Archive for the ‘report’ Category

Keeping track of your Potholes!

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

It could be tracking anything you are interested in but on Sunday I came across the now fixed hole in a cycle path. Fortunately I approached it from the side the camera is facing in the light.  If you descended in the dark from behind the camera at 25 mph, you could have had a life threatening moment.

On the mapI have a link to Hampshire County Council’s problem reporting site, and the track links for each problem. Plus the photo and a link to the Google map location.  I used task info to store the date of submission and fixing.

You could use a simlar process for snag lists when commissioning equipment or factory inspections or event health and safety tours etc.


My Hampshire Potholes,-1.289456&spn=0.004779,0.011362,-1.289456&spn=0.004779,0.011362,-1.304348&spn=0.002389,0.005681,-1.304348&spn=0.002389,0.005681,-1.18121&spn=0.000597,0.00142,-1.18121&spn=0.000597,0.00142

Mindjet MindManager 9 Road Show – Manchester

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010

My final Road Show of the tour.  Good choice for the venue Rachael, Manchester United’s boardroom.  Yes, we did get to see the football field and the red terraces.  Click the photo to see that those extra goalposts have a growing purpose.

Manchester United - Old Trafford Football Stadium
Twitter scored two goals this morning. Someone outside of the meeting spotted two of us twittering from within and told us . Which provided me with the ice breaker, “Mike Thomas (aka @thomasmike) please identify yourself”.  Secondly Pascal Venier (aka @pascalvenier) noticed halfway through the morning that we were a couple of miles away from him, so I invited him to join us and he jumped in a taxi. Good to meet you Pascal.

I had spoken on the phone to Peter Maddern (aka @speechem) a few years ago. It was good to meet him face to face and learn a bit more about speech recognition.  He took particular interest in using MindManager with a Tablet PC and posed the question “Can you use MindManager with a graphics tablet in ink mode?” The answer is yes and we worked out how the following day.  For Windows 7 go to Control Panel > Programs and Features and in the left hand colum click “Turn Windows features on or off”.  Tick the Tablet PC components.  This works with Wacom graphics tablets and maybe others.  Vista has something similar.  I can’t find any references to achieving in XP but I believe it was possible with some registry hacking.

Steven Bashford, Senior Product Manager, Mindjet, Germany took the main role for Mindjet.  He lead the group through the improvements and changes in MindManager 9.  He dwelt on the Gantt view, Outlook parts and Slide view giving the audience time to ask questions and dealing with their concerns.  He even told a joke but we all agreed it didn’t work and he should try it again tomorrow in Dublin.  Did it work, Steven?

Here is my map of Bill Creekbaum’s version of the same session “MindManager 9 Overview and Product Demonstration“. I mapped it in ink on MindManager with my Tablet PC, converted it to text, added styles, links and published it to the internet within an hour of Bill’s session ending.

James Hoggett of Contact and Code repeated his overview of SharePoint and MindManager Explorer for SharePoint from the Birmingham Road Show.  Must get that link to the free SharePoint server and look at the polling (survey) tool in SharePoint that James mentioned. James provided these links : The free version of SharePoint 2010 foundation is available for download here: Probably a better solution is to use the full SharePoint 2010 VHD (Virtual Hard Drive i.e. a SharePoint sever running virtually on your PC) that Microsoft have provided on a trial basis here:

There was some good news and some bad news during the morning.

Bad news: Outlook parts no longer track the contact, email, task or note if they are moved in Outlook e.g. to another folder. Pity, I enjoyed demonstrating that working in previous versions.  Mindjet have changed to a different process for linking/integrating with Outlook which is more reliable and uses less processor time.

Good news: I have nearly mastered the slide viewer.  Big tip: Do not include too much on a slide or open up topics with large numbers of sub topics e.g. a Google map part with 10 sub topics.  Create extra slides which focus on details.  I will publish the map I used for my presentation after I have tidied up and remove links to pages I don’t want you to access on my PC :).  In the mean time here is a Mindjet Player version I upload during one of my presentations “Turning Ideas into Accessible Information

Neutral news: The slide frame in the slide view is the same size as the paper selected in the Page Setup (Slides).  The default is likely to be A4. Some printers will give you more page sizes than others and even a custom size. It may be worth chaning your default printer and playing with different page sizes, if slides do not fill your screen.  May cause problems, if your last print job was to DL Envelopes!

Must get back to encouraging people to update to MindManager 9 prior to the 30th September  launch discount deadline.  Two orders arrived on the day of this Road Show, one via LinkedIn and the second via Ecademy.

Mindjet MindManager Road Show Birmingham

Friday, September 17th, 2010

Well my social network worked last night.  Three sources recommended the same pub “The Wellington” and one of them, Roger Vanstone met us there and took Bill Creekbaum and I to his favourite Indian restaurant the “Al Faisal“. Suprisingly we were back in the hotel by 11pm.

