List of concept- and mind-mapping software

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Concept-mapping and mind-mapping software are used to create diagrams of relationships between concepts, ideas or other pieces of information. It has been suggested that the mind mapping technique can improve learning/study efficiency up to 15% over conventional note taking.[1] There are a number of software packages and websites that allow the creation of, or otherwise support mind maps.

File format[edit]

Using a standard file format allows interchange of files between various programs. Many of the programs listed below support the mm format used by FreeMind. The mm format is an XML text format consisting of tagged objects.

Free Software[edit]

The following tools are free as defined by the Free Software Foundation. As such, they are necessarily also open source.

Software License Genre Platforms Online visualization Online editing Online real-time collaboration Notes
Compendium GNU GPL Social science Cross-platform No No No
  • Written in Java
  • An email address is required to receive a download link
Docear GNU GPL Research Cross-platform Yes No No
  • Written in Java
  • Special features for students and researchers (reference and literature management)
FreeMind GNU GPL Project management Cross-platform Yes No No

Written in Java

Freemind-0.9x Screenshoot.png
Freeplane GNU GPLv2+ Mind mapping Cross-platform Yes No No

Written in Java

Screenshot of Freeplane v.1.1.3.png
PGF/TikZ Dual: GNU GPL or LPPL Mind mapping Cross-platform Yes (requires ShareLaTeX) Yes (requires ShareLaTeX) Yes (requires ShareLaTeX)
  • Set of TeX macros. TikZ library: mindmap
SciPlore MindMapping (Extinct - Docear listed as successor) GNU GPL Mind mapping Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux No No No
  • Docear listed as successor.
  • 100% compatible file format with FreeMind.
  • Special features for researchers and students (PDF bookmark import, Adding BibTeX keys)
  • Written in Java.
MindMup MIT License Mind mapping Web Browser Yes Yes Yes
  • Project on GitHub
  • Freemind import/export
  • Browser-based, HTML5 features automatically adjust to mobile (touch) or keyboard interfaces
  • A free online service runs this project with cloud-based storage on Amazon S3.
  • Integrates with Google Drive and GitHub to provide cloud storage and sharing control
  • Written in Javascript and Ruby.
MindMup screenshot.png
VUE Educational Community License Concept mapping Cross-platform No No No
  • Written in Java
  • Requires the creation of an account to download from its home page.
  • Can also be used for building presentations.
VUE 2.0 User Interface on a Mac.jpg
WikkaWiki GNU GPL Wiki software Cross-platform Yes Yes No
  • Written in PHP
  • Uses MySQL
  • Native support for FreeMind maps
  • Based on FreeMind
Screenshot mindmap.jpg
WiseMapping[g 1] WiseMapping License Mind mapping Cross-platform Yes Yes No
XMind EPL and GNU LGPL Project management and Knowledge management Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux No No No
  • Mind maps, spreadsheets, fishbone diagrams, tree charts, org-charts.
  • Online sharing
  • Compatible with Freemind.
  • Used to be proprietary.
  • Written in Java.
XMind Screenshot TDias.png
TiddlyMap BSD 2-Clause License Concept mapping Cross-platform Yes Yes No
TiddlyMap Demo Site - 0.7.24.png


The following is a list of notable concept mapping and mind mapping applications which are freeware (they are available at no cost). Some are open source, and others are proprietary software.

Software License Genre Platforms Online visualization Online editing Online real-time collaboration Notes
CMAP Tools RAND-RF Concept mapping Cross-platform Yes (requires Cmap Server, Cmaps on servers generate urls/webpages) Yes (requires Cmap Server) Yes (requires Cmap Server)
Coggle Proprietary (Freeware) Mind mapping Cross-Platform Yes Yes Yes
  • Unknown programming language(s)
  • A google account is required to log in
Screenshot of webapp
Edraw Mind Map Proprietary (Freeware/Freemium) Mind Mapping Cross-platform No No No
  • Written in Java
  • Designed with advanced functions like auto generation and auto connection of shapes.
Qiqqa Proprietary (Freeware/Freemium) Concept mapping Microsoft Windows Yes No No
  • Mind maps for academics oriented around their research papers, notes and annotations.
  • Can export mind maps to the web and share by social media.
yEd Proprietary (yEd Software License Agreement) cmap tool Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, Cross-platform  ?  ?  ?


The table below lists pieces of paid commercial software that allow the creation of mind maps and concept maps.

