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Topics - Uffe

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1
Hello,


This is in 13.5, but there's no mention of any relevant changes in the history for 14.

Let's I create a class with an attribute with an initial value.

Let's then say I create both an instance of that class, and another class which is a specialization of the first class.
I switch on presentation of inherited attributes for both the instance and the specialized class.

If I now override the attribute initializer in my specialized class, that overridden value is shown in the local attribute compartment of that class. Good.
But the same change is shown in the inherited attribute compartment. In other words, it now looks like the attribute in the general class has the same initial value as it does in the specialized class -- which it doesn't.

This isn't great, but semantically I suppose you could overlook it: there is only one initial value for any given attribute (since an instance cannot logically be initialized twice), so the presentation of the parent's initializer is more of a convenience. It'd be nice if it was right, but it's not crucial.

But now consider the same situation with an instance with a run state, which exhibits the same behaviour.

In my instance it now looks like the initial value is what I've put into the run state. This is definitely wrong. The initial value is a property of the classifier -- it cannot change with the run state, which is a property of the instance.

Or is there some obscure Jehova's Witness-style mangling of the UML standard that allows for this behaviour?


/Uffe

2
Bugs and Issues / Artifacts and attributes
« on: June 26, 2018, 08:51:41 pm »
Hi all,


I'm working in 13.5, but there's no mention of any changes to this behaviour in the release history for 14.

The properties dialog for an artifact does not include a "details" page, but the context menus in both the diagram and project browser allow me to open the attributes dialog, which allows me to create attributes in the normal way, with type, scope and initial value.

If I create an instance of this artifact, its type is reported as artifact (not object). In its diagram context menu, under "Features & Properties", there's an item "Override Attribute Initializers." When working with classes, this item does not appear for an instance but for a specialized class.

The same menu item for a class instance instead has the "Set Run State" item. This is what I would expect for an instance of an artifact as well. I can get that if I create an object and set its classifier to the artifact, but not by dropping the artifact onto a diagram -- that forces the creation of an artifact instance.

I should also point out that the "Override Attribute Initializers" item, when selected for an artifact instance, only yields an error message saying that the instance "has no attribute initializers to override." That makes sense if the attributes of artifacts are intended to work like the attributes of classes -- but why have the menu item there in the first place, only to have it flash an error message?

However, the weirdness doesn't end there. If I create another artifact (classifier) and draw a generalization from it to the previous one, the diagram context menu for the specialized artifact does not include the "Override Attribute initializers" item -- there's just the normal "Attributes" item.

If I switch on presentation of inherited attributes, the attributes from the general artifact are shown (with initial values) in both the specialized artifact and in the artifact instance.

So.

1) Artifacts can have attributes.
2) Generalizations can be drawn between artifacts.
3) Attributes are inherited between artifacts connected by a generalization.
4) An artifact's local attributes can be given initial values.
5) Initial values of an artifact's inherited attributes cannot be overridden.
6) An artifact instance, which is itself an artifact, cannot have a run state.
7) An artifact instance, which is itself an object, can have a run state.

Is this by design?


/Uffe

3
Bugs and Issues / Default connector line style
« on: June 21, 2018, 05:07:33 pm »
Hi all,

Is there a way to set the default connector line style in a diagram?
Say I want all future connectors to use Tree Style - Vertical, or Orthogonal - Square. Can I set that somewhere?

/Uffe

4
Suggestions and Requests / Package Indicator for Here Be Locks
« on: June 15, 2018, 08:49:28 pm »
Hi all,

User locks are indicated with blue exclamation marks for "locked by me" and red ones for "locked by someone else."
It would be useful to be able to see at any package whether something in it, but not the package itself, is locked by me or (less importantly) by someone else -- all the way up to the root node.

Maybe a smaller exclamation mark, maybe an italic one, maybe a paler one, maybe something else, but having some kind of indication would help a lot.


