iBlueSky App Review: Creative MindMapping on Your Mobile Device

iBlueSky v2.0 continues to lead the field for mind mapping on the iPhone and iPod Touch

iBlue Sky App

What You Will Learn in This Video:

– Lateral ways to use iBlueSky to create Presentations, Vision Statements and Products

– Tips on how to supercharge the use of the app to increase productivity and gain more time

– How to quickly and easily navigate through the app and its features

– Considerations you need to be careful of when using app



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iBlueSky App Review


And welcome to the iBlueSky iPhone app review. This is West and thank you for joining me in this series of app reviews. I hope you’re enjoying them.

Now I like to use this app for a whole heap of things which I’m going to take you through. This is the screen that comes up when the app first loads up. Now I’ve only got a few in here for this particular shoot. And you can see that iBlueSky, the team, have actually created a few mind maps for you to have a look at when you first load up here. But I’ve also created a test one which we’re going to have a bit of a play around with later on.

But if we tap on the iBlueSky INTRO, that allows us to see a sample of one of the mind maps that they’ve created. Now what I’ll be doing is talking you through how I use my fingers in order to get the effect on the screen. In order to view a mind map from its largest view, i.e. from the top and see the whole mind map in one picture, I just double tap on the screen with my finger. And what happens is it will actually zoom all the way out and allows you to see the mind map out. And if you want a particular place that you want to go to, you just double‑tap on that place and it’ll zoom into it. So it’s pretty cool in that aspect.

The other thing, obviously, if you want to adjust it by just a little bit, you can pinch together. And what that does is it brings the mind map a little bit smaller bit by bit so you can adjust. And obviously, reverse pinching makes it bigger and bigger.

So if we just have a really quick look at some of the things that the team has written about this app—I won’t spend too much time on here—but there are a lot of things you can do with it. And they’ve given us some great, fantastic ideas. And in a second, I’m also going to show you some of the ways that I use it and some of the ways that I think people could most benefit from it.

So I’m going to go ahead and tap PROJECTS. And I’m going to head back to the main page. And we’re going to have a bit of a play around the test mind map that I’ve created because I wouldn’t mind actually going through that other one in a little more detail myself. So if we want to change basically the subject of our mind map, we can create it by tapping the EDIT button on the top right and then just editing whatever you want the subject to be. Okay. Pretty simple. While we’re in that box, if we want to add a branch, we then come down to the ‘+’ button here, bottom right, tap on that. And it automatically adds a branch. So I might just call this Branch 1 and go to DONE. Now I can color code that. I can change it to whatever color I want. I can change their fill to whatever color I want. I can actually hold my finger on ‘Branch and just move it wherever I’d like to move it. So a long, thin in, out—it’s pretty cool. And the same goes if I want to create another branch from Branch 1, I just tap on BRANCH 1 and hit the + button and etcetera, etcetera.

So I can continue to create mind maps and branches however I like and color code them however I like. So that’s pretty it in a nutshell. You know, the purpose and the focus of this app is primarily to create cool mind maps and that’s exactly what it does.

Now I’ve just recently got upgraded to version 2 and it’s got some extra features form the first version which I think are pretty exceptional. One thing, a much larger page size. So you can create bigger mind maps. You can export them by email. I really also like the fact that you can export different formats and also use, you know, like from FreeMind and some of the other great mind mapping software on PC, for example. And it also gives you some more ideas on how to use this great program.


So how do I use this program and how would I recommend that you use it in order to get the most out of it?

Well, the first thing I recommend is for any idea that you have, most people are visual—a lot of people are visual—and for them to sit down and write something down really doesn’t have the same impact as mind mapping it out and really putting their ideas, making it visual and color coding it, making it stand out. And I think that, you know, it has the ability to really cerate much more passion, much more structure and much more systemized approach to an idea rather than just doing a brain dump. What a mind map does is it forces you to automatically start categorizing and putting things together rather than just words on paper and then sort of trying to make sense of it later on.

I also think it’s great for strategy and strategic visions for businesses or even if you’re a one‑person company to just really sit down and start mind mapping your vision from this feature, really thinking about what your purpose is and putting it all together in a big, beautiful mind map.

Other things I like to get people to do are to mind map their processes, their important business processes. And what I mean by that is, for example, a sales funnel. All the things or, you know, all the things that people have to do in order to go through a certain system or process in a business, get them to mind map the process out. I mean, obviously, if you’re working in a very established company, all these procedures will already be done. But if you’re just kind of weaning it or you’re doing something that’s not documented, it’s a great way to actually capture it in order to either get help or look at the holes and plug the holes up. And this is a great way to do it.

Another great way is to use it for your presentations: any speaking that you like to do, any public education sessions or seminars. I think it’s an amazing way to be able to create pegs in your memory to be able to easily deliver a presentation and the format and the foundation comes directly from a mind map. And this leads on to my next point, is creating products by starting with the concepts. I remember going through a product called Product Launch Formula One a long time ago by Jeff Walker and all he did was pretty much go through a mind map and talk through each of the different points in the mind map. And that was a million dollar cost. You know, it was filled with great content and that was the base of it. And no one complained because it was still very visual and it was a great product.

So if you are looking at writing a report, a book, a course, I think this is a fantastic foundation to start that process. And I definitely moved more towards this visual type of things rather than writing things out. The other thing that just popped into my head is the key concepts of books that you’ve read, I recently read a book by Robert Kiyosaki called Conspiracy of the Rich, and I did a great big mind map of the key concepts of that book. And just looking at it, I can get a sense of what the book was about. And just by reading the initial branches, I know exactly what each chapter and each major concept was. And for me to compare that to either rereading the book or rereading pages and pages of notes, it’s going to save me a lot of time in the long run. And by the way, if you want that mind map, just come over to my blog or my Facebook fan page, I actually shared it with my audience. It’s a really good mind map.

I can’t really see any downsides to this. Obviously, it would be fantastic doing this on an iPhone, it’ll be fantastic on an iPad or some big mobile device. Still pretty damn good on the iPhone though. And once you’ve done a mind map, there are a few options.

The first one is to tap on this icon here to email the project to yourself. So if you tap on EMAIL, it just comes up with an email, you email it and it’s in your inbox.

The other way to export a mind map is to tap on this button here in the initial page. And it allows you to save it to Box.net. So if you’ve got a Box.net account, it just automatically saves it to that and you can access it to there and download it to your computer. Edit it, keep it, file it, archive it—whatever you’d like to do.

All in all, I’m going to give this app a 91%. It’s definitely my pick of the mind mapping apps. It’s simple but it’s really easy to navigate, easy to use. And good luck using it, creating beautiful mind maps.

Key Features of iBlueSky:

– Huge page size – almost 1500x the size of the iPhone screen

– Easy import via the web in Novamind, Freemind & OPML formats

– Easy export via email in these formats: Novamind, PDF, PNG (limited to 4000×4000 pixels), OPML outlining format, Freemind, plain text

– Branches with more than one line of text

– Attach notes to branches (imported and exported in most external formats)

– Edit branch colours with an easy-to-use colour picker, option to apply colour changes to sub-branches

– Clipboard: cut, copy and paste branches

– Scroll and zoom – standard pinch gesture

– Double tap to zoom in and out

– Translucent/auto-hiding toolbars

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