Friday, October 24, 2008
FreeMind: a free "mind mapping" or "concept mapping" software
It's very possible that at some point this blog may actually take shape, or morph into something completely different. For now, since it's called "Anything and Everything", that will stay the amorphous blob that is this blog.
In the meantime, that doesn't stop me from exploring what kinds of content may wind up finding its way into here. For instance, while doing double duty on trying to discern any noticeable patterns in my interests and discovering new technologies that could be used for the classroom, I quickly Google'd "free mind map software" and came up with FreeMind, a java-based sourceforge project. It is free, GPL, and is pretty intuitive once you get it going.
There's plenty of keyboard shortcuts to keep the program moving along at a brisk pace, and I could see something like this working well in a technology-centered classroom focusing on writing or any kind of concept development. Also, I only gave it a whirl for a short time, but there looks to be plenty of bells and whistles to make things more colorful, add stamps and icons, prioritize, and more. I liked that the help file itself is actually set up as a concept map as well.
Apparently, there are all sorts of other free and proprietary software packages out there for this purpose, and if FreeMind ever doesn't do the trick, I guess one of these others could be a decent back-up. Here's some screen shots.