Statistica Knowledge Base – All about Graphics (Graphs)

Graphics Introduction

What are the different ways in which I can create graphs in STATISTICA?

Graphs from the Graphs menu contain the most flexible graphing capabilities available in STATISTICA, offering literally thousands of different combinations of options to create the precise graphics that lead to accurate interpretation of data. These commands are also available from the STATISTICA Start button menu (the button in the lower-left corner of the STATISTICA window).

categories of STATISTICA graphs

Following are the general categories of STATISTICA graphs available from the Graphs menu:

  • Menu graphs use data from the current input spreadsheet, taking into account the current case selection and weighting conditions.

menu graph

  • User-defined graphs are templates of previously saved menu graphs. To create these, click the Add As User-defined Graph to Menu button on the Options 2 tab of any graph creation dialog.
  • Block data graphs use the currently selected (continuous) block of data in the active spreadsheet to specify input data for the graph.

block data graph

  • Input data graphs process data directly from the current input spreadsheet and take their cues as to which variables to use from the current cursor position.

input data graph

Other specialized graphs related to specific analyses (e.g., ANOVA plots of means, Nonlinear Estimation plots of fitted functions, Cluster Analysis tree diagrams) are accessible directly from analysis results dialogs.

specialized graph

Note that all STATISTICA Graph types offer the same customization options. Also, any type of graph can be created with STATISTICA Visual Basic.

Are there different customization options for each type of graph?

No. Once a graph is displayed on the screen, regardless of how it was requested or defined, all graph customization options available in STATISTICA can be used to customize it. The customization options available for all graphs include appending new plots to existing graphs and linking and embedding graphs, as well as drawing, fitting, and graph restructuring options. Also, all these options can be used to customize graphs that were saved and later opened for additional editing.

What happens to graphs when the data file changes?

All Graphs menu graphs can maintain automatic links to the data from which they were created as long as the graph specification dialog is active. Options for auto-updating graphs are available on the Options 1 tab of all graph specification dialogs. Note that if you want a graph to be dynamically updated when the data file changes, it must be placed in a stand-alone window (instead of in a workbook or report).

In what formats can I save STATISTICA Graphs?

STATISTICA Graphs can be saved in the following formats:

  • STATISTICA Graph files (*.stg)
  • Bitmap files (*.bmp)
  • JPEG files (*.jpeg, *.jpg)
  • Portable Network Graphics files (*.png)
  • Windows Metafiles (*.wmf)
  • Enhanced Metafiles (*.emf)
  • PDF files (*.pdf)
  • GIF files (*.gif)
  • TIFF files (*.tif)

How do I export a STATISTICA Graph to another application?

Export via Copy and Paste operations (e.g., the Clipboard). The quickest way to export a graph is to copy it to the Clipboard and then paste it into another application. STATISTICA native, Windows metafile, and bitmap formats are created in the Clipboard and can be used in other applications.

STATISTICA Graphs can be pasted into other application documents (e.g., word processor documents or spreadsheets) as embedded objects or objects linked to graph files. If STATISTICA Graphs are pasted to other applications via Windows OLE, the graphs are tied to STATISTICA and can be interactively edited from within the other application.

  • Linking STATISTICA Graph files via OLE. STATISTICA Graph files can also be inserted and linked via OLE to other applications.
  • Export to another file format. If the graph to be saved is to be used by an application that does not support OLE or ActiveX, you can choose to save the file as a different file type by selecting the appropriate option from the Save as type option in the Save As dialog.
  • Limitations of Windows Metafile format. Very large (in terms of the number of data points represented) or very complex graphs that can be produced by STATISTICA can exceed the capacity of the Windows metafile graphics format used in the Windows 95 and 98 systems. In those circumstances, use the JPG, PNG, or bitmap representation instead.

How is the mouse used in graph applications?

In addition to the standard Windows mouse conventions for selecting objects, the mouse can be used in many other specialized applications in the graphics window in STATISTICA. The following is a list of representative examples:

  • OLE. Links or embeds foreign document files to STATISTICA documents by dragging them directly from the desktop or Windows Explorer (across application windows) and dropping them onto STATISTICA Graphs.
  • Brushing. Highlights data points in the graph by clicking on them with the brushing tool or selecting them with a Box, Lasso, Cube, or a 2D or 3D Slice.
  • Zoom in and zoom out tools. Zooms in (“magnifies”) or zooms out (“shrinks”), respectively, the selected area of the graph.
  • Drawing tools. Adds rectangles, ovals (or circles), polylines, and freehand drawings, arrows, etc. to a graph.
  • Resizing and moving. Resizes (drag on a “black selection square”) or moves (drag the entire object) selected graph objects.
  • Editing polyline objects. Reshapes individual segments of the polyline drawing by dragging on either the object area black selection squares or any of the black selection squares that mark the line segments.
  • Rotating text. You can interactively rotate custom text by selecting it in the graph and then dragging one of the object handles (small black squares) in the desired direction.
  • Controlling the mouse with the keyboard in graphs. You can also emulate the mouse with the keyboard in order to move or resize an object by selecting the object, placing the mouse pointer over the object, and then using the keyboard cursor keys to move or resize the object.

