Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Those wanting help in navigating complex ideas often turn to mind mapping software, and Scapple is one of the best on the market. The Mac app brings structure to concepts, but in a user-friendly, drag-and-drop way. The economical design and quick import options also make sure nothing gets between users and their ideas.
Scapple isn't a spelling mistake for that Pennsylvania Dutch concoction made with pork scraps, corn meal, flour and spices.
In fact, scapple is actually a word meaning to work roughly, or shape without finishing.
It's also the name of a dynamite new mind mapping program from Literature and Latte, the folks who brought the Mac world Scrivner.
Mind mapping isn't exactly a new category of software and the folks at L&L aren't me-too types, so you know they wouldn't try their hand at this kind of software if they didn't think they could add value to it.
That they did.
Scapple is not only easy and fun to use, but it's one of best mind mapping programs for creatives in the market.
Blank Canvas for Ideas
Mind mapping is based on the idea that we think visually, not in outlines. When we attack a project, we have ideas swirling around in our heads and can best make the connections to those ideas in a free-form way -- no Roman numerals, letters and numbers.
While mind mapping programs can give you the free-form freedom you're looking for with ideas, they do force you to connect your ideas -- maybe before you are ready to do that.
For example, when you write down one idea, the program will typically automatically connect it to the next idea you write, unless you manually intervene.
Scapple doesn't even make those kinds of minimal impositions on your thought processes. It gives you a true blank canvas for your ideas.
You can type an idea anywhere on that canvas by moving your cursor to wherever you want the idea to appear and double-clicking the spot. Alternatively, you can use the command-control keys to start a new idea.
As you start populating the Scapple canvas with ideas, you might want to move some ideas close to others. All you need to do is click and drag the idea to its new location.
Now you may notice how some ideas relate to others. You want to connect those ideas. No problem. Click one of the ideas you want to connect and drag it to the other idea. The "dragged" idea will bounce back to its original location and a dotted line showing the connection between ideas will appear on the screen.
You can reposition either idea, and the bond between them will stretch and shrink to accommodate the changes.
Don't like the connection anymore? Just drag one idea onto the other and the link will be broken.
Don't like the ideas either? Click on them and tap delete.
Using Arrows to Target Ideas
Dotted lines are OK, but a mind map isn't a mind map without arrows.
Scapple lets you link ideas with arrows on the fly.
To create an arrow from an idea you've dragged to another idea, hold down the option key as you drag and drop the idea.
An arrow in the other direction can be created by holding both the option and command keys while dragging and dropping ideas.
Two-way arrows can be created by holding down the shift and command keys during a drag and drop.
If you see two ideas connected by a link, and suddenly you realize that there should be another idea between the pair, you can double-click on the link and a box will pop up, allowing you to insert the idea between the other two.
While a mind map's horizontal dimensions are its strong suit, sometimes the vertical relationship of a series of ideas can be too obvious to ignore. Scapple lets you group those ideas in "stacks."
For example, let's say you have an idea that you'd like to connect with several URLs. You could connect everything together with dotted lines or arrows, but a stack might be more useful.
You could create your idea, select it and then hit command-enter. A new box will appear immediately below the idea. You can paste your first URL in that box, select it, hit command- enter again to create the next item in the stack, and so on until the stack is finished.
By the way, URLs in Scapple are live, and clicking on them will take you to their location on the Internet.
When you're creating ideas on the fly, you might not see what makes a good stack of ideas. That's not a problem. You can select the ideas you want to stack by using shift- or command-click and choose "stack" from Scapple's menu bar. All the ideas will be neatly stacked under the first idea you selected.
In addition to associating ideas by stacking, you can also place borders around them. That will make them stand out on the page.
You can also lock the ideas inside the border you draw around them by choosing "magnetic" from the Notes pulldown menu. Locking ideas in the shape allows you to move both the shape and ideas around as a single unit.
Scapple not only accepts keyboard input, but you can also drag pictures and document files into it.
Read complete at: MacNewsWorld.com
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Expansive features and real-time collaborative functions elevate MindMaple’s potential as education technology.MindMaple Inc. has released v1.61 of their mind mapping software, MindMaple. Developed with students and teachers in mind, this version seeks to bridge the gap between instructor and student, and overcome the restrictions of group work.
MindMaple v1.61 includes improved formatting, export options and increased style options. The cloud-based collaborative function is arguably the most notable feature added to this update. This feature allows users to upload, save, and launch mind maps or information maps, to their Google Drive. The cloud-based functionality allows the publisher and collaborator to utilize and edit the mind map from any location equipped with an Internet connection. Instructors can upload syllabi, lecture outlines and such, online for students to readily access. Students can upload organized lecture notes or brainstorm group assignments without having to hover over one computer screen. MindMaple’s collaborative feature seeks to improve the process of group work and content creation.
