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Messages - michielper

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1
General Board / Ways to show changes in Reports
« on: June 07, 2018, 01:19:23 am »
What options do I have to show what has changed in a Report since the previous version (or since a specific time)?
One way is to use Search * and sort on Date which gives the most recently changed elements on top. You can also generate a report that lists this information.

So, what other options do I have?
Is there some way to indicate changes in the text or diagrams themselves?
Is a baseline comparison of models useful?

Thanks for any tips!

2
General Board / Re: Element Status & Connector Status
« on: June 05, 2018, 06:32:56 pm »
The Template Package approach works well, also for the Status! :)

3
I know this is an old topic but Sparx Support referred me to this within the last 24 hours, so ...

ArchiMate might be a bit different than other modeling languages. If I have three elements A, B and C and relations from A to B and from B to C it might be relevant to show this on one diagram and then - on another diagram - only show A and C with a *derived* relation. The language has specific rules as to which relations can be derived from which. Therefore it IS highly relevant to be able to add relations without showing them in all previous diagrams.

To me the solution might be simple: If I lock the first diagram I thereby say that I don't want anybody to change anything. Sparx might then add the derived connection to the diagram but automatically turn the visibility off. If the diagram is not locked, Sparx can act as usual and make the new connection visible.

Feature request?

This is an important modelling topic. The ability to "zoom" in and out and show a model in more or less detail is very useful indeed. This can obviously be done manually, by explicitly hiding and showing connectors in diagrams (which indeed are Views). It would be nice if a tool understood the modelling language to such a degree that is could help with this. I think that certain Archimate-specific tools can indeed do this. But this is not easy and very much modelling-language dependent. For example... When A and E are connected via B, C and D with various intermediate elements and connectors.... What then is the relationship to be shown between A and E? I don't think the Archimate semantics will always be unambiguous in such cases. So I can understand that Sparx is not (yet) supporting this :-) although there are certainly simple cases where tool support would not be very complex.

4
Suggestions and Requests / Re: Multiple Project Browser Windows
« on: May 22, 2018, 09:08:38 pm »
One other workaround could be is opening the target package as a list and then drag the items back and forth.

That is a good suggestion. Especially since you can drag a tab to its separate window, this is indeed almost like having a second Project Browser. You can just drop elements into the new List window. I don't think I will need a second project browser now :-).

5
General Board / Re: Versioning of connectors
« on: May 17, 2018, 07:36:40 pm »
We use status on Connectors to indicate 'live' / 'proposed' and use diagram filters to show / hide connectors of current state / proposed state

I can use the same parameter to drive my reports too,

As far as I can see, connectors have no Status attribute... This is an omission in the tool I think; I don't see why connectors would not need a Status indication just like other elements. By connecting this status with the status of the diagram, my problem would probably be solved.
Of course, you can add a status tag, is that what you mean?
Diagram filters are not very useful. They are purely a visual aid and work globally, over all diagrams :-(.

6
General Board / Versioning of connectors
« on: May 16, 2018, 04:48:35 pm »
I would like to model a situation where I have a number of elements who's connections change over the system lifecycle. So, the components remain the same but the connections between them are different between versions.
Of course, one way to do this is by simply making different views (diagrams) in which different connectors are shown. This may be a useful approach if it's only the pictures that matter but not if the model itself is important, e.g. when generating reports or when simulating the model.
Another approach is to create copies of the elements but this creates a maintenance problem and is very inelegant.

So what other options do I have?

Thanks for any help!

7
Suggestions and Requests / Multiple Project Browser Windows
« on: May 14, 2018, 09:08:10 pm »
(Re)organizing the Project Browser is not easy when there is only one Project Browser window and you have to drag elements and packages long distances up and down, holding down the mouse button. This would be a lot easier if it were possible to open a second window on the Project Browser so that you can drag from one window to the other. Similar to what you do in a file browser.


8
General Board / Re: Glossary plural terms
« on: May 10, 2018, 12:19:31 am »
And, another question, would it be possible to realise this in an add-in? That is, does EA call an overloadable function before a glossary look up and before highlighting terms?
Unfortunately not. There are callbacks which can catch the creation / deletion of a glossary term, but the lookup and highlighting are EA-internal.

