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Stairseries Properties

Define stairseries properties

Modifying Properties

You can set and query graphics object properties using the set and get commands or the Property Editor (propertyeditor).

Note that you cannot define default property values for stairseries objects.

See Plot Objects for information on stairseries objects.

Stairseries Property Descriptions

This section provides a description of properties. Curly braces { } enclose default values.

Annotation

hg.Annotation object (read-only)

Control the display of stairseries objects in legends. Specifies whether this stairseries object is represented in a figure legend.

Querying the Annotation property returns the handle of an hg.Annotation object. The hg.Annotation object has a property called LegendInformation, which contains an hg.LegendEntry object.

Once you have obtained the hg.LegendEntry object, you can set its IconDisplayStyle property to control whether the stairseries object is displayed in a figure legend.

IconDisplayStyle ValuePurpose
onInclude the stairseries object in a legend as one entry, but not its children objects
offDo not include the stairseries or its children in a legend (default)
childrenInclude only the children of the stairseries as separate entries in the legend

Setting the IconDisplayStyle Property

These commands set the IconDisplayStyle of a graphics object with handle hobj to children, which causes each child object to have an entry in the legend:

hAnnotation = get(hobj,'Annotation');
hLegendEntry = get(hAnnotation,'LegendInformation');
set(hLegendEntry,'IconDisplayStyle','children')

Using the IconDisplayStyle Property

See Control Legend Content for more information and examples.

BeingDeleted

on | {off} (read-only)

This object is being deleted. Mechanism to determine if objects are in the process of being deleted. MATLAB® sets the BeingDeleted property to on when the object's delete function callback is called (see the DeleteFcn property). It remains set to on while the delete function executes, after which the object no longer exists.

For example, an object's delete function calls other functions that act on a number of different objects. If a function does not need to perform an action on an about-be-deleted object, it can check the object's BeingDeleted property before acting.

BusyAction

cancel | {queue}

Callback queuing

Determines how MATLAB handles the execution of interrupting callbacks.

A running callback is the currently executing callback. The interrupting callback is the callback that tries to interrupt the running callback. The BusyAction property of the interrupting callback determines how MATLAB handles its execution. When the BusyAction property is set to:

  • 'queue' — Puts the interrupting callback in a queue to be processed after the running callback finishes execution.

  • 'cancel' — Discards the interrupting callback as MATLAB finishes execution.

For information about how the Interruptible property of the callback controls whether other callbacks can interrupt the running callback, see the Interruptible property description.

ButtonDownFcn

string | function handle

Button press callback function. Executes whenever you press a mouse button while the pointer is over this object, but not over another graphics object. See the HitTestArea property for information about selecting objects of this type.

See the figure's SelectionType property to determine if modifier keys were also pressed.

This property can be:

  • A string that is a valid MATLAB expression

  • The name of a MATLAB file

  • A function handle

Set this property to a function handle that references the callback. The expressions execute in the MATLAB workspace.

For information on the syntax of callback functions, see Function Handle Callbacks.

The expression executes in the MATLAB workspace.

For information on the syntax of callback functions, see Function Handle Callbacks.

Children

array of graphics object handles

Children of the stairseries object. An array containing the handles of all line objects parented to the stairseries object (whether visible or not).

If a child object's HandleVisibility property is callback or off, its handle does not show up in this object's Children property. If you want the handle in the Children property, set the root ShowHiddenHandles property to on. For example:

set(0,'ShowHiddenHandles','on')
Clipping

{on} | off

Clipping mode. MATLAB clips graphs to the axes plot box by default. If you set Clipping to off, portions of graphs appear outside the axes plot box. This occurs if you create a plot object, set hold to on, freeze axis scaling (axis manual), and then create a larger plot object.

Color

ColorSpec

Color of the object. A three-element RGB vector or one of the MATLAB predefined names, specifying the object's color. The default value is [0 0 0] (black).

See the ColorSpec reference page for more information on specifying color. See Adding Arrows and Lines to Graphs.

CreateFcn

function handle | cell array containing function handle and additional arguments | string (not recommended)

Callback function executed during object creation. Defines a callback that executes when MATLAB creates an object. The default is an empty array.

You must specify the callback during the creation of the object. For example:

graphicfcn(y,'CreateFcn',@CallbackFcn)

where @CallbackFcn is a function handle that references the callback function and graphicfcn is the plotting function which creates this object.

