Vision Mind Mapping Liam Hughes (BiggerPlate)

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Regarding our last post about « Mind Mapping vision » there is the answer of Liam Hughes, the founder of Biggerplate, the biggest MindMaps library . In a nutshell, Biggerplate represents more than 30 000 members and almost 290 000 mind maps downloaded. Since its creation in 2008, it faced a huge success and we hope it will never stop growing !

What is your own definition of mind mapping and how do you use it currently?

Mind Mapping is a process for visually capturing and organising ideas and information coherently.
I use mapping software every day to manage my business, both in day-to-day action management, and long-term planning and strategy creation. I believe mind mapping is the ‘must have’ tool for entrepreneurs and start-up businesses, and this is based on my own experience over a number of years. Mapping helps to create macro and micro clarity even in  very complex situations, and there is no other approach that can do this so easily.

How do you think that its practice will evolve in the future in medium term (5 years) and long term (10 years)?

I think the Mind Mapping process will actually remain roughly the same, as the fundamental principles are established, and work very well. However, I think the tools we use will evolve significantly. I think (and hope) we will see many more touch-based mapping applications, and a greater use of mobile applications. I think we will probably also see an increasing reliance on cloud-based applications, but I think this may be a slower transition, while people familiarise themselves with web-hosted software and the infrastructure (3G/4G signals, mobile tariffs, etc) catches up with the technical possibilities that are now available.

According to you, how the software editors of mind mapping should evolve in the future?

I believe a key area that is currently not exploited enough is 3rd party developers, who can create powerful software extensions to enhance the power and application of the core mapping software product. We’ve seen this approach work well in numerous contexts around the world, perhaps most notably in recent years with the development of an entire ‘app’ ecosystem for iOS and Android platforms. The small developers that build apps have helped to make the iPhone what it is. The same technological possibilities exist for mind mapping software, but only if developers invest in technology to enable 3rd party developers to contribute to the development of extensions and improvements for the core product. Currently, very few software editors offer an API for third party developers to work with, and I think this should be a key focus for them all, as it will empower a wider circle of people to enhance mind mapping software beyond the limits of what the editor alone could conceive or create. 

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