Is there a viewer/explorer software that allows you to collapse and expand clusters? I.e., you have this graph before, and via collapsing, it gets displayed as this graph afterwards? I’d prefer an open source product.

Before and after

Background (you can skip this)

I’m trying to find out whether Graphviz would be a good tool for exploring software design and project management items.

For software architecture, nodes could be classes, clusters namespaces/packages and edges dependencies. Maybe even different types of dependencies, e.g. inheritance or association etc. I have once used such an explorer at work in a very expensive edition of Visual Studio. I have not found such a great tool for other languages that was affordable for personal use. jQAssistant may be what I am looking for. It is an open source tool that allows creating neo4j (graph database) graphs for Java (and AFAIK any language if writng an extension). And AFAIK, neo4j graphs can be exported as Graphviz.

For project management, nodes/clusters could be parent and child issues, and edges could be relationships like “blocks” or “relates to”. Apparently there is an extension for jQAssistant that can do that for the project management software Jira.

For both use cases, the collapse feature is quite vital, because a graph with hundreds of nodes and edges does not aid understanding.

As a side note for this question, custom arrangement of node positions would also be important. AFAIK that should be possible in at least some editors, because I have seen that some Graphviz layout engines support an attribute for a node’s position.

I have posted this question in the Graphviz forum before, but I hope to get more replies here.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.