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Format Tick Labels

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19 Aug 2007 (Updated )

Replace Tick Label with Specified Formattable Objects.

Editor's Notes:

This was a File Exchange Pick of the Week

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File Information
Description

Will replace axes tick labels with formatted text objects that can include both Tex and LaTex interpreted strings. Primary example is to add degree symbols to labels. Inputs can be a cell array of strings or a single string to be appended to the end of each of the current labels. Header documentation includes several examples. Labels can also be rotated.

Acknowledgements

This file inspired Simulate Control Of Magnetized Tetrahymena Pyriformis Cells, Format Tick Labels (Extended V2), Format Tick Labels (Extended), and Tick2text: Create Easy To Customize Tick Labels.

MATLAB release MATLAB 7.3 (R2006b)
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Comments and Ratings (36)
27 May 2014 Chen

it is not very good

02 May 2014 Maha

Excellent function, works really well. I made a few changes that extends this program for semilogx, semilogy, and loglog plots. Check it out here: http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/fileexchange/46431-format-tick-labels--extended-v2-

21 Jan 2014 seeden  
16 Oct 2013 Jakob Sievers

Great. Though I had to apply a segment of 'parent',h to all the text commands for it to work as intended when working with several plots in a subplot.

10 May 2013 Alexandros Iliopoulos  
14 Jan 2013 Stan

Very helpful, thank you!

29 Nov 2012 asdas

it appears that this function does not work with log-log plots...

19 Jul 2012 pietro

Hi this is a very usefull tool. Is it possible to use it for color axis thick labels? I tried to give the color axis axis handle, but it doesn't work.

thanks

29 Jun 2012 Thomas

Great Tool,

but if try to use it on a Diagram with a logarithmic scaled y-axis the xlabels disapear. When using ist with a log scaled x-axis the ylabels disapear.

24 Apr 2012 JoseMauricio

Hi!! Can I use Tick in 3D diagrams?

13 Apr 2012 Dhayalan

I tried for Semilog bar plot. But it is not functioning. All my values are positive, so no problem with semilog in Y axis. Once i change the scale to semilog and run this code, nothing appears in Xticks. Any help?

Regards,
D

04 Feb 2012 Bret

Worked first time!

19 Aug 2011 Lucila  
29 Jul 2011 Patrick

To get it to work with log axes I replaced

lim(1)-offset*(lim(2)-lim(1))

with

10^(log10(lim(1))-offset*(log10(lim(2))-log10(lim(1))));

17 Jul 2011 Jay Cheng

I am working on 3D plots. How to add tickz......... please.

14 Jul 2011 Namaka

Thanks for the file!

But I found a small bug:
If I make my tick labels beforehand then use this version of the function:
format_tick(h,tickx,ticky,[],[],[],[],offset);
It re-assigns my tick labels to the default.

I did a quick-fix by copying the lines tickposx = get(h,'XTick'); and
'set(h,'XTickLabel',tickposx);' (located around line 134), and pasting them into the preceding if-statement. then I deleted the extra 'set(h,'XTickLabel',tickposx); '. However, beware! This fix may have introduced other errors that I haven't caught...

05 Apr 2011 J G  
04 Nov 2010 ?ukasz

It doesn't work with semilogx correctly.
check the Y label.

26 Oct 2010 Murat Cihan Yüksek

Excellent contribution, easy to use, perfectly useful for thesis work... Thank you.. Sorry about my previous post. It was my first.. This contribution deserves full rating..

04 Sep 2010 Santiago

Good work. It could be improved by allowing to format the y axis only independently of the x axis. Default action should be to do nothing. There are also problems with log plots, ylabels move out of the figure sometimes and xlabels are formatted only in the exponent.

13 May 2010 John

Great stuff, however I am finding that the rotated labels are not centered but are right-justified. For example:

figure
plot(100:1000,100:1000)
format_ticks(gca,'m','m',[],[],0,90);

09 Feb 2010 Aniket

In response to comment suggested by Eric above (Dated: 11 Feb 2009):
I tried copying unicode characters from word, and they show ok in the script editor, but on the figure, they show as "?".
Any one else has noticed this, and have a solution??
I dont want to download this script file just to write character π in the ticklabel.

