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Keywords: Diagramming, Diagrams in UML, Information visualization, Mind maps 

Mind map

A mind map is a diagram used to visually organize information. A mind map is hierarchical and shows relationships between pieces of a whole. A mind map is created around a single concept, in which associated ideas, images, words, etc. are added as extensions. Major ideas are connected directly to the central concept, while other ideas are branched out from those major ideas. Mind maps are considered a type of spider diagram and similar to the concept "idea sun bursting" in the 1970s.

Generic Mind map template available through for Confluence

A mind map is a visual tool that has several advantages compared to traditional note taking. Mind maps use several memory triggers such as color and images so that it it easier for the brain to recall, memorize, and connect information within existing knowledge. In addition, mind maps are a graphical representation of information that illustrates the relationship between concepts, thus it is easier to break down complex ideas into a comprehendible picture. Mind maps are useful for managers, advisors, creatives, teachers, students, and anyone looking to visualize problems or organize thoughts. 

Of course, there are several diagramming software programs available to easily create diagrams such as mind maps without having to know modeling language. When working specifically within the Atlassian marketplace (Confluence or Jira) there is also the possibility to create and integrate diagrams using, our own Seibert Media sponsored software tool. You can build mind maps, concept maps, organizational charts, etc. from scratch or you can take advantage of preexisting templates such as the mind map shown above. 

Mind Maps Structure Information

mind maps convey the relationship between ideas and concepts no matter how simple or complex.

Mind Maps Improve Memory

mind maps use color or even images in its structure. In addition, mind maps help connect new pieces of information to existing knowledge.


The term "mind map" became popular by Tony Buzan, a famous British author and television personality during a 1974 BBC TV series he hosted called Use Your Head. Buzan came up with the concept of radical tree, where he diagramed key words in a colorful radiant, tree-like structure. However, the concept of mind mapping has been around for generations and dates back centuries. The first use of a visual layout of information that resembled a mind map was the Tree of Porphyry, a taxonomy from the Greek philosopher, Porphyry of Tyre. 


The application and use cases of mind maps are endless and this is evident throughout history from the the classification of biblical scriptures in 692 CE to Charles Darwin evolutionary thoughts in 1837. In modern day, the most common use cases of mind maps include: 

Note taking

Mind maps makes it easy to take and memorize notes.


Mind maps can be used to plan projects or business strategies.


Mind maps are useful for brainstorming and organizing thoughts.

Idea Management

Mind maps make it easy to manage and organize ideas or concepts.

Meeting Management

Mind maps makes it easy to organize meeting notes or agendas.

Knowledge Management

Mind maps help to organize knowledge and ideas in a centralized manner.

Concept Mapping

Concept maps are similar to mind maps, however there is a clear distinction between the two types of diagrams. While a mind map focuses on only one concept or idea, a concept map connects multiple ideas or concepts. In addition, a concept map typically has texts or labels on the branches or connecting lines. Mind maps are based on hierarchies or tree structures centralizing a single concept, while concept maps are more diverse in pattern. 

Generic concept map template available through for Confluence

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This content was last updated on 04/21/2021.

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