CurveExpert Professional 2.0

Breaking News, CurveExpert Pro, News, Slider June 13th, 2013 No Comments

Introduction

Hyams Development is pleased to release CurveExpert Professional 2.0 to the general public; this software is at the Download Center for a free 30-day trial.  The software is priced at $79 for a multiplatform license, and existing users of CurveExpert Professional 1.x can upgrade to 2.x for only $15.  As always, all purchased licenses are perpetual and work on Windows, OSX, and Linux platforms.

What about CurveExpert Professional 1.x?

CurveExpert Professional 1.x will still be available for download for registered users of that project.  As the need arises, bug fixes will continue to be applied, and new versions of 1.x will continue to be available.  However, there will be no new features added to the 1.x versions; only maintenance releases.

What's new in CurveExpert Professional 2.0?

Please read on to discover what is new in this release of CurveExpert Pro 2.0.

Plugins

An exciting new feature has been added to CurveExpert 2.0, called plugins.  Plugins allow you to automate repetitive tasks as well as integrate CurveExpert 2.0 into your own workflows.  Several examples of plugins are included with the software, and the API's are described in the documentation that ships with CurveExpert Pro.  And we don't try to invent our own scripting language; plugins are written in standard Python.  Built-in modules include numpy (numerical arrays), scipy (scientific computing), and wxPython (GUI toolkit).  These built-ins give you flexibility and power to compute and automate practically anything.  Plugins are really only limited by your imagination; any Python module can be imported into a plugin, even those that you have installed externally to CurveExpert Pro. As an example of using a plugin is to automate the reading of several different datasets, perform analysis on each one in turn (say, compute a few nonlinear regressions), and write the results out to a file.  Two screenshots are shown below that demonstrate the writing of a plugin, and the manager that is used to install, uninstall, enable, and disable plugins.

plugin_in_action

pluginsmanager

Polar graphs

A new plot type has been added; it is now possible to plot anything on a polar axis.  An example of this is shown below; all normal graph features are available also when working with a polar graph.

Polar plot

Hot links + direct import from Excel files

Instead of importing your data files into CurveExpert Pro, you can now create a hot-link to the underlying text or Excel file.  When the data in the text file (or Excel file) is updated, the data within CurveExpert Pro is automatically updated.  Further, all results based on that data are updated.  This very important feature allows you to keep only one copy of your data, which eases the data management burden.  The hot link can either refer to a text file where the data resides, or it can refer to an area with an Excel spreadsheet where the data resides.  Both .xls and .xlsx files are supported.

excel_hotlink

3D/Contouring Graphing improvements

In previous versions of CurveExpert Pro, one could contour only a continuous result.  The contouring capability has now been extended to contouring discrete data (your dataset) as well, regardless of its regularity or structure.  In addition to this, you can also now plot triangulated wireframes, solid triangulated surfaces, rectangular wireframes, and rectangular surfaces (carpets) of your data. In addition to this, it is now possible to draw a scatterplot of a 3D dataset with color shading of points that correspond to the selected colormap (which maps z values to a particular color).  An example of six new plot types is shown below (click to see a larger version).

sixnewgraphs_small

Other Graphing Improvements

The graphing component in CurveExpert Pro has been improved significantly for a better user experience and more flexibility in your plot creation.  A list of new graph features is below:

  • support for drawing arrows, lines, and shapes (rectangles, squares, ellipses, etc.) on a graph.  Text inside the shapes is optional.
  • undo capability, which is a huge timesaver, and allows you to experiment with the appearance of a graph without fear of overwriting previous work.
  • ability to set the aspect ratio of a graph canvas.
  • ability to copy the underlying data from any curve; right click any curve and pick "Copy Numbers".
  • autoscale lock.  This allows you to force the current graph extents to stay fixed, regardless of whether the data or results on the plot change.
  • ability to specify axis spacing by either amount or number of divisions, for both minor and majors.
  • a right click pan will now only pan the axis that the mouse is moving in.
  •  ability to cut and paste a theme from on graph to another.
  • 10^x tick mark format; particularly useful on log plots.
  • "Clear all Series" added to graph right-click menu
  • A new application preference sets the maximum number of points to place on graph; this is very important for extremently large datasets.  If a dataset exceeds the number of points allowed, the plotted points are intelligently "thinned" such that the character of the entire dataset is still displayed, but just with fewer visible points.
  •  right click menu choices to move tabs in the "Data and Graphs" notebook tabs left and right
  • ability to lock marker color to the line color for a series