/Uffe

Allright, but the Paolo idea should then certainly be implemented by Sparx!

9
General Board / Re: How to delete ForkJoinH elements?
« on: May 10, 2018, 12:17:20 am »
Use the relationships window. If there is a connector it will show up there.

If you don't know which element is linked to it, select everything on the diagram. It will show all relationships and you can find the one targetting a fork/join and add it back on the diagram, then delete it properly.

Ok thanks! Although I solved my problem in another way (deleting and recreating an element) this method would certainly have worked. I never used this window until now... EA still has many hidden gems!  :)

10
General Board / How to delete ForkJoinH elements?
« on: May 08, 2018, 09:31:58 pm »
When I run a Simulation (UML Activity chart), I encounter a ForkJoinH element that I thought I deleted..... But I cannot find it in the project browser, nor via an Extended search. It seems that ForkJoinHs arent listed in the Project Browser at all! Why not?

So... How can I get rid of this ForkJoinH??

11
General Board / Re: Glossary plural terms
« on: May 08, 2018, 09:23:37 pm »
We may have been thinking about this the wrong way...

If we allow a number (say 5) of variants (why they are variants is our business), we can place the "Root Term" as the Domain key for the record and provide the other variants - all of which should map to the same definition.  We can require that each root and variant appear only once in the set.

Then if any term in the set appears in the notes, the definition is mapped.  It would be nice to have two definitions - the 25 word or less concise definition and a more expansive description which could be accessed once the shorter definition has been displayed.

We can populate the entries to our needs.

Paolo

I like that suggestion. This puts the responsibility of defining which words (let's call them synonyms) should point to a particular glossary entry completely with the user, where it should be. The simple implementation, which would be good enough for me, is to have to specify each "synonym" explicitly. A more advanced implementation would allow the user to specify a (regular expression) pattern.
Implementation in EA should not be complex but will be extremely helpful!

And, another question, would it be possible to realise this in an add-in? That is, does EA call an overloadable function before a glossary look up and before highlighting terms?

12
General Board / Glossary plural terms
« on: April 17, 2018, 10:42:13 pm »
It seems like I have to add two entries for every term in the Glossary that occurs both in singular and plural in my texts. This is very inelegant of course. Is there a way around this?

13
General Board / Re: How to position a picture in a Report Template?
« on: April 17, 2018, 10:37:41 pm »
Thanks Nizam, that seems like a good trick. But I havent discovered yet how to import an RTF document into EA....
And you state that is it possible to set a background image in a template in the EA template editor, can you tell me how to do that?

Thanks!

14
I guess not. Every element has a rectangular shape which can be mapped to a clickable area. Edges can't easily be represented this way. You'd need some tricky Java stuff to detect a connector click.

q.

Sparx has made the (I suppose conscious) decision not to treat connectors as "first class citzens" but as "attributes" of other elements. There are other modelling tools that have made another choice (e.g. the open source Archimate modeling tool Archi). This problem may be related to this choice. A logical solution therefore, in the spirit of Sparx EA, would be to use an Interface element. See my other response in this thread.

15

I'm using Information Flow connectors to specify interactions between various databases and other components within our organization, adding the appropriate Information Items to each flow. The Information Items contain some fairly detailed information like DB Schemas for SQL interactions, XML or JSON Schemas for web service interactions, links to more detailed diagrams, etc. Within the model, it's relatively easy to get from the connector to the Information Items (right click connector->find items conveyed).

However, in the HTML export, those very same connectors are not clickable via right or left click so you can't drill deeper into the model from the web page representing the model diagram. Is there a way to enable the connectors to be clickable in the HTML export?

I have another suggestion, namely to model the connectors as explicit Interface elements. Since they carry a lot of information, modelling them as "first class citizens" seems justified. All attributes can then be attached to the Interface elements. It is the approach I take myself (I am mainly using Archimate but this can be done in UML also).
This has other advantages too. It makes it easier to choose whether to show the relationship between particular components; connectors do not magically pop up in other diagrams if those diagrams do not contain the Interface elements. Versioning of interfaces also becomes easier.
And of course, they become clickable in HTML reports.... :).

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