Using Google Apps to replace Visio – Part 2


In my previous post, I talked about using Google Apps Draw to replace Visio and was asked to do a video to show how easy (or maybe how difficult) this is to do.  Now please keep in mind, the ease at which this particular diagram was done happened with a little pre-work – creating the PNG files to use in the diagram.  If you don’t have a PNG for what you are looking to create, then yes it could get a little tedious but once you are setup it should be as easy as the video below.

Now one thing I will readily admit, and is apparent in the video is everything is not always to scale, but is it really always to scale in Visio if you are using stencils from different vendors?  How tedious it is to size everything properly will vary from person to person depending on your level of CDO (OCD in alphabetical order for those not as CDO as me).  Sorry for not having any audio, apparently my microphone is broken.  What I wasn’t able to point out during the recording easily was how Google Apps will display red/blue lines when sizing or moving objects to help you align them.  While watching the video, look at the red lines that appear while I was adding the servers to the rack which help me align them properly.

Conclusion – in less than 5 minutes that included a little extra clicking around I created a new diagram from a template I had created.  While it obviously does not stand up feature for feature with Visio, it is not meant to.  This is meant to show that creating basic diagrams can be done without Visio, and for that matter installable computer software (well if you take out the PNG creation).

Diagram created in example video.