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'[OT] Re: How to write bad code - was C vs. ASM'
1999\11\16@090422 by Jim Hartmann

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Does anyone have any suggestions for good documenting tools?  I mean a
program you can draw pictures like state diagrams and also text?  MS Word
is terrible for drawing and maintaining pictures.

-Jim

1999\11\16@165252 by Don Hyde

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I have used ABC Flowcharter for years.  It used to be cheap and small and
simple, and a very easy way to create flowcharts and state diagrams.  Now it
belongs to MicroGrafx, and is more expensive and highly bloated (like all PC
software), but it still makes flowcharts and state diagrams faster and
easier than any other program.  It will (sort of) output files that can be
read by weaker programs like Visio.

{Quote hidden}

1999\11\16@180345 by Thomas Brandon

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I have never actually done a team job in an embedded system but have
programmed for a small company (5 employees) doing fairly substantial
projects for the team sizes. Through this I have seen the value of
documentation from both sides. We had one person working for us who
basically never documented code (put his name and the project name if you
were lucky) and had insanely poor code legibility (this was Visual Basic and
at times I was re-reading code to understand it which ain't normal in VB).
At one point I was asked to integrate some code he had done into a project I
was developing, it was a nghtmare. In the end I rewrote all the code because
I thought it was completely wrong. After looking over it with him it turned
out he had done it mostly correctly but had approached the problem very
differently from me and thus I had misunderstood his intents and thought
there were errors. This was a big learning experience for me in the need for
documentation.

But through the same person I saw the other side of the documentation
argument. This was a very small company, especially given the sizes of jobs,
and so we simply couldn't afford stuff ups. And, when it comes down to it,
the customer doesn't pay for documentation, he pays for a working product
(obviously this changes when you get to ISO9xxx stuff). My coworker would be
congratulated by my boss for getting work done in extremely fast times.
True, if modifications came up the price would be paid, but over the 3 years
odd I worked at that company, this person would have been congratulated by
my boss a few dozen times for promptly finishing work and got caught out all
of 2 times (and then it was the person stuck making modifications who paid
the real price). Now obviously these figures may have been different in
larger projects but these weren't exactly tiny projects.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not defending poor documentation, far from it.
After trying to modify his code I am a thorough believer now. But that
doesn't change the fact my boss regarding him as one of his best employees
and he got congratulated more times for promptness due to fast coding than
the whole team ever got congratulated for documenation. As I said, to the
customer, documentation ain't worth the bytes it's stored in... It's a
working product that matters. Oh, the number of times I wished those poorly
documented projects would explode in his face, but alas it was never to be.
To this day I don't know if it was luck or genius that allowed him to code
in that way, but he did, and he was rewarded for it.

Tom.

1999\11\17@021106 by Dr. Imre Bartfai

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Hi,
use LyX and his companion, xfig. Both are free, and working excellent. I
hope, Linux is not a concern... <G>

Regards,
Imre


On Tue, 16 Nov 1999, Jim Hartmann wrote:

> Does anyone have any suggestions for good documenting tools?  I mean a
> program you can draw pictures like state diagrams and also text?  MS Word
> is terrible for drawing and maintaining pictures.
>
> -Jim
>
>

1999\11\17@044237 by Keith Hook

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I use "Visio Professional" by the Visio Corporation and the nice thing is
that you can insert the finished results into MS Word.
Keith Hook
Group Manager
CyberLife Solutions
http://www.cyberlife.co.uk
Telephone: +44 01223 727026
Fax: +44 01223 727001
Quayide
Bridge Street
Cambridge
U.K
CB5 8AB
-----Original Message-----
From: Jim Hartmann [Jim_hartmannspamKILLspamSILENTKNIGHT.COM]
Sent: 16 November 1999 14:02
To: .....PICLISTKILLspamspam.....MITVMA.MIT.EDU
Subject: [OT] Re: How to write bad code - was C vs. ASM


Does anyone have any suggestions for good documenting tools?  I mean a
program you can draw pictures like state diagrams and also text?  MS Word
is terrible for drawing and maintaining pictures.

-Jim

1999\11\17@093142 by James Paul

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Jim,

I too use a Visio product. Visio Technical.  This has libraries
for Electronics, HVAC, Commercial Electrical, Computers,
Networks, Office Layout, etc., etc.
It's a very good program, reasonably priced (about $160.00 when
I got this one about 1 year ago), and it's easy to learn.  Also,
as Keith Hook stated in his message, you can paste the Visio
drawings into MS word with ease.

I would recommend it enthuastically.

                                    Regards,

                                      Jim






On Wed, 17 November 1999, Keith Hook wrote:

{Quote hidden}

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