# Documentation

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# Text Properties

Text appearance and behavior

Text properties control the appearance and behavior of a Text object. By changing property values, you can modify certain aspects of the text.

Starting in R2014b, you can use dot notation to query and set properties.

t = text(0.5,0.5,'text here'); s = t.FontSize; t.FontSize = 12;

If you are using an earlier release, use the get and set functions instead.

## Text

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Text to display, specified as a character array, string array, cell array, or numeric value.

Example: 'my label'

Example: string('my label')

Example: {'first line','second line'}

Example: 123

To include numeric variables with text, use the num2str function. For example:

x = 42; str = ['The value is ',num2str(x)];

To include special characters, such as superscripts, subscripts, Greek letters, or mathematical symbols use TeX markup. For a list of supported markup, see the Interpreter property.

To create multiline text:

• Use a string array, where each element contains a line of text, such as string({'line one','line two'}).

• Use a cell array, where each cell contains a line of text, such as {'first line','second line'}.

• Use a character array, where each row contains the same number of characters, such as ['abc'; 'ab '].

• Use sprintf to create text with a new line character, such as sprintf('first line \n second line'). This property converts text with new line characters to cell arrays.

Text that contains only a numeric value is converted using sprintf('%g',value). For example, 12345678 displays as 1.23457e+07.

### Note

The words default, factory, and remove are reserved words that will not appear in text when quoted as a normal characters. To display any of these words individually, precede them with a backslash, such as '\default' or '\remove'.

Text color, specified as an RGB triplet or one of the color options listed in the table. The default value of [0 0 0] corresponds to black.

For a custom color, specify an RGB triplet. An RGB triplet is a three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1]; for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7]. Alternatively, you can specify some common colors by name. This table lists the long and short color name options and the equivalent RGB triplet values.

OptionDescriptionEquivalent RGB Triplet
'red' or 'r'Red[1 0 0]
'green' or 'g'Green[0 1 0]
'blue' or 'b'Blue[0 0 1]
'yellow' or 'y'Yellow[1 1 0]
'magenta' or 'm'Magenta[1 0 1]
'cyan' or 'c'Cyan[0 1 1]
'white' or 'w'White[1 1 1]
'black' or 'k'Black[0 0 0]
'none'No colorNot applicable

Example: 'blue'

Example: [0 0 1]

Interpretation of text characters, specified as one of these values:

• 'tex' — Interpret characters using a subset of TeX markup.

• 'latex' — Interpret characters using LaTeX markup.

• 'none' — Display literal characters.

#### TeX Markup

By default, MATLAB® supports a subset of TeX markup. Use TeX markup to add superscripts and subscripts, modify the font type and color, and include special characters in the text.

When you set the Interpreter property to 'tex', the supported modifiers are as follows. Modifiers remain in effect until the end of the text. Superscripts and subscripts are an exception because they modify only the next character or the characters within the curly braces.

ModifierDescriptionExample
^{ }Superscript'text^{superscript}'
_{ }Subscript'text_{subscript}'
\bfBold font'\bf text'
\itItalic font'\it text'
\slOblique font (usually the same as italic font)'\sl text'
\rmNormal font'\rm text'
\fontname{specifier}Font name — Set specifier as the name of a font family. You can use this in combination with other modifiers.'\fontname{Courier} text'
\fontsize{specifier}Font size — Set specifier as a numeric scalar value in point units to change the font size.'\fontsize{15} text'
\color{specifier}Font color — Set specifer as one of these colors: red, green, yellow, magenta, blue, black, white, gray, darkGreen, orange, or lightBlue.'\color{magenta} text'
\color[rgb]{specifier}Custom font color — Set specifier as a three-element RGB triplet.'\color[rgb]{0,0.5,0.5} text'

This table lists the supported special characters with the Interpreter property set to 'tex'.

