Best 10 Free JavaScript Charting Libraries

Javascript Charting Libraries

Presenting huge chunks of data in a standard spreadsheet to analyze or to study is as inconvenient as it can get. Charts are an essential part of a web application for data presentation. And so JavaScript charting libraries are inevitable. The human brain is programmed to understand data much more efficiently visually. And the data visualized creates much more influence than the data being presented as it is no matter how well it is explained.

For example, let’s say you were presented with the data regarding climate change. A scientist beautifully explains the data taken over decades of study but using a spreadsheet or a written report. That can make people aware of such phenomena. But if the same data was presented with a picture of the Earth and the rising temperature over the time represented with increasing intensity of the color red, that creates the feeling of the rising temperature in people’s minds, a much more serious effect.

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In other cases, where you have all the data in numbers regarding the trends that affect your business. If that data is visualized using the proper data visualization techniques, you will find the existing trends in your business, you can analyze new trends, make better decisions like allocating resources in the right place at the right time, which would have been difficult or even impossible otherwise.

When looking for the presentation of data in your web application, you need to first recognize the best techniques that can be used to represent your data. Next is to choose the right Javascript charting library. There are a lot of free and premium JavaScript charting libraries to chose from. So choosing them can prove to be a pain in the neck. Read the article How to Chose the Best JavaScript Charting Library For Your Project?.

Below I have listed some of the most popular JavaScript charting libraries among the many on the web that can help you in data visualization.

Chart.js

Chart.js JavaScript charting library

Chart.js is one of the most popular JavaScript charting libraries used in admin templates and other web application. It is an open source project, so it is completely free for use.

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Chart.js offers 8 different chart types for data visualization with out of the box animations. Chart.js offers charts that are highly customizable. You can view the demo of the different types of charts and experiment with them by adding or removing data or data-sets.

Chart.js is compatible with all the modern browsers and responsive behavior of the charts can be enabled by some configuration in the charts.

Chart.js provides really good and comprehensive documentation to get started with.

Morris Charts

Morris.js JavaScript charting library

Morris Charts has “good looking charts shouldn’t be difficult” as their motto. This charting library is also a popular charting library and is used in many admin templates – free and premium alike. The charts used in Morris charts focus on simplicity and effectiveness.

There are 4 types of charts in the library – line, area, bar, and donut charts.

Morris charts provide a free license. The license details are provided in the website. There is also a detailed documentation for the charts.

Flot Charts

Flot Charts JavaScript charting library

Flot charts is another one of the charting libraries frequently seen in admin templates and other web applications. This charting library has many different charts to help visualize data with simplicity and attractive features in your web application. These include stacked charts, thresholding the data, tracking curves with a crosshair to name a few.

Flot charts are compatible with the following browsers.

  • Internet Explorer 6+,
  • Chrome,
  • Firefox 2+,
  • Safari 3+
  • and Opera 9.5+

Flot charts have good documentation to get started with and is free to download.

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Echarts

echarts JavaScript charting library

Echarts is a free charting library that provides 18 different types of charts. These charts are simple yet colorful and interactive. These include funnel charts, heat maps, candlestick, scatter plot, pictorial bars etc.

The documentation is very extensive and comprehensive and is really helpful in getting started with the charts.

JQuery Sparklines

jQuery Sparklines JavaScript charting library

jQuery Sparklines is jQuery plugins that can be used to create small inline charts. These small inline charts or sparkline are displayed in the browser by using the data given via HTML or javascript.

As mentioned jQuery Sparklines are small inline charts. They do not display axis labels. It is primarily intended to show trends or patterns and small enough so that they can be used inline along with texts.

The data in the graph is not displayed in the axis labels, but hovering the mouse upon the chart gives the data that it is currently displaying.

The plugin is compatible with iOS and Android operating systems and most modern web browsers. The following are the browsers compatible with jQuery Sparklines.

  • Firefox 2+
  • Safari 3+
  • Opera 9
  • Google Chrome
  • Internet Explorer 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10

jQuery sparkline is an open source plugin and is free to download. The website provides a good documentation for the plugin.

D3

D3 JavaScript charting library

D3 is an open source JavaScript library released under BSD license. It provides a tremendous amount of charts, graphs and other methods for data visualization. D3 gives you almost everything that ou need to visually represent your data of any kind.

The website provides comprehensive documentation and examples to help getting started and reduce the time to get familiar with the charting library and how to use it.

D3 support all the modern browsers. D3 charting library has been tested on the browsers including Firefox, Google Chrome, Safari, Opera, IE9+, Android, and iOS.

PlusCharts

Pluscharts JavaScript charting library

PlusCharts is a free charting library that can be downloaded and added to your website for the visual representation of data. The library supports all the most popular charts including line chart, pie chart, bar chart, donut charts, column charts etc. The big collection of charts include graphs that are simple and lightweight. Also, the charts are completely responsive and very customizable.

PlusCharts provides good documentation and is compatible with all the modern browsers. They provide great support also, however they do not provide free support.

C3.JS

C3.js JavaScript charting library

C3.js is a charting library based on D3. It consists of a huge collection of charts including stacked bar chart, scatter plot, combination chart, multiple XY line chart and much more that you can integrate into to your web applications.

C3.js is a free charting library and provide examples of the charts and graphs that it supports. The library has a good documentation. In the case of any issue or bugs, you can report them in their GitHub issues page.

xCharts

xCharts JavaScript charting library

xCharts is a JavaScript charting library based on D3.js for building custom charts and graphs in websites and web applications. xCharts is very well documented that helps in getting started with the charting library with ease.

xCharts is open source and you can use the dynamic, fluid and highly customizable charts and graphs on your website for data visualization for free.

 Chartist.js

Chartist.js JavaScript charting library

Chartist is an open source JavaScript charting library and supports different types of line charts, bar charts, and pie charts.

The charts in Chartist.js are responsive and can provide creative animations to make the data interactive. Chartist.js is supported in all the modern browsers.

There are proper documentation and illustration of the charts and graphs on the website and proper guide as to how to use and implement many of its functionalities.

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