Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Mind Mapping software

I use Mindjet MindManager for mind mapping at work, and I've used Inspiration in the past. MindManager is quite expensive, the version I use (5) has terrible printing options (can't print the notes easily) and it doesn't have OPML output; but it looks 'professional' (corporate). Inspiration suffers in comparison by looking like an educational market product (which it is).

So I'm shopping a bit for something that has the best features of Inspiration and MindManager with OPML import/export, great PDF output, OS X and XP versions, and reasonable cost.

I'll update this post with my research. At the moment it looks like I should examine NovaMind and OmniGraffle and reconsider Inspiration. I may stay with MindManager -- it does run well under Parallels so I don't have to buy the OS X version.

Some good references so far:
NovaMind stands out. It has free downloads for Mac and Windows and does OPML well. The standard editing is $100 (cheap), and the web page seems to suggest that one license might work for Mac and Windows versions, but I can't tell from the page if that's legal use. NovaMind also integrates with the OS X Merlin project management package.

I'm going to try it!

Update 12/5/06: ConceptDraw too! I never expected so many options.

Update 12/5/06b: NovaMind through an uncaught exception in XP within 5 minutes of downloading while I played with a sample file. Scratch that one.

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