Creating your first JavaFX chart app, part 1

Let's see step-by-step how to create a JavaFX application that uses Charts-kt.

This tutorial will help you understand how to:

  1. Set up a Kotlin JavaFX project
  2. Import the libraries you need using your licence keys
  3. Create your first chart in a JavaFX application and launch it

What do you need?

  • 15 minutes
  • JDK 1.8 (or later)
  • Intellij Community or Ultimate (tested with IntelliJ 2020.3.*)

Creating the Kotlin JavaFX project

IntelliJ IDEA is the editor of choice for a Kotlin project. This tutorial works with the community (free) edition of IDEA as well as the ultimate edition.

Let's start by creating a new Kotlin project, and choose JVM Application.


Choose the name and location of your project.

As for the build system, Gradle is the preferred option but Maven also works.

We'll choose Gradle Kotlin for this tutorial, you can change it if you're more comfortable with Groovy.

Choosing the JDK

Concerning the JDK, you can either run the project with:

  • Java 8, as this JDK includes JavaFX
  • Java 9 or later, but you'll need to import the required JavaFX modules. You can check Getting started with JavaFX for detailed information. For our Gradle Kotlin project, this requires adding these lines to your build.gradle.kts file:
plugins { kotlin("jvm") version "1.4.31" id("application") id("org.openjfx.javafxplugin") version "0.0.9" } javafx { version = "15.0.1" modules = listOf("javafx.controls") }

Checking the project

Finish the project creation wizard, then create a first Main.kt file with a main function to validate that the configuration is ok.


Launch it by clicking on the green triangle on the left gutter of the editor, your project should build and start this first program:


Importing the libraries


First, let's add in the file of the project, two properties for the versioning of our libraries:

// choose the last stable versions! d2vVersion=0.8.12 chartsVersion=1.1.0-eap1

The EAP version of charts is for development use only and displays a watermark on every chart but it did not require any license.

Then add this code in the build.gradle.kts file at the root of your project to specify the repositories, credentials, and versions used.

val d2vVersion: String by project val chartsVersion: String by project repositories { maven{ url = uri("") } maven{ url = uri("") } } mavenCentral() dependencies { testImplementation(kotlin("test-js")) implementation("org.jetbrains.kotlinx:kotlinx-html:0.7.2") implementation ("io.data2viz.d2v:core-jvm:$d2vVersion") implementation ("io.data2viz.charts:core:$chartsVersion") }

Note that you're importing the Charts-kt library, but also the core module of the data2viz open-source library which contains a lot of basic stuff you'll need to create your charts.


Now, reload your Gradle project if this had not already been done by clicking on your Gradle tab's "refresh" button. You should get a BUILD SUCCESSFUL result.

Creating your first application

Now let's dive into the code and create a very simple chart to check that everything is working as expected. Paste this code in your Main.kt file.

import io.data2viz.charts.chart.chart import io.data2viz.charts.chart.mark.plot import io.data2viz.charts.chart.quantitative import io.data2viz.charts.viz.newVizContainer import io.data2viz.geom.Size import javafx.application.Application import javafx.scene.Scene import javafx.scene.layout.Pane import javafx.stage.Stage private val width = 300.0 private val height = 300.0 private val values = listOf(1.0, 2.0, 3.0, 4.0, 5.0) fun main() { Application.launch( } class MyFirstChart: Application() { override fun start(stage: Stage) { // Creating the JFX root element, a Pane val root = Pane() // Creating a VizContainer to hold our chart root.newVizContainer().run { // Size the VizContainer size = Size(width, height) // Create a first simple Chart chart(values) { val values = quantitative({domain}) plot(values, values) } } // Launch our Scene stage.apply { title = "My first chart!" scene = (Scene(root, width, height)) show() } } }

Launch your JavaFX application that contains your first chart by running the main() function of your application.


The result should look like this: