Basic Diagramming Rules
Data and Processes
Data — such as Files, Assets, etc. — are drawn as simple rectangles. Data are located on the diagram based on representation and revision status.
Processes — (including Applications and Plugins) are drawn as slanted rectangles. Processes are located as needed, near the data they interact with. (In other words, locate by usage, not by where the binary file lives.)
Note: on a whiteboard, slanted rectangles are way less sloppy than circles, and after a few false starts, very easy to draw.
Pipelines do two big things for us in digital production. First, they manage the conversion of data formats, and second, they manage the synchronization of data sets across infrastructure levels. Examples of the latter include Perforce syncing and cloud rendering.
Horizontal Axis — represents data conversions. In whiteboard sessions we find it most natural to draw conversions left to right, just as in the above diagram.
Vertical Axis — represents data synchonization. In whiteboard sessions we find it most natural to draw global datastores and cloud services at the top of the board, and local stuff lower on the board.