Archive for June 28, 2010

7 Free Diagramming Tools To Create Diagrams Easily – Alternative to Microsoft Visio

What can turn out to be a complex design can become simple if its represented via a good set of diagrams. Diagrams can simplify complexity in your software design. Diagramming tools are used to create flow charts and business diagrams. While Microsoft Visio is one of the best diagramming tool that is commercially available, there are free diagramming tools that are equally good and lets you create professional looking diagrams.

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Here are some of the best diagramming tools that are available for free:

1. Dia

Dia is free and open source diagramming software, developed as part of the GNOME projects. Dia is inspired by the commercial Windows program ‘Visio’, though more geared towards informal diagrams for casual use. It can be used to draw many different kinds of diagrams. It currently has special objects to help draw entity relationship diagrams, UML diagrams, flowcharts, network diagrams, and many other diagrams. It is also possible to add support for new shapes by writing simple XML files, using a subset of SVG to draw the shape.


Its available for GNU/Linux, Unix and Windows. Download the software here.

2. ARIS Express

ARIS Express is a free-of-charge modeling tool for business process analysis and management. ARIS Express is the first free business process modeling software. ARIS Express is the perfect tool for starting with Business Process Management. It’s easy to install and allows intuitive and fast process modeling.


Its available for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. Download the software here.

3. Inkscape

Inkscape is an open source vector graphics editor, with capabilities similar to Illustrator, CorelDraw, or Xara X, using the W3C standard Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) file format. It is very easy to edit nodes, perform complex path operations, trace bitmaps and much more.


The software is available for Windows and Mac OS X. Download the software here.

4. ADONIS:Community Edition

ADONIS:Community Edition is a free tool for professional business process management. It lets you to easily model your processes and organisational resources to document the status quo, show the big picture, and design changes.

 ADONIS-Community Edition

You can download the software here.

5. Kivio

Kivio is a free and open source flowcharting and diagramming application for the KOffice application suite, and has a user interface that is similar to Microsoft Visio. It enables you to create network diagrams, organisation charts, flowcharts and more.


The software is available for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. Download the software here.

6. Draw Draw is a vector graphics editor that is part of the office suite. It provides shapes, connectors between shapes and are available in a range of line styles and facilitate building drawings such as flowchart. It includes many features found in desktop software like Microsoft Visio.


Download the software here.

7. yED

yEd is a free general-purpose diagramming software with a multi-document interfacey. It is a powerful diagram editor that can be used to quickly and effectively generate high-quality drawings of diagrams. Using yED you can create your diagrams manually or import your external data for analysis and auto-magically arrange even large data sets by just pressing a button.


Download the software here.

8+ Free and Open Source E-Learning Community Software List

E-Learning community software like Blackboard help bring teachers and students together, sharing information on line in a seamless manner. While Blackboard is standard and has been present for years has good features. There are some free and open source alternatives. some are good and some are evolving. It is recommended that you try the following software list if you are looking for alternative to Blackboard or similar solution.

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Moodle is a Course Management System (CMS), also known as a Learning Management System (LMS) or a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). It is a Free web application that educators can use to create effective online learning sites. Moodle has a large and diverse user community with over 929431 registered users on this Moodle site alone, speaking over 78 languages in 211 countries. Learn more.


Sakai is a Course Management System (CMS), a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) or Learning Management System (LMS). While Sakai can be used for teaching and learning (similar to Blackboard and Moodle), it is a Collaboration and Learning Environment (CLE) because it embraces uses beyond the classroom. Distributed as Open Source, can be used for free. Sakai is an adaptable, interoperable, reliable, and scalable platform for learning and collaboration. Sakai’s roles and permission system is especially flexible and powerful. Learn more.


.LRN (pronounced "dot learn") is a global community of educators, designers, and software developers who partner together to drive educational innovation. Because the software is open source, organizations can invest their precious dollars in people and curriculum development instead of expensive licensing and support fees. Learn more.



Claroline is an Open Source eLearning and eWorking platform  allowing teachers to build effective online courses and to manage learning and collaborative activities on the web. Translated into 35 languages, Claroline has a large worldwide users’ and developers’ community. Adjustable to various training contexts, Claroline is not only used by schools and universities, but also by training centres, associations and companies. The platform is customizable and offers a flexible and custom-made working environment. Learn more.


Dokeos is a open source online learning suite. It provides all the features needed for e-learning and blended learning management : From Authoring to Reporting. Here is an interesting mind map from Dokeos website.



