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Ditaa: Diagrams Through ASCII Art (sourceforge.net)
59 points by archielc 60 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 7 comments

It is now on GitHub: https://github.com/stathissideris/ditaa

I've recently used this for a diagram of a FSM in software I'm developing at work.

I drew the diagrams on http://www.asciidraw.com. The diagram ends up as a comment in my source code. This has a couple of benefits: It is easy to keep up to date (I change it if I change the code), and it is under version control (so if I check out a particular branch, I don't have to struggle to find the relevant diagram). It is also not significantly more difficult to do than, say, Visio for a simple diagram like this.

I then used Ditaa to convert the diagram to an image file for more official documentation, like emails to customers etc.

emacs also has a mode for drawing ASCII diagrams, but I'm on Windows, so I can't comment about it.

(http://asciiflow.com/ seems like a nice alternative to asciidraw.com, but asciidraw is the one I started out with)

edit: there is also http://shaky.github.bushong.net/ that I use to entertain people who's seen the ditaa generated diagram.

Re https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11105290

I think this, combined with JavE and/or $EDITOR for $EDITOR in {emacs, vim}, is in fact easy to use. I've written many ASCII diagrams in vim and JavE before -- it's quite easy. The main advantage of writing ASCII diagrams first is that a) they work over email really well, b) they're great for IETF Internet-Drafts and RFCs.

> The main advantage of writing ASCII diagrams first is that a) they work over email really well

FYI there is an ancient format for bitmap-in-email this, see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Netpbm_format

LibreOffice recognises it, incredibly. I've not tested it out in any mail client. I doubt it's supported, but it does exist as a spec.

(FYI and totally irrelevant I originally came across it here http://underhanded-c.org/_page_id_17.html)

Something that I was looking for recently, but didn't find, was a set of ASCII art "glyphs" for rendering electronic schematics.

I am not sure that there exists any kind of library for this, and what I have seen of such schematics (from various text files and other forms), there isn't any "one true way" to represent "standard" parts in both vertical and horizontal orientations (for some parts, it would be nearly impossible, if the goal was to represent the actual symbol using ASCII characters). Most parts are most amenable to horizontal representation only. Fortunately, many schematics can be created in such a manner.

Last time I saw something cool hosted on sourceforge, I was so shocked I fell off my dinosaur and broke my stone underwear.

Wear animal skin underwear

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