We’re happy to introduce you to our new plugin that serves the purpose of modeling the structure of documents.
Its predecessor, the Model Based Document Generator (MBDG), was developed in 2009 by ESO (European Southern Observatory), ten years after the organization started to implement a “one document” approach. The MBDG plugin for MagicDraw was developed in order to enable users to write documents as SysML models and to transform them into DocBook XML files. The plugin proved to be a success, making it possible to work with documents and system models within the same modeling environment, thus removing the risk of data duplication and significantly improving the consistency in an organization‘s documentation. It was used to create and maintain the modeling guidelines collected in an MBSE cookbook.
While MBDG accomplished its purpose and complied with the aforementioned “one document” approach, No Magic, Inc. aimed at making document modeling even more efficient. In 2014, we released the Document Modeling plugin – the neatly developed tool that ensures a more reliable outcome and offers more features, such as direct DocBook file export to PDF, HTML or XML formats. It also allows reviewing the prepared document structure in the document preview panel.
The Document Modeling plugin generates a document from your model. It automatically creates tables of content (for the whole document, as well as for particular chapters according to your model‘s hierarchy), lists of tables and figures. You can also edit individual figures and tables by manually scaling and aligning them.
The plugin allows you to:
- Use a standardized way to create a document structure model.
- Create a document structure in a dedicated diagram.
- Review your modeled document in a preview panel before generating a file.
- Share a document structure model with your colleagues via Teamwork Server.
- Apply different document styles.
- Save time and resources, as well as achieve better consistency between your documents.
System engineers may be already familiar with this plugin, as concepts from the OMG SysML standard Views and Viewpoints are used to model it. However, it is designed to benefit not only system engineers, but also system analysts, system architects, and anybody who needs to model a document structure for a specific project.
The new plugin is available on the most recent MagicDraw v.18.0. It can be easily installed by going to Help > Resource/Plugin Manager. We at No Magic, Inc. hope our new plugin will bring your document modeling experience to a new level.
Our effort to develop products that meet all your needs doesn’t stop here – we are currently working on our Cameo Collaborator to make it fully customizable via View and Viewpoints.
Note: This is a technology preview of the document modeling functionality. It is not intended for use in the production environment. Please explore this new technology, experiment with it, and get back to us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your feedback and suggestions about possible improvements or features you are missing. We seek to create the most serviceable tools possible, therefore we welcome and appreciate your contribution!