Does anyone know of a free program or library that is capable of plotting very long periodic signals (like audio), say 1 billion points, interactively (so I can zoom/pan) and without aliasing when you zoom out.

Matlab is not bad at this, but is obviously far from free. Audacity is also ok but makes no attempt to prevent aliasing. In fact I think it just sub-samples the data.

This site explains the aliasing problem rather well (see also this demo). Unfortunately those demos only work because they are plotting functions. I want to plot data.

I've tried all the common Python/Julia/Gnuplot/R/Qt/etc. plotting libraries but none of them are really designed for plotting more than a few thousand points.

Any OS, though preferably OSX. Windows OK too. Any language. Ideally free but if there's a really good solution that isn't insanely expensive that would be interesting too. Don't care too much about licence but opens source is obviously preferable.

  • It is very hard to show 1 bil points without any kind of summarization (aliasing is one of them, but there are several) -many of them would be on the same pixel -would consume lots of RAM and VRAM -scaling and panning would consume lots of cycles
    – kurast
    Jul 19, 2017 at 14:58
  • The way to do this is to have a program pre-filter data and store it in a hierarchical structure, selecting from the most suitably filtered data depending on the zoom level. The graphical analogy is called mipmap and is used in computer games to display textures that are very far away. This is conceptually easy, someone just has to do it. I hope someone will post an answer with a tool that can do this.
    – pipe
    Apr 13, 2018 at 14:31


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