Note that the mouse pointer will change to match the application in use. Press the ESC key to return the mouse pointer to the default mode. You can also use the mouse pointer to customize the graph.

How do I select an object in a graph?

To select an object in a graph, click on the object. Once an object has been selected, press the TAB key to navigate from object to object within your graph.

Copy and Paste Operations (Clipboard)

How can I copy an entire STATISTICA Graph?

Ensure that the window containing the graph to be copied is active, and then press CTRL+C or click the Copy toolbar button.

STATISTICA Graphs can be pasted and linked or embedded in other application documents (e.g., word processor documents or spreadsheets) following standard OLE conventions. If STATISTICA Graphs are pasted to OLE-compatible applications, the graphs maintain their relation to STATISTICA and thus can be interactively edited from within the other application or updated when the STATISTICA Graphs change.

If the STATISTICA Graph copied to the Clipboard has been saved as an *.stg file, you can link it in other application documents (or STATISTICA‘s own) by selecting Paste Special from the Edit menu.

How can I copy a selected part of a STATISTICA Graph?

There are several copy options:

  • Copying an object. Select a graphic object to be copied by clicking on it (ensure that you are in default pointing mode, i.e., the Selection Tool button on the toolbar has been clicked. Graphic objects are all objects you have created on the screen such as a custom text, a segment of a drawing, or an embedded graph or artwork. When the object is selected, press CTRL+C. Alternatively, you can click the Copy toolbar button.
  • Copying a rectangular section of the graph. Enable the Screen Catcher by pressing ALT+F3, or select Capture Rectangle from the Edit – Screen Catcher submenu. Hold down the left mouse button, and use the mouse pointer to select the area of the graph you want to copy. When you release the mouse button, the selected area will be automatically copied to the Clipboard in the bitmap format (there is no need to click the Copy button). Note that the Screen Catcher can be used to copy any rectangular part of the screen, not only in the graph window from which it was called but any part of the screen (even including parts that belong to other applications).
  • Copying a specific window. The Screen Catcher can also capture a specific window from the screen. To copy a specific window, select Capture Window from the Edit – Screen Catcher submenu, and use the mouse pointer to select the desired window.

How do I place text in a STATISTICA Graph?

Even large portions of text (e.g., a report several pages long) can be pasted into STATISTICA Graphs using the Clipboard operations mentioned in the previous two topics. Additionally, you can paste a portion of a document into the graph window using the Paste Special command. To edit and customize the text within STATISTICA Graphs, double-click the text to display the Titles/Text dialog (for custom text) or the respective OLE server application (for pasting in text via the Paste Special command).

Both the Clipboard-based as well as inserting operations listed in the previous topic apply to all Windows compatible graphs and artwork (linking and embedding operations support any OLE-compliant objects).

How do I place artwork or other graphs into a STATISTICA Graph?

The Clipboard-based operations (cut, copy, paste, link, embed) apply to all Windows-compatible artwork and graphs. Linking and embedding operations save graphs and artwork into bitmaps, Windows graphics metafiles, STATISTICA format graph files, and any OLE-compatible objects.

How can I undo operations on graph objects?

A multi-level undo option (available from the Edit menu, or by clicking the Undo toolbar button, or by pressing CTRL+Z) maintains up to 32 buffers (steps), which also include operations on objects.

Multiple and Compound Graphs

How can I place one STATISTICA Graph into another?

The easiest way to place one graph into another is to copy a graph displayed in one window (press CTRL+C or click the Copy toolbar button), and then move to the target graph window and paste it there (press CTRL+V or click the Paste toolbar button). The pasted graph will be displayed on the target graph. Now you can move or resize it like any other custom graphic object.

You can also change the properties of the pasted object by selecting Object Properties from its respective shortcut menu (right-click on an object). You can also edit the embedded object by double-clicking on it (following the standard OLE conventions).

Graphs and artwork saved as files can also be dynamically linked or statically embedded in the current graph by using the standard OLE facility, accessible by clicking the Graph Tools toolbar Insert Object button or selecting OLE Object from the Insert menu.

What are compound graphs?

Compound graphs are those that contain other graphs. STATISTICA can automatically create compound graphs (e.g., in the Quality Control module where one display contains four different types of graphs, or when you use the Multiple Graph AutoLayout Wizard.

Can I represent objects in graphs as expandable icons?

Icons representing documents in Windows Explorer can be dragged across applications and dropped into STATISTICA Graphs. If the source application is OLE-compliant, the document will be displayed in the STATISTICA Graph.