Character SequenceSymbolCharacter SequenceSymbolCharacter SequenceSymbol

\alpha

α

\upsilon

υ

\sim

~

\angle

\phi

\leq

\ast

*

\chi

χ

\infty

\beta

β

\psi

ψ

\clubsuit

\gamma

γ

\omega

ω

\diamondsuit

\delta

δ

\Gamma

Γ

\heartsuit

\epsilon

ϵ

\Delta

Δ

\spadesuit

\zeta

ζ

\Theta

Θ

\leftrightarrow

\eta

η

\Lambda

Λ

\leftarrow

\theta

θ

\Xi

Ξ

\Leftarrow

\vartheta

ϑ

\Pi

Π

\uparrow

\iota

ι

\Sigma

Σ

\rightarrow

\kappa

κ

\Upsilon

ϒ

\Rightarrow

\lambda

λ

\Phi

Φ

\downarrow

\mu

µ

\Psi

Ψ

\circ

º

\nu

ν

\Omega

Ω

\pm

±

\xi

ξ

\forall

\geq

\pi

π

\exists

\propto

\rho

ρ

\ni

\partial

\sigma

σ

\cong

\bullet

\varsigma

ς

\approx

\div

÷

\tau

τ

\Re

\neq

\equiv

\oplus

\aleph

\Im

\cup

\wp

\otimes

\subseteq

\oslash

\cap

\in

\supseteq

\supset

\lceil

\subset

\int

\cdot

·

\o

ο

\rfloor

\neg

¬

\nabla

\lfloor

\times

x

\ldots

...

\perp

\surd

\prime

´

\wedge

\varpi

ϖ

\0

\rceil

\rangle

\mid

|

\vee

\langle

\copyright

#### LaTeX Markup

To use LaTeX markup, set the Interpreter property to 'latex'. Use dollar symbols around the text, for example, use '$\int_1^{20} x^2 dx$' for inline mode or '$$\int_1^{20} x^2 dx$$' for display mode.

The displayed text uses the default LaTeX font style. The FontName, FontWeight, and FontAngle properties do not have an effect. To change the font style, use LaTeX markup.

The maximum size of the text that you can use with the LaTeX interpreter is 1200 characters. For multiline text, this reduces by about 10 characters per line.

## Font

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Font name, specified a supported font name or 'FixedWidth'. To display and print properly, you must choose a font that your system supports. The default font depends on the specific operating system and locale.

To use a fixed-width font that looks good in any locale, use 'FixedWidth'. The 'FixedWidth' value relies on the root FixedWidthFontName property. Setting the root FixedWidthFontName property causes an immediate update of the display to use the new font.

Example: 'Cambria'

Font size, specified as a scalar value greater than zero in point units. The default font size depends on the specific operating system and locale. One point equals 1/72 inch. To change the font units, use the FontUnits property.

Example: 12

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

Character thickness, specified as one of these values:

• 'normal' — Default weight as defined by the particular font

• 'bold' — Thicker character outlines than normal

MATLAB uses the FontWeight property to select a font from those available on your system. Not all fonts have a bold font weight. Therefore, specifying a bold font weight still can result in the normal font weight.

Character slant, specified as one of these values:

• 'normal' — No character slant

• 'italic' — Slanted characters

Not all fonts have both font styles. Therefore, the italic font might look the same as the normal font.

Font size units, specified as one of the values in this table.

UnitsDescription
'points'Points. One point equals 1/72 inch.
'inches'Inches.
'centimeters'Centimeters.
'normalized' Interpret font size as a fraction of the axes plot box height. If you resize the axes, the font size modifies accordingly. For example, if the FontSize is 0.1 in normalized units, then the text is 1/10 of the plot box height.
'pixels'

Pixels.

Starting in R2015b, distances in pixels are independent of your system resolution on Windows® and Macintosh systems:

• On Windows systems, a pixel is 1/96th of an inch.

• On Macintosh systems, a pixel is 1/72nd of an inch.

On Linux® systems, the size of a pixel is determined by your system resolution.

If you set both the font size and the font units in one function call, you must set the FontUnits property first so that the axes correctly interprets the specified font size.

Smooth font character appearance, specified as one of these values:

• 'on' — Apply font smoothing. Reduce the appearance of jaggedness in the text characters to make the text easier to read.

• 'off' — Do not apply font smoothing.

## Text Box

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Text orientation, specified as a scalar value in degrees. The default rotation of 0 degrees makes the text horizontal. For vertical text, set this property to 90 or -90. Positive values rotate the text counterclockwise. Negative values rotate the text clockwise.

Example: 90

Example: -90

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

Color of box outline, specified as an RGB triplet or one of the color options listed in the table.

For a custom color, specify an RGB triplet. An RGB triplet is a three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1]; for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7]. Alternatively, you can specify some common colors by name. This table lists the long and short color name options and the equivalent RGB triplet values.

