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Rendering UML Activity Diagrams as Human-Readable Text



David Flater, Philippe A. Martin, Michelle L. Crane


We describe a modification of the Petri Net Linear Form notation to support the rendering of Unified Modeling Language (UML) Activity Diagrams as human-readable text. This new notation, called the Activity Diagram Linear Form, allows UML Activity Diagrams to be expressed in an alternate form with the superior accessibility, compatibility, and simplicity of use of a plain text representation. For some applications, these benefits greatly outweigh the aesthetical and pedagogical advantages of a visual representation.
NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR) - 7469
Report Number


Activity, diagram, language, modeling, software


Flater, D. , Martin, P. and Crane, M. (2007), Rendering UML Activity Diagrams as Human-Readable Text, NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online],, (Accessed April 18, 2024)
Created October 31, 2007, Updated October 12, 2021