social, health, political imagery through the lens of G J Huba PhD © 2012-2021

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Click here for my partner post on merging mind maps and sketchnotes. The post opens in a new window.

Buzan-style mind models are great (for me) in dealing with the cognitive issues of my dementia. Rohde-style sketchnotes are great (for me) in dealing with the cognitive issues of my dementia.

Q: What happens when we combine the strengths of both approaches? A: A little bit of magic.

This diagram was created in the superb program iMindMap Ver 10.

Click the image to expand it.


Mind Map in the Style of a Rohde Sketchnote



Mike Rohde’s seminal work on #sketchnotes is a brilliant contribution to the knowledge base on communicating and using visual thinking methods.

I have recently done much work on using mind map methods to assist those with typical aging, dementia, and cognitive planning for their futures which may include cognitive decline with age or after brain trauma.

Mike #Rohde and his disciples say to hand sketch when using his visual thinking model. I am moderately good at simple sketchnoting. See here for early posts on hand-drawn sketchnoting (with examples) for those with dementia (by someone — me — who has dementia).

But how might you use a computer program to generate a sketchnote? Here is an example prepared with the superb mind map program iMindMap of my guidelines about how to combine strengths of mind mapping and sketchnoting.

Of course, I prepared this as a computer-assisted sketchnote with iMindMap.

Within my application space of developing visual displays for those with typical aging or dementia or brain trauma or concerns about future cognitive decline as they age, I think the best applications of sketchnoting would be instructions for various methods and issues, historical records, and visual thinking for people who usually acquire new information through written or verbal media (conversations).

Click on the image to expand it.

More information on sketchnotes is found on the Sketchnote Army web site.

Data fly across the TV screen all day since I keep it tuned pretty much all of the time to cable news (with the exception of Star Trek Discovery, of course).

To all of the politicians (and Donald Trump is by far the worst), pseudo scientists, analysts for TV networks who know little about analysis, doctors pushing natural products not proven to be helpful, athletes and other endorsers, and lobbyists paid or pro-bono, I want to scream SHOW ME THE DATA. I would be willing to bet that only about 33% of all statistics cited on TV, especially by the President, have any data behind the speakers’ claims.

A lot of what is called Fake News or Junk Science may be intentionally lying or it might just reflect on a speaker who is too lazy to look up the actual data and facts before going on TV and spouting off. Either way, it is not acceptable.

Click on the image to expand it.

Show Me the Data


The types of visual thinking tools I use to help deal with my own cognitive deficits are mind mapping, sketch noting and doodling. All can be done manually with a pen or pencil and paper. Mind mapping greatly increases its assist by using a program such as my preferred choice iMindMap or alternatives XMIND, MindManager, or dozens of other programs. Sketch noting and doodling are typically done with a pen and paper or a tablet or smartphone and a drawing program.

Click on the mind model (mind map) to expand its size.

The best mind maps are stories.

  • How dementia is diagnosed.
  • Where you can receive experimental treatments for cancer.
  • History of immigration to the USA.
  • History of the United States Virgin Islands.
  • Strategies for re-building Puerto Rico after it was leveled by a hurricane.
  • What components should be in a comprehensive healthcare plan?
  • How Russia and American citizens conspire to launder money through US banks and businesses.
  • The size of food, water, and medicine problems in various geographical areas.
  • The story of how Edison stole credit for AC (alternating current electricity) from Tesla.
  • The location of abortion clinics in the United States and what each provides as general healthcare services to women whether seeking an abortion or not.
  • What you did on your summer vacation.
  • Recollections of people and places.
  • Your grocery list.
  • Recipes.
  • Family history.
  • Favorite music.
  • Your appointments for the week.

Click the following mind model to increase its size.

Well organized and visually compelling information can “turn on” many parts of the brain. Having information stored in multiple places in the brain is an excellent strategy for retaining functions should there be brain damage or disease.

Great “mind map” stories include many different elements to make them memorable, distinct, attention-grabbing, and engaging.


Before reading this post, consider reading my earlier post on the CODER algorithm for mind mapping by clicking HERE.

Click on images to expand them.

The CODER algorithm suggests developing mind maps that explicitly state information in order to …

C – Communicate

O – Organize

D – Decide

E – Explain

R – Report

The CODER algorithm specifically addresses deficits in abilities to communicate, organize, decide, explain, and report which are a significant part of dementia or cognitive impairment. I have been using the technique of mind mapping since 2010 to address issues in my own dementia, and I judge it to be extremely effective. Putting information into a visual thinking environment (VITHEN) so that it can all be seen provides a way to communicate with others, examine context, make decisions, explain ideas and conclusions to others, and report using the mind map itself.

As a note, I consider the iMindMap computer program (currently on Version 10) to be the best way to create and use mind maps or mind model (a term I created for advanced mind maps).


Since 2013 when first presented, my CODER algorithm has been one of the most accessed posts on Recently it has been “rediscovered” and is now being accessed frequently.

So I decided that I should take a look at it and see if it needed to be upgraded. In fact, I discovered that my views were about the same on how to develop a meaningful and informative mind map. Consequently, I just made a few very small and largely inconsequential content changes to the map.

The map has been reformatted. The program in which this was originally drawn (iMindMap) has been enhanced significantly and annually since 2013.

The original mind map from 2013-2015 can be accessed HERE The original post includes textual material about the map.

Drum roll, please. Here is the 2017 revision. Click the image to expand it.

CODER Algorithm for Mind Mapping