15 FREE

THINKING

VISUAL

TOOLS

Deep but Snappy Reviews Example Maps Key Functions Links to Save You Time With hints about Visual Thinking Models



BY ROY GRUBB

2
Free visual thinking tools

Contents
Introduction .............................................. 3 Blumind ..................................................... 4 Cmap Tools ............................................... 8 Connected Mind ...................................... 12 Edraw MindMap ...................................... 16 FreeMind ................................................. 20 Freeplane ................................................ 24 iMindMap Basic ...................................... 28 Lucid-Chart ...............................................32 Mind42 .................................................... 36 MindNode ............................................... 40 Prezi......................................................... 44 TreeSheets .............................................. 48 Visuwords ................................................52 VUE .......................................................... 56 Xmind ...................................................... 60 Resources ............................................... 64

Roy Grubb

http://www.InformationTamers.com/WikIT/

3
Free visual thinking tools

Introduction
You’ll find four pages describing each of the 15 free visual thinking tools covered in this eBook: 1: Graphical example, showing characteristics in visual form. 2 & 3: Evaluation; ‘for and against’; characteristics. 4: Key web links. I have used, stretched, prodded and reviewed all of these tools personally. In case you wonder what a mind map or a concept map or some of the other thinking tools mentioned here are, there’s a note about Visual thinking models buzzwords at the end, describing the special ways mappers use ordinary words like ‘organic’ or ‘boundary’, and on the same pages, there are links to more resources about how to make and use these useful maps. This eBook does not cover software or web apps with “free” 30-day trials after which the software expires, or that limits the number of objects on a map so much that serious maps cannot be made. Nor does it cover mobile apps. The section “License limitations” appears in some entries. Sometimes it just notes that you need to provide an email address to use the software. In cases where there is a free version and a ‘Pro’ version, the license limitations described relate to the free version. If no license limitations are mentioned, you can use the software for any purpose. But most free software licenses include the restriction that you cannot sell the software to others.

Roy Grubb

http://www.InformationTamers.com/WikIT/

InformationTamers.com/WikIT/ .4 Free visual thinking tools Blumind 1 Roy Grubb http://www.

shapes.5 Free visual thinking tools  Simple. you use Ctrl+up/down arrow keystrokes. and it lets you choose the map’s background color. but curving relationship lines outside the hierarchy are permitted Provides an outline view of a map Predefined map formats and designs (colors. Platforms supported Windows A portable version is available .com/WikIT/ . multiple built-in styles  No images on maps This is a fast and free mind mapper that can produce respectable looking maps. Blumind offers a range of color schemes based around Windows themes. fast. not dragging. tree and logic diagram. other than small icons and that can be a disadvantage for some uses of mind maps.InformationTamers. It is desktop software that you download. organization chart. It takes charge of your map layout almost completely. line styles) are included with the software Roy Grubb http://www. You can choose from the usual range of layouts: radial. You can’t display images in the map.this can be run from a USB memory stick Features Includes some (minimal) support for project management: by storing task % complete Searching text in a map is supported Appearance Allows maps with a slightly organic appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Connections between nodes are limited to a tree hierarchy. so if you want to change the position of a node.

com/WikIT/ .InformationTamers. making sharing easier Import / Export Can import the following types of files: FreeMind / Freeplane Can export the following types of file: Outline text image formats FreeMind / Freeplane Roy Grubb http://www.6 Free visual thinking tools Allows change to map background: You can change the color Layout Layout is principally controlled by the software with little or no manual override Attachments Allows attachments to nodes. They may be of the following types: Notes to expand the detail given active hyperlinks icons Attachments to nodes are saved as part of the map file.

7 Free visual thinking tools Blumind  INFORMATION AND DOWNLOAD http://blumind.InformationTamers.org/ Portable version  http://portableapps.com/node/28891 Roy Grubb http://www.com/WikIT/ .

com/WikIT/ .8 Free visual thinking tools Cmap Tools 2 Roy Grubb http://www.InformationTamers.

The server software is available free at present (while it is in a beta / test version) if you want to try it on your own network. You can use this as simple desktop mapping software or. you can collaborate and share a map with others. there is no limitation on how you use the mapping software. Collaboration support: Multiple users can negotiate to edit the same map simultaneously and Cmap supports chat while they edit. License limitations: Registration is required.I use it myself when I want to sort out my thinking on a complex subject.this can be run from a USB memory stick Features Has support for making presentations Maps are kept online for sharing or access from multiple locations Has provision for handling multi-maps: by showing multiple maps on a page by allowing a node in a map to be linked to other maps Roy Grubb http://www.9 Free visual thinking tools  For rigorous analysis of knowledge. Linux A portable version is available .com/WikIT/ . Mac OS X. It supports making presentations. CMAP is hard to beat  Operating the software is more cumbersome than some I recommend Cmap as a concept mapper . their appearance and use is often different (see links in the introduction). Platforms supported Windows. Other than that. Though concept maps are similar to mind maps.InformationTamers. but this should not be a problem (I have never been spammed by IHMC). Cmap can show sentences implied by the concepts and their linking phrases. using an public online or intranet server.

