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Audience: IDL users wishing to plot data in Autoplot from IDL.


  1. Introduction
  2. Example
  3. Discussion
    1. How it works
  4. Problems

1. Introduction

The IDL program applot is intended to allow autoplot to replace many cases where IDL's plot command would be used. The goal is that

IDL> plot, x, y

would be replaced with

IDL> applot, x, y

and the data is packed up and sent over to Autoplot for plotting. This plot in Autoplot is then interactive and avoids disturbing IDL's state.

Here is the script which should be run in IDL: This should be downloaded and compiled in the IDL session. Autoplot is then started, and it's server enabled using Options->Enable Feature->Server, and use the default port 12345.

2. Example

Unix> wget
Unix> idl
IDL> .comp applot
IDL> ; ensure that the server mode is enabled on Autoplot via [menubar]->Options->Enable Feature->Server
IDL> applot, dist(200)
IDL> applot, findgen(200), sin(findgen(200))
IDL> applot, findgen(200), sin(findgen(200)), xunits='seconds since 2001-011T00:00'

3. Discussion

3.1. How it works

The script works by saving the data into a das2stream, which is das2/Autoplot's serialized data format, and sending over to Autoplot via the /tmp directory. Autoplot's server is used to tell it to plot the file.

4. Problems

  • has code to start up Autoplot from IDL that should be updated. It assumes Windows and a fixed path for java, and the CLASSPATH variable isn't used.
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