The Chandra Imaging and Plotting System (ChIPS) is a 2D plotting system designed to allow users to easily create, manipulate, and produce publication quality visualizations. ChIPS has a simple but very powerful interactive interface that allows users to dynamically modify the contents and layout of their plots quickly and efficiently, with the results of any changes being immediately visible. ChIPS allows users to construct their plots fully interactively, and then save the final plot commands as a Python script. This bypasses the need to iteratively edit and rerun the script when developing the plot. Features such as undo and redo commands allow users to easily step backwards and forwards through previous commands, while the ability so save ChIPS sessions in a platform-independent state file allows the session to be restored at any time, even on another machine. Because ChIPS offers a Python interface, users can analyze their data using the broad array of modules offered in Python, and visualize the information in ChIPS at the same time. In this paper we explore the design decisions behind the development of ChIPS and some of the lessons learned along the way.
Astronomical Data Analysis Software an Systems XXIV (ADASS XXIV)
- Pub Date:
- September 2015