i. making sharing easier Import / Export Can export the following types of file: Web pages Text XML Outline text Image formats & SVG PDF and Postscript Roy Grubb http://www. any node can be associated with any other.they appear when a mouse is hovered over a labeled node Provides an outline view of a map Allows floating topics Allows change to map background: You can select an image as the map’s background Layout Layout is normally entirely manual There is an option to ask the app to re-layout the map Attachments Allows attachments to nodes.e.InformationTamers.10 Free visual thinking tools Collaboration support: Supports simultaneous editing by more than one person Maps are kept online for sharing or access from multiple locations Searching text in a map is supported Appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Connections between nodes are not limited to a tree hierarchy. meaning a node can have multiple parents Nodes can have labels .com/WikIT/ . They may be of the following types: Notes to expand the detail given active hyperlinks active links to files images that can be seen on the map Attachments to nodes are saved as part of the map file.

com/WikIT/ .us/ http://www.cmappers.net/ http://cmap.us/download/ http://portableapps.us/ http://cmap.InformationTamers.11 Free visual thinking tools Cmap Tools  INFORMATION DOWNLOAD Portable version http://cmap.ihmc.ihmc.ihmc.com/node/25515 COMMUNITY http://cmapforum.ihmc.us/support/ Roy Grubb http://www.

com/WikIT/ .12 Free visual thinking tools Connected Mind 3 Roy Grubb http://www.InformationTamers.

InformationTamers. Platforms supported Online.ly/nnrWrR It’s free and is useful for making single images of any web page. Mac OS X. It uses the Google Chrome browser. but only in Google Chrome Windows. browser-based. One weakness is that you need another utility from the Chrome store to save the maps as images. even if it is much too long for your screen. organic.it won’t take long to view and it’s worth it.13 Free visual thinking tools  Eye-catching. no built-in Connected Mind allows you to make very organic-looking and visually powerful mind maps. you need to log in with your gmail account first. Called Webpage Screenshot. so runs on most platforms.com/WikIT/ . It doesn’t. Press the ‘ ? ‘ button on the right of the toolbar to see the help provided . you can get that here: http://bit. But don’t think that because it runs in a browser this will support collaboration. say MindMeister or Mindomo. browser-based but no collaboration Appearance Allows maps with an organic appearance Roy Grubb http://www. It’s not hard to use but it does take a little while to get used to it. colorful  Hard work. and you will need a gmail account to save your maps online. like. Linux Features Supports only one editor at a time Has provision for handling multi-maps: by showing multiple maps on a page export capability. To see your maps stored online.

meaning you can draw relationship lines and even a limited form of concept map Allows floating topics Layout Layout is entirely manual Attachments Allows attachments to nodes. but this can be ignored if you want to.14 Free visual thinking tools Allows maps with a box and line appearance There is an underlying tree hierarchy. They may be of the following types: Notes to expand the detail given active hyperlinks active links to files images that can be seen on the map Import Can import the following types of files: FreeMind / Freeplane Export Can import the following types of files: NONE Roy Grubb http://www.InformationTamers.com/WikIT/ .

com/WikIT/ .google.com/webstore/detail/pmkffmgahaepmhkhkblhopnpleeikokc?hc=search&hcp=main You must visit this link in Google’s Chrome browser to download and use this tool Roy Grubb http://www.InformationTamers.15 Free visual thinking tools Connected Mind  INFORMATION AND DOWNLOAD https://chrome.

InformationTamers.com/WikIT/ .16 Free visual thinking tools Edraw MindMap 4 Roy Grubb http://www.

backgrounds. TIFF. eye-catching maps. not limited to mind maps and supports several styles  Rigid and cumbersome Edraw MindMap can make mind maps. It can make attractive. This is a diagramming-style mind mapper. WMF. in which you make maps much as with Visio: Click a template object on the left and drag it to your drawing.InformationTamers. frames and clipart. BMP. Platforms supported Windows Features Has provision for handling multi-maps: by showing multiple maps on a page way to make mind maps Appearance Allows maps with an organic appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Nodes can have labels. making quick and attractive diagrams with a wide range of symbols. because it doesn’t really understand mind mapping. It has few import options. It exports to more formats than most free mapping software. bubble diagrams and even simple block diagrams. colorful diagrams. but can import Visio files. GIF.com/WikIT/ . EMF and MS Excel. But as a free diagram maker it excels. including SVG. but is tedious to use for that.17 Free visual thinking tools  Can make eye-catching. but this is just added text Roy Grubb http://www. License limitations: May be used for non-commercial purposes only.

making sharing easier Import / Export Can import the following types of file: XML Can export the following types of file: MS Word Web pages MS PowerPoint Image formats PDF Roy Grubb http://www. shapes. line styles) are included with the software Maps produced are (or may be) rectilinear Supports branch boundaries Allows change to map background: You can change the color You can select an image as the map’s background Layout Layout is entirely manual Attachments Allows attachments to nodes.18 Free visual thinking tools Allows floating topics Predefined map formats and designs (colors. They may be of the following types: callouts active hyperlinks images that can be seen on the map icons Attachments to nodes are saved as part of the map file.com/WikIT/ .InformationTamers.

which isn’t free.com/download/EDrawMindMap. so here’s a shortcut: DOWNLOAD http://www.exe  Roy Grubb http://www.edrawsoft.com/freemind. is hard to spot.InformationTamers. The inconspicuous download for the free Edraw MindMap.php Most links on that page point to Edraw Max.com/WikIT/ .19 Free visual thinking tools Edraw MindMap  INFORMATION http://www.edrawsoft.

com/WikIT/ .InformationTamers.20 Free visual thinking tools FreeMind 5 Roy Grubb http://www.

