The scope of this talk page: This page is for remarks on the content of our main page and wiki. Please address your questions on FreeMind itself or request for help with using FreeMind to our Help forum.
This page is for:
- Feedback on the usability of FreeMind wiki,
- Requests for missing information in the wiki.
This page is not for:
- RFEs -- feature requests,
- Feedback on the usability of FreeMind application.
Specific to this article
Date for release candidate
Now it's RC9 (july 2010) but doesnot appear in the main page which is still at RC7 --Steeve osteen 7 october 2010
Outdated version number
The main article refers to FreeMind 0.9.0 beta19, but the current unstable release is FreeMind 0.9.0 beta20. Please remove this comment when this has been corrected.
The Freemind wiki in general
First impressions of the wiki
My first impression? You're wicked smart but my god, people, you need a contact form. Look into Drupal, I truly think it will serve your needs better than this wiki. Interact with the world, we'll help, promise.
You desperately need a savvy end-user to clean up your documentation. You're obviously brilliant but you are not speaking the same language as your users and that's ok, but it's hampering the implementation of the very important project you're working on. For instance, in my MacOS X snow leopard, I can't find the autosave files and you just crashed bad on me and this wiki has taken a large amount of my time to scan through and I still can't find the solution (and I am a very advanced user, just, like the vast majority of your users, I do hope you realize, not very *nixy). I was in the first half-hour of a budget mindmap and would love to have it back, but I do not have the knowledge (and, again, I am a pretty advanced admin style end-user)to follow your fascinating, rambling jazz riff of a wiki to where my save files are. they are not in the .app package and they are not in any directory searchable by sherlock, so they are functionally lost to me unless I can find the answer from you (or until I bother to google again and possibly find it elsewhere - right now I'm going to bed), I just wanted to tell you all this). Autosave files should be available from the file menu after a crash. Code to do this is probably available freely, maybe out of firefox. If you had user forums and other feedback mechanisms other than wiki'ing (which not many end-users will ever do, no matter how savvy)I am sure my problem would already be solved. If you involved the community more actively, you could probably find coders to do it and help you march the version numbers towards 1.0.
Regardless, this issue should be quickly solvable by a user in any OS with a minimum level of competence by consulting the documentation or the website.
Wonderful software your dedication is inspiring. Thank you, respect, a user
My impression of the wiki is quite good. So far, we can let the original home page running, together with the one at freezope. I will move most of the stuff from the home page to wiki, as well as from the wiki at freezope. Any failure of this wiki is, therefore, covered. We can switch to this wiki completely in the near future. -- Dan of FreeMind 08:32, 10 Sep 2004 (PDT)
Can an admin read Running MediaWiki on SourceForge and ensure the sessions directory is setup correctly? As of August 2005, SourceForge no longer allows write access to the htdocs directory and instead requires writing persistent data to /tmp/persisent. Changing this directory should fix the logout problems (just try to edit a page to see what I mean). --Shellreef 15:19, 7 Sep 2005 (PDT)
- That was very helpful; thank you. The sessions of MediaWiki should work fine now. --Danielpolansky 12:03, 8 Sep 2005 (PDT)
I have made a very simple navigation bar, repeated at every page to which it points. The navigation bar points only to the primary pages. Secondary pages can be reached by following the link "All Pages" at the navigation bar.
Originally, I wanted to change the navigation bar at the very left, but MediaWiki's documentation disclosed that this is only possible by editing the monobook skin's template. As this is not very flexible, I've chosen the other option, although it's not very elegant.
