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I am working on overleaf and I want to make a diagram to represent the ordinal numbers (a mathematical term) in the following way...

enter image description here

I am using tikzpicture to make this diagram. My attempt is as follows (not completed!).

\begin{tikzpicture}
  \draw[gray] (-4,-4) grid (4,4);
  \draw (0,0) node[] {$0$};
  \draw (-0.3,-0.2) node[] {$1$};
  \draw (-0.5,-0.4) node[] {$2$};
  \draw (-0.4,-0.7) node[] {$3$};
  \draw[-> , dotted]  (-0.3,-0.8) .. controls (0.2,-1.2) and (1,-0.3) .. (0.3,0.4) ;
  \draw (0,0.5) node[] {$\omega$};
  \draw (-0.8,0.3) node[] {$\omega+1$};
  \draw (-1.3,-0.3) node[] {$\omega+2$};
  \draw (-1.1,-0.8) node[] {$\omega+3$};
  \draw[-> , dotted]  (-1,-1) .. controls (-0.9,-1.3) and (-0.6,-1.5) .. (-0.35,-1.5) ;
  \draw (0,-1.5) node[] {$2 \cdot \omega$};
  \draw[-> , dotted]  (.55,-1.5) .. controls (1.2,-1.3) and (1.3,-0.8) .. (1.3,-0.5) ;
  \draw (1.3,-0.3) node[] {$3 \cdot \omega$};
  \draw[-> , dotted]  (1.3,0) .. controls (1.3,0.5) and (1,1.3) .. (0.3,1.3) ;
  \draw (0,1.3) node[] {$\omega^{\omega}$};
\end{tikzpicture}

whose output is as follows

enter image description here

But the problem is, it is very time-consuming and is not looking that much beautiful. Also, the entries like $\omega + 1, \omega + 2$, etc are feeling so big in this picture. Can we reduce the size? Can anyone tell me any other way to create such diagrams? any link to check or any source someone provide? any sort of help will be very helpful.

Note: I am using the grid on purpose to draw the entries accordingly. By beautiful, I did not mean about the grid, I can comment that line.

Thanks in advance.

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  • 1
    It would be much more efficient to use polar coordinates, where a point is written (r:phi) -- note the semi-colon -- where r is the distance to the center, and phi the polar angle (by default in degrees). In the present case, you woukd use an r defined as a linear fiction of phi, in order to produce the spiraling shape. And the size issue could be solved by using globally a smaller font like e.g., \footnotesize, or increase the canvas size by providing [x=15mm,y=15mm] or similar as a option for the tikz picture.
    – Jhor
    Commented Mar 7, 2022 at 0:39
  • That sounds good. Let me try on it. Thank You Commented Mar 8, 2022 at 7:08

1 Answer 1

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I found it an interesting challenge, since it is about placing terms in something similar to a spiral, searching I found this very detailed code from Guilherme Zanotelli to draw parametric spirals, and then I adapted it to obtain a similar result, I have used some nesting to place the nodes.

RESULT:

enter image description here

MWE:

\documentclass[tikz,border=0.5cm]{standalone}

%this code is from Guilherme Zanotelli  in a "short" explanation in https://tex.stackexchange.com/a/333824/154390 [start]
\newcommand\bonusspiral{} % just for safety
% \bonusspiral[draw options](placement)(start angle:end angle)(start radius:final radius)[revolutions]
\def\bonusspiral[#1](#2)(#3:#4)(#5:#6)[#7]{
    \pgfmathsetmacro{\domain}{#4+#7*360}
    \pgfmathsetmacro{\growth}{180*(#6-#5)/(pi*(\domain-#3))}
    \draw [#1,
    shift={(#2)},
    domain=#3*pi/180:\domain*pi/180,
    variable=\t,
    smooth,
    samples=int(\domain/5)] plot ({\t r}: {#5+\growth*\t-\growth*#3*pi/180});
}
%this code is from Guilherme Zanotelli  in a "short" explanation in https://tex.stackexchange.com/a/333824/154390 [end]

