Introduction

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TeeChart is available for a wide range of programming environments. This section provides an overview of the basics that makeup a TeeChart Chart and points someway to information sources and help guides.



Welcome to TeeChart - Guide to help and information sources

1. Introduction

The purpose of this guide is to highlight the resources that are available to help you work with TeeChart. All TeeChart technical information is now available in electronic format only. Electronic format brings obvious advantages such as word search, portability and speed.

There are now many sources of information for TeeChart, of which some contain duplicity or variants on the same theme and some are better than others at answering differing types of questions. To clarify it all, this guide is the roadmap.


We have tried to minimize the effect of obsolescence of content by putting the information in as generically as possible, as a guide to information sources. We hope it is of use.


Thanks for using TeeChart !!


TeeChart Installation

All versions of TeeChart are delivered in a single executable installer file or in some cases as a zipfile.

Where an installer is provided it creates a menu group below the Windows 9x / NT / 2000 / XP menu to access TeeChart files, tutorial documents, help and examples.

Where TeeChart is provided as a zipfile it is normally sufficient to unzip the file and use its contents as a pathed development resource.

3. Where to look for help

There are several sources of help available to users of TeeChart. This area is important to an understanding of where to look and can save a great deal of time.


Code completion

The native code prompter in nearly all professional programming environments will show all properties and methods available for any TeeChart class. Simply type in the start of the programming line and on typing the point separator all available Class options will appear. For properties and methods, required variables and their type will be displayed.


Online Help

The Online help is the first stop for any queries relating to syntax of code declarations. The Online help, through its inherent design, documents the class structure of the TeeChart component library. The Online help can be reached in several ways:


  • By entering F1 when a TeeChart property is selected as written on your programming page.
  • By entering F1 when highlighting a TeeChart placed on a Form. You may then select a Contents entry or search for the property or method via the index.
  • By opening the help file from the Help menu. You may then select a Contents entry from the “TeeChart Charting Library” group or search for the property or method via the index.

TeeChart Examples

Coded examples can be accessed via the 'Examples' icon in the TeeChart menu group. The icon takes you to the parent folder for all coded examples, which are classified by sub-folder.


A useful way to get help from the examples is to use Windows' file finder to search through the directory tree for project files containing a word (property or method) for which you would like to see a coded example. Follow this up by opening the projects related to the looked for item.


Example:


Use Windows Find File and look for the method or property in this way:


  1. Point the Windows' File finder to the TeeChart Examples folder structure.
  2. Select the File type for the programming environment in which you are working from the table below and put the wildcard equivalent (e.g. *.cs) in the file search criteria of your search.
  3. In the 'Advanced' section of File Finder put the word or phrase you are searching for (e.g. "GetAxisLabel").
  4. Start search. All files returned will have an associated project file as denoted by the extensions indicated in the table below. Open the project file in the same folder as the found file to open the example project. Alternatively view the found file with notepad or any other text editor.

Tutorials

HTML Tutorials contain a guide to use of the key areas of TeeChart’s component libraries. You can access the Tutorials via the icon in the TeeChart menu group. We recommend you take a look at the Tutorials as early as possible to familiarize yourself with the information available: you will probably find some useful tips there when you come to start working with projects. We recommend that you use Internet Explorer (v4 or greater) when viewing the tutorials as some features are optimized using ActiveX.


FAQ

TeeChart’s Frequently Asked Questions are available on the Steema web:


[[1]]


The FAQ includes many hints on usage of specific properties and methods and on the implementation of various types of applications.

Question submission - Steema's managed support forums

The Steema managed forums are available for access to all current customers.


You can use this method to send us any questions for information that you cannot find in the FAQ. We prefer to receive questions sent in this way if possible, as the format allows us to log, track and record trends in problems reported to us more easily. Steema's forums are constantly monitored by Steema personnel who are normally able to assure a fast turnaround for your enquiry.