If the source application is not OLE-compliant, the document will be represented as an icon, either of the source application (if an association exists in Windows for the document’s file extension), or of the Windows Object Packager (if no association exists). These icons function as buttons; double-clicking on an icon will launch the application with which it is associated and open the file represented by the icon.

How do I create a blank graph for a compound graph?

The quickest way to create a blank graph is to select Blank Graph from the Graphs – Multiple Graph Layouts submenu. You can also select Wizard from the Graphs – Multiple Graph Layouts submenu to display the AutoLayout Wizard – Step 1 dialog. In this dialog, click the Blank button in the Add Graphs group box, and then click the OK button to produce a “compound” graph containing one blank graph. You can then add new or existing graph objects (e.g., added text, embedded or linked objects, arrows, freehand drawings, previously saved graphs, etc.) to that blank graph.

The Wizard (see below) and the Templates commands (on the Graphs – Multiple Graph Layouts submenu) can also be used to design and produce a custom layout. Alternatively, the Snap to Grid facility can be used. The Alignment Grid (accessible from the View menu) and/or the dynamically updated cursor coordinates can be used to aid in the visual placement and alignment of the graph objects in the blank graph.

Can I place multiple graphs on one page?

Several graphs can be printed on one page by linking or embedding them within a blank graph (see above). Although this can be done manually using cut-and-paste (and Snap to Grid), the easiest method is to use either the Multiple Graph Layouts – Wizard or the Multiple Graph Layouts – Templates, which automates placement of multiple graphs on one page.

What is the Multiple Graph AutoLayout Wizard?

The Multiple Graph AutoLayout Wizard can be accessed from the Graphs – Multiple Graph Layouts submenu. The Multiple Graph AutoLayout Wizard assists you in selecting and arranging graphs to be placed on the same page.

Graphs can be selected from all currently open STATISTICA Graph windows (in all currently open STATISTICA modules) or from graph files previously saved to disk; blank graphs (to be filled or replaced later) can also be used.

Categorized Graphs

What are categorized graphs?

Categorized graphs are created by categorizing data into subsets and then displaying each of these subsets in a separate small component graph arranged in one display. For example, one graph can represent male subjects and another one female subjects, or high blood pressure females, low blood pressure females, high blood pressure males, etc.

graph categorized graphs

In STATISTICA, categorized graphs are:

  • Available in many output dialogs (they are automatically generated as part of output from all procedures that analyze groups or subsets of data, e.g., breakdowns, t-tests, ANOVA, discriminant function analysis, nonparametrics, and many others)
  • Accessible as part of the Graphs of Input Data options in the shortcut menus in all spreadsheets
  • Accessible from the Graphs menu where a wide variety of user-defined methods to categorize data are available

How do I define categories for categorized graphs?

When categorized graphs are requested from output dialogs of specific analytic procedures that involving subsets of data, the graphs will automatically display the subsets that are already defined as part of the current analysis).

Alternatively, the categorized graphs requested from the Graphs menu offer a variety of methods to specify subsets using one or two grouping variables.

Specifically, categories can be defined by:

  • Integer Mode: Integer values of grouping variables
  • Categories: Dividing grouping variables into a requested number of equal-length intervals
  • Boundaries: Custom intervals (ranges) of grouping variables, defined by specific interval boundaries
  • Codes: Specific values (i.e., codes) of grouping variables
  • Multiple Subsets: User-defined “multiple-subset” definitions that can be entered as logical case selection conditions of values of all variables in the current data file

The following graph is a relatively complex example of a two-way categorized graph based on a mixed method of defining the subset graphs. The two-way categorization arranges small graphs like a two-way table (crosstabulation) based on two different criteria of categorization.

For example, the two rows of graphs represent categories defined based on values of variable Home_2 (cases where Home_2 is less than or equal to 104.624 and cases where it is greater than 104.624). The three columns of graphs represent subsets of cases defined using specific “multiple subset” definitions based on values of variable number 0 (i.e., case numbers) and variable Home_2.

Following is the 2D Categorized Scatterplots dialog from which the above graph was defined (select Scatterplots from the Graphs – Categorized Graphs menu).

graph categorized scatterplot

Specifically, variable Work_1 and Work_2 are plotted in each small graph (as variables X and Y, respectively). The first of the two categorizations (X Categories, or “columns” of graphs) was defined as Multiple Subsets in the Specify Multiple Subsets dialog that is displayed after the Specify Subsets button is clicked.

How do I create a graph that plots my data according to all distinct values of a categorical variable. What is the limit on the number of categories?

You can make such a graph with a categorical variable having up to 1,000 categories. On the graph specification dialog, select Unique Values as the type of interval. Note that you can also choose to sort these categories in ascending or descending order on the graph.