So a mind map can be used to hold information in an organized way for retrieval and use in other software that is not possible with most mind mapping software. In some ways.fields that can appear against each node. but is easy to use and works well from keyboard shortcuts. But don’t be put off . including some on the iPad and iPhone. See also the Freeplane section. Mac OS X. nodes can have ‘attributes’ .if you don’t have technical interests or a need for deep technical control. It has been around since the year 2000 and developed steadily for a long time. this is a techie’s mind mapper.this can be run from a USB memory stick Features Online maps can be embedded in blogs and other web pages. easy data interchange  The user interface is not FreeMind is the grandaddy of open source mind mapping software. fast mapping from the keyboard. Interchange with other software is particularly easy as the FreeMind format can be imported into many other mindmapping software packages. where they will be interactive (but not editable) great Roy Grubb http://www. where you can name. It has some idiosyncrasies. For example. and some browser-based. Dig and you will find it has many hidden capabilities. Linux A portable version is available .InformationTamers. define and store your own information.com/WikIT/ . keeping your hands on the keyboard is important. you can learn to use FreeMind quickly and won’t need to dig into the documentation. If ideas are flowing fast and you’re trying to get them down and organized quickly.21 Free visual thinking tools  Powerful. Platforms supported Windows . on-line mind mapping services.

22 Free visual thinking tools Includes support for project management: by storing task priority. task dates. but curving relationship lines outside the hierarchy are permitted Maps produced are (or may be) rectilinear Supports branch boundaries Layout Layout is controlled by the software but allows for manual override Attachments Allows attachments to nodes.com/WikIT/ .InformationTamers. They may be of the following types: Notes to expand the detail given active hyperlinks active links to files images that can be seen on the map icons Import Can import the following types of file: Freeplane MindManager Roy Grubb http://www. task % complete Has provision for handling multi-maps: by allowing a node in a map to be linked to other maps Searching text in a map is supported A reminder system is built in Appearance Allows maps with a somewhat organic appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Allows floating topics Nodes can have labels (using FreeMind’s user attributes) Connections between nodes are limited to a tree hierarchy.

net/wiki/index.net/wiki/index.23 Free visual thinking tools Export Can export the following types of file: MS Word Web pages XML Outline text Image formats PDF Freeplane FreeMind   Roy Grubb INFORMATION http://freemind.net/projects/freemind/forums/ http://www.InformationTamers.php/FreeMind_portable COMMUNITY http://sourceforge.sourceforge.sourceforge.php/Download Portable version http://freemind.net/wiki/ DOWNLOAD http://freemind.com/WikIT/ .sourceforge.

com/WikIT/ . The controls around the map. It is possible to achieve some effects in Freeplane that FreeMind doesn’t support. Had I not. That’s because I chose different settings to show the diversity of appearance that either can produce. So are some of the map elements that can be used.looks different from the FreeMind one in the previous entry. are quite different. they would have looked the same.24 Free visual thinking tools Freeplane 6 The map on the right .InformationTamers.the map itself . Roy Grubb http://www. as you can see.

on-line mind mapping services. easy data interchange  Map files are not Freeplane was forked from FreeMind in 2008. Platforms supported Windows.x-1. You can learn to use Freeplane quickly. at a time when some of the original FreeMind developers had different ideas about development. Mac OS X. Linux A portable version is available . I would recommend Freeplane over FreeMind. Interchange with other software is particularly easy as. Like FreeMind. even more so than with FreeMind. task dates. including some on the iPad and iPhone.net/wiki/index.InformationTamers. fast mapping from the keyboard.php/Freeplane_1.25 Free visual thinking tools  Powerful. the Freeplane format can be imported into many other mindmapping software packages.this can be run from a USB memory stick Features Online maps can be embedded in blogs and other web pages.0.x For now. You can read about the differences between Freeplane and FreeMind here: http://freeplane. task % complete guaranteed to remain compatible with FreeMind’s Roy Grubb http://www. this is a techie’s mind mapper. and some browser-based.net/wiki/index.sourceforge.sourceforge. but keep your eye on new versions from both. where they will be interactive (but not editable) Includes support for project management: by storing task priority.com/WikIT/ . though more friendly to nontechnical users.php/Main_Page#Freeplane_features and here: http://freeplane.1. for now at least.

