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Re: Problem with supplying custom tick marks

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  • Subject: [mg82922] Re: Problem with supplying custom tick marks
  • From: Thomas E Burton <tburton at>
  • Date: Sat, 3 Nov 2007 03:29:38 -0500 (EST)

The help for Ticks in Version 6 (same behavior in v5) says in part  
"Tick mark lengths are given as a fraction of the distance across the  
whole plot." Hence, the ratio of x-tick lengths to y-tick lengths  
will be in proportion to AspectRatio. The  x-ticks seem therefore to  
be foreshortened by the default aspect ratio of 1/GoldRatio. It is  
thus no surprise that your x-ticks looks short.  A quick and dirty  
correction is

xticks1 = xticks /. {l_Real, 0} :> {l/ar, 0}

Block[{ar = 1/2},
   Plot[5*Sin[x], {x, 0, 15}, Frame -> True, FrameTicks -> {xticks1,  
Automatic, None, None},
        AspectRatio -> ar]

which looks good to me at all aspect ratios I tried, above and below  
1.  Apparently, the default option Automatic adjusts for aspect  
ratio. I am surprised that this adjustment is not reflected in the  
result of AbsoluteOptions.  I am also surprised that the problem you  
cite seems to be confined to aspect ratios below 1. To my eye, using  
xticks with AspectRatio->3 looks OK. Perhaps it's an optical illusion.


David Park had written:

> Here are a set of tick specifications for an x axis: ... What  
> bothers me is that the x-ticks are so much shorter in the second  
> plot (at least they distinctly look that way to me) even though  
> they are exactly the same ticks. ...

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