The navigation bar content is located at Template:Navigation_bar. By changing the template, the navigation bar changes in all the pages where it is included. See also help on templates. --Danielpolansky 11:08, 14 Sep 2004 (PDT)
Just below that navigation bar is another section which includes a Download and install option. That option links to a nonexistent anchor. The correct page anchor is just plain #Download. Not a big deal, but it did confuse me a little when I clicked on it and got nothing. Maybe this section should also be a template, just like the navigation bar. Objectivesea 12:00, 5 Feb 2008 (PST)
- The logo that should be in the upper left corner is NOT right on my web browser. It covers part of the navigation bar at the very top of the page making a click on my username impossible. I think there might be some extra space in the logo file or some goofy extra code in a template? Rauterkus 14:01, 13 Apr 2010 (UTC)
Where is toolbox defined for the wiki
At templates/xhtml_slim.pt, with user rights rw-timan72,r,r.
The speed of Mediawiki
Currently, there are no problems with the speed of Mediawiki that we are using. We are running on mySQL 4.1.x.
I have enabled file cache (see help on file cache). It also simplifies backing up of the wiki, as it suffices to backup the pages in the file cache. But the wiki is still very slow. --Danielpolansky 11:21, 27 Sep 2004 (PDT)
- If performance continues to be a problem, you might consider moving this MediaWiki to BerliOS (another free software host). Their MySQL is much faster than SourceForge's in my experience. --Shellreef 14:17, 7 Sep 2005 (PDT)
By logging to SQL server, I have found out that SourceForge is running mySQL version 3.23.58. Thus we may not set that we are running version 4 in LocalSettings.php. --dp
$ mysql -u freemind --database=freemind --host=mysql -p
An easier way to find out about mySQL version was to visit this special page of this wiki.
Mediawiki's image thumbing capability is not that good
In the main page, there are several screenshots scaled down manually in Gimp. They are not stored in the wiki internally; they're only referred to from within the wiki. When I first tried to use images internally, taking advantage of Mediawiki's thumb function, it did not work at all because of the PHP's GD libary missing. The library is now there, but, when scaled down using GD, the thumbs do no look that good . Thus I keep the screenshot images as they are, i.e. external to wiki. A demonstrating example follows. --Danielpolansky 10:26, 8 Apr 2005 (PDT)
- GD is infamous for its poor thumbnailing. Consider installing ImageMagick instead. --Shellreef 14:26, 7 Sep 2005 (PDT)
Can't we use multistage resampling for thumbnails? What I mean is: when the image is 8x larger than the thumbnail, resample it to be 4x larger, then 2x, then of thumbnail size. This way, the filtering is done during each step and the "moire"/aliasing pattern is diminished a bit.
--Kfoltman 21:21, 20 Mar 2007 (EST)
To get help on using mediawiki
See Editing Overview (pointing also to Extended Image Syntax), documentation on customizing the interface of the wiki, Style Guide and the User's Guide for wiki usage and configuration help.
Why we chose MediaWiki rather than other wiki engine
MediaWiki has buttons for formatting a cursor selection when editing, lessening the memory burden of a new user. MediaWiki allows for editing of single sections of a page, and has an elegant automatic table of contents for each page, created out of the sections. It has a separated pages for article and for discussion. MediaWiki distinguishes graphically inner links and links going outside. Furthermore, MediaWiki supports TeX markup for mathematics. MediaWiki is the wiki engine of Wikipedia, successful free internet encyclopedia. Thus MediaWiki seems to be one of the best free wiki engines available.
Some how too's would be nice
i was playing around, I imediately thought of mapping some complex (poorly designed) websites, software etc. I want a quick tutorial on /if i can do this... thanks FUN STUFF
German FreeMind book
FreeMind kompakt ( http://www.brain-media.de/ ) - the second editon of our FreeMind book.
HOWTO's and Documentation
I mentioned this in an e-mail to the OpenDiscussion forum, but I believe a HOWTO section and Documentation section are in order. These sections should have links above the current "Asked Questions" link on the main page.
The HOWTO section should contain a list of HOWTO's that are written/updated the Freemind community (it's users), and the Documentation section should be a well organized layout of the information contained in the HOWTO's, but explicitly controlled by the site-administrators.
