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Mind Mapping and More: EDraw

Not too long ago, I wrote about FreeMind, a simple, everyday mind-mapping software. That’s good and all, but what if you want more? Want to make a street map? Show a process? Use pictures? Read on.

First off, the up-to-date version of this software costs a bit, but the older one is freeware. Great!

Best:
You can make maps of anything, anyway you want.

Worst:
This is free, and there’s a paid version, so a few features don’t work.

My Edraw map
See? All kinds of random lines and such… You can make one much better than this, though.

So, apparently Teck was having trouble with FreeMind, and he went looking for a substitute. He found a bit more, but I’ll start out slow.

“Map: Anything that shows relationships between anything.” Strangely, I learned that from my history teacher. Regardless, that’s what EDraw does. It makes maps. All sorts of maps… From a basic thought web, to a complex satellite network, EDraw makes maps.

All right, now that that’s out of the way… I have to say, now that I’ve used this, that FreeMind’s biggest downfall is it’s inability to connect points. Sometimes things are related to each other, and EDraw lets you show that. Using a system of shapes and lines, you get to make everything just how you want it. You can also re-size and annotate all of those shapes, and you can direct all of those lines. Really, there isn’t much to describe here. I really like the free-draw line, though. With how complex things can get, sometimes a perfect curve just won’t do it.

On to interface… Sure, there’s the common toolbars up top that are just packed with tiny buttons, but there’s also the Library on the side. Backgrounds, shapes, arrows, symbols, etc, all nice, big, and organized in drop-down menus… and they’re drag-n-drop! There’s also way more symbols for describing things. A smiley face, a clock, a big, red blob… Yeah, it’s got a lot.

Now, I’ve covered everyday use, but I think this one has business potential, too. Want to include an Excel spreadsheet right in your map? How about a Word document? You can treat these just like a thought web, with blobs and everything. The advanced features like this are in the toolbars, but they’re there.

Back to everybody, now: color themes, fonts, backgrounds, and alignments; have multiple maps open with tabs… make slide shows out of them. You can even save your map as .html and put it on your web site!

There’s still more, but I don’t want to go on about it… I consider this one FreeMind on steroids. If you’re having trouble finding something, it’s probably there. Check the help file.

The library
Look at that… So much better than a toolbar.

So, here I am going on about the good… It lacks a few features. I think this is because it’s a free, older version of EDraw Max. It supposedly gives you the option, but it says stuff like “Text copying disabled…” copy and paste is the only thing I found, but there’s likely more.

Download EDraw at EdrawSoft.com… Make sure you go for the freeware version!

Source: EdrawSoft.com.

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5 Responses

  1. Great review allot of enthusiasm, I can really see your starting to grow as a blogger we all start as noobs
    So keep up the great work…

    P.s. Your blog is getting better with each review… 😉

    Teck

  2. I also I recommend trying
    Edraw English Version Edraw Max V4 English Version…

    It’s the top download link on the home page
    it’s the newest version out by them and it’s
    packed with more goodies it’s a trial version
    it’ appears you can use the trial version as long
    as you like but it doesn’t offer updates and some
    stuff is locked…

    p.s it offers mind maps also

    Teck

  3. […] a blogger I came across a couple of weeks ago that I gave blogging tips too… Wrote a great review about this software I recommend checking it out… He reviews software he has personally tried […]

  4. 😉 Thanks… for the link, too.

  5. Your welcome taeleth,
    I seen you wrote this great review and I didn’t want to
    compete with each other instead I wanted to refer readers to your great review… 😉

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