Another useful feature for educators and students alike are the added template and theme maps. Templates, such as lesson plans, and themes, like Blackboard, offer recommendations on how the software can be utilized in the classroom. The sample maps can be altered to fit the needs of the user or used as a source of inspiration.
Read more: sfgate.com
Thursday, April 25, 2013
BETA COGGLE aims to set itself apart from other mindmapping tools with an ultra-clean interface and user experience. Controls are a cinch -- add an unlimited number of parent/child nodes with a simple mouse click, or delete nodes by holding the 'Ctrl' key down first. Colors, grouping, and spacing are updated auto-magically to ensure the map is always easy to read and trace. You can optionally share mindmaps Google Drive-style, giving collaborators read/write privileges, or review the mindmap creation process with a handy timeline slider.
Coggle is a simple, beautiful, powerful way of structuring information. It's designed to help you understand things, and then share your knowledge by arranging your document in the same way that your mind works. This way of working is called mind-mapping, and is a very powerful way of learning, storing and sharing information.
Coggle supports: * Real-time Collaboration * Markdown formatting * LaTeX syntax for the inclusion of math expressions (use LaTeX via the \\( \\\) or \\[ \\] escape sequences) * Downloaded as vector PDF or as PNG
Other software is ugly, complicated, difficult to use, and often extremely expensive: Coggle is free, simple, beautiful, and it always will be. Coggle is aiming to provide a new tool to the people stuck in the world of conventional documents, lists and spreadsheets, not just to convert the people who already love mind-mapping.
Everyone from business teams sharing information on a project, through students and teachers, to individuals organising their own lives.
Monday, April 22, 2013
Mind maps are fundamentally very simple. You can create one on the back of a napkin in mere seconds, so it follows that there should be an equally effortless way to do it online. And there is: MindMup, a free and lightweight service lets you throw together simple mindmaps without having to download anything, open an account, or do anything else. It's Web-based, too, so it works across Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux.
When you go to MindMup.com, you first see a default map explaining how the service works. It goes over keyboard and mouse use, and includes notes on how open and frictionless the service is. And for once, it's no hyperbole: MindMup requires no registration to work, not even when you save your mind map. And if you're afraid of saving your work to the service, you can easily connect it with your Google Drive, or even save to the local browser storage using HTML5.
Read complete at: pcworld.com
Thursday, April 11, 2013
For a lot of us, we don’t know what we want to be when we grow until we grow up; even then, our choices might turn out differently than we’d hoped — or just plain wrong. And while daydreaming of stardom or veterinary school is a practice we strongly encourage, it doesn’t always help turn your aspirations into action. Even those of us that are thrilled with the path we’re on can use some direction now and then — luckily, there are methods and tools that make analyzing our professional needs pretty easy.
Naturally, those of us at Mindjet prefer mind mapping. Brainstorming ideas, realigning choices, and seeing new connections is an awesome way to go from thinking about making things happen to actually getting them done.
Choosing a Direction: Inside-Out or Outside-In?
Deciding on a starting point is typically the first thing to do, right? What’s cool about mind mapping is that you don’t have to. If you can’t think of a linear path you’d like to travel, that’s perfectly okay — starting a map is all about asking questions.
What’s your current job? What do you like to study, watch, listen to? How much money do you want to make? Do you want to travel, live in a particular city, start a family, own a dog? No question is too ridiculous or unimportant when you’re mapping your career — remember, the average person spends 90,000 hours working during their lifetime (that’s 10 straight years, 24/7). It’s probably a good idea to make those hours worth more than just a paycheck.
Farnoosh Brock of the Prolific Living blog has some great suggestions for things to consider as you build your career map. My personal favorites:
- Values you’re not willing to compromise on, such as flexibility or integrity
- What you’re not willing to do or whom you wouldn’t want to work with
- How you want to see yourself and be seen professionally
- What you’re willing to invest for yourself and career (education, training, etc.)
Read complete at business2community.com wrote by Arwen Petty
Saturday, April 6, 2013
Managing business has been made simpler with increasing use of mind maps in analysing the components that make a business model work.
What do Boeing, BBC, Google and P&G have in common? All these global companies use Mind Maps to increase their efficiencies in operations and save valuable time and money. Using mind maps in businesses have become global trend but is still nascent and evolving in the country.
“For setting up or managing any business, the key attributes are ideas and thought process apart from resources and infrastructure. Why not giving physical shape to those ideas using mind maps to analyse and get clarity for better understanding,” says Koteshwar, Educe Learning.
