Re: documenting signal paths

Subject: Re: documenting signal paths
From: Ed <glassnet -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "Joel Wilhelm" <eleysium -at- gmail -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 4 Apr 2008 06:51:43 -0400

On Mon, Mar 31, 2008 at 3:12 PM, Joel Wilhelm <eleysium -at- gmail -dot- com> wrote:
> In schematics, is there a standard for signal paths being either:
> 1. Left to right;
> 2. Right to left?

You may have a standard for your official engineering drawings.
However, for the purposes of a book, or training, it is better to
apply common sense to your book.

I have one diagram in a current book that flows top to bottom. Since
these are communication paths, you actually could say it is bottom to
top, if you start your discussion with the destination equipment. This
occurs in the functional description chapter.

In another part of the book, we discuss components as they appear in
the rack, starting at the top of the rack. This occurs in the
component description chapter.

In a troubleshooting section you may use a different flow, say from
the view of an operator, and where they may interact with the system.

Since you mentioned schematics, I assumed you meant an electronic
system. If you are documenting software, then a different set of
requirements may apply.

One thing to keep in mind is that if you eliminate path crossovers, a
diagram is much easier to understand. If you place a component in an
alternate location (not strictly in the left to right flow), and make
the diagram easier to understand, then my opinion that it is ok.

As you develop a writing and drawing technique that actually works for
users, you will run into some resistance from the engineering
discipline, where there is a strong belief that things are discrete
and always work in the prescribed fashion.


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