Is there a Stack Exchange site for questions on how to correctly represent something in a flow chart? My search for a duplicate mostly just turned up feature requests for the ability to add flow charts to posts (though they don't give example questions for where they want them) or requests for a flow chart for how to determine the correct SE for any given question.

I'm trying to figure out how to represent two things happening at the same time in different swim lanes. I suspect that my question will have already been asked at the correct SE site, if it exists.

If it matters, the flow chart isn't for a software program.

The question:

I am building a flow chart representing a review process. At one point, the item under review is being looked at by two separate entities. Neither has to wait for the other to take action (which would be either to send the item back or approve it) but the process doesn't move forward until both approve.

What is the correct way to show two things happening at the same time in different swim lanes? How do I indicate that the process doesn't move forward until both approve it? I don't want it to look like the steps after approval can happen until they do.

I created a flow chart approximating the problem rather than screenshot a section of the real one for readability.

Flow chart showing this section of the flow chart. The task "Send for External QA" has a message flow to a task in swimlane 2 and swimlane 3. Each then has a decision gate asking if the item passes. If it doesn't, it goes to a task that says "Return for Corrections" and a message flow goes from that task back to the "Work on Item" task in swimlane 1. If it does, it goes to a "Return for Next Step" task which has a message flow to task "Next Step" in swimlane 1. Currently, nothing indicates that "Next Step" does not happen until a message from both swimlane 2 and swimlane 3 occur.

  • @nicael Both the question and image are there now. – BSMP Jan 19 '16 at 15:09

If your question is focused on the layout of information, a good fit might be Graphic Design, since one of its foci is visual communication. They may also be able to help you with the implementation of it (in terms of tools) provided that you put a little effort into researching your tools first. Example question: Making Flowchart

Similarly, UX can help you convey information effectively. Example question: Layout for a flowchart

Finally, if your question is about formatting or rendering flowcharts, TeX/LaTeX would be a good place (assuming you're up for using TeX or one of its derivatives). Example question: Flowchart drawing (Complicated Arrows)

  • It looks like UX is my best bet since a couple of those questions are about symbol usage. (I'll probably need to check on their meta first though; their last flowchart question was in 2014. Perhaps their rules have changed.) – BSMP Jan 19 '16 at 15:19

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