Lecture Notes in Computer Science Volume 1353, 1997, pp 415-424

Extending the Sugiyama algorithm for drawing UML class diagrams: Towards automatic layout of object-oriented software diagrams

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The automatic layout of software diagrams is a very attractive graph drawing application for use in software tools. Object-oriented software may be modelled using a visual language called the Unified Modeling Language (UML). In this paper we present an algorithm for the automatic layout of UML class diagrams using an extension of the Sugiyama algorithm together with orthogonal drawing. These diagrams visualize the static structure of object-oriented software systems and are characterised by the use of two main types of edges corresponding to different relationships between the classes. The graph drawing algorithm accounts for these concepts by treating the different edge types in different ways.