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Topics - Richard Freggi

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1
General Board / How does EA treats Note, Comments and Text box entries?
« on: November 14, 2017, 12:04:32 pm »
I've searched the user guide, this forum and googled a bit but could not find a description of how are they different in EA and how they are handled differently by EA.  So far seems like Comments and Notes are the same thing although they have different icons on toolbox; and text box cannot be linked to an element and cannot set line color for the box itself. 

For now my goal is to make an informed decision about which I should use for which purpose.  Does anyone have any info on what is the semantic difference and how EA handles each (including reporting, export etc.) thanks!

2
I am working on a large project, and I need to copy/paste text from several sources into element notes and tagged values.  Many sources are MS Word and Powerpoint documents.  This text contains a lot of formatting characters; I tried to clean them out by pasting into MS Notepad before pasting onto EA; using Excel CLEAN function, and using Notepad++ to find and replace any weird characters.  Still a lot of junk got thru.  The Sparx spell checker ignores these characters.  Main issue for now is that CSV export displays wrong then imported to MS excel: notes and tagged values fields go to the wrong cells and screw up everything else.  I need top quality CSV export because I use it to make tables/slides for presentations to management; also this is a large long term project.
(I export from EA as tab delimited as that is a character that just should not appear in any of the text.)

My preferred cleanup strategy would be to:
1. Export the whole model to XMI
2. Open the XMI with Notepad++
3. Use the 'search and replace' with regex to replace all this junk with empty strings. 
4. Save the cleaned XMI and import into EA in a new project and delete the old project

I googled around but cannot find the regex expression that will safely leave all XMI that EA needs safely untouched, but take out all the junk characters from notes and tagged values.  I tried several expressions but they either leave several junk characters in or they destroy some of the tabs and line feeds that were legitimate.  Example (hope this displays correctly):
Quote
  –  â
and many more

If anyone can provide to me I would be very grateful!  Thanks!!

p.s. Google also brought up an approach to use unix tr command as: tr -cd '\11\12\15\40-\176' < file-with-binary-chars > clean-file.  Anyone has an idea if this would be a better strategy?

3
Hello, here's a few ideas:

Data modeling:
1. Add true crow's feet notation, where keys are underlined instead of having the key icon as stereotype (following the bar across relationships helps following identifiers)

2. If it's not patented, how about adding automatic highlighting of the keys when you hover mouse over a relationship... this is something that Mysqlworkbench does and I find it useful to plan queries and joins

3. You can drag attributes (non-keys) from a table (or Class) to another in Project Explorer, but not in the diagram... it would be useful to be able to move attributes around in diagram as well (like ERWin etc.)

4. Editing attribute names in the diagram by click+F2 or click + slight move cursor is buggy - sometimes changes are not saved

5. Add ability to reverse engineer SQL DDL code (from DDL file to ERD diagram, instead of from database connection to ERD diagram)... useful when database connection is not available and to share schemas via DDL.  MySQLWorkbench and ERWin can do this

6. No CSV export for attributes is a major feature gap... I have read up on EA limitation to CSV export classifiers only and not their attributes, and I understand the difficulty in implementing this across all UML classifiers, but a table-attribute specific script should be made available by Sparx.  It's very valuable for quick editing-fine tuning-reporting when under time pressure (ERWin is excellent in this respect)

Other:
7. If I add a nesting relationship to a package in package diagram, it is not reflected in project explorer... in project explorer the nested package is NOT moved to inside the parent package.  Shouldn't it be?

8. In sequence diagram there should be a checkbox or setting to have default every activation is new... so when using message numbering, the numbering is 1,2,3,4 by default not 1.1, 1.2, 1.3.  It's very time consuming to right click on each message and set new activation for all messages.  I think activations should be new by default

9. When using search function (CTRL-F) several times in a row, the last text typed in the search bar is still there and unselected after pressing CTRL-F again.  So I have to move the mouse to the text bar, delete the text, then type your new search item.  It would be better if the text in search bar was highlighted-selected after each CTRL-F so if I type a new text it will be immediately overwritten; and if I want to keep or add to the old text I can just click on the bar to deselect it.  Like search function works in WIndows.

Pls PM me if any of these suggestions are implemented in future versions.  Thank you!


