Home – New Forums Get productive Your favorite mindmapping and brainstorming tools?

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  • #969736
    peppie
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    Here is a question for the thinkers and project developers.

    I am always on the lookout for general tools and software for developing projects and ideas. I like and use mindmaps quite a lot, but have not yet found any software tools etc. that do much beyond one or 2 things.

    My wish list is a tool to do a mindmap/logic graph/task list etc. (lots of options for notes, file and links attachments etc.) to firstly brainstorm a project then develop the detail a bit for projects like developing your business over the next x months, writing a manual or a full blown book and even just to keep track of research material.

    Do you have a favorite paper based or software tool??? A challenge to all you chronic list writers, would love to hear you share your passion for organising and just how you organise your ideas.

    #1040505
    Warren Cottis
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    I find it hard to go past Freemind simply because it’s free

    #1040506
    onlineiq
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    I use mind42.com

    It is also a free online tool, allows links and notes (tho not ‘to do’ lists) and fantastically, is a collaboration tool, so you can be working with others on the same mindmap in real time.

    #1040507
    Paul Cunningham
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    Paul

    I’ve only just been introduced to the idea of mind maps and have become really interested. I was wondering what software you are using currently using?

    Warren and Ursh I’ll check out you suggstions, thanks for sharing.

    #1040508
    peppie
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    Paul Cunningham, post: 49047 wrote:
    Paul

    I’ve only just been introduced to the idea of mind maps and have become really interested. I was wondering what software you are using currently using
    Frankly the best option I have found of all is called Pencil on Large Piece of Paper!!! A bit hard to modify neatly, but at least it has almost unlimited options.

    I have used Freemind though, but been a bit frustrated with the limitations when looking at say attaching files and links etc. to branches. I came across http://www.xmind.net/ recently which I have not yet been able to try out but it looks interesting.

    A while back I came across Infohesive http://www.2brightsparks.com/infohesive/features.html which is more for developing a document like a manual or application help file and does not involve anything like a mindmap. I think I wouldn’t mind something like a combination of say Infohesive and a decent mindmap application. Am I asking too much???

    PS Most of my research data is stored in a huge tree of folders (but no more than 2 or 3 levels deep) and if I can’t find what I want I use Xplorer2 (which is a souped up version of something like explorer in Windows but with far better search functions) to find and sort it. It has multiple tree windows and is very good for file sorting and finding. But even that is not quite enough if you need to sort information for a book or similar project.

    #1040509
    roshan
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    I’ve been mind-mapping for several years and my personal favourite is MindJet Mind Manager. Unfortunately this is not a cheap product (and each upgrade costs more), so I tend to stick with XMind which is free and is really easy to use.

    I’ve used the paid version of XMind but found that for what I need (my mind maps tend to get complex), the free version works just as well.

    I’ve managed to convert quite a few people to using mind maps and have run several training/introduction sessions on it, and would be happy to help anyone looking to get started.

    Roshan

    #1040510
    peppie
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    Thank you Roshan, it seems I might be on the right path here re XMind.

    I have been fiddling around with XMind a bit in my “spare time” and have been quite impressed with even the free version. The paid version seems to mostly expand the collaboration possibilities and since I work on my own (in the development department) that’s fine with me. I particularly like the way I can attach files and links to branches and I can see that it could easily work pretty well for organising say research material.

    As an example of its use, I was playing around with it one evening and my wife noticed what I was doing. She had a meeting to chair a few days later that would be dealing with a complicated issue and asked me to install XMind on her laptop. She had only a brief explanation from me as to how it worked and after the meeting said it had been VERY useful for making notes about all the various issues and comments being thrown at her.

    #1040511
    FionaFell
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    I use http://www.lovelycharts.com for my wireframing and mindmapping.

    Might be worth a try. (They are web based, and have a free trial so you can check it out before giving over any $)

    #1040512
    roshan
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    peppie, post: 49827 wrote:
    I have been fiddling around with XMind a bit in my “spare time” and have been quite impressed with even the free version. The paid version seems to mostly expand the collaboration possibilities and since I work on my own (in the development department) that’s fine with me. I particularly like the way I can attach files and links to branches and I can see that it could easily work pretty well for organising say research material.

    Paul,

    Yes, XMind works very well for a single user. And similar to your experience, I find that people get curious when they see Mind Maps for the first time and tend to take it on and find new ways of using it. It’s always a fun (and different) way to prepare for – and sometimes deliver – presentations!

    Roshan

    #1040513
    Simple1
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    Cant say anything beats the ability of a pencil and paper. Not great for the environment tho.

    #1040514
    peppie
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    As one line in a favorite movie goes, “DING – wrong, but thanks for playing”!!!

    When all else fails, yes you have a point. It has been said the one piece of technology almost every child has been exposed to in their life – is the pencil. And still very useful, even has an undo function if you acquire the appropriate add on.

    Not quite part of the purpose of this discussion. Though it can be useful for a rough draft if only a napkin is available.

    #1040515
    Simple1
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    peppie, post: 49918 wrote:
    As one line in a favorite movie goes, “DING – wrong, but thanks for playing”!!!

    When all else fails, yes you have a point. It has been said the one piece of technology almost every child has been exposed to in their life – is the pencil. And still very useful, even has an undo function if you acquire the appropriate add on.

    Not quite part of the purpose of this discussion. Though it can be useful for a rough draft if only a napkin is available.

    Oh, i am sorry, me and my tangents. It is useful to point out that I have never had a pencil crash on me.
    Check out the free but often overlooked plug-in for Excel.
    regards.

    #1040516
    The Internet Bloke
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    I’ve tried several free and paid mind mapping tools, and now use X-Mind.
    http://www.xmind.net

    The free version is great, and the paid version with extra bells and whistles is inexpensive.

    Another great tool “the brain” is at http://www.TheBrain.com
    This mimics the way the brain works, and allows you to store and define relationships between a virtually unlimited number of topics.

    regards,
    Eric G.

    #1040517
    peppie
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    Thanks Eric for reminding me, I was intending to get back to here the report my findings.

    Yes I hearty agree that XMind is a good choice. So far I have been very happy with what I can do with it. Particularly being able to attach files/links to branches and also drill down to levels below when things start getting a bit complex.

    I have started to create one map of all my development plans/wish lists and use a lower level to put things like To Do lists in for each nodule. It takes a bit of dedication, but for any avid list writer like me it is heaven to be able to have a dynamic multiple purpose and erasable mega list!!!

    #1040518
    Communicate with Karen
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    Thanks for sharing everyone. I have been using the pencil and paper version. But now I am going to branch out and try x mind too.

    As mentioned previously if you like this for a presentation or meeting tool have you tried prezi? Can look a lot like a mind map crossed with a powerpoint presentation but much more sophisticated.

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