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Mind Mapping on the World Wide Web

By  Jan 29, 2009

Topics: Certification

Before we review dedicated mind mapping software products, I want to discuss how we can leverage so-called Web 2.0 technologies to broaden and deepen our IT certification studies in a mind-mapping context (wow—say that five times quickly).

As prerequisite reading, please peruse my introductory article on mind mapping:

InformIT Certification Reference Guide: “Mind Mapping Basics”

Tabbed Browsing

Any current-generation Web browser worth its salt supports tabbed browser windows. However, it never ceases to amaze me how few people (relatively speaking) continue to ignore this marvelous feature and surf Web pages in a single browser window.

Here is the typical browsing scenario: you visit Google and execute a search query. You click a relevant search result, and that result takes over the single browser window. You read the page for a few minutes, and then click an interesting link on that page. Forthwith, you forgot all about the original Google search results page that contained a lost wealth of useful Web links!

If we are to be successful mind mappers, we must leave no intellectual stone unturned. We must become dedicated to using tabbed browser windows.

Here are some useful links on tabbed browsing to get you started:

Power Bookmarks

As I’m sure you already know, the bookmark, or favorite (depending upon which Web browser you are using), represents an online shortcut to a frequently accessed Web page.

In today’s Web 2.0 world, we have nifty technologies that allow us to place our bookmarks on figurative steroids. Let’s look at some of these methods.

If you use Mozilla Firefox (my personal favorite Web browser), there is the Scrapbook extension. This browser extension allows you to “snapshot” Web pages and view them offline.

Then there is Foxmarks, which stores your bookmarks online. You can then keep your bookmarks synchronized across multiple computers. Neat, huh?

Delicious is another social bookmarking service that you need to be aware of as well. Like Foxmarks, Delicious supports online storage of your bookmarks. In addition, with Delicious you perform keyword search across all Delcious users’ bookmarks. There is Really Simple Syndication (RSS) support…the feature list takes off from there. Quite awesome, indeed.


According to Wikipedia (there’s an irony for you—using Wikipedia to define the term wiki), a wiki is “a page or collection of Web pages designed to enable anyone who accesses it to contribute or modify content, using a simplified markup language.”

Imagine leveraging some of the techniques I’ve already showed you—opening links in tabs, managing offline and Web-synchronized bookmarks—with a database as current and as robust as Wikipedia. Pretty powerful stuff, wouldn’t you agree?

Assuming that you are a reasonably disciplined individual, there is no limit to the amount of content you could absorb, whether you are planning your next IT certification credential, your next career move, or your next stage in life.

Finally, I need you to understand that Wikipedia is simply an excellent example of a wiki; Wikipedia it is not the wiki. Anyone can create his or her own wiki page library. For instance, check out Wikispaces when you get a free moment. Consider running Google queries to find the best deal on wiki hosting; it is a pretty hot commodity for schools and organizations (heck, even for individuals) nowadays.

As I stated at the outset of this post, we will undertake a detailed consideration of dedicated mind mapping software in my next, and concluding, post in this series. Happy studying!