How to generate graphics dynamically on the web using Python CGI script?

Xavier Morel xavier.morel at
Fri Jan 20 11:57:48 CET 2006

Steve Holden wrote:
> Debashis Dey wrote:
>> Hello,
>> I have a python CGI program. I would like to show a graph within a HTML 
>> plage. I would like to dynamically generate the graph using the python 
>> CGI script on the web server side and send it to the browser.
>> My question is how can I do this in python? Is there a free tool to do 
>> this? Can someone please send me some simple python code to draw simple 
>> graphics within HTML (e.g. draw a line or a circle).
> Unfortunately HTML does not include graphics facilities, simply the 
> ability to refer to graphical resources.
> The typical way to include a created graphic would be:
>   1. Create a (.png, .jpg, .gif) file showing the
>      image you want
>   2. Store it in a temporary file whose name will be
>      unique to the current session
>   3. Generate an HTML response including an <IMG ...>
>      tag referring to the newly created graphic
> Step 1, which is what you seem to be asking about, can be handled by a 
> number of packages, perhaps the best-known of which is PIL, the Python 
> Imaging Library - see
> This is open source, and available at no cost. There's a wealth of 
> information on how to use it on the web, and many regular readers of 
> this group are skilled with it!
> regards
>   Steve

Well, some people have been crazy enough lately to generate more or less 
imageless bar graphs though, see Eric Meyer's "Bar Graphs with Style" 
for more informations on the subject 
( for a demo)

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