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2007-11-09, 03:58 #1
- Join Date
- Mar 2002
- Sacramento, California, USA
- Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Database modelling: problems with the Entity shape
I'm using the reverse engineering wizard to help me build documentation for an existing database. It creates a diagram composed of Entity shapes. I've found that the Entity shape is really meant for desiging databases, not for documenting them. I've having trouble dealing with the resulting mismatch.
The root problem is that Entity is designed to represent the fields in a table and nothing more. For documentation, that's just pointless. To make my work useful I have to add information about how the associated application uses the table, what data is stored in it, how it relates to other tables, etc. Entity has no place for any such information.
I thought I could work around the problem by putting notes in a rectangle below each Entity and grouping each Entity/rectangle pair together, but Entity is fighting me there, too. An Entity is impossible to resize, so I can't match its width to the width of the corresponding rectangle. It seems impervious to snap and glue, so I can't even align a pair of shapes without an excessive amount of work.
I've starrted reading about how to modify stencils, and eventually I may figure out how to make Entity behave as I want. For now, though, I'm seeking ideas on how to get the results I need -- or any presentable approximation -- without the learning curve.