Summarize

Adding new topic shapes to your MindManager library

In the MindManager Library there is a section called Shapes. It contains three folders: Ovals, Rectangles and Rounded Rectangles. Any of these shapes can be applied to a topic by dragging and dropping or selecting a topic and then clicking the required shape. This can be used to give another level of emphasis to your maps. If you need to change the colour of a shape or remove / add a dot, duplicate and then open in your image editor.

What about adding your own shapes to the library? Very easy add a new folder (right click the shapes folder) and then follow the instructions on my Creating New Topics Shapes in MindManager map.

I created a new shape from my logo by editing it and adding a boundary in Paint.net. I also gave a it a transparent background. Then I added it to Shape Library and used it for the central topic of the map. You can see in the map some of my choices may not be that clever. If the shape had been applied to the main or subtopics the background would not be an issue.

This morning I was creating a new shape from a sandcastle image during an online client training session. It soon be came apparent that the aspect ratio of the shape image is dependent on the text string height and width. You need to choose shapes that look good when crushed, stretched or otherwise distorted!

There are a few ways to mitigate the distortion:
1. Control the text width in Format Topic or by dragging the left and right text boundaries
2. Font size and type
3. Edit Content Margins in the Library Shape or Format Topic > Size and Margins. See the map.

Does anyone have some great examples of custom shapes in their MindManager maps?

About Andrew Wilcox

Andrew is an experienced user of MindManager who shares his knowledge and advice for free here. And provides commercial training and consulting on how to exploit MindManager and other mind mapping software applications in business, organisations and for individuals at Cabre For more information about Andrew please visit his Google + profile.

One Response to “Adding new topic shapes to your MindManager library”

  1. readability says:

    I have to admit to still being paper bound when it comes to mindmaps – but I do use different shapes for different levels of 'heading' – and just text without shapes for the lowest level of information (as well as coloured text for specific types of information).

    The danger is people getting excited about the options and going over the top! I'm thinking of the 12 year old with a WYSIWYG editor creating a website "Oooh, I've 256 colours to use; let's see how many I can get in!"

    However, I'm sure you don't do this, Andrew, and you'll educate your customers not to either!

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