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Tony Buzan has defined these "rules" for Mind Mapping:

I believe these rules are well worth following if you use mindmaps for learning. They are very hard to follow completely and rigidly - and its not worth trying I have found - if you use mindmaps in adult life, in your work or projects.






The Rules of Mind Mapping

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  1. Start in the centre with an image of the topic, using at least 3 colours.
  2. Use images, symbols, codes and dimensions throughout your Mind Map.
  3. Select key words and print using upper or lower case letters.
  4. Each word/image must be alone and sitting on its own line.
  5. The lines must be connected, starting from the central image. The central lines are thicker, organic and flowing, becoming thinner as they radiate out from the centre.
  6. Make the lines the same length as the word/image.
  7. Use colours – your own code – throughout the Mind Map.
  8. Develop your own personal style of Mind Mapping.
  9. Use emphasis and show associations in your Mind Map.
  10. Keep the Mind Map clear by using radial hierarchy, numerical order or outlines to embrace your branches.
Attribution: Tony Buzan via Wikipedia


There is an article that is well worth reading about how the rules work out in practical use at the Mind Mapping Wiki.

Comments
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Number 8 is the only one that I regard as inviolable!

jennifer at buzan dot com dot au 2007-10-22 20:39:57
Hi,
there is a cool Mind Map on the Laws of Mind Mapping here
http://www.buzan.com.au/learning/mindmapgallery.html
vic at mind-mapping dot org 2007-10-23 03:29:06
Very nice, thank you.
Myself, I really like the one at http://www.buzanworld.com/mindmaps/img/mindmapping.jpg because it includes the branch that is to me all important:

            No rules!
Rules
            Suggestions ...

Keep up the good work!

Vic
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Articles
Project estimating – Mindmaps are a tool in the armory

The key to getting something useful out of this article is to read the author’s title carefully. Mind mapping simplifies the process of project estimating -- it doesn’t simplify the actual task-time estimation. Every project manger knows that the work of a project must be broken into separate and manageable units for estimating. To look at a project and think “That’s about a week’s effort” is a recipe for frustration and missed targets. Mindmaps, spider diagrams and bubble charts are excellent for the first phase of breaking a project into manageable parts. For me mindmaps, as strictly defined by Buzan’s rules, are less suitable than spider diagrams for this type of analysis, but we can assume that Dr. Mariaraj is not being too strict in his use of the term below.

Tony Buzan has defined these "rules" for Mind Mapping:

I believe these rules are well worth following if you use mindmaps for learning. They are very hard to follow completely and rigidly - and its not worth trying I have found - if you use mindmaps in adult life, in your work or projects.

Who invented mind mapping

This comes up from time to time - usually in the form of "Buzan didn't invent mind mapping".

Underlying theory of Concept Maps

Here are links to important scholarly papers by Joseph D. Novak and Alberto J. Cañas on Concept Maps, their theory and construction.

Semantic networks

"Semantic network" is a broad enough term to cover many forms of information map. Here is a link to an article by John F. Sowa, originally written for the Encyclopedia of Artificial Intelligence.