My $0.02, Bobby
- For help with understanding mind mapping or idea mapping I really like Idea Mapping by Jamie Nast and she just blogged about Freemind in her blog Idea Mapping Blog also there are examples on her site Idea Mapping Success of idea maps done with FreeMind.
Very intresting wiki site!... Thanx! --HarryRens 16:56, 15 Oct 2005 (PDT)
"Did FreeMind make you angry? Write a complaint"
Negative feedback about FreeMind? Write a complaint.
You might want to add Compendium () to the Alternatives. Compendium is a tool similar in intent to mind-mapping software, but it has a different map structure and a different underlying philosophy. Compendium is free to download and use, although the project people request that you register before downloading. It is not open source, however -- you must register as a developer to get the source and can not re-distribute it. Like FreeMind, it's in Java.
For general brainstorming, discussion capture and personal knowledge base organization, I don't really have a strong preference between Compendium and MindManager/FreeMind. I've used MindManager much longer, and I haven't used either in a corporate brainstorming/discussion session, just for my own personal work. If you're doing project management I'd recommend MindManager, since it integrates with Outlook and Microsoft Project. But I'm leaning towards Compendium as a personal organization tool for a couple of reasons:
1. It runs on both Windows and Linux. I think it runs on MacOS as well, being in Java, but I don't have a Mac to test it.
2. The underlying philosophy is geared towards brainstorming, discussion and knowledge organization. I think it's a "mini-ontology editor".
I would recommend that you add PersonalBrain to the Alternatives list on the main page. It is a fantastic commercial mind mapping tool with an animated, dynamic user interface. It can easily import other mindmap file types. A free version is available. Runs on Mac/Linux/PC. Take a look at www.thebrain.com.
More Commercial mind mapping programs
It would be great to add more mindmapping programs. Such as ConceptDraw MINDMAP http://www.conceptdraw.com/en/products/mindmap/ It's very good and old software and it worth to be listed.
XMIND ( http://www.xmind.org/ ) is a revolutionary mind mapping/brainstorming software. Worth to be listed.
Enterprise Architect (http://www.sparxsystems.com.au/) has the option to do mindmaps, too.
iMindMap (http://www.imindmap.com) May I suggest adding iMindMap onto the list of Commercial Mind Mapping programs. The desktop application uses Tony Buzan’s organic Mind Mapping methods to create maps for brainstorming, organising, creative thinking, project management and planning.
Some usability suggestions
I think it would be nice to have a link pointing to the usual SourceForce project page somewhere inside the left navigation. This way things like forums, mailing list archive and the usual boring stuff can be accessed without typing a URL manually (currently, either it's not there or it's buried too deep for me to find). The other way would be to provide direct links to forum archive pages, mailing list page and so on. Or just assume these don't exist, because of mildly worn-out looks of default SourceForge interface ;)
Another suggestion for addition as a complementary tool for use with FreeMind
Would you consider adding 3D Topicscape (http://www.topicscape.com/) to the alternatives list? In some ways it's not just an alternative but a complement to FreeMind, because it can now import a FreeMind .MM file (tested with 0.9.0 Beta 8) and make a 3D mindmap, or export a topicscape to a FreeMind file. And it can do a round trip. When a FreeMind map gets very large, it offers an alternative to breaking the map down because it allows much more to be seen at one time than on any 2D mindmap. There's a screenshot of a FreeMind mind map produced by exporting a Topicscape used to plan and collect information for a research project here:  (The screenshots were stitched together, otherwise less than a third could be seen on a 1920x1200 screen.) There's a screenshot of the original Topicscape here:  I like using mind maps to plan projects, but when projects get too big, a (pseudo-)3D view can show you much more at one time than a flat 2D mind map. You can fly, instantly zoom in, and change the node around which your 3D scene is built to examine it from many angles.
One more addition: XMind (http://www.xmind.net/) is a robust alternative that offers a variety of formatting, structural, and nesting options, even in its free (open source) version. The Pro version (commercial) offers extended capabilities, including output to .pdf and office suite formats.
