Competence Mapping with Visual Studio Ultimate

I’ve been trying to find a way in which I can easily map competences, books, certifications etc. The goal here is to be able to determine what you need to do to reach a certain competence or certification. Now, there may be some fancy tool out there to do this, or you could just whip up Visio and start drawing, but a) I don’t want to buy a new tool, and b) I want this to be interactive.

I just finished a demo that uses the Dependency Graph functionality in Visual Studio Ultimate. I’ve used similar tooling before (from NDepend) for auditing and reviewing, but this time around I’m using it as part of my solution rather than to review a solution. I’ve expressed compentencies and books in classes, and if a competence is required for another, I’m adding a reference to it in a prerequisites list. The same happens with books you could read to learn about the competence.

After letting Dependency Graphing do its thing, you end up with a graph such as the one below. The great thing is that it’s interactive. You can delete/colapse in the diagram what you don’t need, and you can select the items for which you want to see more detailed dependencies. In the graph below, I’ve selected several constructors to show me all the dependencies.

With everything in code, I could now create a user interface that enables you to query the map for what you still need to do to get to the competence/certification you want.

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