DocFlex/Together is a revolutionary template-driven documentation generator for Borland® Together® based on DocFlex Technology.
Created under leadership of the former author of the template-driven DocGen module in Together (which was developed during 1998-2000 yet in TogetherSoft Corp.), this new tool represents a major breakthrough and next logical step over what Together DocGen was and still is now.
The software includes:
The DSM drivers connect to Together models and present the information from them in the form similar to XML documents, which can be further processed by DocFlex generator using templates. The result is the best quality printable or hypertext framed documentation for projects and models designed in Together.
The whole packages is prepared as a normal Together component and can be invoked both from the Together IDE and from the command line in a batch mode. The template designer can also be started alone as a separate Java application without launching the whole Together IDE.
Represents Together models in the form similar to XML documents and allows to process information from them basing on universal concepts of XML and approaches developed around it (such as XPath).
Provides advanced data querying and sorting capabilities comparable with those of XSL Transformations (and possibly even beyond).
The high quality graphic Template Designer allows to visually design the sophisticated formatting of the generated documentation basing on abstract layout concepts such as flow of text, paragraphs, tables and lists and any combinations of them.
Since all such layouts in one or another form are supported by any modern output format (such as HTML, RTF, PDF, XSL-FO and so on), the formatting specified in the DocFlex template can be rendered with the high precision in any of those formats. (Currently, the supported output formats include HTML and RTF. Other formats are planned in next versions, XSL-FO in the first place).
The TXT output is supported as well and may be used for non-documentation tasks to employ sophisticated data query and processing capabilities presented in this technology (for instance, using templates and TXT output, you can easily program dumping the data from Together models into various XML files).
DocFlex templates are full-blown programs. What is not visualized by the Template Designer in the form of template components can be specified in component properties using FlexQuery-expressions.
FlexQuery-expressions are small scripts with the Java-based syntax, which are widely used in DocFlex templates to specify all kinds of dynamically computed settings (such as dynamic properties of template components, filter conditions and so on).
More than 80 built-in general utility functions are available now within the expressions, plus 26 function specific for Together, which represent some functionality provided by Together OpenAPI.
A special utility function
callForName() allows to invoke
a method of any custom-written external Java-class (implementing a special
interface from the DocFlex API).
Within FlexQuery-expressions, it is possible to access the template parameters as well as various generator variables organized in the form of hierarchy of objects and properties of the Generator Object Model (similar to Document Object Model in Dynamic HTML).
The basic set of templates provided with DocFlex/Together allows to generate the following kinds of documentation:
The notable feature of the Diagram Documentation generated in RTF output format is that, all diagram images are properly scaled to fit the page size. Moreover, big diagrams will be automatically rotated into "landscape" orientation in order to minimize the image scaling (this feature can be disabled).
Provides comprehensive support for launching the documentation generator from the Together command line. This includes possibility to specify on the command line:
DocFlex/Together works with:
To run the Template Designer as separate application, you will need Java™ 2 JRE 1.4.x or JRE 1.3.x.
The DocFlex/Together Java libraries are supplied in two variants (both included in the packages available in downloads):
Under JRE 1.4.x, the DocFlex Generator shows much faster performance (although, this can be used only with Together 6.2 or Together Architect 1.0).
DocFlex Template Designer launched from Together IDE (click to enlarge):
The framed HTML documentation generated by the "CashSales" sample project using
'ProjectDocFrames.tpl' template (click on the screenshot to see the live HTML):
These are the pages from the RTF documentation generated by the "CashSales"
sample project using
'ProjectDoc.tpl' template (click on the screenshot
to see in full size):
Please notice the Sequence Diagram on the 3-rd screenshot. It happened to be big enough, so it was automatically rotated into the landscape orientation in order to minimize the image scaling. This feature is unique for DocFlex!
DocFlex/Together offers the following major advantages over the old DocGen module in Together:
A new data model concept. Now, it is not based anymore on the Together specific notions (namely, things described by RWI interface of Together OpenAPI). Instead, DocFlex, in any its incarnation, always "thinks" it works with an XML document. This allows to organize all data querying basing on XPath as well as gives other immense possibilities of data processing -- virtually to turn inside out any data fed to DocFlex with just a few settings specified in templates!
Also, this approach provides a single platform independent on any particular application. As you can see on our web-site, we offer now a similar tool for Javadoc called DocFlex/Javadoc.
What's more, very soon we are going to release DocFlex/XML -- a version which will allow to construct templates basing on DTD and XSD (XML Schema) files and take data directly from XML files.
The next step about it will be creating with the DocFlex/XML a set of templates specifically designed for OMG XMI® data sources (that is XMI files). In effect, this will provide a universal template-based doc-generator for virtually any modern UML modeling tool with all included XMI-specific templates open for the users to change! And all of this is going to appear very soon (see below), in a period of a month or two.
Another huge advancement over the old DocGen is absolutely new formatting concept. In the old DocGen, all formatting within templates was specified in notions of coordinates. This was difficult and sometimes simply impossible to render correctly in such layout-based formats as HTML and RTF.
In DocFlex, on the contrary, all formatting is directly specified using layouts (such as flow of text, paragraphs, tables and lists). This smoothly fits into the container organization of Java Swing components as well as all known output formats (HTML, RTF, PDF and so on). The result is that what you see in the Template Designer, you'll get in output documents.
Also, this approach allows using the same abstract formatting once specified in the templates to generate the outstanding quality documentation simultaneously in all output formats supported by DocFlex (see screenshots).
There are lots of other advancements which could make life easier for developers using DocFlex such as full support of template parameters, all generator variable organized in the form of the Generator Object Model (similar to Document Object Model in dynamic HTML), about 100 general utility functions available in FlexQuery-expressions, which are small scripts widely used in DocFlex templates to specify all kinds of dynamically computed settings.
The open part of DocFlex API will allow to smoothly integrate the calls to DocFlex generator into your own Java code. The open API will allow:
The open DocFlex API will be fully documented with the release of DocFlex/XML which is planned about the end of Jan-2005.
About the same time (or early Feb-2005), we are going to release the DocFlex/Together version 1.1 upgraded with the latest DocFlex core.
Shortly after that, the plans are to release the “DocFlex/Together+XML” bundle which will include all features of both DocFlex/Together and DocFlex/XML as well as, in addition, will allow to mix in a single generated documentation the data taken as directly from Together models as from XML files. Later, the DocFlex/Together+XML, besides the basic templates for Together, will also include the templates for XMI® data source.
We suggest the following reasons for purchasing a license for DocFlex/Together and starting using it:
DocFlex is a state-of-the-art technology which in total took more than 8000 man/hours to develop. No one vendor offers now anything like this!
A rare opportunity to upgrade one of the key features of a UML modeling tool for a very cheap price.
This product is not the dead one. It is a live source! By purchasing a license for this software, you not only acquire a useful tool, you also make a vital investment into its future development which results you could enjoy later by yourself. And we do know where to go next!
We provide agile support for your license no big company could ever boast!
You could ask us any your questions and receive comprehensive answers on them directly "from the source" -- that is from the very people who have conceived and developed this technology.
Moreover, we are able to instantly fix any bugs you report as well as quickly update this tool to meet your needs. Because what is useful for you will certainly be useful for others! In fact, this is what we most need now -- to have a direct contact to people using our tools and be able to track what improvements are needed, what the real demand is.
We offer help in designing your templates to customize the generated documentation by your order. See also our Services.
To find a lot more information about DocFlex/Together, please visit:
See more examples and screenshots of the generated documentation:
DocFlex Technology documentation:
Try DocFlex/Together now: