matplotlib questions

We have some data that we'd like to plot and I'd like to know if matplotlib (MPL) supports this directly (I don't think it does) or where we should start looking to implement this capability.

We want to plot time intervals in a similar way to a horizontal bar graph. In this case, the data is when a spacecraft is in view of a ground station. So for a list of ground stations (the y axis), we have lists of start and stop times that represent the view periods. So we need to:

- show the list of ground stations (i.e. arbitrary labels) along the Y axis like you would on a bar chart.

- draw sets of rectangles at the right y location with the length determined by the x data (in user controllable line styles, colors, and fills).

- optionally label the start and stop points of each interval with the X value for that point (in this case a date/time). Ideally, the user would have the option of specifying a location relative to the bar for each end point like this (none, high, mid, low):

High High
Mid | BAR | Mid
Low Low

I don't think I can currently do this in MPL so I'd like to here ideas from John and anyone else on which classes I should start looking at any suggestions on how this should work.

Ted Drain Jet Propulsion Laboratory ted.drain@...369...