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Using UML/flowcharts before developing?  RSS feed

 
Daniel Ortega
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Hello All! Newbie here, just getting started with Java (think "Hello World" kind of stuff). I've read through a few posts in this forum, which leads me to this posting.

When developing a Java app, even a simple one for testing/educational purposes, do most experienced developers plan out their apps via UML or flowcharts? Is this done in the "real world" of Java developers?

I've seen a few Java tutorial videos. One instructor said developers should always plan out applications with UML/flowcharts before coding, but other videos never mention using them.

Just wondering how most others plan out their Java apps before writing code.

Thanks.

Dan
 
Knute Snortum
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I shy away from words like "always", but I would say that with all except the most trivial programs, you should do some planning.  It doesn't have to be UML or flowcharts, although these are good, but at least writing down the design of the program is recommended. 

I've been out of the "real world" of programming for some years, but when I was making a living at this, we had design specs that we coded to.  Sometimes I was part of the design planning and sometimes I was handed the specs.  Usually the specs would be detailed enough to code from, but sometime I did a little planning beyond the specs for myself.
 
Daniel Ortega
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Thanks Knute. Appreciate the reply. I agree, words like "never" and "always" are usually best avoided, especially in business where time is money.

I wasn't sure how most pros who are paid to do Java development actually begin a project. In a perfect world, I'm thinking the best thing is to have the Java developers involved from the beginning of a project, but maybe that's not how it works in the business world. 

Thanks.

Dan
 
Junilu Lacar
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Circles and arrows on a whiteboard. That's about the extent of the diagramming that I do, especially for big projects. UML, as with any other notation, is used to communicate ideas. It's only good for conveying high-level abstract ideas though, in my opinion. Detailed design is best done in tests and in code. That's the approach I take.

Read the essays by Jack Reeves about code as design
 
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