Mind mapping on tablet devices is one of the “quiet revolutions” of mobile computing. You don’t hear much about it, but as the number of iPads and other tablets being used explodes, mind mapping apps are making a huge difference in the way that many people think and work.
Here are the top 10 reasons why tablet devices are the perfect platform for mind mapping:
1. Just the right size for mind mapping: The screen size of the average tablet device is “just right” to enable mind mapping. Compared to the screen of a smartphone or mini-tablet, it feels positively expansive. If you’ve ever tried to create a mind map on a smartphone, you know what I’m talking about. If you haven’t, consider yourself fortunate – it’s a painful experience, with lots of zooming and scrolling.
2. It boasts go-everywhere portability: Most tablets are small, flat and very portable, which makes it more likely you’ll carry one of them with you to capture your ideas.
3. It’s the ideal companion for on-the-go mapping: Its form factor – not too big, not too small, unobtrusive and easy to balance on your lap – makes it fun to create mind maps. In fact, I prefer it to working with a mouse and keyboard to develop my mind maps.
4. It’s closer to the organic experience of hand-drawn mind mapping: The tactile interface of a tablet just feels right when mind mapping. Unlike a desktop PC or laptop, its user interface doesn’t get in the way when you’re creating mind maps on it. With a tablet, you use your fingertip to add and manipulate your map’s content. There’s something very tactile about it that brings the whole experience much closer to the organic feel of hand-drawing a mind map.
5. The advantage of instant-on availability: Because tablets are “instant on” devices (you don’t need to wait for them to boot up) and have a long battery life, they’re ideal for quickly capturing ideas or adding content to a map when you have 5 or 10 minutes to spare.
6. Develop your idea on a tablet and finish it on the desktop. One of the most common usage scenarios for mind mapping apps on mobile devices is that you get inspired, fire it up and capture some ideas on the fly, and then transfer them to a desktop mapping program for further development. This is a very powerful way to work.
7. Carry all of your mind maps with you. You can carry your collection of mind maps with you wherever you go. Several mind mapping apps automatically sync with “cloud”-based services, ensuring that you always have one-tap access to your full library of ideas, projects and other visual summaries.
8. It’s a non-intrusive presentation medium. When used with a stand or case that lets you prop it up, tent-card style, you can easily use your tablet device to present your ideas to small groups of people, which will help to give your ideas a definite “Wow!” factor. Plus, using your mind mapping app of choice, you can annotate your ideas as you discuss them (try that with a PowerPoint presentation!).
9. It’s a low-cost way to collaborate with your team members. With several of today’s mind mapping apps, you can contribute to a team-based mind mapping environment without having to invest several hundred dollars in desktop mind mapping software.
10. Test drive computer-based mind mapping. It’s an inexpensive way for you to figure out if you like mind mapping or not. Before you invest in desktop mind mapping software, why not try out a mind mapping app for your tablet device to see if this form of visual thinking fits with the way you think and work?