MindMaple review

MindMaple is a good-looking lines-and-boxes style mindmapper and has now been added to Mind-Mapping.Org.  It has Windows and iOS versions and (currently in beta) one for the Mac.  There is an on-line sharing facility via Google Drive

There are Lite and Pro editions on Windows and iOS, with the Lite version being free and a capable mapper.  I haven’t tried the Mac-based beta version.  MindMaple Pro for Windows can be had on a $10 p.a. subscription or a $50 lifetime license.

Nodes can be laid out as you wish, which I always like or you can leave it to lay out automatically.  To support tidy manual layout, there’s an unobtrusive grid that can be toggled on and off.  The map background has options for color, images, textures and gradients.

It has good node-numbering options if you need that.

Find includes a Replace function, which is useful, but like many mind mappers this one does not search in notes or comments.

Topics have many options for attachments (see the map below for detail), notes and comments on topics, and project management attributes, like start and end dates, priority, amount complete, duration and resources.

click for full-size image
click for full-size image

Lite vs Pro, Windows version

Pro offers advanced MS Office export, password protection of files and export to PDF.  It also has more map themes, clip art and backgrounds (with a promise of more to come) compared to Lite which just has four themes and six templates.

Import / Export

I imported a MindManager map and the result wasn’t bad (it’s the one above), though there are a few inconsistencies.  An equivalent map imported from FreeMind looked cleaner and more consistent, but this is probably because MindManager has more stylistic variations on offer than FreeMind.  MindMaple does not offer export to other mind map formats.

The Windows desktop version can export to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, HTML (which includes neat control allowing map image to be resized by the user), image (in 5 formats) and text, plus PDF for Pro. Given that most of the attributes needed for simple project management are present (it lacks task dependency) it’s a shame that it cannot export project data to MS Project and the like.

Export to jpg image files in MindMaple uses heavy compression and produces an image of poor quality…

jpg is on the left, in case you were wondering!
jpg is on the left, in case you were wondering!

…so choose png for a sharper and clearer appearance.

Map sharing

Unfortunately I couldn’t test the sharing capability.  The sharing function is in beta and, though I saved a map in my Google Drive folder, MindMaple/Google rejected my log in when I tried to access the share and synchronizing functions.  I was unable to find out if two users could edit the same map at once though MindMaple descriptions suggest it can, but if so, I could not test how it handled any editing clash.

Although there are one or two minor items that need to be fixed, this is a respectable mind mapping tool.

See more examples and download details at the Master List entry for MindMaple.

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