MindMeister for iPad takes mobile mind mapping to the next level in its latest release. Version 4.1 contains numerous new features that enhance its usability and degree of fit for business applications. Here’s what’s new and improved:
Auxiliary keyboard: MindMeister 4.1 for the iPad adds an auxiliary keyboard that sits on top of the iPad’s virtual keyboard (pictured above). This gives you fast access to recently used icons and speeds the creation of new topics. This is a very smart way to handle this toolbar – rather than creating a dedicated one that takes up valuable screen real estate, this narrow horizontal toolbar appears and disappears along with the iPad’s virtual screen. Why didn’t anyone else think of this before?
Context menu: Tapping a node (MindMeister’s term for a map topic) now causes a context menu to pop up, which enables you to cut, copy, delete and connect topics, as well as access recent topic colors and icons you’ve used.
Node creation gestures: You can now double-tap above, below or beside the current topic to quickly add siblings and child topics. MeisterLabs calls them “gestures,” which I think is a misnomer. To me, in a tablet computing environment, a gesture is a pattern that you trace with your finger on the screen, which the app interprets as a specific command. MindMeister’s implementation is simply a double-tap. Let’s call it what it is. This is a feature I’ve seen in several other iPad-based mind mapping apps, and it really is a productivity booster!
Themes: In recent months, MeisterLabs launched a set of attractive map themes for the web-based version of MindMeister. These are now supported in the iPad app.
Alternate logins: In the browser-based version of MindMeister, you can now login using your Facebook account. Version 4.1 of the iPad app not only offers this alternate login, but also Google and OpenID, with more options to be launched in the near future.
What I’m not seeing is live co-editing between users running MindMeister on iPads, iPhones and the web version of the app. Perhaps that’s coming in 2012? We’ll see.
Full details on MindMeister for iPad 4.1 are available on the MindMeister Blog.