On Class Diagrams, Crossings and Metrics

Author Holger Eichelberger

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Holger Eichelberger

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Holger Eichelberger. On Class Diagrams, Crossings and Metrics. In Graph Drawing. Dagstuhl Seminar Proceedings, Volume 5191, pp. 1-12, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2006)


As a standardized software engineering diagram, the UML class diagram provides various information on the static structure of views on software while design, implementation and maintenance phase. This talk gives an overview on drawing UML class diagrams in hierarchical fashion. Therefore, common elements of class diagrams are introduced and aesthetic rules for drawing UML class diagrams are given. These rules are based on four disciplines involved in the reading process of diagrams. After a brief introduction to our drawing algorithm, an extensive extension of the well-known Sugiyama algorithm, two details are highlighted: A new crossing reduction algorithm is presented and compared to existing ones and issues on measuring the quality of a layout are discussed.
  • UML class diagrams
  • semantic aesthetic principles
  • hierarchical crossing reduction
  • layout metrics


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