com/WikIT/ . but curving relationship lines outside the hierarchy are permitted Maps produced are (or may be) rectilinear Supports branch boundaries Layout Layout is controlled by the software but allows for manual override Attachments Allows attachments to nodes.InformationTamers.26 Free visual thinking tools Has provision for handling multi-maps: by allowing a node in a map to be linked to other maps Searching text in a map is supported A reminder system is built in Appearance Allows maps with an organic appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Provides an outline view of a map Allows floating topics Nodes can have labels (using Freeplane’s user attributes) Connections between nodes are limited to a tree hierarchy. They may be of the following types: Notes to expand the detail given active hyperlinks active links to files images that can be seen on the map icons Import Can export the following types of file: FreeMind MindManager Roy Grubb http://www.

sourceforge.php/Portable_Freeplane COMMUNITY http://sourceforge.net/wiki/ DOWNLOAD http://sourceforge.net/wiki/index.net/projects/freeplane/ Portable version http://freeplane.InformationTamers.27 Free visual thinking tools Export Can export the following types of file: MS Word Web pages XML Outline text Image formats PDF FreeMind Freeplane  INFORMATION http://freeplane.sourceforge.net/apps/phpbb/freeplane/viewforum.php?f=1  Roy Grubb http://www.com/WikIT/ .

com/WikIT/ .InformationTamers.28 Free visual thinking tools iMindMap Basic 7 Roy Grubb http://www.

InformationTamers. and you can use all the features for 7 days. the free Basic version has the essential functions.com/WikIT/ . Download the full version. you see a message telling you to upgrade: You quickly learn what you can and cannot do with the Basic version. which is still very useful.) You will need to provide an email address to download iMindMap. If you want authenticity.29 Free visual thinking tools  The mind mapper from the person who named them. License limitations: The capabilities described below apply only to the free (‘Basic’) version. it converts itself into the limited Basic version. (iMindmap also has iOS versions but they are not free. Platforms supported Windows Mac OS X Features Has provision for handling multi-maps: by showing multiple maps on a page by allowing a node in a map to be linked to other maps Searching text in a map is supported Roy Grubb http://www. this is it!  Non-functional and visible controls from the full version can be confusing If you want to make traditional. One slight drawback is that all the higher version controls are there and if you try to use one. which is the first in a line of four versions of this product that provide more features as you move up the price range. but at the end of that time. organic mind maps of the type promoted by Tony Buzan. instead of it stopping working. Although there are various fullfeatured versions. this is the software for you.

InformationTamers.com/WikIT/ . They may be of the following types: Notes to expand the detail given active hyperlinks active links to files images that can be seen on the map icons Attachments to nodes are saved as part of the map file. used when you open attached hyperlinks Appearance Allows maps with an organic appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Allows floating topics Supports branch boundaries Connections between nodes are limited to a tree hierarchy. but curving relationship lines outside the hierarchy are permitted Layout Layout is controlled by the software but allows for manual override Attachments Allows attachments to nodes. making sharing easier Import / Export Can export the following types of file: Image formats Roy Grubb http://www.30 Free visual thinking tools Has an integrated browser.

com/WikIT/ .31 Free visual thinking tools iMindmap Basic  INFORMATION http://www.InformationTamers.thinkbuzan.com/intl/products/imindmap/basic & DOWNLOAD Roy Grubb http://www.

InformationTamers.32 Free visual thinking tools LucidChart 8 Roy Grubb http://www.com/WikIT/ .

Mac OS X. and all edits are stored in history so that manual rollback can solve any problems with the server’s decision. Collaboration support: Server decides how to merge simultaneous edits.com/WikIT/ . 60 objects per document / up to 2 collaborators. on: iPhone / iPod iPad limited to 60 for free accounts Online. Linux Runs on iOS. This supports collaboration with multi-user editing and chat. LucidChart has some automatic help with layout that reduces this burden. diagram-drawing software is more burdensome for making mind or concept maps than software designed for the purpose.33 Free visual thinking tools  Unlimited diagrams can be saved online. Server decides how to merge simultaneous edits. even works on iPad  Objects per diagram Mostly. Platforms supported Windows. The example shown is exactly at the limit of 60 objects.InformationTamers. browser-based. even on the iPad for which it has a modified user interface to help with the limited space. so runs on most platforms Roy Grubb http://www. License limitations: Unlimited number of basic diagrams / max. It works in HTML5 and therefore on many platforms. and all edits are stored in history so that manual rollback can solve any problems with the server’s decision.

InformationTamers.com/WikIT/ .34 Free visual thinking tools Features Supports simultaneous editing by more than one person Has provision for handling multi-maps: by showing multiple maps on a page by allowing a node in a map to be linked to other maps Appearance Allows maps with an organic appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Allows floating topics This makes diagrams. not maps Allows change to map background: You can change the color You can select an image as the map’s background Layout Layout is entirely manual Attachments Allows callout attachments to nodes Import / Export Can export the following types of file: Image formats PDF Roy Grubb http://www.

lucidchart.com/invitations/accept/4e72d495-92b0-4361-9a1b-4ce60a7e1727 (you will need to make an account to see it properly) ONLINE Roy Grubb http://www.lucidchart.InformationTamers.35 Free visual thinking tools LucidChart  USE IT HERE http://www.com/ VIEW THE EXAMPLE http://www.com/WikIT/ .

