Here is a simple code I wrote to visualize what I am trying to achieve:

Labeled[Graph[Range[#], Table[i <-> i + 1, {i, Range[# - 1]}], 
VertexCoordinates -> {{-5, 5}, {5, 5}, {5, -5}, {-5, -5}},
VertexLabels -> "Name"], "Graph Sample v1.0"] &@4

enter image description here
In this code snipet, the vertices and edges are generated semi-automatically for the users convienience. The number &@4, ideally should be replaced by the length of a list containing a set of coordinates defined by the user.

I believe I can achieve this using Length[expr] function which could be fed the user defined set of cooordinates as an input.

In order to achieve what I have described above, I have employed a variation of code such as:

PlotRange -> {-6, 6}], {{v, {{-5, 5}, {5, 5}, {5, -5}, {-5, -5}}}, 
Locator, LocatorAutoCreate -> True}], "Locator Example"]

enter image description here
N.1 - I am aware that the code does contain an equal set of coordinates as in my first code snipet above.

However, I was unable to extract the generated list of coordinates which could be used to define VertexCoordinates in a Graph. Additionally inheriting a new problem with the locator requiring an input in a form of coordinates for initialisation..

As the title says, I would appreciate if anyone could give me some pointers or assistance with this problem. I am also considering extending this into three-dimensions and would appreciate any input on that on seperate basis. Many thanks in advance. Hope the question is well rounded and provides enough ground to go by.


2 Answers 2


You could add button to copy or print coordinates:

   PlotRange -> {-6, 6}], {{v, {{-5, 5}, {5, 5}, {5, -5}, {-5, -5}}}, 
   Locator, LocatorAutoCreate -> True}, 
  Button["Copy Coordinate", CopyToClipboard[v]], 
  Button["Print Coordinate", Print[v]]], "Locator Example"]

graph with locators

  • $\begingroup$ thank you for the time you've spent developing a solution. It is very much appreciated. The solution you have proposed is insightful, it is close to what I am trying to achieve. Ideally, I would like your solution to feed data to VertexCoordinates within a Graph, I have tried several permutations of the solution you have proposed, however failed to achieve my goal. I was wondering if you'd have any ideas on how the above could be achieved. $\endgroup$ Commented Aug 17, 2015 at 19:22
g = Graph[{1 <-> 2, 2 <-> 3, 3 <->1}];
init = VertexCoordinates /. AbsoluteOptions[g, VertexCoordinates];
(* Rescale to 10% padding *)
xyScale = 1.1 # -.1 Mean@# &/@ (Through[{Min,Max}[#]] &/@ Transpose@init);

Manipulate[SetProperty[g, {VertexCoordinates -> pt, PlotRange -> xyScale}],
          {{pt, init}, Locator}]  

Mathematica graphics

  • $\begingroup$ thank you for your answer, I was wondering if you could expand on it by including an explenation on how it achieves the desired outcome? Please forgive me if it's obvious, it's a bit ambigious to me since I am not very advanced with use of Mathematica. Many thanks for your time in advance. $\endgroup$ Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 20:42

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