Create a chart in PHP

FusionTime is a JavaScript charting library that helps you visualize, and explore time-series data. In FusionTime, you get lots of out-of-the-box interactivity, like, time navigator, date range selectors, tooltips with crosslines, interactive legend and more features which enhances the experience of exploring and understanding time series data.

We have built a simple FusionCharts server-side PHP wrapper, which provides bindings for FusionTime. The FusionCharts server-side PHP wrapper allows you to easily add interactive time-series charts to any PHP project.


Since FusionTime is distributed along with FusionCharts Suite, download/install the FusionCharts package to get access to FusionTime. Note that you will also need PHP 5.6 or later version to use FusionTime.

Install FusionCharts and the PHP wrapper component using following steps:

  • Include the FusionCharts JavaScript files, which can be downloaded from here.

  • Copy and paste the fusioncharts.php file from integrations > php > fusioncharts-wrapper in your project folder.

  • Include the FusionTime file to render time-series charts.

// Include FusionCharts core file
<script type="text/javascript" src=""></script>

// Include FusionTime file
<script type="text/javascript" src=""></script>

// Include FusionCharts core file
<script type="text/javascript" src="path/to/local/fusioncharts.js"></script>

// Include FusionTime file
<script type="text/javascript" src="path/to/local/fusioncharts.timeseries.js"></script>

Create Your First Chart

Now that you have installed FusionTime and FusionCharts server-side PHP wrapper, let us build the first chart to show the "Daily sales of a grocery store".

The chart will look as shown below:

Loading data for chart…

The data for the above chart is shown in the table below:

Time Sales
01-Feb-11 8866
02-Feb-11 2174
03-Feb-11 2084
04-Feb-11 1503
05-Feb-11 4928
06-Feb-11 4667
07-Feb-11 1064

FusionCharts accepts a DataTable as the data source. DataTable is a part of DataStore, which is a tabular representation of the data. To create the DataTable, you need to provide the following:

  • schema - which defines the properties of the columns.

  • data - values of each row and column of the DataTable.

For an instance of FusionTime, you can create n number of DataTables, but only one DataStore.

Next, let's learn how to prepare the schema and the data of the DataTable.

Create the schema

The schema outlines each column represented in the above table. The schema contains an array which has multiple objects created in it. Each object represents a column in the DataTable.

name and type are mandatory keys for each object. If the object type is time then format is also a mandatory key.

To define the schema, let's create a schema.json file and copy the following code:

It is not mandatory to create the schema in a different .json file. You can also define the schema within the .html file.

    "name": "Time",
    "type": "date",
    "format": "%-m/%-d/%Y"
}, {
    "name": "Sales",
    "type": "number"

In the above code:

  • Each object of the schema maps to a column of the tabular representation of the data.

  • The JSON object has the following attributes:

    • name - Specify the name of the column of the tabular representation of data

    • type - Specify the type of the column.

    • format - Specify the input format of the date as per your data. In this example, the format is %-m/%-d/%Y. To know more about date formats, click here.

Now that we have the schema ready, let's work on the data.

Create the data

Data for the above chart is too big to be shown here. A sample of it has been used in the data object defined below:


Create a new data.json file, and copy the above code there. Next, copy the entire and replace it with the content of the data object in your 'data.json' file.

It is not mandatory to create a data.json file. You could also do the same in your HTML file.

In the above code:

  • Each object in the data array corresponds to a row in the tabular representation of the data.

  • Each element in an object is represented by each object of the schema. The values in each object of the array represent the following:

    • Time according to the format

    • Total Sales amount

We are all set with our data to create the chart.

By default, FusionTime applies the average function to aggregate the data and display on the chart. You can change the aggregate function from average to any other numeric calculation. To know more, click here.

Now, let's create the files to render the above chart.

Render the chart

Once you have the data and the schema ready, create a .js file and copy the following code:

$data = file_get_contents('data.json');
$schema = file_get_contents('schema.json');

$fusionTable = new FusionTable($schema, $data);
$timeSeries = new TimeSeries($fusionTable);

// Wrapper constructor parameters
// charttype, chartID, width, height, renderAt,  data format, TimeSeries object

$Chart = new FusionCharts("timeseries", "MyFirstChart" , "700", "450", "chart-container", "json", $timeSeries);

    // Render the chart

In the above code:

  • The path of the data.json file has been assigned to $data. Note that if the data.json file is stored at an external location, you need to provide the entire path of the file here.

  • The path of the schema.json file has been assigned to $schema. Note that if the schema.json file is stored at an external location, you need to provide the entire path of the file here.

  • The following parameter values have been set for the $Chart wrapper constructor:

    • Value of charttype has been set to timeseries.

    • Value of chartID has been set to MyFirstChart.

    • Value of width has been set to 700.

    • Value of height has been set to 450.

    • Value of renderAt has been set to chart-container.

    • Value of data format has been set to json

    • The time-series object $timeSeries has been provided.

  • The $Chart constructor has been set to the render() method to render the chart.

That's it! Your first chart in PHP using FusionTime is ready.