[[2]]


Documents

TeeChart documents are included in the root installation folder of TeeChart. These files will vary between versions but normally include several text files:

Release.txt - Contains release notes for your version of TeeChart

License.txt - License information

Welcome.htm - This file

Support.txt - File listing key support links


Steema web

The Steema web, [[3]] is regularly updated with new information:

  • The Technical pages at the website contain many coded examples to download in addition to technical commentary and updated FAQ
  • New version information - maintenance releases for download
  • Links to webs of interest to TeeCharters
  • Trial versions of new and existing products

The Steema support page ([[4]]) presents options on the Steema Support web.

Email support

With the exception of evaluation cycle queries, please do not send technical enquiries via email to Steema. Steema Software have migrated all support, with the exception of Pro-support, to the online forums at the Steema Support Central web site (Steema Support Central web site) and to the newsgroups that continue to operate, access listed as in this document. Email enquiries related to pre-sales queries may be directed to info@steema.com.


  • Support via Steema Support Central website, customers-only may post questions
  • Open access newsgroup support, Steema Support will endeavour to answer queries posted here
  • Help with installation queries
  • Maintenance release notification
  • Receipt of up-to-date TeeChart FAQs
  • Submittal of technical queries

We will attempt to respond to those enquiries that highlight a new issue not covered in the FAQ and that may be of interest to other TeeCharters. We will include the reply in the updated FAQs. Please refer to the FAQ before submitting support questions.


This takes the form of the Pro Support program. Please check the Steema web for latest information about support packages.


The Pro program includes these features:


As Standard support plus:


  • 12 priority support questions
  • Private newsgroups
  • Additional support resources at the Steema Support Central website
  • Reply within 48 hours in working days with receipt confirmation emailed the same day
  • Emailed problem reports
  • TeeChart version release notifications

Steema newsgroups


Steema provides newsgroups for support interaction with Steema Support and other Steema product developers:
To connect to Steema's newsgroups point your news reader to:

www.steema.net A direct link to the newsgroup associated with this product is included in the Tutorials.


Please mail feature requests to info@steema.com or use the Steema Support Central Forums. We will evaluate the contents of the wish list when defining new versions of TeeChart.


Use the Steema Support Central Forums on the Steema Support Central web for bug reporting.

3. TeeChart version information

Have I got the latest version?

To confirm that you have the latest version of TeeChart you can connect to the Steema web and check the Versions pages:


Version Link VCL [[5]] ActiveX [[6]] NET [[7]] Java [[8]] PHP [[9]] Mobile [[10]]


Obtaining maintenance releases

Maintenance releases, e.g. v4.1.1864.22788--> v4.1.1879.21176 (NOT new versions e.g. v3.1.* --> v4.0.*) can be obtained free of charge from the Customer download page at the Steema web during the active subscription period for the product. See the section entitled 'Have I got the latest version?’


4. Glossary of TeeChart key terminology

Axis

Basic Chart Axes


Axes refer to the scales that can be placed on the Chart to orientate the data. In standard terms these Axes have either an X, Y or Z component as in the diagram below.

Image007.png

TeeChart has five principal axes, Left, Top, Right, Bottom and Depth. Different data Series can be related to different Axes permitting different Axis scales for these Series on the same Chart.


  • Left and Right Axes refer to a Y-Axis
  • Top and Bottom Axes refer to an X-Axis
  • The Depth Axis refers to the Z-Axis

Multiple Axes


TeeChart offers true multiple Axes at runtime. Multiple Axes permit an independently scaled Axis to be placed anywhere on the Chart with any Start/Finish point.


The following diagram shows an example of the use of multi-axes:

Image008.png

Look up Axes in the online help file for a full list of properties and methods and an overview of functionality.

Canvas

TeeChart uses several Canvases. Principal canvases include:


  • Chart Canvas, which is the visible Area enclosed by the Chart Panel boundary. All Chart Axes and data are plotted on the Chart Canvas.
  • Printer Canvas. TeeChart transfers contents of the Onscreen Chart to the Printer Canvas when printing.

If you require a feature that we haven't added to the standard TeeChart properties and methods then, with almost unlimited flexibility, you can add it yourself using the TeeChart Custom draw Canvas methods. Custom draw permits you to output your own objects and text to the Chart panel associating them with runtime variables and Chart conditions. These could take the form of hints on passing a mouse over a data Series object or a message triggered by a threshold exceeded. The Custom Canvas also supports a variety of 3D objects.