MATLAB executes this routine after setting all other object properties. Setting this property on an existing object has no effect.

The handle of the object whose CreateFcn is being executed is accessible only through the root CallbackObject property, which you can query using gcbo.

For information on the syntax of callback functions, see Function Handle Callbacks.

DeleteFcn

function handle | cell array containing function handle and additional arguments | string (not recommended)

Callback executed during object deletion. Executes when this object is deleted (for example, this might happen when you issue a delete command on the object, its parent axes, or the figure containing it). MATLAB executes the callback before destroying the object's properties so the callback routine can query these values. The default is an empty array.

The handle of the object whose DeleteFcn is being executed is accessible only through the root CallbackObject property, which can be queried using gcbo.

For information on the syntax of callback functions, see Function Handle Callbacks.

See the BeingDeleted property for related information.

DisplayName

string

String used by legend. The legend function uses the DisplayName property to label the stairseries object in the legend. The default is an empty string.

  • If you specify string arguments with the legend function, MATLAB set DisplayName to the corresponding string and uses that string for the legend.

  • If DisplayName is empty, legend creates a string of the form, ['data' n], where n is the number assigned to the object based on its location in the list of legend entries. However, legend does not set DisplayName to this string.

  • If you edit the string directly in an existing legend, MATLAB set DisplayName to the edited string.

  • If you specify a string for the DisplayName property and create the legend using the figure toolbar, then MATLAB uses the string defined by DisplayName.

  • To add a legend programmatically that uses the DisplayName string, call legend with the toggle or show option.

See Control Legend Content for more information and examples.

EraseMode

{normal} | none | xor | background

Erase mode. Controls the technique MATLAB uses to draw and erase objects. Use alternative erase modes for creating animated sequences, where control of the way individual objects are redrawn is necessary to improve performance and obtain the desired effect.

  • normal — Redraw the affected region of the display, performing the three-dimensional analysis necessary to correctly render all objects. This mode produces the most accurate picture, but is the slowest. The other modes are faster, but do not perform a complete redraw and are therefore less accurate.

  • none — Do not erase the object when it is moved or destroyed. While the object is still visible on the screen after erasing with EraseMode none, you cannot print it because MATLAB stores no information about its former location.

  • xor — Draw and erase the object by performing an exclusive OR (XOR) with the color of the screen beneath it. This mode does not damage the color of the objects beneath it. However, the object's color depends on the color of whatever is beneath it on the display.

  • background — Erase the object by redrawing it in the axes background Color, or the figure background Color if the axes Color property is none. This damages objects that are behind the erased object, but properly colors the erased object.

Set the axes background color with the axes Color property. Set the figure background color with the figure Color property.

Printing with Nonnormal Erase Modes

MATLAB always prints figures as if the EraseMode of all objects is normal. This means graphics objects created with EraseMode set to none, xor, or background can look different on screen than on paper. On screen, MATLAB mathematically combines layers of colors (for example, performing an XOR on a pixel color with that of the pixel behind it) and ignore three-dimensional sorting to obtain greater rendering speed. However, these techniques are not applied to the printed output.

You can use the getframe command or other screen capture applications to create an image of a figure containing nonnormal mode objects.

HandleVisibility

{on} | callback | off

Control access to object's handle. Determines when an object's handle is visible in its parent's list of children. HandleVisibility is useful for preventing command-line users from accidentally accessing objects that you need to protect for some reason.

  • on — Handles are always visible.

  • callback — Handles are visible from within callback routines or functions invoked by callback routines, but not from within functions invoked from the command line. This provides a means to protect GUIs from command-line users, while allowing callback routines to have access to object handles.

  • off — Handles are invisible at all times. Use this option when a callback invokes a function that could damage the GUI (such as evaluating a user-typed string). This option temporarily hides its own handles during the execution of that function.

Functions Affected by Handle Visibility

When a handle is not visible in its parent's list of children, it cannot be returned by functions that obtain handles by searching the object hierarchy or querying handle properties. This includes get, findobj, gca, gcf, gco, newplot, cla, clf, and close.

