Research and Advances

Programmed methods for printer graphical output


It is frequently desirable to display the results of computation in a graphical form. This is often done through the use of special hardware such as digital X,Y-plotters. Programmed graphical output for standard printers is preferable in several situations: (1) when economic considerations do not justify the expense of special hardware for the purpose, (2) when a combination of graphical output with some other kind, such as explanatory material, is desired, and (3) when some special variety of graphical output is needed which cannot readily be drawn by an analog device. A number of routines have been prepared (primarily by users rather than manufacturers) to convert numerical data into graphical form for printing by output typewriters or line printers. Virtually nothing on this subject has been published, and this report represents an admittedly incomplete attempt to describe this technique and suggest possibilities for its use.

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