By Jill Duffy
Jill Duffy is a contributing editor covering productivity apps and software, as well as technologies for health and fitness. She writes the Get Organized column, with tips on how to lead a better digital life.
Of all the mind-mapping software on the market, MatchWare’s MindView 5 Business Edition ($379) is one of the most expensive you’ll find—but it’s expensive for a reason. MindView 5 Business integrates tightly with Microsoft Office, both conceptually and technically. MindView could easily pass for an Office app, with the same familiar interface you’d expect from Microsoft’s suite, but more importantly, it can import and export data from Excel, Word, Project, PowerPoint—even Outlook Task Lists are supported.
What separates MindView from its competitors is in how it breathes new visual life into your business’ data, documents, and ideas. You can sketch out a complex business proposal, meeting agenda, timeline, or project with ease, then change its layout from an image to a document or a chart, or any other number of formats, depending on the that’s data behind it. MatchWare lets you repurpose, recreate, and redistribute existing data like no other mind-mapping software does. Because it so effortlessly makes business data more alive, MindView 5 Business Edition is PCMag’s Editors’ Choice among mind-mapping software for business.
Install MindView 5 Business Edition, and you can either get started drawing out your ideas straight away, or watch some helpful tutorial videos to learn the basics of how to use the software and shortcut keys.
As with most mind-mapping software, like MindJet’s MindManager 9 (3.5 stars, $349) or Mindomo 5 Premium (4 stars, $6 per month), MindView typically begins with a brainstorm. When you start a new document, you can choose from six options: mind map, top down, left/right, timeline, outline, or Gantt. You can change the layout at any time with amazing flexibility and no data loss when you switch. Everything updates in real time so there’s no guesswork as to how the new styles or format will look. Don’t like it? Control-z to undo, with multiple undos supported.