Monday, November 21, 2011

SVG Charts, Done Right.

Here at Bizo we like many companies use charts visualizations in our products. They are fantastic tools for making the lives of our users easier. But unfortunately most charting libraries aren't that great. Some, like Google's visualizations have overly complex apis where you have to contort your data into intermediary objects and zero pad data. Others like flot have poor default options that require you to override almost every option just to get something that looks halfway presentable.

Our initial requirements for a charting library seemed pretty simple:

  1. Good looking defaults
  2. An api that didn't force a developer to do mental gymnastics just to load in data
  3. IE support
  4. No flash

But after looking around for a while it became apparent that none of the existing libraries really met our needs. Every library we looked at fell flat in one of these four requirements. So I set out to write a charting library from scratch during nights and weekends. Eleven days later version 1.0 of Raphy Charts was born. Raphy Charts ( an html5/canvas charting library built ontop of Raphael ( that includes the following features:

  • Great looking defaults (see example below)
  • Easy api that allows you to pass a normal 2d Javascript array of x,y points without the need to pad your x-labels.
  • IE support for version 7+
  • SVG or VML (older IEs) charts with no Flash.
Get Raphy Charts

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