Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Violet UML

In my Software Engineering course, I have the students do OOA&D projects where some form of software for working with UML diagrams is useful.

In previous years, I've used ArgoUML.  It's open source, and quite full-featured.  It also does not support undo.  Every year I investigate to see if any progress has been made on this issue, and every year it's "in progress".  Students find this limitation extremely frustrating, and I don't blame them.  Feh.

This year I stumbled across Violet UML, which I had somehow missed in my previous searches for open source UML tools.  It does not aim to be a full-blown CASE tool --- e.g., no code generation, reverse engineering, etc.  This is actually a virtue in my case: it's very simple to use, so the learning curve for students should be minimal.  The UI is intuitive.  And it has undo.  It's a Java app packaged as an executable jar file, so no installation required.  Win win win.

3 comments:

Rikard Eggers said...

Been using DIA for a while now but this is truly better...

David Hovemeyer said...

@Rikard - The only thing I don't like about Violet UML is that it tends to cluster the start and end points of relationships in the same place. You can usually work around this if you fiddle with the "Bent Style". I agree that it's superior to Dia.

Rikard Eggers said...

Have yet too see that behavior but will take a look at "Bent Style"... Thanks again!