OptionDescriptionEquivalent RGB Triplet
'red' or 'r'Red[1 0 0]
'green' or 'g'Green[0 1 0]
'blue' or 'b'Blue[0 0 1]
'yellow' or 'y'Yellow[1 1 0]
'magenta' or 'm'Magenta[1 0 1]
'cyan' or 'c'Cyan[0 1 1]
'white' or 'w'White[1 1 1]
'black' or 'k'Black[0 0 0]
'none'No colorNot applicable

Example: 'blue'

Example: [0 0 1]

Color of text box background, specified as an RGB triplet or one of the color options listed in the table.

For a custom color, specify an RGB triplet. An RGB triplet is a three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1]; for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7]. Alternatively, you can specify some common colors by name. This table lists the long and short color name options and the equivalent RGB triplet values.

OptionDescriptionEquivalent RGB Triplet
'red' or 'r'Red[1 0 0]
'green' or 'g'Green[0 1 0]
'blue' or 'b'Blue[0 0 1]
'yellow' or 'y'Yellow[1 1 0]
'magenta' or 'm'Magenta[1 0 1]
'cyan' or 'c'Cyan[0 1 1]
'white' or 'w'White[1 1 1]
'black' or 'k'Black[0 0 0]
'none'No colorNot applicable

Example: 'blue'

Example: [0 0 1]

Line style of box outline, specified as one of the options in this table.

Line StyleDescriptionResulting Line
'-'Solid line

'--'Dashed line

':'Dotted line

'-.'Dash-dotted line

'none'Line is invisible

Width of box outline, specified as a scalar numeric value in point units. One point equals 1/72 inch.

Example: 1.5

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

The space around the text within the text box, specified as scalar numeric value in point units.

MATLAB uses the Extent property value plus the Margin property value to determine the size of the text box.

Example: 8

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

Clipping of the text to the axes plot box, which is the box defined by the axis limits, specified as one of these values:

• 'off' — Do not clip the text. Portions of it might appear outside the axes plot box.

• 'on' — Clips the text to the axes plot box.

• If the axes ClippingStyle property is set to '3dbox', which is the default, then MATLAB either displays the entire text or none of the text, depending on the text position. If the point defined by the text Position property lies inside the axes, then MATLAB displays the entire text. If the point lies outside the axes, then MATLAB displays none of it.

• If the axes ClippingStyle property is set to 'rectangle', then MATLAB displays portions of the text lying inside the axes plot box and does not display portions of the text lying outside the axes plot box.

### Note

If the Clipping property of the associated axes is set to 'on', which is the default, then each individual object controls its own clipping behavior. If the Clipping property of the axes is set to 'off', then MATLAB does not clip any objects in the axes, regardless of the Clipping property of the individual object.

## Position

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Location of the text, specified as a two-element vector of the form [x y] or a three-element vector of the form [x y z]. If you omit the third element, z, then MATLAB sets it to 0.

Specify the position using numeric values. To convert datetime or duration values to the appropriate numeric values for a particular coordinate direction, see ruler2num.

By default, the position value is defined in data units. To change the units, use the Units property.

Example: [0.5 0.5 0]

Data Types: double | single | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

Size and location of the rectangle that encloses the text, not including the margin, returned as a four-element vector of the form [left bottom width height]. The first two elements, left and bottom, define the position of the lower left corner of the rectangle. The last two elements, width and height, define the dimensions of the rectangle.

By default, the extent value is defined in data units. To change the units, use the Units property.

Example: [0.5 0.5 0.4 0.2]

Position units, specified as one of the values in this table.

UnitsDescription
'data' (default)Data coordinates.
'normalized' Normalized with respect to the axes. The lower left corner of the axes maps to (0,0) and the upper right corner maps to (1,1).
'inches'Inches.
'centimeters'Centimeters.
'characters'

Based on the default system font character size.

• Character width = width of letter x.

• Character height = distance between the baselines of two lines of text.

'points'Points. One point equals 1/72 inch.
'pixels'

Pixels.

Starting in R2015b, distances in pixels are independent of your system resolution on Windows and Macintosh systems:

• On Windows systems, a pixel is 1/96th of an inch.

• On Macintosh systems, a pixel is 1/72nd of an inch.

On Linux systems, the size of a pixel is determined by your system resolution.

All units, except for 'data', are measured from the lower left corner of the axes. This property affects the Position and Extent properties.

If you specify the Position and Units properties as Name,Value pairs when creating the Text object, then the order of specification matters. To define the position with particular units, set the Units property before the Position property.

Horizontal alignment of the text with respect to the x value in the Position property, specified as one of the values in this table. The vertical line indicates where the x value lies in relation to the text.

ValueResult
'left' (default)

'center'

'right'

Vertical alignment of the text with respect to the y value in the Position property, specified as one of the values in this table. The horizontal line indicates where the y value lies in relation to the text.

