Mindmapping is really a graphical method of planning or taking notes. I find them really useful for brainstorming and planning content. I’ve also seen them used as a presentation tool at conferences – see Andy Black: ‘Mobile Learning & Online Communication’
I’ve been looking for really good mindmapping software for a while and have tried a few, including FreeMind (opensource) and MindGenius, which was provided by the University (but doesn’t seem to be now). These have both done the job and have been quite easy to use, but don’t look that great, especially when exported as the map is displayed with a list of links underneath.
As you can see above, a fully functioning MindMeister map can be embedded into a page and viewed in full-screen. Other features I like…
The ability to:
- preview external links with a thumbnail image when you rollover the icon
- add notes which can be viewed when you roll over the icon
- attach a file, such as a pdf, accessed via the icon (see e-Portfolio/ PebblePad)
- upload your own images or use the rather nice ones provided (shown above)
- link elements with a customizable arrow (see e-Portfolio > Webfolio)
- collaborate in real-time with a chat function (enabled when you click on a collaborator’s name)
- assign specific tasks to collaborators, listing priorities and due dates
- revert to a previous version if a mistake is made
- make live updates to your map when it has been published and embedded
- create, edit & display on mobile devices – iPhone, iPad and Android – free to download from the App Store
The above map is a collaboration between myself, Mark Lyndon, Mark Pannell, Sid White and Rob Stillwell. To note: the ‘revert’ function confused us for a while – all collaborators have to log out apart from the one who executes the revert!
This map has been created using a Basic (free) account which allows you to have 3 maps. Other paid options are available – I’m very impressed with this one so far!
Can you recommend any other mindmapping software? What do you use them for?
Update 15.05.12: I’ve just downloaded the iPad app and it works very nicely. Here’s a pic…