Entity-Relastionship diagrams in OmniGraffle?

I’d like to do some entity-relationship diagramming for a portion of a database, just to help me visualize the interactions of maybe a dozen tables or so. The best I can do so far is to cobble together table name and rows with separate rectangles. This is a bit cumbersome.

Has anyone worked out at good way to draw ERDs in OmniGraffle?

Hi @tod, there was a pretty nice tutorial on relationship diagramming in an older version of the OmniGraffle 6.0 user manual (the tutorial begins on page 125). There have been some changes to the UI since then, though, so some of the screenshots will be a bit off if you’re running the most recent version of OmniGraffle, but I think it should still help!

We’re working on adding an updated tutorial back into the current user manual. Hopefully we’ll have that available in the not-too-distant future.

Wow, this is something I’d most definitely be interested in as well!

The best is, of course, to use an established Standard, rather than inventing one for yourself. That way, all the elements get communicated, rather than only the elements that you know.

For anyone interested in genuine, Standard-compliant data modelling, I have Stencils for OmniGraffle, available free:

Entity Relation Diagram (ERD)

Data Model (IDEF1X)

I also have Stencils for genuine Relational data modelling (Dr E F Codd, not the detractors), Extensions to IDEF1X, and serious GUI design (not skins). Please email me (go to profile) for those.


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Some clarification:

That is of course the Standard IDEF1X symbols for Entity level. It is not ERD as commonly used, because ERD is anti-Relational, it cannot handle Relational Keys.

Given that the Relational Model has been established for 50 years, and that we have had genuine SQL platforms for 40 years, that ERD is still being taught at university level, instead of the Standard IDEF1X, stands as evidence that academia in the computer science field at least, is divorced from reality.

I do not provide assistance for anti-Relational or pre 1970 methods.


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