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Re: [igraph] Graphing in a "polar" layout

From: Tamas Nepusz
Subject: Re: [igraph] Graphing in a "polar" layout
Date: Thu, 5 Mar 2015 12:18:11 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.23 (2014-03-12)

Hi Christina,

igraph layouts are simply matrices with 2 columns and one row for each vertex,
so the easiest is probably if you generate such a matrix yourself. If you want
to place a vertex at radius r from the center with an angle of alpha (in
radians), then you have to use the following formulae to figure out the X and
Y coordinates:

X = r * cos(alpha)
Y = -r * sin(alpha)

where the Y coordinate is negated only because the Y axis of the coordinate
system of the screen is oriented from top to bottom.

You haven't mentioned whether you are using igraph from R or Python and I'm
more familar with Python, so I'll add an example in Python here:

from igraph import Layout
from math import sin, cos

def polar_layout(radii, angles):
    return Layout([(r*cos(angle), -r*sin(angle)) for r, angle in zip(radii, 

The "polar_layout" function has to be called with two lists: one that specifies
the radius of each vertex and one that specifies the angle of each vertex. It
will then return a Layout object that can be passed to plot() as follows:

layout = polar_layout(..., ...)
plot(graph, layout=layout)

All the best,

On 02/04, Christina Pikas wrote:
> I've got ~100 nodes assigned to various categories. I would like to end up
> with nodes of one category in the center and all the other categories
> spaced along a ring outside - like this NodeXL polar graph:
> http://www.connectedaction.net/2013/03/03/how-to-plot-a-network-in-a-polar-layout-using-nodexl/
> I know about star layouts (just one node in the center?) and ring or circle
> layouts.
> My plan was to find the layout coordinates for subgraphs for each group and
> then copy them all over, but this is proving to be even more of a hassle
> than I had originally thought.
> Is there an easier way?
> Thanks in advance,
> Christina

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