ValueResult
'middle'

'top'

'cap'

'bottom'

'baseline'

## Interactivity

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Interactive edit mode, specified as one of these values:

• 'off' — Do no allow interactive text editing. To change the text, you must set the String property. This is the default value.

• 'on' — Allow interactive text editing. MATLAB places an insert cursor within the text and typing changes the text. To apply the new text, do any of the following:

• Press the Esc key.

• Click anywhere away from the text.

• Reset the Editing property to 'off'.

MATLAB updates the String property to contain the new text and resets the Editing property to 'off'.

State of visibility, specified as one of these values:

• 'on' — Display the object.

• 'off' — Hide the object without deleting it. You still can access the properties of an invisible object.

Context menu, specified as a ContextMenu object. Use this property to display a context menu when you right-click the object. Create the context menu using the uicontextmenu function.

### Note

If the PickableParts property is set to 'none' or if the HitTest property is set to 'off', then the context menu does not appear.

Selection state, specified as one of these values:

• 'on' — Selected. If you click the object when in plot edit mode, then MATLAB sets its Selected property to 'on'. If the SelectionHighlight property also is set to 'on', then MATLAB displays selection handles around the object.

• 'off' — Not selected.

Display of selection handles when selected, specified as one of these values:

• 'on' — Display selection handles when the Selected property is set to 'on'.

• 'off' — Never display selection handles, even when the Selected property is set to 'on'.

## Callbacks

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Mouse-click callback, specified as one of these values:

• Function handle

• Cell array containing a function handle and additional arguments

• Character vector that is a valid MATLAB command or function, which is evaluated in the base workspace (not recommended)

Use this property to execute code when you click the object. If you specify this property using a function handle, then MATLAB passes two arguments to the callback function when executing the callback:

• Clicked object — Access properties of the clicked object from within the callback function.

• Event data — Empty argument. Replace it with the tilde character (~) in the function definition to indicate that this argument is not used.

For more information on how to use function handles to define callback functions, see Callback Definition.

### Note

If the PickableParts property is set to 'none' or if the HitTest property is set to 'off', then this callback does not execute.

Creation callback, specified as one of these values:

• Function handle

• Cell array containing a function handle and additional arguments

• Character vector that is a valid MATLAB command or function, which is evaluated in the base workspace (not recommended)

Use this property to execute code when you create the object. MATLAB executes the callback after creating the object and setting all of its properties. Setting the CreateFcn property on an existing object has no effect. To have an effect, you must specify the CreateFcn property during object creation. One way to specify the property during object creation is to set the default property value for the object. See Default Property Values for more information.

If you specify this callback using a function handle, then MATLAB passes two arguments to the callback function when executing the callback:

• Created object — Access properties of the object from within the callback function. You also can access the object through the CallbackObject property of the root, which can be queried using the gcbo function.

• Event data — Empty argument. Replace it with the tilde character (~) in the function definition to indicate that this argument is not used.

For more information on how to use function handles to define callback functions, see Callback Definition.

Deletion callback, specified as one of these values:

• Function handle

• Cell array containing a function handle and additional arguments

• Character vector that is a valid MATLAB command or function, which is evaluated in the base workspace (not recommended)

Use this property to execute code when you delete the object MATLAB executes the callback before destroying the object so that the callback can access its property values.

If you specify this callback using a function handle, then MATLAB passes two arguments to the callback function when executing the callback:

• Deleted object — Access properties of the object from within the callback function. You also can access the object through the CallbackObject property of the root, which can be queried using the gcbo function.

• Event data — Empty argument. Replace it with the tilde character (~) in the function definition to indicate that this argument is not used.

For more information on how to use function handles to define callback functions, see Callback Definition.

## Callback Execution Control

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Callback interruption, specified as 'on' or 'off'. The Interruptible property determines if a running callback can be interrupted.

### Note

Consider these callback states where:

• The running callback is the currently executing callback.

• The interrupting callback is a callback that tries to interrupt the running callback.

Whenever MATLAB invokes a callback, that callback attempts to interrupt a running callback. The Interruptible property of the object owning the running callback determines if interruption is permitted. If interruption is not permitted, then the BusyAction property of the object owning the interrupting callback determines if it is discarded or put in the queue.

The Interruptible property determines if another callback can interrupt the ButtonDownFcn callback of the Text object. The Interruptible property has two values:

• 'on' — Interruptible. Interruption occurs at the next point where MATLAB processes the queue. For example, when you have a command such as drawnow, figure, getframe, waitfor, or pause.

