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REQUEST: Mind Mapping

productivity mind maps

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#61 Jay P.

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 03:53 PM

Howdy everyone!

I love reading this thread because it hits all the pain-points I've had acquainting myself with the Evernote rich-text-only paradigm.

I've been using mindmapping tools for almost a decade (FreeMind anyone?) and found myself still using it most when I had serious contemplation to do or needed to take a lot of notes really quickly in way that was legible immediately afterwards. Because I'm now such a hardcore Evernote user, using a different mindmapping tool for any note taking felt like I was complicating my life more than I should. Frankly, all of the mindmapping tools that claim to have Evernote integration suck and integrate with Evernote in such an awkward way it's no better than just using FreeMind+Dropbox and occasionally attaching PDF or PNG representations of my mindmaps and hoping OCR would help me later.

I came to the juncture of asking myself whether it was worth just foregoing mindmapping altogether to keep my note-taking life simple.

As a developer, I was intrigued by the problem and set out to fix it. And I think I have fixed this mindmapping+Evernote problem now.

I'll be releasing my app for the world to use in the coming weeks but I'm looking for beta testers right now. I'd like Evernote users ranging from very-little-to-no mindmapping experience and people like gazumped in this thread who seem to be dedicated mindmapping connoisseurs.

If you'd like to participate in the beta of my Evernote mindmapping tool, please contact me via email: jicksta at gmail dot com.

When I launch the tool publicly, I'll also announce it in this thread.

Thanks!
Jay Phillips

#62 Owyn

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 04:08 PM

I'm looking for beta testers right now

Email sent.
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#63 dlu

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 05:54 PM

Howdy everyone!

I love reading this thread because it hits all the pain-points I've had acquainting myself with the Evernote rich-text-only paradigm.

I've been using mindmapping tools for almost a decade (FreeMind anyone?) and found myself still using it most when I had serious contemplation to do or needed to take a lot of notes really quickly in way that was legible immediately afterwards. Because I'm now such a hardcore Evernote user, using a different mindmapping tool for any note taking felt like I was complicating my life more than I should. Frankly, all of the mindmapping tools that claim to have Evernote integration suck and integrate with Evernote in such an awkward way it's no better than just using FreeMind+Dropbox and occasionally attaching PDF or PNG representations of my mindmaps and hoping OCR would help me later.

I came to the juncture of asking myself whether it was worth just foregoing mindmapping altogether to keep my note-taking life simple.

As a developer, I was intrigued by the problem and set out to fix it. And I think I have fixed this mindmapping+Evernote problem now.

I'll be releasing my app for the world to use in the coming weeks but I'm looking for beta testers right now. I'd like Evernote users ranging from very-little-to-no mindmapping experience and people like gazumped in this thread who seem to be dedicated mindmapping connoisseurs.

If you'd like to participate in the beta of my Evernote mindmapping tool, please contact me via email: jicksta at gmail dot com.

When I launch the tool publicly, I'll also announce it in this thread.

Thanks!
Jay Phillips


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#64 dracnath

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 03:46 PM

I've been thinking about mind mapping and evernote a lot recently and just wanted to add my own 2c to this.

Personally I've no interest in a mind mapping tool that would allow notes to be linked. What I'd really like is to be able to create mind maps that reside completely in a particular note. So when creating a mind map of a meeting it could reside within a note and then be dropped into a folder and tagged just like any other note.

As for linked solutions, that's ok, but it's an extra painful step for people. For it really to be useful it would idealy be an either built in or related in teh same way that Skitch is. So that there could eventually be one cross platform mind-mapping-note-taking-ass-kicking tool for mac, pc, ios, android and even for the BlackBerry Playbook.

#65 tjeef

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 02:18 PM

Since EN can't really make relationships (structures, hiearchies, sequences) between notes and therefore has limited use as an outliner, I would LOVE to see MindManager (or another mindmapping tool) take on that role, in integration with EN.

Ie. the possibility to manage a "tree" (including the sequence of child notes/topics) of notes in a mind map.
This would be the best of both worlds.

(Even without the mind map, it would be GREAT if EN got this functionality within. Similar to UltraRecall and other outliners, where parent/child relationships and sequence of siblings can be set up).