31 Jul 2009 Nicolas Ferlay

Dear fellows,

I did detect a small problem:
it works when I write as the ticklabel '$10^{3}$', or '$10^{+3}$', not with '$10^{-3}$' : the minus sign is not understood !
How can it be ?

Nicolas

24 Jul 2009 Paul

A very useful program; however, it doesn't seem to work when I move the y-axis to the right with set(gca,'yaxislocation','right') - does anyone know how to do this?

The reason I ask is because I manually create colourbars with imagesc (so I have better control over the tick labels etc.) and I want the yaxis to sit on the right...

Any help is greatly appreciated.

28 May 2009 Daniel Crispell

Very nice and very useful. One comment- I believe the 'if' statement on line 303 should be >=, not > so that if only one option is being set the block will be entered.

24 May 2009 Jeffrey

Great work. My only complaint is that the default behavior should be do nothing, not add degrees. But that was easy enough to fix in the mfile.

20 Apr 2009 Patrick Toche

This is a very useful submission. I'm sorry that I submitted 1 star above, I tried to cancel but couldn't. I think it happened when I refreshed my browser. If someone knows how to cancel it, please by all means do. I meant to give 5 stars.

I just want to say that I made a minor extension to this script. It should appear under my name, it's a very trivial extension: I have Introduced a distinction between offsets for the horizontal axis offset_x and vertical axis offset_y. This is useful if your x-axis and y-axis do not cross at the origin. This extension gives you independent control of the offset for the x-axis labels and y-axis labels. If you're interested it should soon appear under my name. I don't have the reference now as I only just uploaded it. Thanks again to Alexander.

20 Apr 2009 Patrick Toche  
11 Feb 2009 Eric

Obviously the alternative above is limited to the unicode character sets and is not as flexible as the TeX interpreter

11 Feb 2009 Eric

SIMPLE ALTERNATIVE
If you have a word processor (like MS WORD) that allows you to insert special symbols like ½ ° µ you can just copy and paste them directly into MATLAB. If using an m file just copy paste these characters into your quoted character array and pass it to your call to set tick labels. The characters are not exactly the same as the TeX characters so make sure you are consistent with this strategy.

10 Feb 2009 Ben Woodacre

You can fix the problem I described above by saving the text labels' positions and then restoring them after invoking format_ticks(). The following code could be shrunk a tad, but it's general enough in case you are using any type of units for the Position property.

% Save label positions
xl = get(gca,'xlabel');
yl = get(gca,'ylabel');
orig_label_units = get( xl, 'Units');
set([xl yl], 'Units','pixels');
xp = get( xl, 'Position');
yp = get( yl, 'Position');
% Generate the text object ticks (changing labels' Position):
[hx, hy] = format_ticks(gca,'{}','{}')
% Restore original label Position and Units properties:
set( xl, 'Position', xp);
set( yl, 'Position', yp);
set([xl yl], 'Units', orig_label_units);

09 Feb 2009 Ben Woodacre

This is just what I have been looking for.

But when I add X and Y axis labels, they are positioned on top of the new text object ticks when MATLAB detects that the axis doesn't have proper axes ticks anymore.

Is there a way to turn off this last re-layout?

22 Jul 2008 Oskar Vivero

This is a great submission! I only edited a couple of lines to fit my needs (turned off the latex interpreter in order to run the figure through laprint.m). Great job!

07 Apr 2008 Ozgur Akman

Top-notch! Really useful function.

18 Nov 2007 Martin Fischbach

Works like a charm!

Thanks for your effort!

12 Oct 2007 John Nat

Great function. It worked flawlessly in my plots.
However, it pains me to see the great lengths the author had to go simply because Matlab lacks support for LaTeX rendering in the Tick Labels. I hope this support is included in future versions.

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