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  • mind-mapping

    One of the most valuable asides I have gleened from this board is the concept of brainstorming and mind-mapping. Unless you are able to effectively process all of your collected stuff, no organizational technique will help much.

    What I would like to know is this; does anyone know of any inexpensive software for mind-mapping? And, I need more resoruces, web-sites on the subject, etc.

    Thanks to all of you,


  • #2

    Tony Buzan is the originator of the concept. He's written several books - I think "The Brain Book" was the first.

    Mind Manager is a good software tool.

    I think its a great idea and I have tinkered with it, studied and tried it, but I've never been very consistent about using mindmaps. Just dont find it that useful. I get my map all made up and go hmm? Now what?


    • #3
      Mind mapping

      Hi Ron

      Personally I hate electronic software for mindmapping - it has rules that you must follow (maybe I should use the word limits and not rules... But basically any software has these limits/rules that you cannot alter). I'd rather use pen & paper because you have total flexibility & the only limit is your mind not the software!

      The best book I've found is by Tony Buzan. Refer:

      Hope that helps.


      • #4
        Look at this thread:



        • #5
          mindmapping suggestions

          I use it, my kids use it, and I can't remember what it was like before I learned how. I think the two biggest concerns in mindmapping are 1) people learning from a third-generation source, and ultimately learning only a limited version of the methodology, and 2) people only using it for one thing - prewriting. I have seen the schools gradually begin to incorporate variations -- webs, clusters, trees -- but none come close to what mindmapping can offer. They never use color, or images, or key words. They never use them for anything other than prewriting (like presentations, notetaking, creative thinking, journal writing, testing, teaching, or organization). Even those who see the power of outlining don't seem to make the leap to the vastly more functional and flexible mind map.

          Another area that can affect use is the perception that this is some kind of weird artsy thing, and not a serious tool. I have started calling it "mapping" at the office. It seems to generate less of the eye-rolling. Don't be fooled -- this is a very powerful method of distributed cognition i.e. getting your thinking outside of your head so you can react to it and manipulate it. My kids understand the benefit (though are not fanatical about it) enough to build them on their own, and their work is always dramatically better when they choose to use them.

          I have used Mindman (PC), NovaMind (Mac), and Inspiration (both). All will get you what software mindmapping offers: easy changes, easy copies, and easy storage. That said, paper-based maps offer many advantages. They are very fast, images (doodles, arrows, smileys, whatever) are easy to include and they feel very natural. The biggest reason to use them, though, is that they are unique. After 20 mindmaps using software, they start looking very similar. If you are truly using the mindmap techniques on paper, they never look the same, which really aids recall and even enjoyment.

          I also recommend Buzan's Mind Map book, as well as this site.


          • #6
            In my humble opinion, Mind Manager is hands down the best mind mapping software. It is simple to learn and allows for quick brainstorming. Mind mapping is a great tool for thought generation and Mind Manager doesn't restrict the user from expressing his/her ideas freely.



            • #7
              Many ways to "mind-map" or "brainstorm...

              When I taught High School (history/english/spanish/mock trial) I encouraged the students to mind map ANY assignment prior to starting it.

              AP US History students made mind maps before writing essays, the Mock Trial group mind mapped the entire case, and I even led my Spanish language students through mind mapping exercises before taking exams. (Write down EVERY Spanish word you can remember in the next 3 minutes, connecting them with lines if possible...)

              I don't know that I followed any of the "rules" of mind mapping...but, in reading this thread and doing a little bit of research, I found this interesting...


              What is a Mind Map?

              A Mind Map is a powerful graphic technique which provides a universal key to unlock the potential of the brain. It harnesses the full range of cortical skills – word, image, number, logic, rhythm, colour and spatial awareness – in a single, uniquely powerful manner. In so doing, it gives you the freedom to roam the infinite expanses of your brain. The Mind Map can be applied to every aspect of life where improved learning and clearer thinking will enhance human performance.

              Originated in the late 1960s by Tony Buzan Mind Maps are now used by millions of people around the world – from the very young to the very old – whenever they wish to use their minds more effectively.

              Similarly to a road map, a Mind Map will:

              Give you an overview of a large subject/area.
              Enable you to plan routes/make choices and let you know where you are going and where you have been.
              Gather and hold large amounts of data for you.
              Encourage problem solving by showing you new creative pathways.
              Enable you to be extremely efficient.
              Be enjoyable to look at, read, muse over and remember.
              Attract and hold your eye/brain.
              Let you see the whole picture and the details at the same time.
              Assist YOU!


              • #8
                'Mindmapping' only 1 way of concept mapping

                'Mindmapping' as taught and described by Tony Buzan is one of several types of concept mapping. Different types do different jobs. A very good overview is at:

                Personaly I like the intuitive flow of pen and paper (during supper in London with David, we had an intersting side exploation on the multi level processing and richness of hand written information as apposed to computer proggrams) That being said, my prefered jotting down ideas at random program is Inspiration, - I use it like electronic postits to do a burst of ideas *before* ordering them in a mindmap/spidermap.

                Sometimes when I want to do the classical 'Mindmap' I use MindManager for it's flexibility and output pretty clean HTML.


                • #9
                  Mind mapping

                  Once I began implementing mindmapping techniques some years ago, I then found I could do nothing constructive without it - meetings, documents, task lists, presentations, ideas, project plans, employee reviews...

                  I have used both MindManager from Mindjet and MindMapper from Simtech. They are fairly similar, but I would recommend MindMapper for its price and look-and-feel. My colleagues disagree with me and recommend MindManager. Whatever tickles your fancy...



                  • #10
                    open source software

                    This may be of interest to you. It is not as well developed as some of the commercial software, but it is getting there fast.


                    I use MindManager at work but this can be used both on my Windows PC and my LINUX box at home.

                    Plus, the price is right!


                    • #11
                      Mindmanager Personal was quoted in an earlier article. This seems to be okay and has the advantage of being free


                      • #12
                        free mind mapper

                        freemind is not nearly as advanced as mind mapper but does the trick.



                        • #13
                          mind mapping tapes/cds

                          Nightingale-Conant has a tape or cd package entitled: Mind Mapping
                          by Michael Gelb. N/C phone is 800-525-9000


                          • #14
                            Mindjet works best with Outlook

                            To really integrate mind mapping into an Outlook-based GTD workflow, Mindjet's MindManager X5 Pro is the way to go. It's not the cheapest solution (in fact, it may be the most expensive!) but the hooks it has for creating next actions and exporting them to Outlook and synchronizing them are so powerful. I never begin a project (in the truest GTD sense) without brainstorming in MindManager and creating next actions and syncing with Outlook.

                            MindManager also links nicely to the electronic documents associated with your projects and can be exported to HTML (for web sharing) or PowerPoint. I often project these mind maps up onto the wall in meetings to quickly illustrate my conceptulaization of a project to others on my team. We discuss, add next actions, rearrange branches and improve on my vision.

                            Whether this is the right tool for your application is a personal decision. But I am convinced that this technique is a powerful way to implement GTD principles into any project you're undertaking - work or personal. I've planned recent articles and reviews I've written, web design projects, the two book proposals I'm currently developing, and a plan to launch a new product for my company using this combination and I'm in "mindlike water" mode on all of them!


                            • #15
                              ConceptDraw Mindmap

                              This also works great