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Re: [zzdev] Re: [zzdev] GZigZag and education?

Hola Benja ;)

On Mon, 18 Dec 2000, Benjamin Fallenstein wrote:

> Hi Kimmo!

> I think the limitations of the mind map you've mentioned are simply
> rooted in the restrictions of paper. The mind map people actually
> encourage connecting leafs of the mind map which have some relationship;
> I think it's just the nature of paper that has stopped them from
> developing something more advanced. But let's not argue about mind maps.
> The point I was trying to make is that boxes don't help associative
> thinking, and that we'd better put the words on the connective lines.

The limitation of the paper approach is relevant notion.
Hmmm... I think we've been describing two different tools for slightly
different purposes. Your emphasis is on concepts, my is on small
documents, chunks of writing. Maybe it could be possible to make a sketch
of a metamap, which could be used as a basis for both tools, for a variety
of maps -- what do you think?

> The algorithm I have in mind is something like this:
> * Draw the accursed concept in the middle.
> * Draw all the concepts connected to it on lines around it. (Let these
> lines start from the middle and point to the boundaries of the screen.)
> The end of the line connected to the concept in the middle call the
> "beginning" of the line; the other end call the "end." (This
> directedness is not visible, just an internal concept.)
> * For each of these lines:
>   - Find all concepts connected to the one on this line.
>   - Draw them on own lines starting from the end of this line...
>   - ...except for the concept which connected to this one.
> * Repeat.
> * If you ever find the same concept twice (i.e., if there's some loop),
> draw it only once and connect both connections to it. (This may be
> changed by user preference, so that a concept found twice is shown on
> the screen two times -- like there should be a similar preference in the
> vanishing etc. views.)
> Some properties of the mind-map I'd like to see in this are:
> * Beauty. Good mind maps have soft curves and look "smooth," "natural" etc.
> * (Associative) connectivity, not separation in boxes.
> * Annotation. In mind maps, you draw symbols etc. next to mind-map stems
> to communicate additional information. (In fact, that is what gzz
> applitude interconnectivity will give us automatically.)

Also, I would like to be able to 'decorate' the node texts (box, cloud
etc.), to drag the note in different position in relation to the accursed
element and also to resize the notes. Summa summarum, my aim is to allow
the user to express his ideas also via the layout.

Besides, it would be nice to use the stems as you pointed earlier.

The algorith, of course, gets more complicated ...

> - Benja