InformationTamers.com/WikIT/ .36 Free visual thinking tools Mind42 9 Roy Grubb http://www.

Collaboration support: Skype address can be recorded. and simultaneous editing. It retains a timeline of changes and allows rolling the map back to that stored at any point. browser-based. Mac OS X. You can ask Mind42 to send you an email when a shared map is changed. Platforms supported Online. the address will be made available to those sharing it. MindManager. imports FreeMind. It can import from FreeMind. where they will be interactive (but not editable) Appearance Maps produced are rectilinear Connections between nodes are limited to a tree hierarchy stimulating appearance Roy Grubb http://www. notification on change  Maps could have more This is a very useful free web application that allows making mind maps in collaboration with others. so runs on Windows. even iOS blogs and other web pages.com/WikIT/ .37 Free visual thinking tools  Unlimited maps. where they will be interactive (but not editable) License limitations: Needs an email to set up an account if you want to make maps. to further enhance collaboration.InformationTamers. Task data can be stored against nodes in the form of To Do list attachments. Linux. Online maps can be embedded in blogs and other web pages. Then when you share a map. but this information is not exportable. multiple simultaneous editors. though this is not perfect (I lost some text on a few nodes). history of changes with rollback. but mostly it works.

InformationTamers.38 Free visual thinking tools Features Supports simultaneous editing Online maps can be embedded in web pages Includes support for project management: by storing task priority. making sharing easier Import / Export Can import the following types of files: XML FreeMind / Freeplane MindManager Can export the following types of file: MS Word XML Outline text Image formats PDF FreeMind / Freeplane Mindmanager Roy Grubb http://www. They may be of the following types: Notes to expand the detail given active hyperlinks images that can be seen on the map icons Attachments to nodes are saved as part of the map file. task dates.com/WikIT/ . task % complete Layout Layout is controlled by the software but allows for manual override Attachments Allows attachments to nodes.

com/ VIEW THE EXAMPLE http://mind42.InformationTamers.39 Free visual thinking tools Mind42  USE IT HERE http://www.com/pub/mindmap?mid=4ef1abd9-7b31-4e66-995a-2f4a9971a1c7 ONLINE Roy Grubb http://www.com/WikIT/ .mind42.

com/WikIT/ .40 Free visual thinking tools MindNode 10 Roy Grubb http://www.InformationTamers.

com/WikIT/ . no relationship lines Appearance Allows maps with an organic appearance Allows floating topics Connections between nodes are limited to a tree hierarchy Roy Grubb http://www. simple maps. This limitation makes it very fast and easy as a brainstorming tool though. License limitations: None. It can export an outline for of the map as HTML. for those ‘thoughts-to-screen’ occasions. RTF files or plain text. makes clear. can export to commonly used format for exchanging maps  No attachments to The free version of MindNode is limited to node words. but none of those are free. like floating topics and multiple maps on one screen cannot easily be represented in FreeMind so may not appear as you expect. and colored edge lines.41 Free visual thinking tools  Very easy to use. Mindnode can export its maps as images and PDF files. though some of MindNode’s capabilities.InformationTamers. There are Pro. iPad and iPhone versions.this can be run from a USB memory stick Features Has a mode designed to support brainstorming Connections between nodes are limited to a tree hierarchy Has provision for handling multi-maps: by showing multiple maps on a page nodes. It can export to FreeMind format. Platforms supported Mac OS X A portable version is available .

InformationTamers.42 Free visual thinking tools Layout Layout is controlled by the software but allows for manual override Attachments None Import / Export Can export the following types of file: Text XML OPML Outline text Image formats PDF FreeMind / Freeplane Roy Grubb http://www.com/WikIT/ .

43 Free visual thinking tools MindNode  INFORMATION AND DOWNLOAD http://www.com/f/Wz7VMY/Markus.Incl.Pro.com/WikIT/ .com/ Portable version http://www.Keymaker-CORE.filejungle.InformationTamers.Mueller.mindnode.rar (file-download site) Roy Grubb http://www.MacOSX.v1.MindNode.7.3.

InformationTamers.44 Free visual thinking tools Prezi 11 This is best understood as a presentation. Try it here :- http://prezi.com/h26pn8blxhhw/prezi-capabilities/ Roy Grubb http://www.com/WikIT/ .