DSpace open source software enables open sharing of content that spans organizations, continents and time. DSpace is the software of choice for academic, non-profit, and commercial organizations building open digital repositories.  It is free and easy to install "out of the box" and completely customizable to fit the needs of any organization. Learn more.


The new version of the powerful open source learning management system has been published! Learn more.


Coggno is an e-learning software platform and courseware creation toolkit, Learning Management System (also known as a Course Management System), and Virtual Learning Environment. Learn more.


LAMS lets design, manage, and deliver online collaborative learning activities. It provides teachers with a highly intuitive visual authoring environment for creating sequences of learning activities. LAMS is free and open source. Learn more.

Free Open Source Software To Manage Large Scale Enterprise Systems

When you manage large projects, its always important to have a easy tool that lets you manage various aspects of the projects like project plan, change requests, document management etc. While there are some commercial software available, there are some really nice and simple software that are available for free. Endeavour Software Project Management is one of the best that is gaining popularity every day.

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Endeavour Software Project Management is an Open Source solution to manage the creation of large-scale enterprise systems in an iterative and incremental development process.

It has some great features to manage portfolio, resource, document management etc. The major features include support for the following software artifacts:

  • Use Case Management
  • Project Plan Management and Charts
  • Iteration Management
  • Change Request Management
  • Wiki Integration with JAMWiki
  • Document Management
  • Test Case Management
  • Defect Tracking
  • Defect Report
  • Assignments Report
  • Task Management
  • Project Glossary
  • Actors Management
  • Status Update Management
  • Iteration Defects By Status and Priority Reports
  • Iteration Cumulative Flow Report
  • Test Plan Management

Endeavour Software Project Management



The Top QT IDE ‘QT Creator’ Provides Easy Ways To Create QT Applications – A Review

Qt is a cross-platform application and UI framework. Using Qt, you can write web-enabled applications once and deploy them across desktop, imagemobile and embedded operating systems without rewriting the source code. Nokia owned QT is quite powerful and very handy for cross-platform developers. Few Editors or IDEs are present for QT like MonkeyStudio, KDevelop, Eclipse or Visual Studio QT integration etc. But, the new QT Creator from the creator of QT is something worth looking at. Lots of features and really lightweight IDE. 

QT Creator from Nokia is a lightweight, cross-platform IDE for use with the Qt application framework. It is truly advanced and has the cool features of modern IDEs like MS Visual Studio, Eclipse etc.

Major Features:

  • An advanced C++ code editor
  • Integrated Qt Designer graphical layout and forms builder
  • Context-sensitive help system (Press F1 for Help)
  • Graphical front end to the GDB debugger
  • Integrated cross-platform build tool
  • Rapid code navigation
  • Project and Build management
  • Cross platform – runs on Windows, Linux, Mac…

Lots of interesting features such as Auto Completion of keywords, include file names, bulk variable renames and many more will help developers to save some time.

A sample Chart project on QT.

QT Creator

Debugging step by step. It has the integrated Watch window, Thread details, Variable highlighting etc. Really helpful for developers.

QT Creator2


3 Easy Steps For Booting Linux From Your USB Drive (Pen Drive) – Really Simple!

Are you interested in converting your old USB Drive in to a Linux testing ground? It is really simple to convert your spare USB Drive in to a Linux boot partition, carry all imageyour favorite apps in your pocket! With these simple steps, you can convert you USB drive in to a Linux bootable device. You can format, reimage with various distributions of Linux and pick your best compatible variant. It’s really non messy. If you do not want to mess up your existing OS installation, then read on…

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PendriveLinux is a great resource on the web for any Linux to USB related details, absolutely comprehensive and you can’t go wrong with the steps provided. Here is the steps for putting Lucid Puppy Linux on to your Pen Drive!

Installation Steps:

1.  Download the lupu-501.iso

2. Download and launch our Universal USB Installer, select Lucid Puppy 5.0.1 and follow the onscreen instructions

Puppy Linux USB

3. Once the script has finished, restart your PC and set your BIOS or Boot Menu to boot from the USB device, save your changes and reboot

Now you will be on Lucid Puppy 5.0.1! Enjoy!

Puppy Linux USB

You can pretty much load any Linux Distro on Pen Drive this way. All you need is a Pen Drive with at least 4GB capacity. Some Linux Distro are less demanding. Like the Puppy Linux will be happy with 128MB or higher Pen Drives.

Via [PendriveLinux]

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