Wednesday, December 19, 2012

How to display Chinese in Graphviz

Graphviz is a very handy tool for drawing plots and firgures.

However, it is not straight forward to display Chinese characters in the generated plots.

One example is as follows using DOT:
node [shape=box,style=dashed,height=0.3,fontname="C:\Windows\Fonts\NSimSun Regular.ttf",fontsize=12]; "你好"; "whr you are ∀";

where you can write UTF-8 encoded Chinese characters in the source file, and alternatively you can write it in xml-like unicode numbers like  "∀" (i.e. ∀). More importantly, you need to specify the Chinese font file such that Graphviz can really display the Chinese characters, since by default Graphviz can hardly find the correct font to use for Chinese characters.

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