Let’s assume you have text file like that:
# Months 6months 1year
3 27 10
4 52 50
5 61 89
7 78 92
8 82 112
9 120 118
10 124 125
And you want to plot line chart but you don’t want to use excel or any other spreadsheet application. By the way I am kind of person who loves Microsoft tools they are make our life easier. (Like I am writing this blogpost on Word) But sometimes especially when I tried change something in chart. I always lost myself inside complex GUI even though they are good about simplifying GUI either. Nowadays, because I had to write article. My mentor recommended to me use GNU Plot. First I thought what is why we can’t use Excel. But now I really liked GNU PLOT, it is super cool.
Let’s back to our subject after talking about details…
I think it’s straight for Linux environment. But if you’re MAC user like me for now. It’s bit harder than Linux to install, you need to install gnuplot_qt. You can install like that:
brew cask install xquartz
brew install gnuplot –with-x11
Now we are in fun part.
I am assuming your data named as a Results.dat also you’re in same directory with your data file.
For creating chart
plot ‘Results.dat’ u 1:2 w lp t ‘6 months’ -> It will create chart for only first data column
For adding another line to chart:
plot ‘Results.dat’ u 1:2 w lp t ‘6 months’,’Results.dat’ u 1:3 w lp t ’12 months’
Furthermore, you can use point instead of lines. For doing that just change lp top.
plot ‘Results.dat’ u 1:2 w lp t ‘6 months’,’Results.dat’ u 1:3 w p t ’12 months’
But we can customize our charts:
For changing x-axis label font -> set xlabel “Time” font “Helvetica,18”
Or y-axis label font pretty much same only need to use ylabel instead of xlabel.
Let’s change x axis label’s -> set xtics font “Helvetica,12”
Then maybe we would like to change line thickness -> just add to lw 2
End of your plot command as argument so it’s look like this:
plot ‘Results.dat’ u 1:2 w lp t ‘6 months’ lw 2
For changing line colour: lc 1 # or some other number
For changing dash type: dashtype 2 # or some other number
That’s all from now. This blogpost mostly about introducing GNU Plot. I should say I really liked it. It saved me from Excel’s GUI. I would prefer to write one more word or even line rather than trying to remember where it was in GUI.