MATLAB Function Reference    
rectangle properties

Modifying Properties

You can set and query graphics object properties in two ways:

To change the default value of properties see Setting Default Property Values.

Rectangle Property Descriptions

This section lists property names along with the type of values each accepts. Curly braces { } enclose default values.

BusyAction                   cancel | {queue}

Callback routine interruption. The BusyAction property enables you to control how MATLAB handles events that potentially interrupt executing callback routines. If there is a callback routine executing, subsequently invoked callback routes always attempt to interrupt it. If the Interruptible property of the object whose callback is executing is set to on (the default), then interruption occurs at the next point where the event queue is processed. If the Interruptible property is off, the BusyAction property (of the object owning the executing callback) determines how MATLAB handles the event. The choices are:

ButtonDownFcn                string or function handle

Button press callback routine. A callback routine that executes whenever you press a mouse button while the pointer is over the rectangle object. Define this routine as a string that is a valid MATLAB expression or the name of an M-file. The expression executes in the MATLAB workspace.

See Function Handle Callbacks for information on how to use function handles to define the callback function.

Children                     vector of handles

The empty matrix; rectangle objects have no children.

Clipping                     {on} | off

Clipping mode. MATLAB clips rectangles to the axes plot box by default. If you set Clipping to off, rectangles display outside the axes plot box. This can occur if you create a rectangle, set hold to on, freeze axis scaling (axis manual), and then create a larger rectangle.

CreateFcn                    string or function handle

Callback routine executed during object creation. This property defines a callback routine that executes when MATLAB creates a rectangle object. You must define this property as a default value for rectangles. For example, the statement,


defines a default value on the root level that sets the axes DataAspectRatio whenever you create a rectangle object. MATLAB executes this routine after setting all rectangle properties. Setting this property on an existing rectangle object has no effect.

The handle of the object whose CreateFcn is being executed is accessible only through the root CallbackObject property, which you can query using gcbo.

See Function Handle Callbacks for information on how to use function handles to define the callback function.

Curvature                    one- or two-element vector [x,y]

Amount of horizontal and vertical curvature. This property specifies the curvature of the rectangle sides, which enables the shape of the rectangle to vary from rectangular to ellipsoidal. The horizontal curvature x is the fraction of width of the rectangle that is curved along the top and bottom edges. The vertical curvature y is the fraction of the height of the rectangle that is curved along the left and right edges.

The values of x and y can range from 0 (no curvature) to 1 (maximum curvature). A value of [0,0] creates a rectangle with square sides. A value of [1,1] creates an ellipse. If you specify only one value for Curvature, then the same length (in axes data units) is curved along both horizontal and vertical sides. The amount of curvature is determined by the shorter dimension.

DeleteFcn                    string or function handle

Delete rectangle callback routine. A callback routine that executes when you delete the rectangle object (e.g., when you issue a delete command or clear the axes or figure). MATLAB executes the routine before deleting the object's properties so these values are available to the callback routine.

The handle of the object whose DeleteFcn is being executed is accessible only through the root CallbackObject property, which you can query using gcbo.

See Function Handle Callbacks for information on how to use function handles to define the callback function.

EdgeColor                    {ColorSpec} | none

Color of the rectangle edges. This property specifies the color of the rectangle edges as a color or specifies that no edges be drawn.

EraseMode                    {normal} | none | xor | background

Erase mode. This property controls the technique MATLAB uses to draw and erase rectangle objects. Alternative erase modes are useful for creating animated sequences, where control of the way individual objects redraw is necessary to improve performance and obtain the desired effect.

Printing with Non-normal Erase Modes

MATLAB always prints Figures as if the EraseMode of all objects is normal. This means graphics objects created with EraseMode set to none, xor, or background can look different on screen than on paper. On screen, MATLAB may mathematically combine layers of colors (e.g., XORing a pixel color with that of the pixel behind it) and ignore three-dimensional sorting to obtain greater rendering speed. However, these techniques are not applied to the printed output.

You can use the MATLAB getframe command or other screen capture application to create an image of a Figure containing non-normal mode objects.

FaceColor                    ColorSpec | {none}

Color of rectangle face. This property specifies the color of the rectangle face, which is not colored by default.