Can we use Freemind in thin client
I want to use Freemind in thin client (50-55 people). ※Windows2003 Server Enterprise Edition (SP2)/Terminal Service
Is it possible to use it? and Does it cause a lack of memory?
Please tell me about it.
Download and install section
I found the "Download and install" section confusing, which is off-putting for potential new users. Specific comments follow:
The 4-step overview is good, but the details don't provide matching numbering.
Step 4 says "Install FreeMind", but there is no detailed instruction about what install means. Presumably it is just a matter of un-archiving the binaries that were downloaded in step 3, but that is not explicitly stated.
The overview doesn't contain a step that corresponds to "Running".
Running: The instruction "on any operating system, double click freemind.jar in the lib/ folder" makes assumptions about how the operating system binds files to applications. e.g. when I do this through the Nautilis file browser under Fedora Core 5, the "File Roller" archive manager is opened and shows the contents of the .jar file.
I'd like to see the java download link on the main page pointing to the most up-to-date version of the JRE version 5. (For use with 0.8.0)
The Sun Developer Network Download Archive offers up to version 1.5.0_11
This page, On http://java.sun.com/products/archive/j2se/5.0_11/index.html gets you to the link http://javashoplm.sun.com/ECom/docs/Welcome.jsp?StoreId=22&PartDetailId=jre-1.5.0_11-oth-JPR&SiteId=JSC&TransactionId=noreg
However Java Runtime Environment (JRE) 5.0 Update 12 is available at https://sdlc5c.sun.com/ECom/EComActionServlet;jsessionid=D6758C20AD2DDF8BAFEAEC6C1B318C6F
Since Update 12 is the most current, and most secure, I guess that's what should be offered, but I can't help but wonder why the archive stops at update 11?
Either way, we should update the link. --Kenrob 06:17, 2 Oct 2007 (PDT)
Access to the Download Page and Banners and Buttons Page
I'd like to propose that we move the download and install information to it's own page and then add a link on the main page to the Download page, using one of the new buttons. (We can certainly use other art, if you want. I'm just suggesting the ones I uploaded because they are immediately available. We might want to replace them later with something better. I'm not a graphic artist.) I think the link should be prominent on the first screen of the Main page.
I'm not sure exactly how you use images as links in this Wiki, but I'm sure there's a way to do it.
I'd also like to see a link added to the buttons and banners page. Perhaps something like:
===How You Can Help Spread FreeMind=== You can add one of our [[buttons and banners | buttons or banners]] to your web site, making it easier for people to find and download FreeMind.
I think this should also be put on the new download page.
--Rben13 09:20, 2 Oct 2007 (PDT)
Link to Forums
I think a link to the Project Forums should be added to the main page, rather than just links to the Complaint forum and Thank You For The Music. Perhaps just adding a link in the menu would be sufficient.
--Rben13 08:32, 9 Oct 2007 (PDT)
Links to Emacs are wrong
The links to Emacs on this page goes to Xemacs, not Emacs. The home page for Emacs is
I can't edit the page. Can someone please correct the page?
- Fixed, albeit with a considerable delay. --Dan Polansky 11:56, 25 Aug 2010 (UTC)
Link to article on Newsforge
The article has moved to linux.com, here is the link: http://www.linux.com/feature/38918
- Fixed some time ago. --Dan Polansky 11:57, 25 Aug 2010 (UTC)
Alternatives to FreeMind: TuxCards is out of date - the last update to the website seems to have been in 2004. However, there is another, similar application called BasKet that provides a similar function, and is still updated: http://basket.kde.org/
- BasKet added, both to the Main Page and to Alternatives to FreeMind. --Dan Polansky 12:03, 25 Aug 2010 (UTC)
http://www.thebrain.com: Commercial alternative with a less hierarchical approach (more than one parent possible). Free version available as well. They have good webinars about what you can do with their tool "The Personal Brain" (and mind mappers in general), too.
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