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Parents' Guide to

Mindomo (mind mapping)

By Leslie Crenna, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Productivity tool looks great but is tricky to navigate.

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MINDOMO is a visually appealing productivity app best suited to the larger screen of a tablet (as opposed to smart phone). It offers a lot of attractive features like design themes and layouts, integrated task tracking, presentation mode, and the ability to insert icons, hyperlinks, and images. To cloud share or email to teachers, synchronize with desktop application generated maps, or make maps public, teens can choose to create and sign in to a Mindomo account, which requires only user name and email. XML-based .mom files can be opened with the desktop version of the application. Though it requires some mental adjustments -- press and hold instead of point and click -- Mindomo offers tablet productivity with an attractive price tag (free).

On the downside, Mindomo is nearly impossible to use on Android smartphones, though it is "compatible" and will download. Basics like file and folder management, connectors, icons, and zoom in and out can be difficult and confusing, dependng on device. Font size sliders don't allow quick and precise adjustments, auto align smooshes topics together, topic size cannot be adjusted, and exported files cannot be previewed on Google Drive no matter what format. Although PDF files lose formatting, .png files come out perfectly. Considering the barriers, unless a friend introduces the idea, teens aren't likely to use Mindomo without prompting from a teacher or parent.

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