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Annotation Arrow Properties

Control annotation arrow appearance and behavior

Annotation arrow properties control the appearance and behavior of an annotation arrow object. By changing property values, you can modify certain aspects of the arrow.

Starting in R2014b, you can use dot notation to query and set properties.

a = annotation('arrow');
c = a.Color;
a.Color = 'red';

If you are using an earlier release, use the get and set functions instead.

Appearance

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ColorArrow color[0 0 0] (default) | RGB triplet | color string | 'none'

Arrow color, specified as a three-element RGB triplet, a color string, or 'none'. The default RGB triplet value of [0 0 0] corresponds to black. If you set the color to 'none', then the arrow is invisible.

An RGB triplet is a three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1], for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7]. This table lists the long and short color name options and the equivalent RGB triplet values.

Long NameShort NameRGB Triplet
'yellow''y'[1 1 0]
'magenta''m'[1 0 1]
'cyan''c'[0 1 1]
'red''r'[1 0 0]
'green''g'[0 1 0]
'blue''b'[0 0 1]
'white''w'[1 1 1]
'black''k'[0 0 0]

Example: 'blue'

Example: [0 0 1]

LineStyleStyle of arrow stem'-' (default) | '--' | ':' | '-.' | 'none'

Style of arrow stem, specified as one of the strings listed in this table.

StringLine StyleResult
'-'Solid line

'--'Dashed line

':'Dotted line

'-.'Dash-dotted line

'none'No stemNo stem

LineWidthWidth of arrow stem0.5 (default) | positive value

Width of arrow stem, specified as a positive value in point units. One point equals 1/72 inch.

Example: 0.75

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

HeadStyleStyle of arrowhead'vback2' (default) | string

Style of the arrowhead, specified as one of the strings in this table.

StringResultStringResult
'plain'

'fourstar'

'ellipse'

'rectangle'

'vback1'

'diamond'

'vback2' (default)

'rose'

'vback3'

'hypocycloid'

'cback1'

'astroid'

'cback2'

'deltoid'

'cback3'

'none'No arrowhead

HeadLengthLength of arrowhead10 (default) | scalar numeric value

Length of the arrowhead, specified as a scalar numeric value in point units. One point equals 1/72 inch. The arrowhead extends backwards from the point (x_end,y_end) determined by the X and Y properties.

Example: 15

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

HeadWidthWidth of arrowhead10 (default) | scalar numeric value

Width of the arrowhead, specified as a scalar numeric value in point units. One point equals 1/72 inch.

Example: 15

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

Location and Size

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XBeginning and ending x-coordinates[0.3 0.4] (default) | two-element vector

Beginning and ending x-coordinates, specified as a two-element vector of the form [x_begin x_end].

By default, the units are normalized to the figure. The lower-left corner of the figure maps to (0,0), and the upper-right corner maps to (1,1). To change the units, use the Units property.

Example: [0.2 0.5]

YBeginning and ending y-coordinates[0.3 0.4] (default) | two-element vector

Beginning and ending y-coordinates, specified as a two-element vector of the form [y_begin y_end].

By default, the units are normalized to the figure. The lower-left corner of the figure maps to (0,0), and the upper-right corner maps to (1,1). To change the units, use the Units property.

Example: [0.2 0.5]

PositionSize and location[0.3 0.3 0.1 0.1] (default) | four-element vector

Size and location, specified as a four-element vector of the form [x_begin y_begin dx dy]. The first two elements specify the coordinates for the beginning of the arrow. The second two elements specify the slope of the arrow.

By default, the units are normalized to the figure. The lower-left corner of the figure maps to (0,0), and the upper-right corner maps to (1,1). To change the units, use the Units property.

Example: [0.5 0.5 0.2 0.3]

UnitsPosition units'normalized' (default) | 'inches' | 'centimeters' | 'characters' | 'points' | 'pixels'

Position units, specified as one of the values in this table.

UnitsDescription
'normalized' (default)Normalized with respect to the figure, uipanel, or uitab that contains the annotation. The lower-left corner of the container maps to (0,0) and the upper-right corner maps to (1,1).
'inches'Inches.
'centimeters'Centimeters.
'characters'Based on the default system font character size.
  • Character width = width of letter x.

  • Character height = distance between the baselines of two lines of text.

'points'Points. One point equals 1/72 inch.
'pixels'

Pixels.

Starting in R2015b, distances in pixels are independent of your system resolution on Windows® and Macintosh systems:

  • On Windows systems, a pixel is 1/96th of an inch.

  • On Macintosh systems, a pixel is 1/72nd of an inch.

On Linux® systems, the size of a pixel is determined by your system resolution.

All units are measured from the lower-left corner of the figure window.

This property affects the Position property. If you change the units, then it is good practice to return it to the default value after completing your computation to prevent affecting other functions that assume Units is set to the default value.

If you specify the Position and Units properties as Name,Value pairs when creating the annotation arrow, then the order of specification matters. If you want to define the position with particular units, then you must set the Units property before the Position property.

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