SmartDraw's Visual Processor Software Plays Key Role in Department of the Interior's Gulf Oil Spill Clean-Up Efforts

SmartDraw VP Enables Department of the Interior Strategic Science Working Group to Visually Document Scenarios at Speed of Thought

Oct 26, 2010, 11:15 ET from SmartDraw

SAN DIEGO, Oct. 26 /PRNewswire/ -- The Department of the Interior (DOI) Strategic Science Working Group (SSWG) is using SmartDraw's visual processor solution to aid in the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill recovery effort. In addition, Joshua Platt, Director of Product Marketing at SmartDraw, was selected to be a member of the SSWG in order to help maximize the use of SmartDraw VP for the group's scenario building, a vital step in carrying out the oil spill containment and clean-up efforts.

The April 20, 2010 explosion of the Deepwater Horizon offshore oil drilling rig resulted in the deaths of 11 crewmen and left the oil well gushing at the sea floor for nearly three-months. The well was declared "effectively dead" on September 19, after first being temporarily sealed with a cap put in place on July 15. The explosion and spill that followed resulted in the largest offshore oil spill in U.S. history.

"It's an honor to have been asked to join the Strategic Science Working Group following this unprecedented environmental crisis, and it's given us a chance to really test the capabilities of our software under urgent conditions," said Platt. "SmartDraw VP has so far been very successful in enabling the group to visually document its efforts in real-time, bringing to life the progress we've made and building scenarios about what is likely happening to the coupled human natural system, and its potential consequences."

Dr. Gary Machlis, Lead Scientist, DOI Strategic Sciences Working Group said, "This group has a crucial task in providing ongoing science-based assessments to decision makers of the spill's potential consequences. We are visualizing things like scenario frameworks and cascading effects instead of simply providing information in text form. This has helped us to provide briefings that are efficient and compelling."

SmartDraw launched SmartDraw VP in June 2010 in response to numerous studies that indicated visual communication is up to six-times more effective than words alone, but until the product's launch, less than 3% of business communication included visuals like flowcharts, mind maps and other charts. This was because using traditional graphics software to create them was just too difficult and time consuming for the typical business person. The visual processor solved this problem.

SmartDraw VP automates the creation of 70 different types of business visuals including flowcharts, mind maps, Gantt charts, timelines, floor plans, data charts and more. Built-in integration with Microsoft Office® and Adobe PDF allows users to create and then share SmartDraw visuals with a single click.

An enhanced version of the software was introduced in September aimed at increasing the usability and adoptability of SmartDraw VP.  New features include document collections, which allow users to group several SmartDraw documents into a single file making them easier to manage and share. Also new is the ability to create custom template categories in the template selector. Users can create custom categories for their company's most frequently used templates. For more information, visit

About SmartDraw

SmartDraw helps businesses increase their bottom line by improving communication, refining operations, completing projects on time, and successfully implementing their plans through the everyday use of visual communication. Creators of SmartDraw VP, the world's first visual processor™, SmartDraw enables business professionals to easily and automatically create more than 70 types of common business visuals, including flowcharts, project charts, mind maps, org charts, timelines and more.  SmartDraw lets anyone achieve professional-quality results in just minutes. SmartDraw is used by more than half of the Fortune 500, as well as thousands of law firms, police departments, health systems, government entities, educational institutions and private enterprises of all sizes. Founded in 1994, SmartDraw is privately-held, with headquarters in San Diego, California. For more information or to download a free trial of SmartDraw, please visit

SOURCE SmartDraw