Create a Plot


This function creates a new Plot and optionally initialises its attributes.

A Plot is a specialised form of FrameSet, in which the base Frame describes a " graphical" coordinate system and is associated with a rectangular plotting area in the underlying graphics system. This plotting area is where graphical output appears. It is defined when the Plot is created.

The current Frame of a Plot describes a " physical" coordinate system, which is the coordinate system in which plotting operations are specified. The results of each plotting operation are automatically transformed into graphical coordinates so as to appear in the plotting area (subject to any clipping which may be in effect).

Because the Mapping between physical and graphical coordinates may often be non-linear, or even discontinuous, most plotting does not result in simple straight lines. The basic plotting element is therefore not a straight line, but a geodesic curve (see AST_CURVE). A Plot also provides facilities for drawing markers or symbols (AST_MARK), text (AST_TEXT) and grid lines (AST_GRIDLINE). It is also possible to draw curvilinear axes with optional coordinate grids (AST_GRID). A range of Plot attributes is available to allow precise control over the appearance of graphical output produced by these routines.

You may select different physical coordinate systems in which to plot (including the native graphical coordinate system itself) by selecting different Frames as the current Frame of a Plot, using its Current attribute. You may also set up clipping (see AST_CLIP) to limit the extent of any plotting you perform, and this may be done in any of the coordinate systems associated with the Plot, not necessarily the one you are plotting in.

Like any FrameSet, a Plot may also be used as a Frame. In this case, it behaves like its current Frame, which describes the physical coordinate system.

When used as a Mapping, a Plot describes the inter-relation between graphical coordinates (its base Frame) and physical coordinates (its current Frame). It differs from a normal FrameSet, however, in that an attempt to transform points which lie in clipped areas of the Plot will result in bad coordinate values (AST__BAD).




Pointer to a Frame describing the physical coordinate system in which to plot. A pointer to a FrameSet may also be given, in which case its current Frame will be used to define the physical coordinate system and its base Frame will be mapped on to graphical coordinates (see below).

If a null Object pointer (AST__NULL) is given, a default 2-dimensional Frame will be used to describe the physical coordinate system. Labels, etc. may then be attached to this by setting the appropriate Frame attributes (e.g. Label(axis)) for the Plot.

GRAPHBOX( 4 ) = REAL (Given)
An array giving the position and extent of the plotting area (on the plotting surface of the underlying graphics system) in which graphical output is to appear. This must be specified using graphical coordinates appropriate to the underlying graphics system.

The first pair of values should give the coordinates of the bottom left corner of the plotting area and the second pair should give the coordinates of the top right corner. The coordinate on the horizontal axis should be given first in each pair. Note that the order in which these points are given is important because it defines up, down, left and right for subsequent graphical operations.

An array giving the coordinates of two points in the supplied Frame (or in the base Frame if a FrameSet was supplied) which correspond to the bottom left and top right corners of the plotting area, as specified above. This range of coordinates will be mapped linearly on to the plotting area. The coordinates should be given in the same order as above.
A character string containing an optional comma-separated list of attribute assignments to be used for initialising the new Plot. The syntax used is identical to that for the AST_SET routine. If no initialisation is required, a blank value may be supplied.
STATUS = INTEGER (Given and Returned)
The global status.

Returned Value

A pointer to the new Plot.