One may doubt, how is it different from things to do or points that one note. He says, “It explains the entrepreneur to think a lot in one direction with clarity and organised way. For instance, if you write a business needs on a paper, you may not actually concentrate each of the sub-sets that you need to do to achieve that objective. However, mind maps are radiant, colourful with curves and pictorially depicted as maps. The objective of the business is at the centre and the things required to reach that objective can be stems. Further, each of the stems can be divided to facilitate each of those things required.
“The nature works in a radiant way from brain to tree. Working in this style will help to think in multiple directions on each of the subject that gives a better and holistic understanding. The pictorial and colourful looks break the monotony and make the person to remember in simple and easy fashion. Few pages of information can be integrated in one map and can be made easy to understand.
“Working in a radiant fashion doesn’t let the person to stop thinking on one aspect. He may immediately jump in to next aspect and comeback to the one when it is needed. However, if we work on linear fashion, it is difficult to leave the gap and further fill and in a way making the entrepreneur stuck at a single point which need to be solved rather than working on individual aspects,” he explains.
“The decision-making can also be quick and at the same time informed by simply analysing pro and cons of the given problem. For instance, the entrepreneur can analyse the problem in a detailed way and work on it. These questions need to be thought while drawing mind map; What is the problem; Why and when it’s started and its implications? When and how are we going to address? Who are responsible and who can solve it? Answering these questions on mind map will help the entrepreneur to get a better understanding and work on each of the possibility individually aiming to solving the problem.”
On learning resources, he says, “There are multiple free and paid tools. Many companies are already using these applications. It is not about the cost but the intention of the user that is required to integrate and use in everyday operations. There are many resources like free apps on phones, tablets and PCs. If they want to enhance further they can attend different workshops that are being conducted in the City.”
About its usage in different industries, he says, “This is being used across industries from aerospace to automobiles. However, it is greatly trending in educational institutes. Some schools are converting each subject into one mind map that helps students to easily remember, comprehend and revise in minutes during exam time. The student can explain the answer in much better way with the help of mind maps.
“This is also trending as project management tool. For instance, Boeing saved $11 million by using this as a tool. The aerospace processes are complex involving various parts and departments. The 25-foot long mind map helped the engineers to understand and learn the engineering manual. This also helped each of the team member informed about each of theirs project developments and ideas using shared mind maps. This helped the team members to maintain pace and generate new ideas.”
Read complete at pstnoon.com wrote by Prudhvi Raju
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Understanding how the technique helps link teaching with learning, enabling students to “learn how to learn”
Lexicon Reading Centre is hosting a lecture by Tony Buzan, inventor of the Mind Mapping technique, at The Library, Rashid Hospital, Dubai. The Mind Mapping for Students with Dyslexia and Dysgraphia is a workshop to help educators detect students’ understanding of presented information, diagnose and remedy students’ learning issues efficiently, and connect with them through visual maps. The mind mapping technique helps link teaching with learning, enabling students to “learn how to learn”. It also fosters creativity, ideas generation, enquiry and problem solving.
Buzan spoke to The weekend tabloid! last week regarding the technique and how it can be used to enhance learning.
Please explain what mind mapping is about
Mind map is a thinking map like the map of a city, but for your mind. A mind map is used to help you find your way around your thoughts.
The intrinsic tendency of the brain is not learn in a linear format, but through imagination and association. Based on this insight, the technique employs visual representation of individual thought processes to provide a creative, innovative and efficient tool for learning. It is a powerful graphic technique which provides a universal key to unlock the potential of the brain by using an array of colourful graphics connected to a central topic. 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. A mind map can be applied to every aspect of life where improved learning and clearer thinking will enhance human performance as it helps organise thoughts and gives an easy-to-follow structure to the learning process.
How much is the technique still viable in our digitally oriented world where varied information is available at the click of a button?
We live in a world that increasingly seems to require more of intelligence and ingenuity in its young minds. As people tend to depend on hi-tech gadgets to provide information, there is very little effort to improve memory skills or think creatively. Mind maps stimulate “comparison thinking” and encourage capacity for creative associations.
Also, due to the same gadgets, attention spans have shrunk, so much so sometimes a half-hour class is not long enough for a child to grasp what’s happening in class. A teacher may create a teaching plan but does the child have enough time to understand or create a mind map for himself, so he can take in the information and write it down at the same time?
It is important for teaching institutions to allocate time for children to understand and then interpret the information through techniques such as mind mapping. If we don’t have time to teach children the right way of learning, then it will be a waste of time. If what is being taught cannot be remembered or understood by the child then it defeats the purpose of the efforts and time expended by both parties. This is why around the globe so many parents are removing their children from traditional educational systems and enrolling them into home-school systems where they have the freedom to express themselves in a creative manner or even day-dream and make use of colour in their learning process.
Read complete at: Gulfnews.com