License limitations: All your presentations will be public. Mac OS X. You can automate the path. so runs on most platforms including Windows. using Flash.com/WikIT/ .InformationTamers. Instead it works as a series of views where text and images are spread across a map-like surface. Linux. because it allows images and text that you want to reveal later to be so small they are not noticed until you are ready to zoom in on them. You can also download a Prezi file that can be decompressed and run on your desktop.45 Free visual thinking tools  Easy to share presentations on line. iOS Features Collaboration support: Supports simultaneous editing by more than one person Maps are kept online for sharing or access from multiple locations can be disturbing for some viewers Roy Grubb http://www. zooms. The zooming ability is very powerful. Your readers can view your work at the Prezi site. for Prezi maps including images. twists and turns of your presentation around this map. Collaboration support: Your online presentations can be viewed by others and you can edit with others on line. so that you can view presentations on an iPad. You are allowed a maximum of 100MB of storage space. And Prezi has a free viewer for IOS. browser-based. a relief from dull slide-by-slide presentations. Platforms supported Online. easy to use  Twisting and zooming Prezi is a web app for preparing presentations that don’t depend on a sequence of slides.

making sharing easier Import / Export Can export the following types of file: Web pages Roy Grubb http://www. not what would normally be called maps Allows change to map background: You can change the color You can select an image as the map’s background Layout Layout is entirely manual Attachments Allows attachments to nodes. They may be of the following types: callouts active hyperlinks images that can be seen on the map Attachments to nodes are saved as part of the map file. where they will be interactive (but not editable) Has support for making presentations Appearance Allows floating topics This makes diagrams for presentations.InformationTamers.com/WikIT/ .46 Free visual thinking tools Online maps can be embedded in blogs and other web pages.

com/ VIEW THE EXAMPLE AS A PRESENTATION ONLINE http://prezi.com/WikIT/ .com/h26pn8blxhhw/prezi-capabilities/ Roy Grubb http://www.InformationTamers.47 Free visual thinking tools Prezi  USE IT HERE http://prezi.

com/WikIT/ .48 Free visual thinking tools TreeSheets 12 Roy Grubb http://www.InformationTamers.

49 Free visual thinking tools  Fast. visual but compact  Unexpected approach TreeSheets is a text-based information organizer with a zooming interface. lightweight app. This image is actually reduced – the actual result is clearer and larger. easy to use. It’s a neat little application. we need to be able to take in the big picture and zoom in rapidly on any area for the detail. In the example on the right.com/WikIT/ . Zooming interfaces are great for information organizers. Then to see them. for some features Roy Grubb http://www. but avoid detail until you want it. and the area pops up to full size. there’s a grid of cells. you just click the cell you want to examine: and roll the mouse wheel forward: The surrounding grid disappears. There are keystroke alternatives to the mousewheel. saved each URL list in the cell (a grid inside a grid) and shrunk the grid using the mouse wheel while holding down Ctrl.InformationTamers. I grouped them under headings. With the volumes of information we have to handle these days. The gray lines are very tiny text. and nested sub-grids. This means you can have a lot on the screen at once. It has titles and then some references I wanted to go back to when I had time. Roll the wheel back and you see the whole sheet again.

com/WikIT/ . They may be of the following types: active hyperlinks active links to files images that can be seen on the map icons Attachments to nodes are saved as part of the map file.50 Free visual thinking tools It doesn’t have the visual impact of a mind map and doesn’t help.InformationTamers. to generate new ideas or new associations. Platforms supported Windows. making sharing easier Layout Layout is controlled by the software but allows for manual override Roy Grubb http://www. It can be visually much more interesting than the examples on the previous page as the main image at the beginning of this article shows. especially when images are included. but a TreeSheet is an excellent way of organizing frequently-referred to information. Linux.this can be run from a USB memory stick Features Searching text in a map is supported Appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Provides an outline view of a map Allows floating topics Maps produced are (or may be) rectilinear Connections between nodes are limited to a tree hierarchy Attachments Allows attachments to nodes. (Mac OS version available in Alpha) A portable version is available . for example.

Google.com/WikIT/ .com/group/treesheets http://www.InformationTamers.51 Free visual thinking tools Import / Export Can import the following types of files: XML OPML Can export the following types of file: Web pages XML OPML & OML Outline text Image formats TreeSheets  Roy Grubb INFORMATION AND DOWNLOAD http://treesheets.com/node/19038 COMMUNITY http://Groups.com/ Portable version http://portableapps.

52 Free visual thinking tools Visuwords 13 Roy Grubb http://www.InformationTamers.com/WikIT/ .

com/WikIT/ . but that requires a subscription for unlimited use. You can double-click a node.53 Free visual thinking tools  Dynamic visual presentation of word relationships  Read only This is not an application that allows you to make maps. It’s a very dynamic map. it is essentially read-only. and VisuWords is free.InformationTamers. so it behaves like a rubberized net. If you hover over a node you’ll see the definition and dragging individual nodes lets you rearrange the net. Instead it builds maps for you based on a choice of dictionary word and its internal record of how that word is associated with other words by meaning. and Visuwords will extend the associated vocabulary around that word. with its own physics built in. Although it is interactive. Roy Grubb http://www. Click and drag the background to pan around and use the mouse wheel to zoom. It’s rather like the VisualThesaurus.

54
Free visual thinking tools

Platforms supported Online, browser-based, so it runs on most platforms: Windows; Linux; Mac OS X. Requires Flash, so does not work on iOS. Appearance Maps have a box and line appearance Predefined map formats and designs (colors, shapes, line styles) are included with the software Connections between nodes are not limited to a tree hierarchy, i.e. any node can be associated with any other, meaning a node can have multiple parents Layout Layout is principally controlled by the software. You cannot override connections, but have great control over node position.

