[thelist] Organizational Charts

Steve Lewis nepolon at worlddomination.net
Wed Sep 15 12:08:15 CDT 2004

Rob Smith wrote:

> I'm currently researching the "best" approach for organizational charts that
> everyone (computer savvy, and not so) that's inexpensive; free would be
> better.

Not a standard, and probably not even the "best" approach, but here is 
a resource I use for a number of different tasks, including quickly 
drawing hierarchies:

<tip type="dynamic image generation">
Need to draw some relationships?  Throwing together an org chart of a 
class hierarchy or even a


A simple text file such as the following is used as the input to DOT. 
  DOT will then build the tree for you automagically.  It can handle 
any mapping of data I can imagine.  I use it for both trees and graphs 
(using "graphs" in the mathematical sense, not the Excel sense).

begin input file
- -
   // The syntax for comments may be familiar,
   // and whitespace is ignored.

   // you can define a node's appearance easily
   Boss [label="Queso Grande" shape="square"]
   // ...etc.

   // connect your nodes with edges,
   // and define the edge's appearance
   Boss -- ManagerA [arrowhead="odot" arrowtail="dot"];
   Boss -- ManagerB [arrowhead="odot" arrowtail="dot"];
   Boss -- ManagerC [arrowhead="odot" arrowtail="dot"];
   Boss -- ManagerD [arrowhead="odot" arrowtail="dot"];

   ManagerA -- CogA1;
   ManagerA -- CogA2;
   ManagerA -- CogA3;

   ManagerB -- SupervisorBa;
   ManagerB -- SupervisorBb;
   ManagerB -- SupervisorBc;

   SupervisorBa -- CogB1;
   SupervisorBa -- CogB2;

   SupervisorBb -- CogB3;
   SupervisorBb -- CogB4;

   SupervisorBc -- CogB5;
   SupervisorBc -- CogB6;

   ManagerC -- CogC1;
   ManagerC -- CogC2;
   ManagerC -- CogC3;

   ManagerD -- CogD1;
   ManagerD -- CogD2;
   ManagerD -- CogD3;

- -
end input file

Steve Lewis

More information about the thelist mailing list