Use Alternative Actor Shapes on Diagrams

Use Case diagrams can get a little dull if every actor shape looks like a stick figure. Using alternative actor shapes can make those diagrams more visually appealing and also provide more informational depth.

Dragging an actor from the project browser to a diagram invokes a menu of different actor shapes you can use instead of the default “stick man.” Just pick the shape you want and it will create that on the diagram:

Custom actor dropdown

If you always want the same shape for actors and don’t want to choose from a menu, you can set that under File / Options. Select the Diagrams tab and change the menu option to be invoked by dragging with the right mouse button.

Adding your own custom actor shapes to the custom actor shape menu is easy. Start by creating a shape library with your custom shapes (you’ll find step-by-step instructions here). When you open that shape library, your custom shapes will be appended to the list of actor shapes on the menu:

custom actor menu

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    Peter Stanford

    I know I can hide the ID of diagram artefacts individually by changing the style property however I can't find a way to apply this at a global level, i.e. for all diagrams, or for a selected diagram, make the ID visible. The users I'm dealing with don't care about the ID, they just want to see the name. I tried selecting multiple diagram objects but the Properties menu was greyed out so I couldn't see the ID visibility there either. Is there a way to do this through Settings or some other technique I haven't found yet?

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