There are many tools out there for doing mind-maps. Here are my top 7.
1. Mind Genius (www.mindgenius.com/): Licences start from £59/$91. This programme enables the visualisation of mindmaps in different formats and the ability to create categories to help with clarification of ideas. It is possible to sync files with Microsoft Outlook for action plans and Gantt charts for planning projects.
2. OneNote (http://www.onenote.com/): This free download allows mindmaps to be easily created. The biggest bonus for researchers is the ability to attach files to the mindmap.
3. XMind (www.xmind.net/): This free programme has a ‘brainstorming mode’ to enable ideas to be quickly jotted down in a freeform format. This software syncs with Evernote and it is possible to export files to Microsoft Project.
4. Coggle (www.coggle.it): Coggle is free and allows notes to be taken in meetings, devise mindmaps in a beautiful way and share these with others.
5. MindMeister (https://www.mindmeister.com/): This is free for the first 3 mindmaps and then increases from £12/$18 for 6 months. This site allows collaborative working and to create mindmaps with others in real-time! Pretty handy if you have online meetings, work in teams remotely or wanted to collaborate with others on ideas. Mindmaps can be shared with others and ‘stunning presentations’ can be produced.
6. StormBoard (https://www.stormboard.com/): This is free for 1 administrator for unlimited mindmaps with up to 5 other users ‘per storm’. This software like MindMeister allows mindmaps to be produced in real-time. StormBoard allows users to vote, create summary reports, comment on ideas and use the software on a mobile to name but a few of its features.
7. Mindomo (https://www.mindomo.com/): Mindomo is free for up to 3 maps with the upgrade from £23/$36 a year for unlimited mindmaps, 1GB storage, iPad and Android sync and a range of export formats. Apart from creating and being able to use the mindmaps anywhere, there are not as many features as other tools.
With these tools, not only can there be visualisation of concepts and ideas but these can be shared and used to collaborate with others. As a researcher, mindmap software is useful for remote working and collaboration.