Software Development with Linux

Easy sequence diagrams

FRI, 01 JAN 2010

You're probably familiar with the philosophy "do one thing and do it well".  It's often harder to do then it seems, especially in the software world.  You start with a great idea, but you can't simply run with it.  You have to add features over features and before you even notice, you've got this big piece of code that try to do everything, but does it poorly.

In my quest to find the best UML modeling tool for Linux, I've seen a lot of software that looked promising, but that currently didn't work well.  If they had focused on a smaller or simpler problem, like only a single diagram, they probably would have released a better tool...

That's the road Trace Modeler took.  It offers only one thing : UML Sequence Diagram, but it does it very well.  I've used it in Kubuntu (using SUN's JRE), and I've been happily surprised.  One of my favorite feature is the "Control Flow", which highlight the control flow in the diagram.  It's really easy to see quickly what's happening this way.

There's also an "Optimize Target Order" function, which will re-order the target to make the diagram looks better, so you don't have to bother with this when you're drawing.

Even if I wanted to have a single UML modeling tool that does everything, I think that I will keep using Trace Modeler for sequence diagrams.  It's best tool for this job.