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Review: Kivio 0.9.1

Going With the Flowcharts

  • November 9, 2000
  • By Brian Proffitt

If you are out on a first date with someone, it is very unlikely that your prowess with flowcharts is going to come up a dinner topic. If it does, seek help now.

Around the office, making flowcharts a skill that likely won't get you as ostracized. I have a theory about this recent surge of interest in flowcharts. As the new dot.coms sprang into being, the nebulous job titles that appear in these cash-rich havens reflected the creativity that made the business in the first place.

The only problem was, no one knew what the heck a "Chief Idea Manager" was in charge of. Or whom, for that matter. To make matters worse, entitlements and perks such as offices with doors began to vanish.

So, to keep things straight, the organization charts began a-flyin' fast and furious around these new tech firms. Once relegated to the pages of an annual report, suddenly organization charts were a necessity in the dot.com world, if only to find out how far up the food chain your cubicle neighbor was. Handy information to have, particularly to make clear whether the Marilyn Manson coming out of your PC speakers might be offending some lowly flunky--or bothering the company president.

The technical industry also increased the demand for flowcharts in more direct ways. As software development became less of a luxury and more the norm in private industry, programmers got wise to the benefits of creating data and function flowcharts.

In the Windows world, the premier flowcharting software is most certainly Visio. This offering from the Visio Corporation was purchased into the Microsoft sphere of influence (read: assimilated into the Redmond Borg cube) in January 2000, but despite this remains a very comprehensive tool for flowcharting, database mapping, software flow, even office cubicle management. There are only two things wrong with this software for Linux users: it's Microsoft and it's expensive.

But penguin-type flowcharters will soon have a Linux-based alternative to Visio, thanks to the commercial efforts of theKompany.com and its new product Kivio.


Information

Product
Kivio 0.9.1

Manufacturer
theKompany.com

Availability
now

Price
Free (Basic); $5 for each additional stencil set


 Features

 Speed

 Value

 Usability

 Overall

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