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Write Scripts

To create an alternative representation for an element or connector, you write a Shape Script that defines the size, shape, orientation and color of the representation. A Shape Script contains a number of sections for defining different aspects of the shape; for an element these include:

  • Main object
  • Labels
  • Decoration (for example, a Document element might contain an icon depicting a document)

For a connector the sections include:

  • Main object
  • Shape Source
  • Shape Target
  • Labels

Shape Scripts operate on the basis that the default (UML) representation is used unless the script contains an alternative definition. That is:

  • If you have a Shape Script containing just a decoration, this decoration is added on top of the normally-drawn object
  • If you have an empty shape routine, it overrides the default; so, a blank 'shape label' prevents the creation of the normal floating text label for elements that have them

You can also comment your scripts using C-style comments; for example:

     // C Style Single Line comment

     /* Multi Line

     comment supported */

Scripting is not case-sensitive: 'Shape' is the same as 'shape'.

Script Structure

Layout

Description

See also

Example of Element Script Layout

shape main

     {

          // draw the object

     }

     shape label

     {

          // draw a floating text label

     }

          decoration <identifier>

     {

          // draw a 16x16 decoration inside the object

     }  

The < identifier > string is an alphanumeric word.

Example of Connector Script Layout

shape main

     {

          // draw the line

     }

     shape target

     {

          // draw the shape at the target end

     }

     shape source

     {

          // draw the shape at the source end

     }

     label <positionLabel>

     {

          // define the text for the label

     }

The <positionLabel> string can be any of:

  • lefttoplabel
  • leftbottomlabel
  • middletoplabel
  • middlebottomlabel
  • righttoplabel
  • rightbottomlabel

Sub-shapes

A shape can have Sub-shapes, which must be declared after the main Shape Script, but called from the Method commands.

This is an example of the ordering for declarations:

     shape main

     {

          // Initialisation Attributes - these must be before drawing commands

          noshadow = "true";

          h_align = "center";

          //drawing commands (Methods)

          rectangle (0,0,100,100);

          println ("foo bar");

          // call the sub-shape

          addsubshape ("red",  20, 70);

          // definition of a sub-shape

          shape red

          {

               setfillcolor (200, 50, 100);

               rectangle (50,50,100,100);

          }

     }

     //definition of a label

     shape label

     {

          setOrigin ("SW",0,0);

          println ("Object: #NAME#");

     }

     //definition of a Decoration

     decoration triangle

     {

          // Draw a triangle for the decoration

          startpath ();

          moveto (0,30);

          lineto (50,100);

          lineto (100,0);

          endpath ();

          setfillcolor (153,204,255);

          fillandstrokepath ();

     }

The shape resulting from this script is:

Drawing Methods

Order of declaration

Shapes can consist of Attribute declarations, Command calls and Sub-shape definitions, which must appear in that order; that is, Attribute declarations must appear before all Command calls and Sub-shape definitions must appear last.

Shape Attributes Sub-Shapes

Learn more

Learning Center topics

  • Alt+F1 | Enterprise Architect | Modeling Languages | Defining Shapes | Defining an Element Shape