Click on image to expand.
Drum roll please …
- Most other web sites that rank mind map apps carry advertising from at least several different producers of these programs while I do not. This may or may not explain my greater willingness to differentiate sharply between the apps.
- Your idea of what a great mind map app should be may differ from mine resulting in different ratings. Mine are particularly relevant for scientific, health, education, and personal use rather than corporate outline formatting. In fact corporate outline formatting in “mind map” programs does not really produce true mind maps, but most corporate customers do not know the difference. Learn why Buzan-style mind maps will perform far better than the “formatted outline” maps produced by many of the best selling programs before committing to one model or the other.
- The programs continuously change (most copy each new version of iMindMap after its release) and my ratings change fairly often.
- I communicate with some of the app developers (as well as other independent reviewers) via email. I try not to let these interactions with nice people and arrogant people and people with crummy business models (and crummy customer support) and development geniuses color my ratings.
- These ratings apply only to Mac software. I do not use any of these programs on a PC. After 25 years of 40-80 hours of PC use per week, I switched to a real computer and use Macs exclusively.
- I will release separate ratings for iPad apps, but in general those programs that are especially good on the Mac tend to be especially good on the iPad. Note that while I do not believe that the Mac version of Inspiration is a particularly good app, I think that the iPad implementation is among the very best.
- The apps I review are full commercial versions. I have yet to find a free mind map app that is even close to the best paid apps in quality and usability.
- Virtually all of the paid apps have free evaluation periods. Most periods are 30 days which is plenty of time to form your own judgment. Make use of the opportunities provided by the developers and vendors.
- And yes, the three programs that I intend to use 90% of the time or more are iMindMap, iMindQ, and iThoughtsX. My use is about 85% iMindMap and 2.5% each of the others. I spread the other 10% of my usage around, often experimenting with other programs just to see if they better fit specific uses or types of users.
This mind map that follows is the same as that above reformatted for “3D” presentation.