About Physics Data Assistant
Physics Data Assistant is an easy to use graphing and curve fitting application. While originally created for use in the WKU University Physics Laboratories, you may find it useful in other fields where you have to plot data and fit to a variety of different mathematical models.
Creating a publication quality graph is performed in easy steps of loading (or editing) your data, plotting your data, fitting it to a model, and exporting it to a file or the clipboard.
This software is installed on the computers in the WKU University Physics Laboratory, but you can also easily install it on your own computer by using the download links and instructions provided below. The program is written in LabVIEW and requires the LabVIEW Run-Time Engine to operate properly. The Windows installer will install both Physics Data Assistant and the LabVIEW Run-Time Engine. However, these are two separate steps on the Macintosh as described below. If you have to reinstall an updated version of Physics Data Assistant on an Apple computer, you do not have to reinstall the run-time engine.
If you run into any issues during installation of either the LabVIEW Run-Time Engine or with Physics Data Assistant on the Macintosh please check out the Frequently Asked Questions section below.
- Annotation Moves Lost – Manual changes to the position of an annotation made by dragging the annotation are lost when any changes to the graph are made. Suggested workaround is to make creating annotations the last step in your workflow of creating a graph before exporting it.
- Hidden Free Annotations – Free annotations are presently created on your graph at the origin. If the origin isn’t visible on your graph then neither will be the free annotation. Suggested workaround is to use a single-plot annotation instead. Future versions will allow the position of the annotation to be edited.
|1.1.4||January 3, 2021||Cleaned up the Cursor Legend display which wasn’t properly showing the names of the current plots. The Cursor Legend control is now only available when the cursors are visible on the plots. Also added a control to allow the user to show or hide plot visibility checkboxes on the plot legend.|
|1.1.3||January 2, 2021||Modified the exponential fit to use the equation A*exp(-x/B) + C. Made the graph title and axes labels larger by changing the font size from H2 to H1 and the changed the axes numbers from H3 to H2. Changed the polynomial fit routine to use the General Linear Fit VI which provides the covariance matrix which will allow computation of the fit uncertainties.|
|1.1.2||September 13, 2020||Updated the codebase to LabVIEW 2020. Added ability to perform exponential, power law, and gaussian function fits. Also, added a special fit function for the Power Transfer experiment in the University Physics II Laboratory.|
|1.1.1||February 6, 2020||Corrected a bug in the fit editor that occurred when an existing fit was selected for editing. Disabled several right-click shortcut options on the main graph control in order to not conflict with the built-in annotations and graph properties editor.|
|1.1.0||January 23, 2020||Cleaned up some typos on the information tab. This is the version that will be installed on WKU Physics and Astronomy computers for the Spring 2020 semester.|
|1.0.9||January 23, 2020||Finished the Application Information tab which provides easy access to basic help for using the program. Added buttons New File, Open File, and Save File to the Edit Data tab for easier access to these functions instead of having to use the File menu.|
|1.0.8||January 21, 2020||Made improvements to the annotation feature including allowing Free (or Floating) annotations, specifying which point the annotation will attach to, and allowing user to choose whether or not an arrow is drawn from the annotation to a point. Trapped the error that occurred when a non-linear fit didn’t converge because of bad guesses and warned the user to improve the guesses and try again. Corrected an issue that was occurring on startup and shutdown on the Mac platform when the program was trying to access the Support directory inside the application to set and retrieve the screen coordinates of the app window.|
|1.0.7||January 20, 2020||Added the ability to annotate graphs.|
|1.0.6||January 12, 2020||
Added code to maximize the window on the first run of the program and then to save the screen location between runs so that subsequent runs will start in the same screen location and size as when the program was last quit.
Made some additional adjustments to make sure that the program would play nicely with window sizes as small as 1280 x 800 on both Windows and Mac platforms. Did some cleaning up of font size differences on Mac and Windows platforms. Added the ability to show or hide the plot legend in the upper right corner of the graph. Implemented an improved scheme to send messages from the user interface to the sub panels. Added an error handler system to inform the user of any errors.
|1.0.5||January 12, 2020||Made the plot engine use the same color for plots, guesses, and fits that correspond to a particular dependent variable. Corrected some issues with editor panes showing incorrect information at certain circumstances. Added the ability to save data to a tab-delimited text file. If the file was originally loaded as a CSV file it will continue to save in that format. Modified the fitting engine to automatically show cursors on a graph if the user selects the option to Fit the Data Between the Cursors.|
|1.0.4||January 11, 2020||Improved to logo on the About screen and the program icon.|
|1.0.3||January 11, 2020||Finished the code for performing Sinusoidal and Underdamped Oscillator model fits. Disabled the ability to select the other types of fits that are not completed yet. These include Power Law, Exponential, Gaussian, and Custom.|
|1.0.2||January 9, 2020||Finished the code for computing the guesses for all the different fit types except a Custom fit. Corrected an error where the slope and intercept were interchanged in the display equation for a linear fit. Created the first MacOS application.|
|1.0.1||January 8, 2020||Reduced the minimum screen size of the application to attempt to accommodate monitor resolutions with as small as 800 vertical pixels. Added this About dialog to keep track of version history. Added the ability to copy the fit results to the system clipboard. Corrected a bug where the graph wasn’t cleared when a new data file was loaded.|
|1.0.0||January 7, 2020||Initial release for testing during development.|