Introduction

PLplot is a cross-platform software package for creating scientific plots. To help accomplish that task it is organized as a core C library, language bindings for that library, and device drivers which control how the plots are presented in non-interactive and interactive plotting contexts.

The PLplot core library can be used to create standard x-y plots, semi-log plots, log-log plots, contour plots, 3D surface plots, mesh plots, bar charts and pie charts. Multiple graphs (of the same or different sizes) may be placed on a single page, and multiple pages are allowed for those device formats that support them.

PLplot has core support for Unicode. This means for our many Unicode-aware devices that plots can be labelled using the enormous selection of Unicode mathematical symbols. A large subset of our Unicode-aware devices also support complex text layout (CTL) languages such as Arabic, Hebrew, and Indic and Indic-derived CTL scripts such as Devanagari, Thai, Lao, and Tibetan.

A number of compiled and interpreted languages have access to PLplot, see our list of language bindings.

PLplot device drivers support a number of different file formats for non-interactive plotting and a number of different platforms that are suitable for interactive plotting. It is easy to add new device drivers to PLplot by writing a small number of device dependent routines.

PLplot is free software primarily licensed under the LGPL.

Feature Summary

Cross Platform

PLplot is currently known to work on the following platforms:

  • Linux, Mac OS X, and other Unices
  • Windows (2000, XP and Vista)

PLplot is built on the above platforms using our CMake-based build system.

Language Bindings

There are many bindings to the PLplot library

  • Ada
  • C/C++/D
  • Fortran 95
  • Java
  • Lisp
  • Lua
  • OCaml
  • Octave
  • Perl
  • Python
  • Tcl/Tk

Output file formats

PLplot device drivers support a number of plotting file formats.

  • CGM
  • GIF
  • JPEG
  • LaTeX
  • PBM
  • PDF
  • PNG
  • PostScript
  • SVG
  • Xfig

Interactive Platforms

PLplot device drivers support a number of platforms that are suitable for interactive plotting.

  • GNOME
  • Gtk+
  • PyQt
  • Qt
  • Tcl/Tk
  • wxWidgets
  • X

Screenshots

Polar plot Shade 3D plots Contouring plot False colour plot Unicode example Alpha color support

You can find the code for these and other examples at the examples page

News

PLplot-5.10.0 has been released

This is the latest stable release of PLplot. We encourage all users to upgrade to this version which... Read more (13 Feb 2014)

PLplot Release 5.9.11

This is a development release of PLplot. It represents the ongoing efforts of the community to improve... Read more (22 Dec 2013)

PLplot release 5.9.10

This is a development release of PLplot. It represents the ongoing efforts of the community to improve... Read more (1 Oct 2013)

Resources

Source Code