I am to teach, how to do linear regression, and to do so I am making my slides in beamer and I am using PGFplots to do the linear regression, i.e.

  \addplot[only marks] table[x=Lat,y=Mort]{skincancer.txt};
  \addplot[dashed] table[x=Lat,y={create col/linear regression={y=Mort}}]{skincancer.txt};

Where skincancer.txt is just some textfile containing some data which is somewhat linear dependent.

What I am interested in doing is to mark 2 points on the regression line, in order to remind the students how to find the parameters (alpha and beta) for the linear regression line y = \alpha x+\beta.

EDIT: The goal is to not manually enter any values. All values should be grabbed from the dataset that I import. Though it is okay that I have to specify that it is the ith and n-ith points that I am interested in.

  • Something like \draw (axis cs:x,y) circle(5mm); replacing x and y with the coordinates? – JPi Mar 27 '17 at 12:39
  • Well yes, but the coordinates are unknown to me. They are something PGFplots have calculated. – Nicky Mattsson Mar 27 '17 at 12:43

The coefficients are available in \pgfplotstableregressiona and \pgfplotstableregressionb, so you can just add a second plot with only markers and samples at specific x-values. I took the example below from the manual, and edited it slightly.

To get the x-values from row i and j of the data table, you can do something like in the code below. I don't know if this is particularly fast, but it seems to work.

enter image description here

1 1.1
2 1.8
3 3.5
4 6
5 4.9
6 7


% Preamble: \pgfplotsset{width=7cm,compat=1.14}
\begin{axis}[legend pos=outer north east]
\addplot +[only marks,mark=x] table[x=X,y=Y] {\mydata};
\addplot [red] table[
y={create col/linear regression={y=Y}}] {\mydata};

% plot dots on the regression line
\addplot [
   only marks,
   mark=*] table[
   y expr={\pgfplotstableregressiona*
            ifthenelse( % \coordindex starts counting from 0
                  \coordindex==1,% row i-1
                  \thisrow{X}, % X-value from row i-1
                   ifthenelse(\coordindex==4, % row j-1
                         \thisrow{X}, % X-value from row j-1
                         nan)) % if other row numbers, use nan
            + \pgfplotstableregressionb},

%\xdef\slope{\pgfplotstableregressiona} %<-- might be handy occasionally
$\pgfmathprintnumber{\pgfplotstableregressiona} \cdot x
\pgfmathprintnumber[print sign]{\pgfplotstableregressionb}$}
  • Are there any to get the x coordinates directly from the dataset? like asking for the 3rd and 5th to last points? – Nicky Mattsson Mar 27 '17 at 12:44
  • @NickyMattsson Ehm, probably. Maybe you can do it with \pgfplotstablegetelem (from pgfplotstable). I don't have time to figure it out at the moment though, maybe later today. – Torbjørn T. Mar 27 '17 at 12:53
  • @NickyMattsson I updated my answer to read the second and fifth x-value from the table. Change the values after \coordindex== to choose the row numbers. – Torbjørn T. Mar 28 '17 at 20:26

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