Connected diagrams can often get a little crowded with various dynamic connectors running between multiple nodes and so it can be useful to hide some of the connecting lines. Of course you still need to make sense of what’s connected to what so adding labels to a connector can be helpful. The challenge is positioning those labels in what is, by definition, a truly dynamic shape.
A couple of posts ago I covered one way of adding ‘Positioning icons in a Visio group shape’. This post follows up with a small code utility to take some of the leg work out of adding all of the group and sub-shape cells.
In a previous post, I looked at one option for positioning icon sub-shapes within a group using a grid system. This works nicely, but it’s based on equally sized grid rows and columns and therefore, equally sized icons too. So in this post I'm going to have a go at trying to managed variable sized icons, while still retaining the ability of collapsing individual items so that the remaining visible icons concertina up next to each other.
In the previous post I looked at a method of dividing up a group shape using a grid system layout, to allow you to position child shapes in a simple and flexible way. One of my motivations for considering this is to try and create a flexible system for laying out icons around a shape when Data Graphics are not an option.
Placement of sub-shapes within a group can sometimes become complex. The logic that determines their size and position can get buried in the individual shapes making it harder to get a clear view of what’s happening. One answer to this problem is the use of a grid system and I thought I’d explore this approach over the next couple of posts.
If you’re designing a Visio solution to work across multiple versions, it can often be a little tricky to remember when a particular ShapeSheet function first appeared on the scene. I regularly find myself reaching for the SDK and so I’ve put together a quick reference that I can look up the information a little faster:
In general Visio shapes have always supported a single solid colour and if you want two or more colors you need to group shapes together. There are some tricks using shadow offsets to add another color, but by and large it’s one color per shape. Visio 2013 changes that by introducing gradients and, aside from the standard use for gradients, this allows you to create regions of different colors across the shape.