Past is a powerful software for scientific data analysis, with functions for data manipulation, plotting, univariate and multivariate statistics, ecological analysis, time series and spatial analysis, morphometries and stratigraphy.

Data may be entered via a spreadsheet-type interface, or pasted from the clipboard. It's also possible to import some files, though format support is limited (XLS yes, XLSX no, for example).

At a minimum, you could just use the program as a capable chart and graph generator.

There's support for lots of chart types, including XY, Histogram, Bar, Pie, Stacked, Percentiles, Bubble, 3D scatter, Matrix, Surface and more. Each chart is hugely customisable, and you can print, save or copy it to the clipboard when you've done.

You get a few accessible extras, including a Google Maps feature (Windows only) which plots columns of latitude and longitude with the points as points, filled polygons or multi-segment lines.

But of course the real power here comes in Past's many stats tools. We don't have the space to begin to cover them here, but as an example, even the relatively simple Univariate menu crams in all these options: Summary, One-Sample tests, Two-Sample tests, F and t tests, Two-sample paired tests, ANOVA etc, One-way ANCOVA, Correlation, Intraclass correlation, Normality tests, Contingency table, Mantel-Cochran-Haenszel test, Risk/ odds, Single proportion test, Multiple proportion CIs, Survival analysis, Combine errors.


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Past's many charting tools are highly configurable and easy enough for anyone to use, but the program's real power comes in its expert-level data analysis features.