Roy Grubb

http://www.InformationTamers.com/WikIT/

55
Free visual thinking tools

Visuwords

USE IT HERE http://www.visuwords.com/

Roy Grubb

http://www.InformationTamers.com/WikIT/

56
Free visual thinking tools

VUE

14

Roy Grubb

http://www.InformationTamers.com/WikIT/

In addition to png and jpg image files." And an RDFS or OWL ontology must be imported to assign ontological terms.57 Free visual thinking tools  Combines concept mapping with presentation  Presentation-making is VUE is an acronym for Visual Understanding Environment. and ontological terms can be assigned. and to solve that. They are interactive in the sense that clicking on a file link or hyperlink will open or launch the file or web page. A slightly organic appearance is possible with nice controls for curved and s-shaped links. With typical short concept map phrases in a node. there are provisions for classifying nodes in some detail: Keywords can be assigned.InformationTamers. with categories using OpenCalais. VUE can export to SVG and RDF formats. VUE can export interactive web pages. Images can be pulled in from Flikr Collaboration support: Has experimental chat: AOL IM Limitations: Needs an email address to download. so this is not very portable. As you might expect from a mapper developed in by academics. This is a concept mapper with emphasis on organizing material for presentations including embedded videos.com/WikIT/ . however. not intuitive Roy Grubb http://www. you can specify a presentation path. VUE can pack the map and all of its attachments in a VPK file (actually a compressed zip-type file. Files in such web pages are linked to the local PC. After completing the map. OpenCalis will probably just say "This node does not contain enough meaningful information to be analysed. The appearance of the maps it makes is rather plain.

meaning a node can have multiple parents Layout Layout is entirely manual Attachments Allows attachments to nodes. any node can be associated with any other. Linux Features Has support for making presentations Has provision for handling multi-maps: by showing multiple maps on a page Has a built-in presentation browser Appearance Allows maps with a slightly organic appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Allows floating topics Connections between nodes are not limited to a tree hierarchy.they appear when a mouse is hovered over a labeled node Attachments to nodes are saved as part of the map file.InformationTamers. making sharing easier Export Can export the following types of file: Web pages XML Image formats PDF Roy Grubb http://www.com/WikIT/ . They may be of the following types: Notes to expand the detail given callouts active hyperlinks active links to files images that can be seen on the map Nodes can have labels .58 Free visual thinking tools Platforms supported Windows. i.e. Mac OS X.

tufts.tufts.uit.edu/forums/list.edu/download/index.59 Free visual thinking tools VUE  INFORMATION http://vue.cfm DOWNLOAD http://vue.tufts.cfm FORUM https://vue-forums.com/WikIT/ .page Roy Grubb http://www.uit.edu/index.InformationTamers.

60 Free visual thinking tools Xmind 15 Roy Grubb http://www.com/WikIT/ .InformationTamers.

Features Has provision for handling multi-maps: by allowing a node in a map to be linked to other maps map style is hard (changing an individual map is easy) Searching text in a map is supported Node numbering (Various numbering styles) Drill down (temporarily make a topic the central one with only its children and below visible) Xmind workbooks allow multiple maps in one file It has an integrated browser that is used when you open attached hyperlinks It has a navigation map that makes it easy to find your way around large maps Roy Grubb http://www. Linux. On-line maps cannot be made private.it’s amazingly capable. Mac OS. License limitations: Fewer export types than Pro. Platforms supported Windows. Mac OS X. but the free Xmind is not at all basic .com/WikIT/ . and the free version does not make Gantt charts. but on-line editing is not supported. no task information can be saved to support project management. They still charge for their Pro version.61 Free visual thinking tools  A first rate free mind mapper for business mapping  Changing the default If you want a free mind mapper for business use. It even gives you access to a free online account on Xmind’s server to help sharing your maps. it’s very hard to beat Xmind. A portable version is available . and Linux 32-bit/64 bit. Has online server for map storage. Collaboration support: Maps can be loaded to a public server for download and editing by others.InformationTamers. It started as a commercial product and then went open source.this can be run from a USB memory stick and works on Windows.

com/WikIT/ . and six map layout options are included with the software Supports branch boundaries Allows an exceptional level of control over the background of a map: plain colored background standard pattern image or use your own image control the transparency of the background image / pattern Optional legend (surprisingly.InformationTamers. They may be of the following types: Notes to expand the detail given node labels callouts active hyperlinks active links to files images that can be seen on the map icons Roy Grubb http://www. many free ones don’t offer this) Layout Layout is controlled by the software but allows for manual override Attachments Allows attachments to nodes.62 Free visual thinking tools Appearance Allows maps with an organic appearance Allows maps with a box and line appearance Provides an outline view of a map Allows floating topics Predefined map formats & designs (colors. line styles). shapes.