HandleVisibility             {on} | callback | off

Control access to object's handle by command-line users and GUIs. This property determines when an object's handle is visible in its parent's list of children. HandleVisibility is useful for preventing command-line users from accidentally drawing into or deleting a figure that contains only user interface devices (such as a dialog box).

Handles are always visible when HandleVisibility is on.

Setting HandleVisibility to callback causes handles to be visible from within callback routines or functions invoked by callback routines, but not from within functions invoked from the command line. This provides a means to protect GUIs from command-line users, while allowing callback routines to have complete access to object handles.

Setting HandleVisibility to off makes handles invisible at all times. This may be necessary when a callback routine invokes a function that might potentially damage the GUI (such as evaling a user-typed string), and so temporarily hides its own handles during the execution of that function.

When a handle is not visible in its parent's list of children, it cannot be returned by functions that obtain handles by searching the object hierarchy or querying handle properties. This includes get, findobj, gca, gcf, gco, newplot, cla, clf, and close.

When a handle's visibility is restricted using callback or off, the object's handle does not appear in its parent's Children property, figures do not appear in the root's CurrentFigure property, objects do not appear in the root's CallbackObject property or in the figure's CurrentObject property, and Axes do not appear in their parent's CurrentAxes property.

You can set the Root ShowHiddenHandles property to on to make all handles visible, regardless of their HandleVisibility settings (this does not affect the values of the HandleVisibility properties).

Handles that are hidden are still valid. If you know an object's handle, you can set and get its properties, and pass it to any function that operates on handles.

HitTest                      {on} | off

Selectable by mouse click. HitTest determines if the rectangle can become the current object (as returned by the gco command and the figure CurrentObject property) as a result of a mouse click on the rectangle. If HitTest is off, clicking on the rectangle selects the object below it (which may be the axes containing it).

Interruptible                {on} | off

Callback routine interruption mode. The Interruptible property controls whether a rectangle callback routine can be interrupted by subsequently invoked callback routines. Only callback routines defined for the ButtonDownFcn are affected by the Interruptible property. MATLAB checks for events that can interrupt a callback routine only when it encounters a drawnow, figure, getframe, or pause command in the routine.

LineStyle                    {-} | -- | : | -. | none

Line style of rectangle edge. This property specifies the line style of the edges. The available line styles are:

Line Style
solid line (default)
dashed line
dotted line
dash-dot line
no line

LineWidth                    scalar

The width of the rectangle edge line. Specify this value in points (1 point = 1/72 inch). The default LineWidth is 0.5 points.

Parent                       handle

rectangle's parent. The handle of the rectangle object's parent axes. You can move a rectangle object to another axes by changing this property to the new axes handle.

Position                     four-element vector [x,y,width,height]

Location and size of rectangle. This property specifies the location and size of the rectangle in the data units of the axes. The point defined by x, y specifies one corner of the rectangle, and width and height define the size in units along the x and y axes respecitvely.

Selected                     on | off

Is object selected? When this property is on MATLAB displays selection handles if the SelectionHighlight property is also on. You can, for example, define the ButtonDownFcn to set this property, allowing users to select the object with the mouse.

SelectionHighlight           {on} | off

Objects highlight when selected. When the Selected property is on, MATLAB indicates the selected state by drawing handles at each vertex. When SelectionHighlight is off, MATLAB does not draw the handles.

Tag                          string

User-specified object label. The Tag property provides a means to identify graphics objects with a user-specified label. This is particularly useful when constructing interactive graphics programs that would otherwise need to define object handles as global variables or pass them as arguments between callback routines. You can define Tag as any string.

Type                         string (read only)

Class of graphics object. For rectangle objects, Type is always the string 'rectangle'.

UIContextMenu                handle of a uicontextmenu object

Associate a context menu with the rectangle. Assign this property the handle of a uicontextmenu object created in the same figure as the rectangle. Use the uicontextmenu function to create the context menu. MATLAB displays the context menu whenever you right-click over the rectangle.

UserData                     matrix

User-specified data. Any data you want to associate with the rectangle object. MATLAB does not use this data, but you can access it using the set and get commands.

Visible                      {on} | off

rectangle visibility. By default, all rectangles are visible. When set to off, the rectangle is not visible, but still exists and you can get and set its properties.

  rectangle rectint