#66 Brian M

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 06:43 PM

Just to kick in what I would reccomend for a mind mappign application... it is open source, cross platform, fast, and does what I think all mind mappers should do which is allow quick mappings (mind map is really just a outline in a pretty form)

Xmind

http://www.xmind.net/

Been using it for years, I like mindjet, but only if I had a spare $300 every year...

#67 Jay P.

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 07:02 PM

I've been thinking about mind mapping and evernote a lot recently and just wanted to add my own 2c to this.

Personally I've no interest in a mind mapping tool that would allow notes to be linked. What I'd really like is to be able to create mind maps that reside completely in a particular note. So when creating a mind map of a meeting it could reside within a note and then be dropped into a folder and tagged just like any other note.

As for linked solutions, that's ok, but it's an extra painful step for people. For it really to be useful it would idealy be an either built in or related in teh same way that Skitch is. So that there could eventually be one cross platform mind-mapping-note-taking-ass-kicking tool for mac, pc, ios, android and even for the BlackBerry Playbook.


I totally agree. This is what I think I've solved. Sorry for all the teasers. I promise there's more info coming shortly!

#68 llbean

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 08:07 PM

So I read May's pdf regarding organizing non-actionable items in EN and mindmaps and was very intrigued. I've never done much mind mapping but have come to realize that there are at least 3 to 4 in my head, mostly process related, which I wanted to jot down and inventory in EN. Some sections of my process seem better described visually with embedded links as opposed to the format EN has to offer.

I've also started using OF, so I'm not looking for a mind mapping app for Mac which acts as a task manager. What I to do is simply create mind maps with file/note links. I'd like an iOS version as well to sync. The best I've found so far is MindNode, which seems almost adequate in its free version except for the fact that you cannot disconnect a node from an existing parent and establish it on a new node.

Any advice if this is worth the $20?

L

#69 jefito

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 10:16 PM

Oh, tell me that the "llbean" of your handle is not the same as the "L. L. Bean" of the boots.. :)
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#70 moreproblemo

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 10:28 PM

Jay, any luck with your beta testing?

#71 Evernot

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 02:54 AM

Frankly, I don't understand all this fuss over "mind maps".

Let's get one thing straight first. Are we talking about the traditional, over-hyped, single-parent "radial" mind map made popular by Tony Buzan, as in Mind On Track? Or are we talking about a "network" design that allows one to create hierarchies of parent/child notes with multiple links between them?

Taking radial mind maps first, their only real claim to fame is that a user should be able not just to allocate children of the central topic like spokes on a wheel, but also to spatially cluster said children meaningfully (afaik only Mind Manager does this properly) as well as have subchildren (descendants) coming off them. If we make a cut in this "wheel" and straighten it out into a vertical line, we end up with a simple outline. EN already provides this in the form of a hierarchical tag list. You could allocate one tag per note if you wish.

If you are hell bent on creating a mind map, by all means do so using some other app, and keep a screen capture program handy (I use Jing) to make copies of your map and update the existing one already stored in your Note as you edit it in your mind mapper app.

As far as "network" type mind maps go, with proper multiparent trees, etc. you can also create one in EN using keywords and/or tags. See my post here with valuable contributions made by May, JBenson2, gazumped and others. No matter how eloquent your mind map is, it becomes impossible to view it all together (a fundamental requirement) after it reaches a certain size, so you might as well accept this and create several "views" (PersonalBrain attempts this), storing screenshots in EN.

At heart, EN is a card file, aka "flat file" database, like a Rolodex, but encrusted with added bells and whistles such as stacks and tags. Trying to graft on mind mapping features would be to compromise on speed and basic efficiency.

#72 llbean

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 05:17 AM

Oh, tell me that the "llbean" of your handle is not the same as the "L. L. Bean" of the boots.. :)


I do live up north. I'll leave you to guess :)

#73 jefito

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 11:26 AM

:)

I live within 3 miles of the Big Boot mothership, and go by it every day on my way to work...
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#74 peterfmartin

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 06:48 PM

http://www.theonion....80th-yea,14170/
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#75 GaryLKing

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 08:33 PM

+1 I'm sorry, that link is just funny.

