The term “mind mapping” comes from a British psychologist named Tony Buzan. According to Buzan's research, mind map is a tree with many different colors, pictures and personal expression. Mind-mapping software is software helping its users building mind maps through a computer.
FreeMind is a free mind-mapping software and available for the public to download. This software is written in Java. FreeMind is also called tree editor which helps users to create foldable trees of plain text notes, as well as adding colors, icons, cloud-shapes, and other graphics in accordance with their own interests. The valuable functions like folding and breadth-width search turn it into a handy tool. The software can be almost fully controlled by keyboard which makes it user friendly.
FreeMind being a mind-mapping software is useful to organize users’ ideas. This software is usually used for note taking, brainstorming, collecting information on a certain topic and project management. Sometimes, users may use FreeMind to build a to-do list with their private information or schedule in order to systemize their own things.
Moreover, FreeMind is especially useful for engineers, managers, and entrepreneurs, authors of books as well as people who want to organize themselves in a more systematic way by computers. This software encourages a write-everything-down living style.
a. Linkages www. links in the format of HTML and linkages to the local files can be stored in the nodes. b. Freemind supports the function of folding which is convenient to users. c. Fast navigation is allowed by simply clicking the button of the mouse. It is able to fold or unfold a node and follow links by a click of the mouse. d. The background of the mind-map can be dragged by both the button and wheel on the mouse. e. Smart Drag and Drop function allows users to copy the whole nodes or copy style of nodes. f. Smart copying and pasting function allows users to add linkages of HTML, plain text, lists of selected files or Rich Text Format (RTF) such as MS Wordpad, MS Word, MS Outlook messages. g. Mind maps are able to change into the HTML format.
h. Users can decorate their mind map with built-in icons, colors and different fonts. i. FreeMind is highly flexible and compatible with other mind mapping tool because FreeMind stores maps in the XML format. Conversion programs are available for users to use the mind maps made by FreeMind on other program. For example, mind maps create by FreeMind could be read or edit by MindManager which is another mind-mapping software through certain conversion program and procedures.
FreeMind is helpful on:
- Essay writing and brainstorming. Different colors are applied to show the status of essays such as which one is already completed, which one is not yet started, etc. Sizes of nodes are also able to indicate the size of the represented essays. - Building database of a plan in a systematic way. For example, contacts, recipes, medical records can be kept orderly. - Recording internet materials or favorite website with colors and fonts according to the users’ own interests. - Keeping track of large scale projects with subtasks, state of each subtask and schedule can be recorded by the mind-map - Adding linkages to nodes with HTML files, source of information and data files. - Keeping a collection of small or middle sized notes with linkages on some nodes which are expandable.
Someone use FreeMind to build a personal database including some bookmarks, health and physical conditions, the progress on learning German, etc. Inside the node “E-Books”, some sub-nodes are linked to google searching engine. Once the keyword is clicked, an Internet Explorer would pop up and...
References: Electronic Sources:
[#.1]. FreeMind – free mind mapping software [Online]. Available:
[#.2]. Mindjet Official Website. Mindjet: What is a Map?[Online]. Available:
[#.3]. MindManuals for MindManager download peoject software, business planning software[Online]. Available:
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