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Measures Tool

Table of Contents

see also: Index, Plugins



measures consist of a special sort of profile and an annotation object that shows the length of the profile. Internally, a measure is a graphics item group with some special behaviour.


The measure’s profile has (by default) vertical end markers, has no handle to change its width and no rotation handles. You cannot select the measure’s annotation by a simple click, you cannot edit it, and it also has no rotation handles.

Measures Tool


this button creates a new vertical measure object.


this button deletes the currently selected measure.


pastes a previously copied measure onto the tool’s OrthoDisplay.


renames the currently selected measure.


changes the color of both profile and test part of the measure.


changes the OrthoPart of the measure.


you can determine whether the measure only move vertically, horizontally, or as by default freely (i.e. without any such limitations).

Text Offset

you can set the text offset (the distance between the end of the pro file and the text part) in pixels. You can further determine whethe the text is positioned relative to the start or end point (default) of the profile.

Text Properties - Units

you can show the length of the profile in mm (default) or in cm.

Text Properties - Formats

you can change the format of the profile length: you can switch between floating format, and zero to 3 decimals.

Text Properties - Open Tool

this button opens the Text Define Tool, where you can change e.g. the font.

Use special end markers

you can switch off the vertical end markers especially used for profiles in measures.

Mouse and Menu Handling of Measures


You can generate a new measure just like a normal profile using the measure mouse mode. Alternatively, you can use the OrthoDisplay context menu entry New Drawing Object/Measure that creates a vertical measure on the OrthoPart and at the position of your mouse click.


whether you simply click on the profile or the text part, always the profile gets selected. If you click on the text part with with pressed CTRL-key the annotation object itself is selected. In this case you can shift the text part relative to the profile i.e. the offset persists when you clear any selection (e.g. by clicking beside any graphics item) and use the measure normally again.


you can translate a measure as if it were a profile.


measures cannot be rotated.


you can copy/paste a measure as if it were a profile.


you can delete a selected measure as a whole as if it were a profile.

Change Color

when you change the color of a measure via menu or tool, profile and annotation will change their color in unison.

(C) 2005-2014 Max Planck Institute for Neurological Research Cologne, Germany