Cayra is a neat little concept and mind mapper and in my view is greatly undervalued, probably because Cayra.net is now an advertising site, and the software is no longer supported. But copies can be downloaded from http://download.cnet.com/Cayra/3000-2076_4-10777905.html and other download sites and it is very usable. It doesn’t install easily on Windows 7, so here’s my post on how to install this on that version of Windows.
It has some qualities of mind mapping software: Organic lines and colour; but at the same time, the connections it can make allow it to be used to make concept maps with cross links and linking phrases. It even lets you have multiple maps on the same page, and has a good ergonomic design to handle this, providing for ‘parking’ separate maps at the foot of the screen. Nodes can have pictures and hyperlinks, links to files, and dates/times for project management tasks.
Be prepared to spend a few minutes understanding how it works, because it is not quite like other mappers, but it is well worth the time, because it has a flexibility that other mappers do not.
Its most unexpected feature, perhaps, is that it uses the self-centering mechanism like Topicscape or Brain. Click a node and that moves to the centre and its branches expand. This can be switched off, and it will operate in ‘Fixed mode’.
It comes with a help map, but also has built-in help.
|This is attractive and useful so I’ve flagged it as a “Fave”.|
Vic’s Picks are tools that Vic believes are significant and in the mainstream of mapping.