4
I am thinking about submitting a feature request, but first I would like to sound it off here, since I'm still learning about EA (previous ERWin user)

1. What do you think about adding a true crow's feet notation, where keys are underlined instead of having the key icon as stereotype
1.1 Also if it's not patented, how about adding automatic highlighting of the keys when you hover mouse over a relationship... this is something that Mysqlworkbench does and I find it useful to plan queries and joins
2. You can drag attributes (non-keys) from a table (or Class) to another in Project Explorer, but not in the diagram... it would be useful to be able to move attributes around in diagram as well
2.1 Editing attributes in the diagram by double clicking is buggy too... changes are not saved
3. EA (at least Professional) cannot reverse engineer SQL DDL code... I find it useful to move models around and update schemas.  MySQLWorkbench and ERWin can do this
4. No CSV export for attributes is a major feature gap... I have read up on EA limitation to CSV export classifiers only and not their attributes, and I understand the difficulty in implementing this across all UML classifiers, but a table-attribute specific script should be made available by Sparx.  It's very valuable for quick editing-fine tuning-reporting when under time pressure (ERWin is excellent in this respect)

Any feedback or ideas?  I'll submit feature request in a few days


5
General Board / Can't add attributes or operations using toolbox???
« on: August 01, 2017, 04:25:49 pm »
Using the basic UML 2 technology (default setting in EA) I can add attributes and operations to classes using the project browser or by double clicking on each class on the diagram; but I cannot drag attributes or operations from the toolbox over the class: I get an error message "Unknown/illegal base type 'Attribute'  Command UML: Attribute".  User guide search shows that this is due to wrong metaclass - I suppose I'm using these toolbox elements in wrong way... but then what is the right way to use them?  Thanks!!!
(p.s. crosspost notice: in separate post I'm asking for help to get attribute default scope = public)

6
I created a MDG toolbox for regular class diagram.  In the profile metaclass I added an attribute _AttPub, type int, initial value 1 (following the MDG technologies user guide on page 43).  When MDG deployed everything works except when I add an attribute to the class using this toolbox, the attribute scope is Private by default. 

The MDG XML file is below.  My goal is to have all attributes scope set to public by default whenever I create a new attribute in a class.  Any help appreciated!
(p.s. crosspost notice: in separate post I'm asking for help to get attribute creation via toolbox)

Code: [Select]
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="windows-1252"?>
<MDG.Technology version="1.0"><Documentation id="0730" name="RFClass0730MDG" version="0730" notes="0730"/><DiagramProfile><UMLProfile profiletype="uml2">
<Documentation id="8B780C68-B" name="RFClass" version="1.0" notes="RFClass"/>
<Content>
<Stereotypes>
<Stereotype name="RFClassDiagram" notes="">
<AppliesTo>
<Apply type="Diagram_Logical">
<Property name="alias" value="RFClass"/>
<Property name="toolbox" value="RFClass"/>
<Property name="diagramID" value="RFClass"/>
</Apply>
</AppliesTo>
</Stereotype>
</Stereotypes>
<TaggedValueTypes/>
</Content>
</UMLProfile>
</DiagramProfile><UIToolboxes><UMLProfile profiletype="uml2">
<Documentation id="CABB778E-B" name="RFClass0730" version="1.0" alias="RFClass0730" notes="RFClass0730"/>
<Content>
<Stereotypes>
<Stereotype name="RFClassElements" alias="RFClassElements" notes="RFClassElements">
<AppliesTo>
<Apply type="ToolboxPage">
<Property name="_AttPub" value="1"/>
</Apply>
</AppliesTo>
<TaggedValues>
<Tag name="UML::Package" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Package"/>
<Tag name="UML::Class" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Class"/>
<Tag name="UML::Attribute" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Attribute"/>
<Tag name="UML::Operation" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Operation"/>
</TaggedValues>
</Stereotype>
<Stereotype name="RFClassConnectors" alias="RFClassConnectors" notes="RFClassConnectors">
<AppliesTo>
<Apply type="ToolboxPage">
<Property name="_AttPub" value="1"/>
</Apply>
</AppliesTo>
<TaggedValues>
<Tag name="UML::Association" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Association"/>
<Tag name="UML::AssociationClass" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="AssociationClass"/>
<Tag name="UML::Generalization" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Generalization"/>
<Tag name="UML::Aggregation" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Aggregation"/>
<Tag name="UML::Composition" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Composition"/>
<Tag name="UML::Dependency" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Dependency"/>
<Tag name="UML::Realization" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Realization"/>
<Tag name="UML::Nesting" type="" description="" unit="" values="" default="Nesting"/>
</TaggedValues>
</Stereotype>
</Stereotypes>
<TaggedValueTypes/>
</Content>
</UMLProfile>
</UIToolboxes></MDG.Technology>

