Thanks for reading and commenting about my blog postings. My goal is to accurately document the genealogy of my family and allied families living in Chesterfield County, SC and Anson County, NC. If you have a Chesterfield County surname you are interested in please send me an e-mail.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Technology and Genealogy = Mind Maps

Wikipedia defines Mind Map as a diagram used to visually outline information.1 Basically, Mind mapping software is brainstorming software that graphically projects the problem and it’s multifaceted interactions.
The Mind Map below is a work-in-progress that I have created to prove:
  • The parents of William A. Purvis
  • That William was twice married

There are a lot of tools out there for creating Mind Maps. Some are free and some will cost you.
Mind maps have not made much of an impact in the genealogy communities yet; but, I believe that in the future Mind Maps will become an essential tool for documenting and graphical displaying the interrelationships within families. I think a graphic depiction of families in a Kinship Determination Project (KDP) would add value to the overall project and better displayed the relationships of families within the project. I am of the opinion that it is now a necessary tool for documenting  and displaying these relationships. 

The software used for the above graphical display is called Freeplane and it is a free open-source program.
There are other programs available that can be purchased, used or downloaded free.
Some of the major features I like about Freeplane are:
  • Once your map is created you can export it as as outline.
  • You can attached documents  and web links to any node on the map
  • Node content structuring (text, icon, image and hyperlink) and presentation area (details, notes, attributes and images);
  • password protect
  • Built-in note panel
  • Can be exported as text file, outline mode
There have been previous genealogy bloggers that have posted about Mind Maps and you may like to take a look at:
Finally, Mark Spencer used Mind Mapping software to create his Genealogy Research Map a Mind Map of the Genealogical Proof Standard.
Every genealogist's and family historian needs a copy of this document which can be downloaded here (


1 comment:

  1. Usually Genealogy (ancestry) is illustrated by family tree diagram. This is totally new. Its like a whole new level of Concept mapping. I've seen some similar diagrams in the diagram community of Creately Concept map Maker.