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If you are likely to plot across years or over a period of say the last x months, then it may be convenient to convert your year and months into a 'period number'. Then you can store the data in a hash like this ;

$data{'category'}[period]

Storing a string of month/year in another array using the same period numbers as the index makes it easy to build the first record of your plot data.

Here is an example of what I mean with your data expanded into 2014.

#perl use strict; use GD::Graph; use GD::Graph::bars; my $YEAR1 = 2013; my @period=(); my %y_data=(); my @x_legend=(); # stroe data while (<DATA>){ chomp; my ($m,$y,$cat,$n) = split ',',$_; # convert year/month to period number my $pd = ym_to_pd($y,$m); $period[$pd] = "$m/$y"; $y_data{$cat}[$pd] = $n; } # graph data my @y_plotdata; push @y_plotdata,[@period]; for my $cat (sort keys %y_data){ push @x_legend,$cat; push @y_plotdata,[@{$y_data{$cat}}]; } # create graph my $my_graph = GD::Graph::bars->new(800,600); $my_graph->set( x_label => 'X Label', y_label => 'Y label', title => 'Title', ); $my_graph->set_legend(@x_legend); my $img = $my_graph->plot(\@y_plotdata) or die $my_graph->error; # save image open(IMG,'>','plot.gif') or die "$!"; binmode IMG; print IMG $img->png; close IMG; # convert year,month to period sub ym_to_pd { my ($yr,$mth) = @_; return ($yr - $YEAR1) * 12 + $mth; } # convert period to year.month sub pd_to_ym { my $ix = shift; my $yr = int(($ix-1)/12)+$YEAR1; my $mth = $ix-12*($yr-$YEAR1); return ($yr,$mth); } #test_periods(); sub test_periods { for my $y (2013..2015){ for my $m (1..12){ my $pd = ym_to_pd($y,$m); my ($yr,$mth) = pd_to_ym($pd); print "$y $m => $pd => $yr $mth\n"; } } } __DATA__ 3,2013,Address,1 2,2013,Equipment,13 3,2013,Equipment,18 4,2013,Equipment,17 5,2013,Equipment,8 3,2013,Database Reconciliation,3 5,2013,Database Reconciliation,3 2,2013,Design/Process,123 3,2013,Design/Process,74 4,2013,Design/Process,42 5,2013,Design/Process,30 1,2014,Design/Process,30
poj

In reply to Re^3: Parsing an SQL table using an array of hashes? by poj
in thread Parsing an SQL table using an array of hashes? by chareTX

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