Most basic pie chart in d3.js

This post describes how to build a very basic pie chart with d3.js. You can see many other examples in the pie chart section of the gallery. Watch out: pie chart is most of the time a very bad way to convey information as explained in this post.

Pie chart section


  • Warning: are you sure you want to use a pie chart? Learn why it is not recommended.

  • Input dataset provides the group names and their corresponding numeric value.

  • The first step is to use the pie() function. It takes this input and return the coordinates of each part of the pie.

  • For instance: a:9 becomes index:0 / padAngle:0 / startAngle: 0 / endAngle: 0.71

  • This new information can finally be given to the d3.arc() helper that will draw the shape.
<!DOCTYPE html>
<meta charset="utf-8">

<!-- Load d3.js -->
<script src=""></script>

<!-- Create a div where the graph will take place -->
<div id="my_dataviz"></div>


// set the dimensions and margins of the graph
var width = 450
    height = 450
    margin = 40

// The radius of the pieplot is half the width or half the height (smallest one). I substract a bit of margin.
var radius = Math.min(width, height) / 2 - margin

// append the svg object to the div called 'my_dataviz'
var svg ="#my_dataviz")
    .attr("width", width)
    .attr("height", height)
    .attr("transform", "translate(" + width / 2 + "," + height / 2 + ")");

// Create dummy data
var data = {a: 9, b: 20, c:30, d:8, e:12}

// set the color scale
var color = d3.scaleOrdinal()
  .range(["#98abc5", "#8a89a6", "#7b6888", "#6b486b", "#a05d56"])

// Compute the position of each group on the pie:
var pie = d3.pie()
  .value(function(d) {return d.value; })
var data_ready = pie(d3.entries(data))

// Build the pie chart: Basically, each part of the pie is a path that we build using the arc function.
  .attr('d', d3.arc()
  .attr('fill', function(d){ return(color( })
  .attr("stroke", "black")
  .style("stroke-width", "2px")
  .style("opacity", 0.7)


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