In the electrical sector, a schematic diagram is usually used to describe the design or model of equipment. Schematic diagrams are usually utilized for the maintenance and repair of electronic and electromechanical devices / units. Original schematics were made by hand, using standardized templates or pre-printed adhesive symbols, but nowadays Electrical CAD computer software is often used.
In electronic design automation, until the 1980s schematics were virtually the only formal representation for circuits. More lately, using the progress of computer system technology, other representations were introduced and specialized computer languages were developed, because with the explosive development of the complexity of electronic circuits, classic schematics are getting less practical. As an example, hardware description languages are indispensable for contemporary digital circuit design.
Schematics for electronic circuits are prepared by designers working with EDA (Electronic Design Automation) applications known as schematic capture tools or schematic entry tools. These tools go beyond easy drawing of devices and connections. Typically they can be integrated into the complete IC design flow and linked to other EDA applications for verification and simulation of the circuit under design.