It was short walk from the hotel to the Raddisson Blu, the Road Show venue. Very helpful staff and a nice well lit room. Pity they did not notice the projector was set to low brightness.  I fixed that for the second half.

Again a long term friend appeared Maurice Poole who has worked for me in the ConferenceREACTION team. Also Mike Hodkinson who I have met at previous events and online.  Very nice also to get compliments from a couple of members of the silent majority who read what I write in the forums and on this blog (note to self you don’t need to add a link here because they are here:) ).

Back to content. As far as I can tell Bill’s presentation was the similar to yesterday’s but we had two longer discussions. One about the Gantt chart view addressing the concerns of the audience.  Those that attended now have a much better understanding of why MindManager 9 did not meet some of our expectations. The good news is planning tasks within a day will be possible in MindManager 9.1. Today’s project challenge was planning a party for the Pope’s visit to Birmingham on Sunday.  Did we get to the emailing the Pope an invitation stage?

We were also enlightened about how to remove the offset in the slide view. Just drag the left or right hand edge of the frame across, similar to adjusting the topic width but the width remains the same.  I also discovered that hiding topics in the map does not hide them in the slide. If you want to hide topics, do it in the slide views.  The short keys work in slide view e.g. Ctrl-F5 to fill the slide with the map snippet.

Again my general understanding of SharePoint was improved by the presentation of James Hoggett of Contact and Code.  Several big businesses are using it for their intranet sites and James showed us a few home pages.  MindManager Explorer for SharePoint looks as though it will add great dashboarding capability to individuals and teams who want quick access to relevant and important items from MindManager.  James noted that the MindManager Add In was the easiest he had come across to integrate with an exisiting SharePoint Server.

Using the Tablet PC, the web export and share tool to publish meeting notes part of my presentation, generated many questions during the session and at lunch.  Again this group choose Inspiration and Project Management from my four offered topics.  I used the hyperlinks to the map sharing sites to give the audience an appreciation of what is available to inspire them.  I will publish the full map after the last road show.

On my way home now.  Why is the standard of the Virgin first class service on the London Birmingham route not repeated on the Birmingham Winchester route?  No WiFi, no snack, no free beer and typically they ran out of hot drinks (free) for a while.  Thank goodness the power socket worked.

See you in Manchester on Tuesday at the Mindjet MindManager 9 Road Show.

Can you use MindManager to record a football game e.g. England v Slovenia

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

England v Slovenia in the World Cup 2010 - MindManager mind map of the gameI did sort of.  See England v Slovenia.

A bit more preparation would of helped but I just sat down on the couch with my Hoegaarden and a packet of Cheddar crisps to watch my team recover their honour (hopefully).

What did I learn?

  • I will never forget ctrl-alt-shift-t which inserts the time in a topic or note.  Use the options to get just time.
  • I should have set up the markers before hand
    • Events: Throw Ins, Corners (I used arrows for this to indicate left or right), Free Kicks, Bookings, Send Offs, Goal Kicks, Injuries, Substitutions. I renamed the Flag markers.
    • Who: Flags for England and Slovenia
    • Team Lists: Avatars for each player
    • Where: I used the task completeness to indicate pitch postion lengthwise.  Perhaps I should have one for width as well.
    • Smileys: They were there.
  • I need to improve my touch typing

Questions Arising

  • Was it just a distraction from the game or is there an application?
  • Would using voice input help?
  • Could I have worked faster in ink?  Maybe but then there is delay of conversion.
  • Is anyone bothered?

Your answers please. Before the next game.

Recording and Publishing Events with MindManager

Wednesday, November 26th, 2008

I have been in the last week recording and publishing two events. The first on Monday 17th was for Business Scene and their second London Connections event. About 500 people attended from a wide range of business networks. They listened to some short speeches, the main one being from an MP Mark Prisk – an upbeat response to the credit crunch, toured the 30 stands and networked. I worked with a photographer Andrew Sansom to create this record.

Business Scene London Connection index map event record mindmanager

The second event last Saturday was the SouthamptonGOGREENfair with my second MP of the week. Probably a few hundred passed through the event and the largest audience was for Alan Whitehead with about 40 people listening to his personal experience of installing various micro generators on his house.

Southampton Go Green Fair index map mindmanager

Both records were created using MindManager 8. Working in ink mode at the events to take notes and then later at my desk to create the web sites and clickable image maps. Some use was made of Microsoft Expressions and Notepad to tidy up and include some objects in the web pages. If only MindManager could include HTML in notes life would be a lot easier for me.

Click the images to visit the web sites.

All of this was done whilst enjoying this winters first cold.