Properties Affected by Handle Visibility

When a handle's visibility is restricted using callback or off, the object's handle does not appear in its parent's Children property, figures do not appear in the root's CurrentFigure property, objects do not appear in the root's CallbackObject property or in the figure's CurrentObject property, and axes do not appear in their parent's CurrentAxes property.

Overriding Handle Visibility

You can set the root ShowHiddenHandles property to on to make all handles visible regardless of their HandleVisibility settings. This does not affect the values of the HandleVisibility properties. See also findall.

Handle Validity

Hidden handles are still valid. If you know an object's handle, you can set and get its properties and pass it to any function that operates on handles.

    Note   If you change one data source property to a variable that contains data of a different dimension, you might cause the function to generate a warning and not render the graph until you have changed all data source properties to appropriate values.

HitTest

{on} | off

Selectable by mouse click. Determines whether this object can become the current object (as returned by the gco command and the figure CurrentObject property) as a result of a mouse click on the line objects that compose the stairstep graph. If HitTest is off, clicking this object selects the object below it (which is usually the axes containing it).

HitTestArea

on | {off}

Select the object by clicking lines or area of extent. Select plot objects by:

  • Clicking lines (default).

  • Clicking anywhere in the extent of the plot.

When HitTestArea is off, you must click the lines to select the object. When HitTestArea is on, you can select this object by clicking anywhere within the extent of the plot (that is, anywhere within a rectangle that encloses the stairstep graph).

Interruptible

off | {on}

Callback routine interruption

Controls whether MATLAB can interrupt an object's callback function when subsequent callbacks attempt to interrupt it.

For Graphics objects, the Interruptible property affects only the callbacks for theButtonDownFcn property. A running callback is the currently executing callback. The interrupting callback is the callback that tries to interrupt the running callback. MATLAB handles both the callbacks based on the Interruptible property of the object of the running callback.

When the Interruptible property is set to:

  • 'off', MATLAB finishes execution of the running callback without any interruptions

  • 'on', these conditions apply:

    • If there is a drawnow, figure, getframe, waitfor, or pause command in the running callback, then MATLAB executes the interrupting callbacks which are already in the queue and returns to finish execution of the current callback.

    • If one of the above functions is not in the running callback, then MATLAB finishes execution of the current callback without any interruption.

BusyAction property of the object of interrupting callback determines whether the callback should be ignored or should be put in the queue.

Setting Interruptible property to on (default), allows a callback from other graphics objects to interrupt callback functions originating from this object.

    Note:   MATLAB does not save the state of properties or the display when an interruption occurs. For example, the handle returned by the gca or gcf command may be changed as another callback is executed.

After the function that interrupts a callback completes, the callback resumes execution where it halted when interrupted. For more information, see Control Callback Execution and Interruption.

LineStyle

{-} | -- | : | -. | none

Line style of stairseries object.

 Line Style Specifiers Table

Use LineStyle none when you want to place a marker at each point but do not want the points connected with a line (see the Marker property).

LineWidth

size in points

Width of linear objects and edges of filled areas. Specify in points. 1 point = 1/72 inch. The default is 0.5 points.

Marker

character (see table)

Marker symbol. Specifies marks that display at data points. You can set values for the Marker property independently from the LineStyle property. For a list of supported marker symbols, see the following table.

 Marker Specifiers Table

MarkerEdgeColor

ColorSpec | none | {auto}

Marker edge color. The color of the marker or the edge color for filled markers (circle, square, diamond, pentagram, hexagram, and the four triangles).

  • ColorSpec — User-defined color.

  • none — Specifies no color, which makes nonfilled markers invisible.

  • auto — Uses same color as the Color property.

MarkerFaceColor

ColorSpec | {none} | auto

Fill color for closed-shape markers. The fill color for markers that are closed shapes (circle, square, diamond, pentagram, hexagram, and the four triangles).

  • ColorSpec — User-defined color.

  • none — Makes the interior of the marker transparent, allowing the background to show through.

  • auto — Sets the fill color to the axes Color property. If the axes Color property is none, sets the fill color to the figure Color.

MarkerSize

scalar

Marker size. Size of the marker in points. The default value is 6.

    Note:   MATLAB draws the point marker (specified by the '.' symbol) at one-third the specified size.

Parent

handle of parent axes, hggroup, or hgtransform

Parent of object. Handle of the object's parent. The parent is normally the axes, hggroup, or hgtransform object that contains the object.