A demo of the shapes that you can place on a graph is below:

shapes

Other changed behaviors and minor additions:

  • Tooltips tell the reason for the colors in the results list, and give the stats for each curve fit.
  • Annotations no longer have the "Draw arrow only" option.  Arrows should be drawn with the new arrow functionality.
  • annotation demo sample .cxp file
  • notebook selector now is not drawn every time the spreadsheet is revealed.  The spreadsheet must have focus to be drawn.
  • new plots created are now named Plot #1, Plot #2, etc.
  • newly added annotations use the same properties as the last added annotation, for convenience.
  • "scale markers" in the graph properties dialog can now be a floating point number for more control, and it cannot be zero.
  • color cycles are now saved as a part of the graph themes.  Old graph themes will still work, but will not modify the existing line colors or markers in the plot.
  • "Line/Markers" page in the graph properties dialog changed to "Series".
  • Themes in right click menu that are offered, are now sorted.
  • autoscaling has been improved in intelligence and robustness.
  • when zoom/pan buttons are depressed, other buttons on the graph toolbar now enable/disable appropriately.  It is now no longer allowed to pull up property dialogs via the keyboard mouse when a zoom/pan is active.
  • double clicking a series in a plot now only raises the properties for that series; not the ones for the rest of the graph too.
  • many tooltips added in the axis panel in the graph properties dialog.
  • Font on the notes page is  nicer and larger, especially on OSX.
  • performance enhancements in the graph drawing
  • in the graph properties dialog, the OK and Apply buttons do not enable until some property is actually changed.  This saves needless graph redraws if the user does not change anything.
  • the drawing order of series is now determined by their ordering in the legend.
  • the ESC key now releases the selected object in the graph.
  • disabled distance alpha shading on 3D scatter plots.
  • items in the Window menu are now alphabetized.
  • the plot is now drawn larger on a printout than it was previously
  • the entire CurveExpert Pro window is now a drop target for files.

Bugs resolved

  • in the result details dialog, the surface was always drawn with a red solid linestyle, which was unattractive.  The line has been changed to thin/black.
  • could not right click on initial guess plot in order to change graph properties.  Fixed.
  • small gap between the annotation arrow and the shape that it is coming from.  Fixed.
  • File import dialog resized in a very odd way.  Fixed
  • odd text appearing in initial guess dialog parameter list.  Fixed
  • decreased overall memory usage of graphs
  • using the keyboard to change notebook pages in the Graphs and Data pane could lead to some very ill effects
  • since the alpha control has no effect on a data 3D scatterplot, is it now disabled.
  • a dataset with standard deviation stems did not obey visibility flags properly.  Fixed
  • incorrect autoscale if only bars on a plot
  • if there is a syntax error in the graph properties dialog, the error information bar causes a little bit of an ugly sizing problem.  Fixed.
  • colorbar is invisible on a 3D plot until the graph properties are invoked once.  Fixed.
  • Under OSX, double clicking a cxp document would load CurveExpert Pro, but not load the document.  Fixed.
  • Under OSX, dragging and dropping a file to the CurveExpert Pro window did not work.   Fixed.
  • When a pan was over, the continuous results were not updated. Fixed.
  • Under OSX, collapsing the window with yellow button required a right click to reopen app from the dock.  Fixed.
  • A few dialogs did not have correct tab traversal order.  Fixed.
  • Documents opened via a double click didn't get saved in the most-recently-used list.  Fixed.
  • better reporting for a failed file read, if there are wrong number of items in a row.