Fitting, Plotting Functions

How do I fit a function to data?

Access the Plot: Fitting options pane of the Graph Options dialog, select the appropriate plot, and click the Add new fit button; then, select the desired type of function or smoothing procedure in the Fit type box. You can adjust the fitting options (e.g., stiffness or optimization settings) and the pattern for the graphical representation of the fit here as well. The pattern can also be adjusted by double-clicking on the fit line or surface in the graph.

How do I display a specific equation for the fitted function?

In Graphs menu graphs, the display of the text of the fitted function equations can be requested by selecting either In title or As custom text in the Display fit expression box on the Options 2 tab of the graph specification dialog. Select Off in the Display fit expression box to suppress the display of fit equations.

Note that these options can be controlled globally (i.e., for all graphs) in the Analyses/Graphs: Display options pane of the Options dialog accessible from the Tools menu.

In all single plot and non-categorized graphs where only one function is fitted, the text of the equation is displayed in the first available line of the fixed title. Depending on the number of equations to be displayed, also in categorized graphs, the equations can be displayed in the fixed titles of the graph.

However, if more equations need to be displayed than the number of lines available in the fixed title, STATISTICA will create a custom text object on the graph and place the equations there. Potentially, such lists of equations can be very long (e.g., include 256 equations), and thus the custom text object can be large and partially cover the graph. However, the location of the listing of functions can be adjusted (the list can be moved around and edited like any other custom text object, the font size reduced, etc.).

graph fit equations

When the listing of functions is very long, it is recommended to add some space around the graph and place the text object there. You can add space around the graph using either the Graph actual size/scaling toolbar button or the Set graph area toolbar button.

How do I plot a custom-defined function?

Select Custom Function Plots from either the Graphs – 2D Graphs or the Graphs – 3D XYZ Graphs submenu and specify the function in the respective dialog. Also, you can add a custom function plot to any existing graph: Access the Custom Function options pane of the Graph Options dialog and click the Add new function button. Then, use the options in the Custom Function options pane to specify the equation to be plotted in the 2D or 3D graph.

In addition to the standard math functions, a variety of functions representing distributions as well as their integrals and inverses are supported and can be plotted (including Beta, binomial, Cauchy, Chi-square, exponential, F, Gamma, geometric, Laplace, logistic, normal, log-normal, Pareto, Poisson, Student’s t, and Weibull distributions).

How do I fit a custom-defined function to data?

The custom-function plotting facility (see the previous topic) accessible in the Custom Function options pane of the Graph Options dialog plots the requested (custom-defined) functions and overlays them on the existing graph. It does not fit these functions to the data. The most commonly used, predefined functions that can be fitted to the data and smoothing procedures is available in the Plot: Fitting options pane of the Graph Options dialog (e.g., Linear, Logarithmic, Exponential, Polynomial, Distance-Weighted least squares, Spline, and others).

Comprehensive facilities to fit to data (and interactively plot in two or three dimensions) user-defined functions of practically unlimited complexity are provided in the Nonlinear Estimation module.

Printing Graphs

Do all printer drivers support rotated fonts?

Most properly configured printers supported by Windows can handle rotated fonts; however, some printer drivers support some of the advanced printer control features used by STATISTICA only when they are set to a higher resolution (e.g., higher than 300 DPI) and/or when they are set to print fonts as graphics. If you encounter problems (e.g., rotated text is printed as unrotated or “uncovered” text is revealed that should be covered), consult the documentation included with your printer for direction on printing TrueType fonts as graphics or setting your printer to a higher resolution.

Do all printers support the non-transparent overlaying of graphic objects?

Most properly configured printers supported by Windows can properly handle printing of non-transparent overlays used in STATISTICA Graphs; see the previous topic for advice on how to configure the printer driver.

Can I quickly adjust sizes of all fonts in a graph?

In STATISTICA, all graph displays and printouts can be continuously scaled. STATISTICA will also automatically adjust the sizes of all fonts, markers, spacing, etc., such that manual adjustments of individual font sizes are rarely necessary.

You can interactively decrease or increase the size of the selected text or point marker by clicking the Decrease Font or Increase Font buttons (respectively) on the Graph Tools toolbar. Each click of the toolbar button changes the font size (or point marker) by one point (i.e., one click of the Increase Font button will increase the font size or point marker by one point). Note that if you have not selected any text or point markers, clicking these buttons will increase or decrease all text and point markers by one point.


About statsoftsa

StatSoft, Inc. was founded in 1984 and is now one of the largest global providers of analytic software worldwide. StatSoft is also the largest manufacturer of enterprise-wide quality control and improvement software systems in the world, and the only company capable of supporting its QC products worldwide, with wholly owned subsidiaries in all major markets (StatSoft has 23 full-service offices, on all continents), and its software is available in more than 10 languages.

Posted on November 23, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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