Recently I have been using gnuplot to plot position data over time. In my datafile, I have time,positional (2D) information, and directional information (in the form of degrees, 0-360). I have nice plots of position wrt to time, however, I was wondering if it's possible to plot degrees as a rotation of individual plot characters. Does anyone have any suggestions for a way to do this?

here is the example script that I am plotting. In this plot there are three files, and 3 data sets. Each containing position and time information, and representing data from a different antenna type. columns 3 and 2 contain position information, and column 1 contains time information.

gnuplot> plot 'gpsfile1.txt' using 3:2:1 ls 1 lc palette title 'smallant', 'gpsfile2.txt' using 6:5:4 ls 5 lc palette title 'FullWave', 'ant_lady_dog_clouds.txt' using 9:8:7 ls 7 lc palette title 'control'

plotted, this data looks like this

2d position data over time time

I have a 4th column that represents orientation from magnetic north. I would like to know if there is a good way to display this 4th dimension, preferably by rotating the markers. Any thoughts?

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1 Answer 1



I'm not sure if I got you right. If you want to annotate your points with an additional orientation use the using vectors style.


Because this is TeX.SX, the solution incorporates the epslatex terminal :-).

#!/usr/bin/env gnuplot

set terminal epslatex color standalone
set output 'gnuplot.tex'

set angles degrees
set xrange [0:3]
set yrange [0:4]

plot '-' using 1:2:(0.2*cos($4)):(0.2*sin($4)):3 with vectors linecolor palette notitle
# x y color angle
  1 1 5     30
  2 1 4     40
  2 3 3     45
  1 2 3     60
  2 2 4     160
  1 3 3     80


enter image description here

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