Old Stone Age

Plot (NewPlot)

Plot (or NewPlot) is a Windows based GIS for working with piece provenienced artifact data (replaces our CC-Plot DOS program). It allows the user to map any group of squares or levels, to color code the map by artifact type or level, and to link the artifacts on this map to their respective records in associated tables.

We wrote this program to deal with total station and analysis data from the Paleolithic sites of Fontéchevade and Pech de l'Azé IV. Others have adapted it to their own sites. The install includes two data sets (Microsoft Access format). One is an empty database with minimal database structure. The other is a sample from one unit at Combe-Capelle Bas. You can download the full Combe-Capelle data set from our web site.

See text below the download table for how to convert data to the Plot format.

This version of the program has a few options that are particular to our own work removed to make it easier to use and to remove potential bugs. That said, there are certainly bugs in this version. When you find them, feel free to let us know and we will attempt to address them. There is no manual as yet.

Also, note that the download is quite large. Future program updates will be much smaller.

New Update - Summer 2005
We have posted the latest versions of this program as of summer 2005. There is only a NewPlot program in this setup (no smaller Plot.exe program). Note that in an effort to standardize our various programs, we have made some changes to the required fields in the database. For instance, the field "Square" is now called "Unit". This version of NewPlot will check the database on start-up and will make changes to the database to make it compatible. We strongly recommend, therefore, that you first run this program with a copy of your database.

If the install does not work, please let us know (mcpherron@eva.mpg.de).

Description Filename Size
Download the installation and program plot_setup.exe 4399k
Download the latest version of Newplot
(full featured version)
Updated Summer 2010
newplot.exe 2880k

Converting Data
Plot reads Microsoft Access databases. What follows is a basic description of how to convert your database to a Plot/Newplot compatible database. It assumes that you have some knowledge of how to work with Access.

1) Only two tables are required: XYZ and Context. Plot/Newplot will automatically add the other required tables.

2) XYZ must include the following fields:
Unit, Text, Length=6
ID, Text, Length=5
Suffix, Numeric, Integer (default value must be 0)
X, Numeric, Single precision
Y, Numeric, Single precision
Z, Numeric, Single precision
RecordCounter, Number, Integer or Long Integer

3) Context must include the following fields:
Unit, Text, Length=6
ID, Text, Length=5

4) Context should also include:
Level, Text, Lenth=10 (minumum - can be larger)

This related table database structure allows multiple XYZ points to be associated with a single artifact record in the Context table. Typically information about the date the object was excavated, the kind of the objects, the level it was in, and who excavated it would be included in the Context table. To link more than one XYZ measurement to an object, place multiple entries in the XYZ table with the same Unit and ID but increment Suffix (0=first point, 1=second point, etc.).

If you have all of your data in a single table, take the following steps to quickly convert it.

1) Make a copy of the table from within Access and call it XYZ.

2) Make a second copy of the table from within Access and call it Context.

3) Alter the field names and lengths in the Context and XYZ tables as described above and as appropriate. You do not need to delete X, Y, and Z fields from Context, though if you retain them it might start to get confusing.

If you have other tables within your database with related information on each artifact, Newplot can use them as long as they also contain Unit and ID formatted in exactly the same way.

If these instructions do not work, please let us know.