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Anyone draw out the logic of a process by hand before coding much?

I've been doing that more and more, and it's handy but ... it's also kinda tedious making them on paper or even just in the VS Code extensions I've tried.

I'd really like a way to bust out quick flow charts in VSCode and there's a Draw.io add on and it's ok but lotta fidgeting with flow chats and dragging stuff.

It doesn't have to be pretty and it doesn't have to be super feature rich.... just want to quick bust out a series of steps flow chart style or ... hell any way fast and visual like.

Anyone use anything they really like?

Comments
  • 3
    I often sketch out flows if its more complex, especially if I need to explain it to others.

    Pen snd paper or a whiteboard are my favorite tools.
  • 1
    @Voxera 2nd for whiteboard.

    I have a little 90x30cm whiteboard for a quick jot down, pre COVID i just used to go hit a whiteboard in one of the meeting rooms and draw it up, take a photo and then make it again in MS Visio later if it needed to be documented.

    No software can beat that whiteboard feeling, since it's just you and it adapting on the fly.
  • 2
    @C0D4 Nice. Former place I worked we had I think about one white board per two employees, with more than half bigger that 6 meters width ;)

    And for documentation: smart phone camera :P
  • 1
    Mermaid: just text.
    BPMN: processes graphs.

    All come in extensions for VSC too.
  • 2
    You can try Plant UML, markup for charts and diagrams. VSCode extension for previews exists, but some are a bit wonkey. I'd suggest using one that just connects to a plant uml server rather than try to actually render it. You can run the server locally (docker?) or use one online.
  • 2
    @RagingCodeChimp My-my, these Java graph systems always confuse me with their "servers"... Why not make it like SQLite to integrate as lightweight layer in the app instead of having user to go through all this trouble, I wonder?
  • 2
    @vintprox it uses dotGraph under the hood to calculate the layouts in the graph, and has styling markup as well... there are extension that dont use server, but most are a bit wonky. Were tou aware that most languages in VSCode also uses servers for syntax stuff like intellisense?
  • 1
    @RagingCodeChimp that I know, of course. Well, I get that you'd most likely integrate servers within IDE, so these CPU intensive tasks don't freeze the thread IDE appears within, and at the same time to be manageable by the parent process. But should graphing tools really be that much consuming?
  • 1
    @vintprox well, its not like it is a visual gui to move boxes around, it is markup interpreted as a graph-structure and auto-layed out. All graph-structure interpreters use a lot of cpu.
  • 1
    @RagingCodeChimp oh, yes, that seems like the answer I was missing then πŸ˜… My scapegoat would be web UI, I was so used to its opportune convenience at times, I even forgotten that it consumes a lot of CPU+GPU. Anyway, if I'd go headless and fully customizable, my preference is something like Puppeteer with JS+DOM measures to generate image of graph under the hood. Now when I talk about, I'm kind of tempted to try this thing out ☺️
  • 1
    @vintprox do it, do it, do it !!!!1!!1 πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‚
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