Selected

on | {off}

Object selection state. When you set this property to on, MATLAB displays selection handles at the corners and midpoints if the SelectionHighlight property is also on (the default). You can, for example, define the ButtonDownFcn callback to set this property to on, thereby indicating that this particular object is selected. This property is also set to on when an object is manually selected in plot edit mode.

SelectionHighlight

{on} | off

Object highlighted when selected.

  • on — MATLAB indicates the selected state by drawing four edge handles and four corner handles.

  • off — MATLAB does not draw the handles except when in plot edit mode and objects are selected manually.

Tag

string

User-specified object label. Provides a means to identify graphics objects with a user-specified label. The default is an empty string.

Use the Tag property and the findobj function to manipulate specific objects within a plotting hierarchy.

For example, create an areaseries object and set the Tag property.

t = area(Y,'Tag','area1')

When you want to access objects of a given type, use findobj to find the object's handle. The following statement changes the FaceColor property of the object whose Tag is area1.

set(findobj('Tag','area1'),'FaceColor','red')
Type

string (read-only)

Type of graphics object. String that identifies the class of the graphics object. Use this property to find all objects of a given type within a plotting hierarchy. For stairseries objects, Type is 'hggroup'. The following statement finds all the hggroup objects in the current axes object.

t = findobj(gca,'Type','hggroup');
UIContextMenu

handle of uicontextmenu object

Associate context menu with object. Handle of a uicontextmenu object created in the object's parent figure. Use the uicontextmenu function to create the context menu. MATLAB displays the context menu whenever you right-click over the object. The default value is an empty array.

UserData

array

User-specified data. Data you want to associate with this object (including cell arrays and structures). The default value is an empty array. MATLAB does not use this data, but you can access it using the set and get commands.

Visible

{on} | off

Visibility of object and its children.

  • on — Object and all children of the object are visible unless the child object's Visible property is off.

  • off — Object not displayed. However, the object still exists and you can set and query its properties.

XData

array

X-axis location of stairs. The stairs function uses XData to label the x-axis. XData can be either a matrix equal in size to YData or a vector equal in length to the number of rows in YData. That is, length(XData) == size(YData,1).

If you do not specify XData (which the input argument X), the stairs function uses the indices of YData to create the stairstep graph. See the XDataMode property for related information.

XDataMode

{auto} | manual

Use automatic or user-specified x-axis values. If you specify XData (by setting the XData property or specifying the X input argument), MATLAB sets this property to manual and uses the specified values to label the x-axis.

If you set XDataMode to auto after specifying XData, MATLAB resets the x-axis ticks to 1:size(YData,1) or to the column indices of the ZData, overwriting any previous values for XData.

XDataSource

MATLAB variable, as a string

Link XData to MATLAB variable. Set this property to a MATLAB variable that is evaluated in the base workspace to generate the XData. The default value is an empty array.

set(h,'XDataSource','xdatavariablename')

MATLAB requires a call to refreshdata when you set this property. Changing workspace variables used as an object's XDataSource does not change the object's XData values, but you can use refreshdata to force an update of the object's data. refreshdata also lets you specify that the data source variable be evaluated in the workspace of a function from which you call refreshdata.

    Note   If you change one data source property to a variable that contains data of a different dimension, you might cause the function to generate a warning and not render the graph until you have changed all data source properties to appropriate values.

YData

scalar | vector | matrix

Stairs plot data. YData contains the data plotted in the stairstep graph. Each value in YData is represented by a marker in the stairstep graph. If YData is a matrix, the stairs function creates a line for each column in the matrix.

The input argument Y in the stairs function calling syntax assigns values to YData.

YDataSource

MATLAB variable, as a string

Link YData to MATLAB variable. Set this property to a MATLAB variable that is evaluated in the base workspace to generate the YData. The default value is an empty array.

set(h,'YDataSource','Ydatavariablename')

MATLAB requires a call to refreshdata when you set this property. Changing workspace variables used as an object's YDataSource does not change the object's YData values, but you can use refreshdata to force an update of the object's data. refreshdata also lets you specify that the data source variable be evaluated in the workspace of a function from which you call refreshdata.

    Note   If you change one data source property to a variable that contains data of a different dimension, you might cause the function to generate a warning and not render the graph until you have changed all data source properties to appropriate values.

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