LinkedIn.63 Free visual thinking tools Import / Export Can import the following types of file: FreeMind / Freeplane MindManager Can export the following types of file: Web pages Text Image formats FreeMind / Freeplane Xmind  INFORMATION http://xmind.Google.xmind.Ning.InformationTamers.net/downloads/ (includes portable version) COMMUNITY http://xmindusers.com/ (recommended) http://www.net/ DOWNLOADS http://www.com/groups/XMind-Group-43266 http://Groups.com/WikIT/ .com/group/xmind?pli=1 Roy Grubb http://www.

64 Free visual thinking tools Resources Visual thinking models Apps Computer software or application programs that run on a desktop computer. Some require a specific browser  Links about concept maps About concept maps How to make a concept map Choosing between concept maps and mind maps Callouts Text associated with a node that is visible in the map.InformationTamers. Browser based Apps that must be run in a web browser.com/WikIT/ . Boundaries … or ‘branch boundaries’ are enclosures that emphasize the connection between topics on a branch. Concept map A concept map is similar to a mind map but cross links have equal weighting with hierarchical links. on a web server or a mobile device. Roy Grubb http://www. in a browser. and links describe relationships between concepts (nodes) with linking phrases.

The web server (the distant computer) does the work. Examples: Blumind. Roy Grubb http://www.65 Free visual thinking tools Cross links Relationships between concepts or topics that do not follow a tree hierarchy. Online There are three types of online map/diagram software: 1.InformationTamers. and you can find more detail about the meanings and common usage of the term “mind map” at the links on the left. Most mind mapping software also allows you to draw connecting lines that are subsidiary to and visually distinct from the hierarchical connections. This can sometimes mean that a topic or concept can have multiple parents. The example on the right shows this. Notes Many mapping apps allow adding notes to nodes. Some support collaborative editing.com/WikIT/ . The text will only be visible when the node is selected and will appear in a separate panel. Web apps that you run from a browser. Links about mind maps What is a mind map? How to make a mind map Buzan mind maps Common mind maps or Buzan mind maps? Choosing between concept maps and mind maps Mind map A mind map is a form of diagram that is principally a tree hierarchy with its main topic in a central node and other topics connected to and surrounding this central node. There’s much more to it than that. Example: Mind42. your computer just sends your instructions and displays the result. Cmap Tools. Desktop software Software that runs on a desktop or laptop computer and doesn’t need to be connected to a network.

Your computer does most of the work. are generally described as organic. Outline view A view of the hierarchy of a map that is laid out as a list with the degree of indentation of a node showing its position in the hierarchy. 3. where all the work is done locally. the wiki about mapping information Directory of selected information maps from around the Web The mind mapping blog This means that the software allows you to use curved lines. Apps you download that are installed as extensions to your browser and run in the browser. but that offer an online server to facilitate sharing and distribution of maps. provided you have the USB with you. and USB ports are available for you to use. multi-level bullet points. Portable version Software Is described as portable if it can run be from a USB memory stick and does not need you to install it. Cmap Tools.66 Free visual thinking tools 2. but the maps may be stored online . Similar to indented. “Slightly” or “somewhat” organic Other valuable free resources WikIT. Some even support collaborative editing. Example: Blumind 4.com/WikIT/ Roy Grubb . http://www. but those who like the treebranch style of organic maps. for example.on a web server. Desktop apps that can run without a connection to the Internet. probably won’t be satisfied with fixed-width curved lines to only extend to one level from the central topic. This means that the software is always available to you as you move from PC to PC.InformationTamers. Organic A form of mind map where branches taper from the center out to the outermost nodes and the node words are along the line. Example of software that supports this: iMindMap Basic. Example: Connected Mind. rather than in a box or bubble.

Roy Grubb http://www. you will have to use a browser based (see above) visual thinking tool. For such cases when you do not have installation rights. Tree hierarchy A form of mind map that follows a tree’s structure where every branch is connected only to its parent and any children. not allowing diagonals or curves (except perhaps at corners). and there is no way of linking between branches. Rectilinear Some software limits the arrangement of connecting lines between topics to horizontal and vertical straight lines. The gray lines in the image on the right are examples. Relationship lines Curving lines in a mind map that link two branches.InformationTamers.com/WikIT/ . I have not tested any of the portable-version downloads. Examples: MindNode and Mind42. Example: Mind42.67 Free visual thinking tools Some companies block off access to USB ports for file-holding devices for reasons of computer security.

designer of 3D Topicscape the mapping information organizer. plans and meetings.ask him about mapping! © Copyright 2011—All rights reserved—Roy Grubb  Book design inspired by Chris Guillebeau’s brilliant 279 Days to Overnight Success Roy Grubb http://www.com/WikIT/ . he specializes in collaboration at the boundary between business and technology and uses visual models to clarify business for technology people and technology for business people.InformationTamers. knowledge. His knowledge of these tools is wide and he freely gives his time to answering questions about them on Twitter and in blog posts. enterprise architecture and planning. He uses visualization for problem solving. Follow Roy on Twitter: @roygrubb .68 Free visual thinking Author Roy Grubb FBCS CITP is a business consultant and visualist. tools As a consultant. As a visualist he very actively spreads the word on mapping information. and Managing Director of G&A Management Consultants Limited. and the use of visual tools. ideas. Roy is the chief editor of WikIT the mapping wiki.