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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Quick Diagrams with SmartDiagrams

It all started with a question on TeX.SX: Namely, is there any quick way to draw diagrams from a list of items, similar to the ‘Smart Art’ feature in PowerPoint 2010?

It wasn’t long before the package smartdiagram was born as a response, using TikZ to do the actual drawings. The basic syntax is:

\smartdiagram[diagram type]{list of comma-separated items}

Here are some examples (based on material from here):

\smartdiagram[circular diagram]{Assess,Plan,Implement,Renew}

\smartdiagram[flow diagram]{Assess,Plan,Implement,Renew}
\smartdiagram[buggle diagram]{Planning Cycle,Assess,Plan,Implement,Renew}

If you happen to be preparing a Beamer presentation, replacing the \smartdiagram command with \smartdiagramanimated will result in an automatically ‘animated’ diagram, with each item in the list appearing one at a time as you advance through the slides:

See the manual for other digram types and customisation options (colours, shapes, sizes, etc).


  1. +1
    Most of time I only use 'Graphviz' (dot) tools. :)

  2. I used creately diagram software to draw diagrams easily. This sure looks fun.