Image009.png

Look up Canvas in the online help file for a full list of properties and methods and an overview of functionality.


The basic (default) TeeChart Canvas is suitable for fast 2D and 3D (orthogonal) plots. You may select the alternative Windows 3D Canvas or the OpenGL Canvas to display Charts with sophisticated visual characteristics. See the TeeChart documentation for more help on this subject.

Image010.png

Fig. Main Chart Components

Chart Panel

The Chart panel is the backdrop to the Chart. If TeeChart is laid bare of all contents, e.g. 'Visible off' for all Charting components, it makes a perfectly serviceable 3D panel.


Lookup TChart in the online help file for a full list of properties and methods and an overview of functionality.


Chart Rectangle

The Charting area: This is the area contained within the principle 5 Chart axes (Left, Top, Right, Bottom and Depth). The Chart data Series and Grid are plotted inside the Chart rectangle.


Some Chart Series types do not require and do not install by default any axes. Setting the Chart Frame to visible enables the Chart rectangle to be highlighted by the selected colour.


Look up TChart in the online help file for a full list of properties and methods and an overview of functionality.


Datasource

The Datasource for a Chart refers to database sourced data. The sources normall include DataSets and DataTables but that depends on the version of TeeChart you are running. Non-Datasource sources for data are defined by the TeeChart developer via code using TeeChart's Add methods to add data programmatically to the Chart.


Functions

TeeChart offers several basic functions such as Average, Moving Average and Curve Fit. These may be selected via the Chart Editor's Series gallery. The function may use another Chart Series as input for its point plot. Functions are added as Line Series type by default but may optionally be changed to a different visualization such as a Bar Series or Point Series.


Legend

The Legend has four default positioning options, Left, Top, Right and Bottom but you may move the Legend to place it anywhere on the Chart Panel including inside the Chart rectangle. The Legend has many supporting properties and events to allow customization and/or interactive display.


Marks

Marks refer to the Labels associated with each data point of a Series. Marks may be displayed in several ways; as the data value, as a text description of the point or as a percentage related to the value of all points taken as a whole. Marks are normally displayed alongside, above or below the Series point. An alternative and complementary data related labeling scheme is the Axis Labels which label key scale points on the Axis. Marks may be repositioned and their properties modified at runtime.


Orthogonal 3D

Orthogonal 3D Charts use the default Chart Canvas to plot an angled, vector drawn line to represent a 3D angle (depth). This gives a basic level of 3D visual appearance whilst remaining very fast for data plots. See the TeeChart documentation for more about TeeChart Canvases and the alternative Windows 3D and OpenGL canvases.


Paging

TeeCharts may optionally be subdivided into several Chart pages. This helps visualization of large data sets or may be useful for 'time dividing' screens of data. Pages may be browsed.


Series

Data Series are the data display method type, e.g. Line Series, Bar Series, Pie, etc. You can mix different Series types in a Chart according to your requirement. Thus your design is not limited to any 'Chart types' defined by TeeChart, the concept of Chart type being virtually obsolete in terms of the number of permutations of Charts (Series type mix) you may create.


Look up Series in the online help file for a full list of properties and methods and an overview of functionality.


Titles

Use TeeChart's Title properties to add Header and Footer titles to the Chart, Axis titles and data Series Titles. Custom draw permits you to add additional titles anywhere on the Chart Canvas.


Walls

The Chart Walls are boundaries that can be placed at the side, bottom and back of the Chart Rectangle to accentuate the Charted area. Chart walls are a visual component not containing any data scale related information. TeeChart has four Walls, Left, Right, Bottom and Back. Each Wall may be coloured and changed dimensionally.


Chart Tools

TeeChart Tools may be associated with a Chart, Series or Axes to facilitate annotation, navigation and data demarcation. An example, the Axis Arrow Tool places arrows on the Axis that scroll the axis when selected. The DragMark tool allows selected Series’ Marks to be mousedragged. Tools are selectable via the Chart Editor or by code