Software Publisher/license Platforms Notes/Features
3D Topicscape 3D-Scape Limited Microsoft Windows Desktop application that presents mind maps as a 3d scene where each node is a cone. Imports MindManager, Personal Brain, FreeMind, text and folders.
Axon Idea Processor Axon Research Microsoft Windows Axon also provides a variety of tools for working with ideas and concepts rather than words. Analyze and solve more complex problems.
Buzan's iMindMap ThinkBuzan Ltd Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux Desktop application that provides organic Mind Mapping methods to create Maps for brainstorming, organising, creative thinking, project management and planning. Integrates with Microsoft Office, and iWork.
ConceptDraw MINDMAP CS Odessa LLC Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X Desktop mind mapping and brainstorming software. Uses mind mapping and brainstorming methods for business, education or personal activities. Integrates with MS Word, MS PowerPoint, MS Project, MindManager, FreeMind and XMind. Compatible with Twitter, Skype and Evernote services.
Creately Cinergix Pty Ltd Cross-platform Online Adobe Flash-based diagramming and visual thinking tool for collaboration. Diagramming software with mind map capability.
Debategraph Debategraph Web application Concept- and argument-mapping tool
iMindQ Seavus Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Web application, Android, iOS
Inspiration Inspiration Software Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, Palm Visual Learning, Mind Mapping
Kidspiration Inspiration Software Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows A visual learning and mind mapping software application for students in kindergarten through 5th grade
LucidChart LucidChart, LLC Web application An HTML5-based collaborative diagramming tool that can be used for both mind mapping and concept mapping
Microsoft Visio Microsoft Microsoft Windows Part of Microsoft Office family of products, it can draw nearly any static diagram including block diagrams, organizational charts, maps, plans or workflows.
Mind42 IRIAN Solutions Web application
  • Browser-based collaborative web application;
  • Real-time collaborative editing (the application name, "Mind42," is intended to be read as "Mind for two");
  • Free to use without functional limitations;
  • Limited support by developer.
MindGenius MindGenius Microsoft Windows First released in 2001, now certified for Windows 7 and Vista and available in both business and academic versions.
  • Type and return functionality to capture information quickly
  • Different mapping views for brainstorming, planning, project management, and presentations
  • Advanced categories, analysis and task management functionality
  • Integrated Gantt chart view
  • Wide range of exports to MS Office and Adobe applications, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Project and PDF
Mindjet Mindjet Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X Desktop application comes in Basic and Pro versions. Integrated with Microsoft Office, available Gantt chart add-in, built-in spreadsheet, Fluent UI. Formerly named MindManager.
MindMaple MindMaple Inc. Microsoft Windows MindMaple is generally used as a business tool mainly for Project management, Brain storming and sharing ideas, Managing schedules, Creating visual presentations.
  • Mind Map with Drawing Interface
  • Visual Task Information
  • Export Mind Map to Other Sources
  • Add Additional Information
MindMapper SimTech Systems Microsoft Windows
  • Mind mapping, idea visualization, brainstorming
  • Process Flow, Org Charts, Fishbone diagramming
  • Concept maps and Flowcharts
  • Project Management with built-in Gantt Charts
  • Built-in Presentation
  • Post it style memo notes
  • Integrates with Microsoft Office
MindMeister MeisterLabs GmbH Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux
  • Browser-based collaborative web application
  • Offline Mode
  • Android, iPhone and iPad applications, providing access to online mind maps
  • Built-in chat
  • Subscription based, also offering a free limited access option
Mindly Dripgrind iOS Mindly is used to give a structure to thoughts, capture ideas, plan a speech, take notes. The user interface mimics the way nature has organized things. Imagine a universe with multiple solar systems, planets around the sun, moons around the planets.
  • Thought structuring, idea collection, brainstorming
  • Planning a project, preparing a speech
  • Designed for iPhone (works on the small screen)
Mindomo Expert Software Applications Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux
  • Browser-based
  • Realtime collaboration, built-in chat, revision history
  • Built-in presentation mode
  • Desktop application
  • Android and iPad applications work both offline and in sync with the cloud
  • Offers a free limited option
MindView MatchWare Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X
  • Professional Microsoft Office Integration (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Microsoft Outlook, Project)
  • 6 Interchangeable Views – Including Gantt Chart and Timeline
  • Calculation Feature and Excel Integration
  • Optimized for Project Management
  • Advanced Filter Function
NovaMind NovaMind Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows
  • Mind Mapping, Presentation, Screenwriting
  • (Note: One of the only programs that has a free layout mode where you can put the branches where you like.)
OmniGraffle The Omni Group Mac OS X, IOS
PersonalBrain TheBrain Technologies Windows, Mac OS X, Unix, Unix-like Graphically intensive and customizable GUI, extremely cross-platform. Notes, calendar, Microsoft Outlook features. Multiple parent node capability.
Prezi Prezi Inc Web application, Windows, Presentation software that supports free form placement and zooming on a single sheet.
Qiqqa Quantisle Ltd. Microsoft Windows Minds maps for academics oriented around their research papers, notes and annotations.
Semantica . Semantic Research Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows A family of software for creating, viewing, storing and sharing of knowledge structures
SmartDraw SmartDraw Software, LLC Microsoft Windows SmartDraw is a visual processor used to create flowcharts, organization charts, mind maps, gantt charts, and other visuals.
Solina Mind Mapping Software Insoft Oy Microsoft Windows organic mind maps and activity maps
SpicyNodes Adobe Flash radial maps, viewer can move from node to node
Tinderbox Eastgate Systems Mac OS X A content management system with concept mapping and mind mapping capabilities
Visual Mind Mind Technologies Microsoft Windows Supports collaboration (client/server) mode.
XMind Pro XMind Ltd. Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Farrand, Paul; Hussain, Fearzana; Hennessy, Enid (May 2002). "The efficacy of the 'mind map' study technique". Medical Education 36 (5): 426–431. doi:10.1046/j.1365-2923.2002.01205.x. PMID 12028392. 

External links[edit]