Arjen ter Hoeve, author of podcasts and training materials focused on mind mapping, has written an e-book on a new visual mapping technique he has developed called "summapping." Briefly summarized, it looks a lot like mind mapping, except that maps can contain items that may be closely related to one another (and therefore are located in close proximity in the diagram), but don’t always need to be joined using connector lines. His objectives in developing this technique, which borrows a lot of concepts and practices from both mind mapping and concept mapping, are to:
- Provide a more flexible medium for recording information and ideas (by creating collections of information that aren’t necessarily tied to a rigid, connected hierarchy)
- Make the contents of visual maps easier for others to understand (by incorporating a standardized set of map symbols and mapping conventions)
- Capture more information in a compact format (both more map elements, as well as a greater variety of content).
If you’re utilizing a mind mapping program that can incorporate "floating" topics, you can try this technique on your own. Arjen’s new summmapping website contains information on how to buy his new e-book, information on software for creating summaps, symbols that you can use and more.