• If the running callback contains one of these commands, then MATLAB stops the execution of the callback at this point and executes the interrupting callback. MATLAB resumes executing the running callback when the interrupting callback completes. For more information, see Interrupt Callback Execution.

• If the running callback does not contain one of these commands, then MATLAB finishes executing the callback without interruption.

• 'off' — Not interruptible. MATLAB finishes executing the running callback without any interruptions.

Callback queuing specified as 'queue' or 'cancel'. The BusyAction property determines how MATLAB handles the execution of interrupting callbacks.

Consider these callback states where:

• The running callback is the currently executing callback.

• The interrupting callback is a callback that tries to interrupt the running callback.

Whenever MATLAB invokes a callback, that callback attempts to interrupt a running callback. The Interruptible property of the object owning the running callback determines if interruption is permitted. If interruption is not permitted, then the BusyAction property of the object owning the interrupting callback determines if it is discarded or put in the queue.

If a callback of the Text object tries to interrupt a running callback that cannot be interrupted, then the BusyAction property determines if it is discarded or put in the queue. Specify the BusyAction property as one of these values:

• 'queue' — Put the interrupting callback in a queue to be processed after the running callback finishes execution. (default behavior)

• 'cancel' — Discard the interrupting callback.

Ability to capture mouse clicks, specified as one of these values:

• 'visible' — Capture mouse clicks only when visible. The Visible property must be set to 'on'. The HitTest property determines if the Text object responds to the click or if an ancestor does.

• 'all' — Capture mouse clicks regardless of visibility. The Visible property can be set to 'on' or 'off'. The HitTest property determines if the Text object responds to the click or if an ancestor does.

• 'none' — Cannot capture mouse clicks. Clicking the Text object passes the click to the object below it in the current view of the figure window, which is typically the axes or the figure. The HitTest property has no effect.

If you want an object to be clickable when it is underneath other objects that you do not want to be clickable, then set the PickableParts property of the other objects to 'none' so that the click passes through them.

Response to captured mouse clicks, specified as one of these values:

• 'on' — Trigger the ButtonDownFcn callback of the Text object. If you have defined the UIContextMenu property, then invoke the context menu.

• 'off' — Trigger the callbacks for the nearest ancestor of the Text object that has:

• HitTest property set to 'on'

• PickableParts property set to a value that enables the ancestor to capture mouse clicks.

### Note

The PickableParts property determines if the Text object can capture mouse clicks. If it cannot, then the HitTest property has no effect.

Deletion status, returned as 'off' or 'on'. MATLAB sets the BeingDeleted property to 'on' when the delete function of the object begins execution (see the DeleteFcn property). The BeingDeleted property remains set to 'on' until the object no longer exists.

Check the value of the BeingDeleted property if you need to verify that the object is not about to be deleted before querying or modifying it.

## Parent/Child

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Parent, specified as an Axes, PolarAxes, Group, or Transform object.

The object has no children. You cannot set this property.

Visibility of the object handle in the Children property of the parent, specified as one of these values:

• 'on' — Object handle is always visible.

• 'off' — Object handle is invisible at all times. This option is useful for preventing unintended changes to the UI by another function. Set the HandleVisibility to 'off' to temporarily hide the handle during the execution of that function.

• 'callback' — Object handle is visible from within callbacks or functions invoked by callbacks, but not from within functions invoked from the command line. This option blocks access to the object at the command line, but permits callback functions to access it.

If the object is not listed in the Children property of the parent, then functions that obtain object handles by searching the object hierarchy or querying handle properties cannot return it. For example, when you have a function such as get, findobj, gca, gcf, gco, newplot, cla, clf, and close.

Hidden object handles are still valid. Set the root ShowHiddenHandles property to 'on' to list all object handles regardless of their HandleVisibility property setting.

## Identifiers

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Type of graphics object, returned as 'text'. Use this property to find all objects of a given type within a plotting hierarchy, for example, searching for the type using findobj.

Tag to associate with the text object, specified as a character vector or string scalar.

Use this property to find text objects in a hierarchy. For example, you can use the findobj function to find text objects that have a specific Tag property value.

Example: 'January Data'

User data to associate with the text object, specified as any MATLAB data, for example, a scalar, vector, matrix, cell array, character array, table, or structure. MATLAB does not use this data.

To associate multiple sets of data or to attach a field name to the data, use the getappdata and setappdata functions.

Example: 1:100