Author Topic: Best method for adding legends to views  (Read 837 times)

ITCleric

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Best method for adding legends to views
« on: May 21, 2020, 16:19:20 PM »
I searched the forum but really only found one post about this. I was wondering what methods the community is using if they need to add a legend to a view. Say for exporting an image or PDF of an architecture to show people who aren't familiar with the Archimate language. Is anyone using any automation for this or do people just create an isolated viewpoint for a legend.

Thanks,

Rennie

Jean-Baptiste Sarrodie

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Re: Best method for adding legends to views
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2020, 16:42:40 PM »
Hi,

I've been using several tricks. They all have pros and cons, so choosing one is a matter of taste. They all have in common to create the legend in a visual group (whose appearance > border is set to rectangle) which helps moving it around when needed.

If you don't have to add composition/aggregation or assignment to your legend, then use a visual connection created between two (invisible) notes. You can tune the connection to mimic usual ArchiMate relationships.
Pros: doesn't add any concept in your model
Cons: can't mimic composition/aggregation or assignment. Doesn't work for elements, unless you use some color code and simply use a note as legend for them.

If you do have to add composition/aggregation or assignment , then use a real ArchiMate relationship created from and to the same Grouping element shown multiple times on your view and set to be invisible. Use real ArchiMate elements for your legend. With Archi 4.7 you'll be able to change concept's label on a per view basis, meaning that you only need one instance of each concept in your model for all possible legends, simply tune the label depending on your need (in some legend you will use ArchiMate name like "Application Component' while in some other you'll use more friendly names like "Business Application").
Pros: support all ArchiMate elements and relationships
Cons: add some concepts "pollution" to your model (but not too much)

I usually keep different standard legends in a single view in order to easily copy/paste them in new views. It is possible to create a jArchi script which would create legend for you based on actually used concepts. I discussed the creation of such script with a colleague and friend (hey David!) multiple time, but we still haven't coded it at the moment.

Regards,

JB
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ITCleric

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Re: Best method for adding legends to views
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2020, 13:57:41 PM »
I know I'm really late in responding Jean-Baptiste (a current project has me buried in work), but this is great advice.

Thank you!

Rennie

DaveVint

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Re: Best method for adding legends to views
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2020, 14:44:52 PM »
I use a script to generate documentation, and include a section with one of these notation guides, using our colour scheme:

https://www.archimatetool.com/resources/

Dave

eric.vdv

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Re: Best method for adding legends to views
« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2020, 17:25:31 PM »
Hello JB (and Phil !),

I am experimenting with your (great) tool since few months now, and I find it very pleasant to use : not only simple/ergonomic, but also quite powerfull... many thanks to you and to Phil for sharing it (and spending your time) with us !  ;)

I was reading the answer you made to Rennie, and I myself decided to use the 1st approach you described when time comes to add some legend to my views, as I pay particular attention to keep my repository "clean" (I don't like to "pollute" it with "fake", "theoretical" or "hypothetical" concetps). So I am using "visual" notes, groups and connections as much as possible...

That said, I was recently wondering why it is actually not possible to "mimic" composition/aggragation/assignment relationships through visual connections, and also why it is not possible to link together two archimate concepts (application components, interfaces, ...) using these "visual connections" (which are only visible in views, without creating underlying object in the model repository).

Indeed, I have a particular use case in mind when asking that, which  go beyond the topic of legends and which must be frequent in most organizations : when I'm working on a new project (at solution architecture level), I am often (no... always !  ;D) asked to identify, design and evaluate all possible architecture scenarios (most of times, there are 2 or 3 candidates for the "target architecture").

If "visual only" connections were possible between archimate concepts (and composition/aggragation/assignment arrow styles allowed, to mimic all kind of relationships), then it would be possible to model all candidate architecture scenarios for a particular project directly on the "reference model" of the organization, in one or several views (doesn't matter), without polluting it with some sort of hypothetical data flows / triggering relationships (/ whatever relationship between concepts) which will never exist in the future (because only 1 of the 2 or 3 candidates will be implemented at the end).

As it is not possible (for now ?  :) ;) ), the only work-around I found was to use "official" archimate relationships between concepts... and then to maintain two archi models in parellel : one "reference model", and another one dedicated to projects... Which is not optimal (to my point  :P) because you have to play and juggle all times with the import/export functionality (which can be a little bit tricky when you are in a team with several architects using co-archi, a "reference model" that evolves a lot (being done "from scratch"), and literally tons of projects to handle in parallel ! :)).

What's your thoughts about this ? Is my idea totally weird ? (maybe there are some potential repercussions that I don't see...) ?
Is the work-around I use the only way to go (or have you got some advices to make it easier to handle) ?

Thank you in advance for your answer and.... keep up the (very) good work ! :D

Regards,
Eric.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2020, 17:33:17 PM by eric.vdv »

Phil Beauvoir

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Re: Best method for adding legends to views
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2020, 10:06:57 AM »
Hi Eric,

We've always disallowed non-ArchiMate type connections between ArchiMate elements in a View so as not cause any confusion when looking at an ArchiMate diagram. As it is now, a connection between elements is guaranteed to be an ArchiMate relationship. We do, however, allow non-ArchiMate connections between elements and notes and groups as the intention is clear.

Phil
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eric.vdv

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Re: Best method for adding legends to views
« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2020, 13:21:25 PM »
Hi Eric,

We've always disallowed non-ArchiMate type connections between ArchiMate elements in a View so as not cause any confusion when looking at an ArchiMate diagram. As it is now, a connection between elements is guaranteed to be an ArchiMate relationship. We do, however, allow non-ArchiMate connections between elements and notes and groups as the intention is clear.

Phil

Thanks for your Answer Phil... OK no problem, I can understand the reason behind this choice...
Then I will continue to juggle with my 2 models...  :P

projetnumero9

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Re: Best method for adding legends to views
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2020, 18:40:04 PM »
Hi,

I usually keep different standard legends in a single view in order to easily copy/paste them in new views. It is possible to create a jArchi script which would create legend for you based on actually used concepts. I discussed the creation of such script with a colleague and friend (hey David!) multiple time, but we still haven't coded it at the moment.

Finally taken the time to write it,  :)! See: https://gist.github.com/projetnumero9/21ec861797dd6f3fcc193f8221922e8e
Not the best writing, but working for a POC!

Regards,

ITCleric

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Re: Best method for adding legends to views
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2021, 20:13:12 PM »
OMG this is awesome, and perfect for my needs! Thank you for sharing it.

Rennie