Guide is responsible for axes look and feel: labels, paddings, color, size and other aesthetic parameters. Here is the structure of the chart and related settings: guide

And a live example:

var chart = new tauCharts.Chart({
    guide: {
        x: {label: {text: 'Cycle Time in days', padding: 35}, padding: 20},
        y: {label: 'Effort in points', padding: 20},
        padding: {b: 70, l: 70, t: 10, r: 10},
        showGridLines: 'xy',
        color: {
            brewer: ['color-red', 'color-green', 'color-blue']
    data: defData,
    type: 'scatterplot',
    x: 'cycleTime',
    y: 'effort',
    color: 'team',
    size: 'count'



x or y describes correspondent axis view. We set axis label to 'Count' and define a padding in pixels.

  var guide = {
           label: { text: 'Count', padding: 36 }

autoScale (deprecated)

This property is deprecated and will not be supported after 1.0.0 release. See nice below as an alternative.


By default Taucharts engine tries to make axis scale "nice". It tries to start measure-based scale from 0 and adds some margins to complete scale with "nice" numbers. For example, if original scale domain contains values [8, 20, ... 40], then axis will have ticks from 0 to 45.

For the time scale nice means adding margins to start and complete scale with nearest nice dates.

You can avoid this behavior by setting axis guide property nice to false:

guide: {
    x: { nice: false }

In this case axis ticks match borders of the original domain. For example, axis ticks will start from 8 and end with 40 for the sample domain [8, 20, ... 40].

min / max

The scale domain can be extended using min and max properties. The min and max can't reduce original scale domain and will be ignored in such a cases.

NOTE: the "nicing" will be applied to extended domain by default. Set nice property to false to avoid such a behavior.

For example, this approach can be used to setup percent scale (from 0 to 100) while there are no 0 or 100 values in the original data.

data: [{date:"2016-01-01", percent:5} ... {date:"2016-02-22", percent:85}],
x: "date",
y: "percent",
guide: {
    y: { min: 0, max: 100, nice: false }

See example:


Ticks are small indicators on an axis that shows axis values.


guide allows to format tick labels using tickFormat property. Taucharts uses d3-based formatter. Check available d3 format specifiers.

In the example below ticks on x axis are formatted using SI-prefix (e.g. "22000" printed as "22k").

  var guide = {
        x:{ tickFormat: 's' }

Custom format specifiers can be defined:

// register formatter by a string key
tauCharts.api.tickFormat.add('string_key', function (originalValue) { /* formatter */ })
// then pass the key to the [tickFormat] property
    type: 'bar',
    guide: {
        x: { tickFormat: 'string_key' }

Custom format specifiers are useful for ticks localization.

See example of such localization:


When operate with period scale, guide allows to specify the period size.

  var guide = {
        x:{ tickPeriod: 'quarter', tickFormat: 'day' }
        // tickPeriod indicates that every tick is a quarter, while tickFormat sets how tick value will be displayed
        // In this example we will have quarters with first day of the quarter: 01-Jan-2014, 01-Apr-2014, 01-Jul-2014, 01-Oct-2014...
  var guide = {
        x:{ tickPeriod: 'quarter', tickFormat: 'quarter' }
        // Q4 2013, Q1 2014, Q2 2014, Q3 2014...

There is a set of pre-defined periods:

  • day
  • week (split timeline by sundays)
  • month
  • quarter
  • year

Also there is a set of tickFormat's for time-based dimensions:

  • "day" (12-Oct-2014)
  • "week" (02-Nov-2014) - end date of week
  • "week-range" (02-Nov-2014 - 09-Nov-2014) - dates range for the week
  • "month" (January 2014, Febrary...) - display month name. January is displayed with a year on the right.
  • "month-year" (January 2014, Febrary 2014...)
  • "quarter" (Q2 2014)
  • "year" (2014)

Also you can define your own period and tick format.

Coordinate grid

If you want to draw a coordinates grid, you can set showGridLines:

   var guide = {
        showGridLines:'xy' //show vertical and horizontal line
   //show only x coordinate line
    var guide = {
           showGridLines:'x' //show vertical line
    //or only y
    var guide = {
           showGridLines:'y' //show horizontal line


See encoding section to understand how to apply color.

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