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30 October 2007 / erikduval

JSB at OpenLearn

Today and tomorrow, the OpenLearn conference is taking place at the Open University, UK. John Seely Brown did the opening keynote and I used this opportunity to play around with MindMeister as a web based mind mapping application.

See below – read clockwise 🙂

Not sure how useful this is: am very interested in your reactions!



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  1. Martin Mackain-Bremner / Oct 31 2007 9:29 pm

    Great visual presentation, Eric – I am doing more and more of this and find it incredibly useful. It’s not to everyone’s taste, I know, but for those who can’t handle ‘pictures’, it is quite easy to convert to more ‘trad’ notes. In particular, I find I can get a summary picture of the whole presentation/conference/event or whatever, without having to scroll through pages of linear notes. In addition, I love the way it is possible to link out to other articles, sites etc. I use Mind Manager, but intend experimenting with web-based tools like Mindmeister too. It’s a bit like Apple – once you have ‘gone over’ it’s almost impossible to go back!


  2. Tony Hirst / Oct 31 2007 9:41 pm

    Hi Erik-

    Seeing this map, it stikes me that there are at least two ways of getting this sort of tree out of many presentations. One is where you the listener identify themes and then then grow them as the presentation unravels, maybe identifying key topics early on then adding child nodes to the most appropriate theme as they are mentioned in the presentation; the other is a literal recording of a presentation that is hierarchically structured anyway.

    Thinking about your example today of opportunistically acquiring metadata from eg a VLE where a course title (‘Intro to Maths’) and a meaningful directory name/location for a resource (‘’) provide free and meaningful metadata for that resource, it strikes me that presentations (which are quite simple documents much of the time) could provide a good way of providing a lot of hierarchically metadata about the things they reference within them, particularly if they are hierarchically structured.

    It would be interesting, I think, to compare your mindmeister map with an outline view of the presentation slides.

    Here’s another visualisation of several records of the talk too – which picks up on


    (Sorry I had to leave your talk early today – I’d have liked to ask about your take on APML? 😉

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