Perple_X PostScript plotting programs (e.g., PSSECT, PSVDRAW, PSPTS, PSCONTOR) look for a file named "perplex_plot_option.dat" containing keywords that control output options. If no plot option file is found, then Perple_X uses default settings. The plot option file is distinct from the computational option file, usually named perplex_option.dat, that is also read by PSSECT. This page documents the options.
The entries in the plot option file take the general form
keyword value1 value2 ....
where the keyword identifies an option and the associated values characterize the option. Comments may be placed anywhere in the file provided they are preceded by a "|" character.
Perple_X 6.5+, PerplexPDF: The 6.5.0 version of Perple_X includes 2 versions of the Perple_X plotting programs, the "standard" version and a special version, created by Dave Hirsch, referred to here as the PerplexPDF version; the PerplexPDF programs are distinguished by names with the suffix "_new" (e.g., pssect_new, psvdraw_new, pscontor_new, etc). Unless otherwise noted, the keywords listed below apply to both versions. The primary advantage of PerplexPDF is that it generates generic PostScript that can be read by any modern PostScript interpreter; in contrast the PostScript generated by the standard version cannot be read by some PostScript interpreters. An additional advantage of PerplexPDF is that it also generates PDF and SVG output (see plot_output_type). For technical reasons (i.e., PerplexPDF involves an external library), both the standard and PerplexPDF versions will persist in Perple_X.
axis_label_scale specifies the scale of axis labels and numbers relative to the default text_scale. axis_label_scale takes real values > 0, e.g., a value of 2.0 generates axes labels that are twice the default text size. The default value for axis_label_scale is 1.2, the value cannot be longer than 12 characters.
bounding_box specifies the EPS (Encapsulated PostScript) BoundingBox in points (72 points = 1 inch), some drafting programs or printers may clip any portions of an image that lie outside of the EPS BoundingBox. bounding_box takes four integer values, these are, respectively: x0 - the horizontal position of the EPS BoundingBox origin relative to the left edge of the page; y0 - the vertical position of the EPS BoundingBox origin relative to the lower edge of the page; x1 - the horizontal length of the EPS BoundingBox; y1 - the vertical length of the EPS BoundingBox. The default values for bounding_box are: 0, 0, 800, 800. An A4 page corresponds to a bounding_box of 0, 0, 595, 842; while a US letter page is 0, 0, 612, 792.
PerplexPDF: x0 and y0 have no significance, x1 and y1 indicate the output page size in points.
The 4 values for bounding_box cannot occupy more than 40 consecutive columns and must be on the same line as the bounding_box keyword.
field_fill determines whether variance-based fills are used in diagrams computed by gridded minimization. field_fill may be either T (true) or F (false), the default is T. This option effects only PSSECT.
variance-based fills for mixed-variable and composition diagrams computed by unconstrained optimization and plotted with PSVDRAW are controlled by modifying the default plot options interactively.
field_label determines whether phase fields computed by computed by gridded minimization are labeled by PSSECT. field_label may be either T (true) or F (false), the default is T. See also replicate_label.
Phase field labeling for mixed-variable, Schreinemakers and composition diagrams computed by unconstrained optimization and plotted with PSVDRAW are controlled by modifying the default plot options interactively.
field_label_scale specifies the scale of field labels relative to the default text_scale. field_label_scale takes real values > 0, e.g., a value of 2.0 generates axes labels that are twice the default text size. The default value for field_label_scale is 0.72, the value cannot be longer than 12 characters.
font specifies the name of the font to be used by a plotting device (i.e., a drafting program or printer). This name must be recognized by the plotting device. Some devices (e.g., CorelDraw) substitute a default font for unrecognized names, whereas others (e.g., Adobe on Mac OSX) do not show/print text in unrecognized fonts. The default value of font is Helvetica, the font name must be < 41 characters long.
PerplexPDF: font has no significance, see new_font.
NOTE: the font names recognized by commercial drafting programs generally do not correspond to the font names indicated in the program menu. The easiest way to discover a recognized font name is to: create a PostScript file of text with the desired font; and then edit this file with a text-editor (e.g., Wordpad) to discover the font name (usually specified before the text).
NOTE FOR MAC USERS: As a consequence of Adobe's recent move away from Type 1 PS fonts, Helvetica is no longer recognized by Adobe products. It may be possible to use the method described in the previous note to identify a valid font, but if not, then assigning MyriadPro-Regular and repeating steps 4 and 5 of John Schumacher's work-around solution creates a PDF file that can be edited in Adobe Illustrator.
grid determines whether a regular grid is superimposed over the plot. grid may be either T (true) or F (false), the default is F.
half_ticks determines whether tick marks drawn halfway between the major interval ticks. half_ticks may be either T (true) or F (false), the default is T.
line_width specifies the default line width in points. line_width takes real values >= 0, its default value is 1, specify a value of 0 for minimum width lines.
new_font specifies the type or name of the font to be used by a plotting device (i.e., a drafting program or printer). This keyword is only used by the PerplexPDF programs. Universally valid choices are serif, sans, and monospace. Specific font names (e.g., Times) are allowed on some operating systems and/or with certain output formats (plot_output_type).
picture_transformation specifies the picture transformation. picture_transformation takes five real values, these are, respectively: dxs - a horizontal relative scaling; dys - a vertical relative scaling; dxt - a horizontal translation in points; dyt - a vertical translation in points; dr - a rotation in degrees.
The default values for picture_transformation are: 0.18, 0.18, 160., 220., 0.
The 5 values for picture_transformation cannot occupy more than 40 consecutive columns and must be on the same line as the picture_transformation keyword.
plot_aspect_ratio specifies the ratio of the horizontal and vertical axes lengths. plot_aspect_ratio takes real values > 0, its default value is 1.
plot_output_type specifies the format of the graphical output from the PerplexPDF programs. The choices are PS (PostScript), PDF (Portable Document Format) and SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics).
The replicate_label controls how far apart replicate phase fields in a phase diagram section must be before they are labeled by PSSECT. The keyword value specifies the minimum distance as a fraction of the axes length, the distance between two fields is taken to be the distance between the field barycenters. If two or more fields are closer than the minimum distance only one field is labeled.
replicate_label may take values between 0 and 1, the default is 0.025. If replicate_label = 0, then all replicates are labeled; if replicate_label = 1, then no replicates are labeled.
This keyword is only relevant for PSSECT.
splines determines whether data curves are smoothed with B-Splines. splines may be either T (true) or F (false), the default is T.
tenth_ticks determines whether tick marks drawn at one-tenth intervals between the major interval ticks. tenth_ticks may be either T (true) or F (false), the default is F.
text_scale specifies the default relative scaling for text. text_scale takes real values > 0, e.g., a value of 2.0 doubles all text sizes. The default value for text_scale is 1, the value cannot be longer than 12 characters.