Last year, I reviewed version 0.8.0 of FreeMind, the open source mind mapping software program that has made significant strides in recent years. In early September, the development team introduced a beta version of 0.9.0. While still somewhat buggy, it shows the direction this unique program is taking.
Here’s what’s new in FreeMind version 0.9.0:
HTML compatible notes: The notes window now has 2 tabs, named "layout view" and "HTML code view." You can not only edit your notes in a rich text format, but also go under the hood to manipulate the HTML and tweak its appearance even further.
Attributes: You can assign values to map nodes in numbered pairs. I have no idea what this can practically be used for, and unfortunately the FreeMind wiki doesn’t provide a clear explanation of what it does.
Filters: You can create map filters, which can be saved. Clicking on funnel icon in the toolbar opens up a panel just below the toolbar where you can add, edit and utilize filters. It toggles on and off. You can filter on text in your map nodes, on greater than/less than values, icons and more.
Scripting via Groovy: Groovy is a Java-based programming language, which can be used to automate a variety of tasks, such as setting the color for all child nodes, add the modified date to a node’s text and other arcane capabilities that only a programmer could truly appreciate. Examples of what it can do are here.
Support for TaskJuggler, an open source project management tool for Linux that enables you to add tasks and resources to map nodes in such a format that they can be read in TaskJuggler when exported.
User icons: If you add PNG images to a specific program directory, FreeMind will regard them as part of its library of map icons. This allows you to customize the icon library.
Latex plug-in: This enables you to add mathematical formulas to your map nodes.
Find and replace: Found nodes can be sorted by date, text, icons, created, modified and notes text. From the find and replace dialogue, you can choose: export selected nodes, replace all, replace selected, go to, and select. Sounds pretty flexible!
Tabs: Open maps are now displayed in tabs.
I wouldn’t recommend using this version of FreeMind for any production work, but it’s a good opportunity to catch up on where the open source development team of Freemind is headed. You can download FreeMind version 0.9.0 here.
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