/Uffe

5
Bugs and Issues / Project browser auto-side-scroll
« on: June 14, 2018, 01:16:20 am »
Hey all,


13.5 on Windows 10, the auto-side-scrolling project browser is driving me up the freakin post. For a project with more depth and/or longer names than some trivial Mickey-Mouse example it's worse than useless.

Not sure if this is EA's fault or some Windows bullsh*t but it doesn't really matter. Point is, is there a way to switch it off?
Only remedy I've found is to widen the window till it covers half the screen. Meaning I can't see the diagrams.


/Uffe

6
Hi all,


Here's a left-field one.

When working with multiple projects and moving models between them, being able to quickly compare two instances of the same model is useful.

One way of doing this is to start two EA instances, undock the same window in both of them, align the two windows pixel-perfect one on top of the other, and then alt-tab between them looking for anything that "blinks". This is an obvious approach when working with diagrams, but really it works equally well with any type of window (properties, project browser, element browser...).

This type of visual comparison would be simplified by the ability to transparentifize the windows. That's a word. You could then just undock one, make it transparent and move it on top of the other, still-docked window; or you could undock both, make them both transparent, line them up and anything that shows up faint will only be present in one window, ie a difference.


/Uffe

7
Suggestions and Requests / Add location to Required MDG Technologies
« on: June 08, 2018, 09:45:31 pm »
Hi all,


The Required MDG Technologies feature is useful, but it requires that users have the same MDG Technology paths set up. This is no issue for built-in technologies, but for locally developed ones it can be.

Specifically, if I want to trial a newer version of an MDG Technology I deploy it to a different network share than the "release" one. I would like to be able to set up a project to use my "trial" version instead of the "release" one and simply point my trial team to that project, but I can't do that because the MDGRequire and MDGBlklist (in t_genopt) specify the technologies by ID, not by file name.

So if the location could be added, either by using the technology file's path or by adding a t_genopt option for the MDG search path, I could specify the technology and path in my trial project and everyone would have a smoother EA experience.


As an alternative, of course, if the "MDG Technologies" dialog, as well as the required/disabled technologies option, were made version-aware, that would be even better.

By that I mean that the respective dialogs should list every version of each MDG Technology they find and force the user to choose exactly one of each such group. The technologies would be identified by their IDs, and listed with their version IDs.


Yet another alternative would be to store the technology ID + version ID in t_genopt. That would be good enough, although of course it wouldn't resolve the case where two MDG Technology files have the same technology ID and version ID -- but really that's poor version control on the developer's part.


/Uffe

8
Hi all,

Pro Cloud Server 2.1 introduced a "Server Based Plugin Interface".
Is this available somehow, somewhere, to tool builders?

Or is it just a way for Sparx to deploy its own integration products?


/Uffe

9
Hi everybody,


The quick linker definition format allows you to specify "captions" or menu item labels, in columns K and L.

It would be useful to be able to use macros which resolve to the source/target element names, eg #SRCNAME#.
The macros should honour the "Use Alias if Available" option in the diagram.

Yes?


/Uffe

10
Hi all,


It would be useful to be able to force EA to open a particular page of the property dialog by default for a stereotyped element.

Is there a special attribute that can be set, or some other way to achieve this?

I'm thinking in particular of the custom tagged value page that EA creates. When you're designing stereotypes which are essentially just placeholders for a specific set of tagged values, having that page opened automatically on double-click would be a small but valuable time saver.

Cheers,


/Uffe

11
Suggestions and Requests / "New Project" in EA 14
« on: May 04, 2018, 06:15:48 pm »
Hi all,


The "New Project" function opens a dialog where you can select file type:
  • Enterprise Architect Project (*.eapx)
  • Enterprise Architect Project (*.eap)
  • Enterprise Architect Project (*.feap)
.eapx is new, the two others were in 13 as well.