7
General Board / EA 13 does not have a database front end?
« on: July 24, 2017, 08:56:09 pm »
Hello I am still new to Sparx EA (using build 13.10) and I would just like to confirm my understanding that EA (Data Modeling MDG) does not provide a simple frontend for databases for things like loading test datasets and testing queries during query development.
I can connect to the database (SQLite) with OBDC and do forward/reverse engineering, so I expected that a simple frontend would be integrated in EA... but I can' t find anything on the user manual or web.  Just wanted to double check if I missed anything before I turn to SQLiteman or something similar (I would prefer not to switch between several tools).
Thanks!



8
EA 13.10

Hello I am playing around with MDG to customise the toolboxes of standard UML profile (by removing the toolbox elements that I don't use).

I use the MDG Technology Builder to create the xmi files for toolboxes and diagram types for several UML diagrams (Class, Use Case etc.).  My MDG files create correctly and show in both the Resouces / MDG technologies / Import technology as well as in the Configure / Technology / Manage menus.  However sometimes the "Set active" button remains grayed out even if I restart EA.  In this case I cannot access the MDG.

Question 1. Does anyone have any good guess of common reasons why the enable button is grayed out?
Question 2. I assume that to change the toolboxes I don't need to redefine extensions of the UML standard elements / connectors and diagrams... just define the new toolboxes using the profile helper.  Is that correct?   
Question 3. When using the helper, is it better to have a separate eap project file for each toolbox or to have all in one eap file?  If all in one file, what is the right package structure (I remember the user manual saying stereotype packages cannot be nested)?  I am trying this package structure:
-  Model
  - Sparx Helper
     - Component profile
        - Component  diagram profile (I edit the toolbox attribute, then I save this package as a profile)
        - Component diagram toolbox (I edit this, then I save this package as a profile)
        - Component toolbox profile
     - Use Case profile
        - Use Case diagram profile (I edit the toolbox attribute, then I save this package as a profile)
        - Use Case diagram toolbox (this is the part I edit, then I save this package as a profile)
        - Use Case toolbox profile
      - Etc. etc.

Thank you very much!
   

9
Hello

my screen real estate is at a premium so in order to maximize workspace I'd like to remove/completely hide the "Start" navigation pane located at the far right of the screen.  The pane closes automatically and has an "Options" menu to rearrange items, but even when closed it takes up a few pixels that I want to use.  Does anyone know if there is a way to totally hide it, similar to the way the status bar can be removed from the screen?  Thanks!

10
Hello

EA version 1310

to make a lot of conceptual/logical level diagrams quickly, I want to create custom toolboxes for the main UML diagrams in the standard EA UML profile (class, use case, sequence, etc.).  But the default UML profile is not available in the MDGTechnologies folder and most documentation is about how to ADD new toolboxes for a new technology, not how to REMOVE elements to the existing toolboxes for the EA default UML profile.

Can anyone point me to instructions to do this?  Thank you very much!!

11
EA 1310.

I want to export a CSV report listing names and tagged values for some elements. I use the Publish / CSV exchange specification menu to make a file specification including fields "Name" and tagged value "Remarks", which is a memo type tagged value.

When I run the CSV report, everything works correctly except all the "Remarks" fields are blank.

If the "Remarks" tagged value is NOT "memo" type then the fields are not blank and all entries are visible in the exported CSV file.

My current workaround is to make 'Remarks" a normal tagged value then enter the text in the notes field of the Remarks tagged value; then select Tagged value notes in the CSV exchange specification. But I think it would be better if "memo" type tagged values exported to CSV correctly. Is this a bug?  Should I file bug report?  Thanks!!

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