@switchingsoftware hi guys, i don't suppose you've got a suggestion for mind mapping software? I've been a big fan of the non-open minddoodle but it's closing down in two weeks.

I know there's loads of open source projects around, but I'm particularly keen on selfhosted or other online options

@davidoclubb May I suggest Freeplane? It's pretty good. That's what I've been using for the past year or more, on and off.


Hi @davidoclubb 👋

I just noticed that Framasoft has a mindmap software as part of their services:

It is based on wisemapping. There it can be tried without a login:

Otherwise, there is: (source at

@davidoclubb @switchingsoftware Hi David, do you have nextcloud? There is a mindmap app for it which is quite nice actually.

I'm going to suggest a fairly unusual approach that I believe is actually truer to the concepts behind #mindmapping, and that is to avoid specialist mindmapping software and instead use something designed more for drawing like #krita or #inkscape.


@davidoclubb @switchingsoftware

Why? Because the whole idea of mindmapping is to engage the visual, imaginative parts of your brain in tandem by actively drawing and using imagination. The drawings can be awful. It's the process of actually drawing them though that gets you thinking about the concepts differently and makes them unique and thus memorable. Specialist software tends to make ultra uniform mindmaps that engage virtually no visual stimulation or imagination, defeating the purpose.

@davidoclubb @switchingsoftware
Take a look at some of the mindmaps added to this toot. Look at how visual they are. Would they be easier to create in a piece of art software or mindmapping software? Yes, you can insert a piece of clip art at strictly defined locations, but just as opening an ebook won't improve your writing skill, inserting clip art won't do much to engage your visual and imaginative thinking compared to actually creating something yourself by hand.

@davidoclubb @switchingsoftware
Ironically, mindmap software seems to encourage the behaviors that mindmaps were designed to get away from. Making forgettable, uniform collections of data using very few different skills and this few areas of the brain. Using branches in mindmapping software instead of bullet points in a word processor is very little difference mentally, if all the branches look exactly the same. Just compare the images in my last toot to this one made in specialist software:

@Blort @davidoclubb @switchingsoftware

Hey, cool thread. I'm doing a lot of mindmap and even if I can draw, I prefer to use LibreOffice Draw for them (arrows with nodes, colored text boxes, embed of picture I can crop on the fly, A4 landscape layout to print my action plan later,pdf). I'm not a bit fan of mindmap specialised software for same reason you describe, but I also saw mindmap software shines in action during meetings: very efficient way to take notes of collaborative brainstorming.

@Blort @switchingsoftware You make some very salient points! I love @inkscape , but there's something to be said for a shortcut for quickly assembling the ideas.

Though I accept that the improvement over bullet points is likely more modest than revolutionary!


Yeah, I agree with you on the value of being able to press a shortcut to insert something quickly.

In short, #Krita is great for being able to draw anything in quickly without limitations.

#Inkscape takes longer to draw, but is available and support easy to move things around. It's decent for drawing arrows etc.

Specialist #mindmap software is fast at adding words in a radial pattern but misses most of the "whole brain" benefits of mindmaps.

@switchingsoftware @inkscape

I know back in the version 2.x days #Krita used to include some basic tools for vector arrows and other shapes, too which made it a unique combo of easy drawing and quick, editable arrows etc. Not sure if that still exists...

@davidoclubb @switchingsoftware @inkscape


Yes, while it has lately seen some updates to the Connectors tool (not released yet) Inkscape probably isn't the best tool for this. If you're into self-hosting, maybe have a look at Nextcloud? It brings lots of apps that you can install, one of them a mindmapping app.

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