#76 Joshua Zerkel

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 04:59 PM

I've been using XMind alongside iThoughtsHD with Dropbox sync, and have been quite happy. No real Evernote integration, however.
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#77 s.mackesey

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 06:28 AM

I have a major feature proposal for Evernote that I assume has occurred to others. If the developers don't plan to implement something similar, I am hoping that someone can point me to another app that has this feature.

I currently use Apple's Keynote to maintain a large list of 'cheat sheets' for various technical tasks-- math and programming mostly. I find the free-form placement of information to be essential. While I find that this system works, Keynote is not designed for this purpose and it shows. I've now got about 50 slides and its an increasing pain to navigate them. I often have reams of information crammed into single slides, and it will take me a while to find what I'm looking for. On top of this, I have to keep Keynote in a space separate from that holding my work.

What the system really needs is search-- if I can't remember Taylor's theorem or the correct syntax for string formatting in Python, I should be able to find that information immediately and have it pop up in a window in my working space. I once tried keeping this kind of info in Evernote for exactly this reason, but I found I didn't use it. The information was too fragmented for Evernote to provide a satisfying solution, and searching wasn't quick enough. It was easier just to go to my Keynote space and visually scan for the needed info.

Since then, my machine has gotten faster and I've begun using Alfred to search Evernote. I now think that the speed of reference issues are resolved. But I would still miss the high level view that I get in Keynote.

Thus I propose a new feature for Evernote: the ability to arrange individual notes on "maps" or "bulletin boards" in a similar fashion to the Keynote silde shown below. This feature would be purely grafted onto the current system. It is not as if a note would have a home map. It could be on as many or as few as one desired. This would have applications far beyond my needs. The ability to view aggregates of notes as a two dimensional whole would be a major step towards more flexible information representation. Linear lists, Evernote's current offering, just aren't that great.

Thoughts? Suggestions for other apps that might serve this purpose?

EXAMPLE MAP:
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#78 peterfmartin

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 07:30 AM

Welcome to the forums, s.mackesey.

I haven't used this program, since I don't need what you're asking for, but you could try out Desk in the Clouds (newly available, it seems, for Mac as well as Windows). If you want more information on Desk in the Clouds, search the forums, since users have described it in other conversations.
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#79 gazumped

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 12:01 PM

I agree that visual mapping is a powerful addition to Evernote's current set of 'brain' tools - +1 for the suggestion, meantime Mind Mapping of various sorts and apps like Workflowy are your only other options to peterf's suggestion above...

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#80 jefito

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 01:08 PM

I have a major feature proposal for Evernote that I assume has occurred to others. If the developers don't plan to implement something similar, I am hoping that someone can point me to another app that has this feature.

<snip>

Thus I propose a new feature for Evernote: the ability to arrange individual notes on "maps" or "bulletin boards" in a similar fashion to the Keynote silde shown below.


Evernote do not usually divulge their plans ahead of time, so if they're planning something like this, we likely won't know until it starts showing up in betas. I'm doubting that this is coming any time soon, myself; it seems too specialized (maybe I'm wrong about that) and requires a bunch of new organizational glue to make it work.By the way, I'm not sure if this fits in with the notion of maps as purveyed by the mind-mapping crowd (granted I am n expert in that area). Bulletin board sounds closer, though.

Anyways, some of the pieces are in place already. For example

This feature would be purely grafted onto the current system. It is not as if a note would have a home map. It could be on as many or as few as one desired.

To me, this says tags. Equating a "board" with a tag allows you to have any number of notes on that board; conversely, you can tag a note with multiple boards. What's lacking in Evernote is the ability to metadata to the boards: how notes are ordered on the board, layout information, etc., etc. You cannot tie any metadata to a tag. So I think that you'd need to store that externally, and that, I think pushes this into the realm of third-party developers, who would build on Evernote's infrastructure, but add their own

So, could Evernote deliver something like this? Sure.
Will they? Short term, probably not, but long term, who knows?

Maybe you should switch from Math to software development, and make it happen... :)
~Jeff
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