%Modification to put a node in specific point of the function
%\NodeOnSpiral[draw options](placement)(start angle:end angle)(start radius:final radius)[revolutions]{node_position_in_degrees}{node content}
\def\NodeOnSpiral[#1](#2)(#3:#4)(#5:#6)[#7]#8#9{
    \pgfmathsetmacro{\dom}{#4+#7*360}
    \pgfmathsetmacro{\grow}{180*(#6-#5)/(pi*(\dom-#3))}
    \path [
        shift={(#2)},
        domain=#3*pi/180:\dom*pi/180,
        variable=\j,
        smooth,
        samples=int(\dom/5),
        samples at=#8*pi/180
    ]
        plot ({\j r}: {#5+\grow*\j-\grow*#3*pi/180})
        node[
            #1,
            rectangle,
            fill=white,
            inner sep=2pt,
            scale=0.8
        ]{#9};
}

\begin{document}
    \begin{tikzpicture}[>=latex]
    %Start drawing the thing.
    % First spiral is used as workspace a spiral that starst from 90 at radious 1 and ends at 90 at radious 6.
    \bonusspiral[black!10,dotted, thick](0,0)(90:90)(1:6)[5]
    
    % Draw a line from (90:1) to (90:6)
    \draw[thick] (90:1) -- (90:4);
    \draw[thick,dashed] (90:4) -- (90:6);
    
    % Draw the first spiral arrow in one revolution from 90:1 to 85:2. no to 90:2 to not put the arrow interrupting the node
    \bonusspiral[red!50!black,dashed, thick,->](0,0)(90:85)(1:2)[1]
    % Put the nodes in their corresponding angle position in the spiral.
    \foreach  \degpos/\nodetext in {
        90/0,
        135/1,
        180/2,
        225/3%
    }{\NodeOnSpiral[green!50!black](0,0)(90:90)(1:3)[2]{\degpos}{$\nodetext$}}

    % Draw the second spiral arrow in one revolution from 90:2 to 85:3. 
    \bonusspiral[blue!50!black,dashed, thick,->](0,0)(90:86)(2:3)[1]
    % same thing in the corresponding spiral and revolution angle.
    \foreach  \degpos/\nodetext in {
        450/w,
        480/w+1,
        510/w+2,
        630/2w,
        660/2w+1,
        690/2w+2,
        720/3w,
        760/4w%
    }{\NodeOnSpiral[red!50!black](0,0)(90:90)(1:3)[2]{\degpos}{$\nodetext$}}

    % Draw the third spiral arrow in one revolution from 90:3 to 85:4. 
    \bonusspiral[blue!50!black,dashed, thick,->](0,0)(90:87)(3:4)[1]
    % same thing in the corresponding spiral and revolution angle.
    \foreach  \degpos/\nodetext in {
        810/w^2,
        840/w^2+1,
        870/w^2+2,
        945/w^2+w,
        990/w^2+dw,
        1035/w^2\cdot2,
        1080/w^2\cdot3%
    }{\NodeOnSpiral[red!50!black](0,0)(90:90)(1:3)[2]{\degpos}{$\nodetext$}}

    % Draw the last spirals arrow in two revolutions from 95:4 to 88:6. 
    \bonusspiral[black, thick](0,0)(93:87)(4:5)[1]
    \bonusspiral[black, thick,->](0,0)(93:88)(5:6)[1]
    % same thing in the corresponding spiral and revolution angle.
    \foreach  \degpos/\nodetext in {
        1170/w^3,
        1890/w^w%
    }{\NodeOnSpiral[red!50!black](0,0)(90:90)(1:3)[2]{\degpos}{$\nodetext$}}

    
    \end{tikzpicture} 
\end{document}
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  • Thanks alot for your time, effort and explanation with comments. This is exactly what I wanted. I'll try this coding in my file this night and will comment with further details. Thanks Again. Commented Mar 10, 2022 at 9:05

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