Welcome to django-spaghetti-and-meatballs’s documentation!

Its a spicy meatball for serving up fresh hot entity-relationship diagrams straight from your django models.

Food puns aside, django-spaghetti-and-meatballs is a django app that extracts models and documentation from a projects models.py to build rich, live, interactive entity-relationship diagrams.

At the moment, it mines details from models:

  • docstrings, so documentation that the same documentation can be reused in the modeling
  • fields, including the fields datatype, help_text and cardinality
  • foreign and many-to-many relationships (at the moment only many-to-many relationships get special styling, but one-to-one is coming soon)

And it does this for all models in a project across any django apps you choose - plus you can specify models to exclude as well.

Why did you make this app?

There are a few really big use cases that I saw spaghetti-and-meatballs filling.

Firstly, for projects where generating user-facing diagrammatic representation of models helps with their understanding. Being able to generate this from the code means that it is never out of sync with the actual design.

Secondly, being able to easily and graphically see the relationships between models shows where some models are over- or under-connected. It also helps show where new connections can be useful, especially during development.

Lastly, it has been helpful during early stages of development as a prototyping and documentation tool. Getting a simple and live view of all of the models and their documentation has been a godsend on a recent project when working with non-developers. My preferred method of design and documentation is writing well documented code, which can be daunting for non-developers. By using django models as an input to making the entity-relationship diagrams it means that diagrams of the structure of a project and the code and documentation never get out of sync. It also meant that I (and others) could easily spot gaps in documentation. While some code is self-documenting, hovering over a model and still being confused about the existence of a field shows a definite need for explanation.



Indices and tables