Did you know you can quickly and easily dictate topic text and add it to your mind maps using Dragon Naturally Speaking dictation software?
This topic recently came up when a fellow content marketer and mind mapper contacted me to see if this is possible. She was having a bad case of carpal tunnel syndrome, but still wanted to be able to use mind mapping software to plan content strategies and projects for herself and her clients. Was there some way to dictate content into her mind mapping software?
So I opened MindManager 2018 and Dragon Naturally Speaking Home 10 and played around a bit. Here’s what I discovered:
Dragon dictates text natively with Microsoft Office applications, such as Word, PowerPoint and Outlook. For any other applications, it opens a Dragon dictation window. It keeps track of the program that was the active window before you started to dictate. When you’re done, you simply tap the “Transfer” button and your text is automatically copied and pasted into it. To help you visualize this, I created this little video:
I also tried this technique with other mind mapping software programs, with these results:
Dictate single and multiple topics
- MindManager 2018
- Mind 8
- MindView 7
- MindGenius Business 6
- ConceptDraw Mindmap 9.3
Dictate single and multiple topics – with one extra step
- MindMeister – it dictates multiple items as one topic, but with a context-sensitive menu that asks if you want to split it into separate topics (see screen shot below)
Dictate single topics only
- MindMapper Arena 17
It didn’t work at all
- iMindMap 10 Ultimate
Other uses and advantages of mind map dictation
Admittedly, carpal tunnel syndrome isn’t a super common use case for using dictation software with mind mapping software. Here are several more practical applications of it:
- Use it to brainstorm and capture a large number of ideas, quickly
- Do project planning “brain dumps,” quickly and efficiently
- Outline a book, report or other large document, capturing bits and pieces at the same velocity as your mind works
Why not give this productivity technique a try? Dragon Naturally Speaking Home is widely available for under $100. You don’t need one of the more expensive “professional” versions of this product. This one works just fine for everything I need to do, and I’m sure you’ll find it to be a great match with your needs, too!
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