The problem with this is that there's no explanation of what the different choices entail. A better list would be
  • Enterprise Architect Project / JET 4 (*.eapx)
  • Enterprise Architect Project / JET 3 (*.eap)
  • Enterprise Architect Project / Firebird (*.feap)

The "New Project" menu item should also be reworked so that it contains a submenu with items for the three file types. If you click the "New Project" item, the current dialog should be displayed, but if you point without clicking, the submenu should be expanded.


/Uffe

12
Bugs and Issues / Formatting on v14 Recent Features page
« on: May 03, 2018, 01:36:55 am »
Hi,

I'm looking at the long list of features, fixes and tweaks in v14, and the formatting is off in some places which makes the page hard to read. Under 1400 "Execuable Statemachines" (sic) there's a bunch of stuff that's got nothing to do with state machines, and in that section as well as others (BPSim for one), all the bullets have been placed on the top level rather than the intended indented ones. I'm sure there are other similar issues on that page.

Completely boring, I know, but it would really be helpful if this could be fixed.


/Uffe

13
Bugs and Issues / RefGUIDList tag: field too small
« on: April 27, 2018, 11:29:25 pm »
Hi all,


I'm working with a profile where I've got a tagged value connector from one stereotype to another, with the target role multiplicity set to 0..*.
This is the equivalent of creating a RefGUIDList tagged value type.

The problem is that, after I've generated the MDG Technology, if I select more than six elements I get an error dialog saying

DAO.Field [3163]
The field is too small to accept the amount of data you attempted to add. Try inserting or pasting less data.


This is obviously because a GUID is 38 characters, which means a list of six GUIDs requires 233 characters, and with a maximum of 255 characters in the field another list entry won't fit.

The 255-character tagged value limit can be normally worked around with a <memo> value. So here's the question: is there a way of combining <memo> and RefGUIDList?

I tried creating a tagged value with the same name as an attribute in my stereotype, but that didn't work. I also tried manually editing the profile XML data to force the contents of a <memo> tagged value type into the RefGUIDList tag definition, but no luck.

Anyone else?


/Uffe

14
General Board / Choosing a tool
« on: April 26, 2018, 06:54:23 pm »
Hi all,


This is a tangent from Ian's thread concerning EA vs Aris for process modelling.

I realize that 'it depends' is the most logical answer, but, like most clients, they haven't decided exactly how they are going to do their process modelling.
And I think this is a reasonable approach.
But before you scream 'that's no way to choose a modelling tool', given that they have realized they WILL need a tool, then surely the smart thing is to tailor their approach to (1) their own requirements, but also (2) the capabilities of a tool.

It seems like a solution -> Requirement approach, but don't we need some measure of this? No point crafting a wonderful modelling approach, then finding there is no tool to which can do it without huge modification. And when maybe a small change to the modelling approach would make it fit disproportionately better with one or other tool.

I couldn't agree more with this, and in general universally if you refuse to allow the chosen platform to drive requirements you will end up with a complete mess that combines weak least-common-denominator fulfillment of functional requirements with the massive bloat of "platform independence."

It doesn't matter if you're designing a system, devising a method or picking a tool, if you put those blinkers on (horizontal blinkers, I guess, preventing you from looking down) you'll end up spending an enormous effort on shoehorning which, ultimately, is non-productive work.

Understanding the platform (tool, middleware, operating system, programming language...) and its capabilities, and making sure your solution fits on top of it, is Right not Wrong.


/Uffe

15
Bugs and Issues / ActivityParameter _instanceType not honoured
« on: April 25, 2018, 07:12:11 pm »
Hi all,

If you create two stereotypes, one of ActivityParameter and one of ActionPin, and specify that the parameter stereotype should be instantiated to the pin stereotype using the _instanceType attribute in the ActivityParameter metaclass, that specification is not honoured when EA creates an action pin during instantiation of an activity with parameters.

AFAIK there is no other way to instantiate an activity parameter. You can't drag-and-drop one onto an empty diagram area, nor onto an action.

Reported.


/Uffe

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