SimpleDiagrams [updated]

New at the Master List: SimpleDiagrams.

SimpleDiagrams There’s a plethora of diagramming apps – web-based and desktop – I have a couple more waiting to be added.  But SimpleDiagrams is different.  It aims for a neat but definitely hand-drawn look.  It’s written with Adobe Air, so is platform independent, and is a desktop application, unlike most of the newer diagramming apps I’ve seen.  It’s in the early stages of development, and worth keeping an eye on.  Reminds me of the drawings in Dan Roam’s “The Back of the Napkin”.

Finally, I’m playing with‘s MashTabs.  It allows web searching with visual results that you can drag into a sheet and organize by clustering.  Interesting but held back by the fact that to get something onto the page you have to find it with the Middlespot search engine, and the fact that you can’t draw or write on the same sheet (AFAIK).  It does allow clustering, which is good, but I’d like to be able to send a web page, that I found by other means, straight to a MashTab, not have to search for something I already have in a browser.

[updated: 1/1/10] Middlespot tweeted back to me that their tools page has a tool for adding to MashTabs outside the interface.  It works with Firefox, Chrome or Safari.  Doesn’t help me, as I mostly use IE8 but maybe that will be supported later. [/update]

MashTabs can be shared.

More soon.  I was lazy over the holidays and need to catch up.

Vic            (@VicGee on Twitter)
The master list of mind mapping &
information management software


Update: Vunotes used to be here but has disappeared.


Topicscape wants more users for new Beta

Here’s a turnup for the book – 3D Topicscape goes 2D! (in beta so far)


I’m a bit late mentioning this.  I’ve written before that I’ve been using Topicscape since its first beta.  I use it every day for organising files for most of my projects and reference notes. 

Now, Topicscape have a Beta out that gives a new option for viewing all the information stored in a Topicscape – you can opt to see it in 2D.  And you can flip from 2D to 3D and back again.   I’ve tried it and it’s very cool.

Topicscape is not hard to use, but I’ve seen occasional comments from people who don’t tune in to the 3D style.  The 3D scene is different from any other application, but I found it pretty instinctive from the beginning.  For those who didn’t see how the 2D field of cones and zooming interface allow a much improved view on their carefully organised information database, the new 2D option provides something that makes Topicscape worth looking at again.

The 2D view makes use of 3D video cards by giving a ‘swinging’ map that lets you see more in an angled view as you slide along it.  Altogether better than scrolling.

It’s hard to avoid comparing this 2D view with PersonalBrain, because it really serves the same market although the appearance is different.  Introducing 2D is surely aimed at encouraging the comparison, and it stands up pretty well.

To try the new 2D view now, you have to apply for a ‘Beta User’ account.  The Topicscape wiki has more information.


Vic Gee  (@VicGee on Twitter)
The master list of mind mapping &
information management software