Diagram Studio vs FNC Blox

Preamble: So @Brett_Adam did an excellent talk at ukDevgroup last month and got me fired up again about adding some diagramming to my app.

About to invest some time in Blox or Diagram. I am hoping there is a white paper or some kind of comparison document / Feature matrix etc. Is there?

My use-case today is Win32 app to visualise a 1000 page wiki which is a hierarchy and also to show cross links between pages. But I also like Adam's database visualiser and would consider using it for workflow in the main line of business app.

Pro for Diagram: Adam has used it extensively and so I can pick his brain and we may be able to share knowledge; it has been around a long time and every problem has probably been solved and may be more feature rich than Box.
Con for Diagram: The author may have learnt better ways of doing things, but constrained by people using the components and not wanting to introduce breaking changes.

Pro for Blox: Newer; cleaner to work with; multi-platform
Con for Blox: maybe not a feature rich.

I will read both manuals, but I am in that ... do neither because I want to make the right decision.

1 Like

Hi @Jason_Chapman, well your assumptions about both products are precise - except for the white paper, unfortunately there is none.

What can I say in addition to what you've already said? That's indeed the story of both products: In the beginning there was Diagram Studio only. Then a cross-platform diagram component was needed and FNC Blox was built from scratch because refactoring TMS Diagram Studio would take much more effort and backward compatibility would be needed. So it would cost more and the result will probably be a Frankestein`s monster.

The core of FNC Blox was designed by the same developer of Diagram Studio, thus indeed it's an "evolved" architecture from Diagram Studio, with more abstract things to make it cross-platform and to fix some structures that became a little outdated overtime in Diagram Studio.

Diagram Studio has more features because it's older but also because some features are hard to add to FNC Blox. For example, Diagram Studio has a full diagram editor ready to use - with menus, toolbars, dialogs, etc.. This is simply complex to implement in FNC Blox because it's cross-platform - everything that is used in the visual editor will have to be cross-platform, and also will have to behave the same and/or look good in all platforms (mac, windows, maybe web...).

So it's a decision that is up to you, there is no right answer. I think the main (but not only) question is if you are win32 only, or cross-platform. If you will are going to be win32 forever, go with Diagram Studio. If you need cross-platform, go with Blox.

If you are Win32 and "maybe" will go to cross-platform in future, then you have to weight what are the odds of such cross-platform need to happen, and what will be your need in it. If it's unlikely to happen, go with Diagram Studio. If it might happen, but your needs are simple - for example, maybe you don't need a full editor in other platform, just to visualize the diagram - then maybe you can start with Diagram Studio and use Blox just for the other platforms, since it will be easy to use it. If you will need full diagram capabilities in other platforms soon, and probably the diagram usage will look and feel the same in all platforms, go with Blox.

I hope that I have helped in your decision. But probably I didn't. :slight_smile:

1 Like

This topic was automatically closed 60 minutes after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.