How did you come to class today? • What were the intersections? • What if one of the paths you took had been blocked? • What if you were giving a group of people directions who might be coming from different directions?
Flowcharts • Used to diagram processes • Four MAIN symbol types • Square = a process • Diamond = a decision • Rhombus = data • Oval = terminating points
Creating a Flowchart • Put a title on each chart identifying the process that it illustrates. (For example: "Order Entry Process"). • Note the author's name and the date on each chart. • Clearly indicate the starting and ending points of the process, using standard symbols marked "Start" and "End." • Keep the direction of flow consistent. Avoid confusion by keeping all flow lines moving from top to bottom and left to right. Don't reverse the direction in the chart unless the flow reverses itself in reality. • Number your steps. • Break the steps down to a consistent level of detail. Don't include trivial sub-steps of one task while treating an another, equivalent task as a whole. If one step or task needs to be analyzed in detail, make a separate chart illustrating that sub-process. • Avoid Crossing Flow Lines In a well-designed chart, flow lines will not cross each other. By rearranging a chart you can usually get rid of crossed lines. If two lines must cross, use a "bridge" (also known as a "line hop") to show that the lines do not intersect.
Homework • Create a flowchart to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Be sure to use the decision diamonds to check for important states. • Due next Tuesday, Sept. 27