than zero (the default). The graph then displays a Bar Origin menu to let you select the bar origin.
  • Bar overlap: With stacked bars, they overlap 100%. You can specify partial overlap between 0 and 100%.

Axis Ranges tab

This tab lets you control the display for each axis, vertical and horizontal, including scaling, range, and tickmarks.

Chapter7 20.png

Autoscale: Uncheck this box if you want to specify the range for the axis, instead of letting Analytica select the range automatically to include all values.

Max and Min: The maximum and minimum values of the range to use when you have unchecked Autoscale. Include zeroCheck if you want to include the origin (zero) in the range.

Approx. # ticks: Specify the number of tick marks to display along the axis. Analytica might not match the number exactly, in the interests of clarity.

Reverse order: Check this box if you want to show the values ordered from large to small instead of the default small to large.

Categorical: Treat this axis as categorical. Usually, Analytica figures out the quantity is categorical without help. Occasionally, if the values are numerical, you might want to control it yourself. See Probability density and mass graphs.

Log scale: Check if you want to display this on a log scale. This is useful for numbers that vary by several orders of magnitude. It uses a “double log” scale with zero if the values include negative and positive numbers.

Set default: If you have changed settings for an axis that is an index of the variable being graphed, clicking this button applies these changes to that index for all graphs that use that index. For example, if the scale is the Index Time, you can use this to change the Time scale (e.g., start and end year) for every graph that displays a value over Time, unless you want to override that default in another graph.

Style tab

The Style tab lets you modify the display of the style and color of the grid, frame, and tick marks, and where to display the key.

Chapter7 21.png

Grid: Select the radio button to control the display of the grid over the graphing area. You can also select the color. A light or medium gray is often a good choice.

Frame: Select the radio button to control the display of the lines framing the graphing area. You can also select the color for the frame. It is usually best to make the frame the same color as the grid, or a darker shade of the same color.

Tick marks: The top radio buttons control where to show tick marks. The lower ones control how they are displayed.

Display key: Select the radio button to control where to display the key on the graph. Select the Show border checkbox to display an outline rectangle around the key.

Text tab

The Text tab lets you change the font, size, style, and color on the graph for the text of axis titles, axis labels (i.e., numbers or text identifying points along each axis), key titles, and key labels (i.e., identifying values in the key).

Chapter7 22.png

Font: Select the font family. Graphic designers recommend using the same font for all text, which you can easily do by leaving all except axis titles as “(Same as axis titles).”

Size: The size in typographic points. Set to 0 if you want that type of text to not display.

Color: Select the color.

Bold, Italics, and Underline: Check these boxes to add bold, italic, and underlined formats to the text.

Chapter7 23.png

Axis Label Rotation: Enter a number from -90 to 90 degrees to rotate the labels for each axis. For example, for a bar graph with many long labels along the horizontal axis, they won’t all fit. By rotating them by 45 or 90 degrees, you can make them all fit without getting truncated.

Adapt displayed font sizes to graph height: If you check this box, the font size automatically adjusts when you make the graph window larger or smaller. This can be useful when you give a demo and want to expand graphs so they are easily readable to people at the back of the room. The font sizes match those specified at the default graph height of 300 pixels.

Background tab

This tab lets you control the fill color, gradient, or pattern on the graph background. The main area covers the entire graph window (exclusive of the top area containing indexes). The plot area is the rectangle showing the graph values. If you leave or set the Fill to None for the Plot area or Key area, they show the same fill settings (if any) as the Main area.

Chapter7 24.png

Fill: Select from:

  • None: No fill. Default to blank (white) background.
  • Solid: Use a solid fill with the selected Color 1.
  • Gradient: Use a gradient of color, going from Color 1 to Color 2, in the direction you specify in Gradient style.
  • Hatch: Use a hatched fill using the selected Hatch Style with Color 1 and Color 2.

Graphic designers recommend avoiding hatched backgrounds, and using solid or gradient back- grounds with pale colors, if at all. The data should not be overwhelmed by the background.

Preview tab

This tab shows the graph using the current settings so that you can see their effects before you decide to Apply or Cancel them.

Chapter7 25.png

Categorical and Continuous Plots

Distinctions regarding whether your results are treated as being categorical, continuous, or discrete impact how the data is plotted. Analytica usually infers the appropriate distinctions, but occasionally you might need to provide explicit setting information.

The discrete] vs. continuous distinction is determined by the domain attribute, and determines whether probability plots are density and cumulative density plots (continuous) or probability mass and cumulative probability (discrete) plots.

The categorical vs. continuous distinction determines how a graphing axis is laid out. Continuous dimensions require numeric values. The determination of whether a graphing dimension is categorical or continuous is partially determined by the domain attribute. However, the values actually occurring in the dimension are determined by the chart type (bar or non-bar chart) and by the Categorical checkbox in the axis range setting.

Exporting graph image type

You can export a graph as an image file in most common formats, including BMP, JPEG, TIFF, PNG, and Enhanced Windows Metafile (EMF):

  1. Display the graph the way you want.
  2. Select Export from the File menu, to open the Save Graph Image as file browser dialog.
    Chapter7 26.png
  3. If you want to change the defaults, edit the File name and select the Save as type, i.e., the file format.
  4. Click Save.

See Also


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