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Archive Notice: This thread is old and no longer active. It is here for reference purposes. This thread was created on an older version of the flipcode forums, before the site closed in 2005. Please keep that in mind as you view this thread, as many of the topics and opinions may be outdated.

May 27, 2005, 04:15 PM

Hi all

I thought about using some UML tool but I am not sure if there are better ways. The only thing I found was together for msvc and that one was only for managed code. What I would need is one for visual studio and coding in c/c++.

What kind of tools do you use for designing your source code? Good old paper and pencil? Or some tool witch is separated form the ide (can’t imagine that would make much sense…)?

Thx for any input.


May 27, 2005, 05:11 PM

Hi there =)

I guess this all depends on the scale of your project.

For small projects that only yourself or few others attend to, paper drawings and good code documentation usually suffice. If desired (for example, if noone can read your handwriting), you might as well use some tool for modelling.

For larger scale projects (both referring to time and people involved) it is better to plan ahead as much as possible to avoid costly mistakes and code rewrites. Consequently, some sort of modelling is definately required before the first code line should be written.

However, I guess it's really just a matter of taste which modelling language or schema you use. Since UML is pretty much self-explaining, and also some kind of standard for modelling, I would just stick to that one.

The same goes for a modelling IDE. Stick with whatever seems most appropriate to your needs. Needs in this context, I think, mostly consist of a user-friendly interface.

I don't see why using an external tool would prove to be a problem, apart from that you need to task-switch for modifying modelled things. Also, I guess modelled things should not be changed too often anyways. (This is why you actually model: so that you have an exact plan of what to do, to start with).

The only exception to the above I can see is if you find some tool to automatically generate code from your models, and vice versa.

Hope this helps,
- Wernaeh


May 27, 2005, 06:02 PM

I disagree with Wernaeh. In large scale software projects rewrites are envitiable so you have to plan for them, not plan not to have them. So utilmately the most important thing is to plan but to be flexible about it in terms of time and modularity.

When designing you need to consider the correct level of abstraction, System to system interactions, not every single code block in infinite/high detail.

But having said that, I use UML to express my ideas. UMLPad is free and useful for quick notes.


May 27, 2005, 06:14 PM

Thx for your replies.

Umlpad looks nice. I was kind of hoping there would be a tool witch allows both designing some class hierarchy and generate a base source code for it as well as updating the UML diagram according to changes in the source code. Does something like this exist for visual studio and using C/C++?

Julio Gorgé

May 27, 2005, 07:25 PM

Microsoft Visio can do this, although it does not feature every single UML thing. I have not used it for a long time, but when I tried it, it seemed to work OK doing both UML->code and code->UML conversions.

Apple's XCode 2.0 has some kind of integrated visual class designer.. I will take a look at it when I have time :-/


May 28, 2005, 02:37 PM

I will look into it, thx.

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