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May 31, 2009

OpenOffice.org Draw does DFDs

I've been rather pleased to find out that I can use OpenOffice.org's Drawing module to generate DFDs (Data Flow Diagram)? the data model I use for planning web applications? I'd thought it didn't have this functionality, or at least that it wasn't very well implemented. After digging around a bit I find that it does, and actually somewhat better than Excel 97 did. The only problem I can see is that oval shapes only have 4 connectors points when I could really do with the 8 that Excel had. However, the ability to add labels to connector lines is a big bonus and being able to export direct to PNG, GIF, PDF and SWF (to name 4 of the 20 formats available) is brilliant. The drawing module is rock solid stable and very smooth to use, also an A2-sized version of the rather complex DFD shown below is only 25KB in size!

OpenOffice.org DFD Example

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