News and thoughts from CS Odessa, maker of the ConceptDraw product line: ConceptDraw PRO, ConceptDraw PROJECT and ConceptDraw MINDMAP.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7: The Importance of Importing Slides

The Presentation Exchange Solution for ConceptDraw MINDMAP adds the capability to import Microsoft® PowerPoint® slideshows and display their contents as a mind map. To see how this feature can benefit you in your everyday work, consider a few possible scenarios…


Scenario 1: Proposal Review

A major proposal to your company includes a PowerPoint slide deck. Clicking through the whole presentation will take far too much time, and in the process you can lose or obscure its meaning. With Presentation Exchange and ConceptDraw MINDMAP, you can easily extract the content and see how it fits together in a single view.

Olga: The entire management team needs to review those proposal slides before the end of the week. I just glanced at the file and there are over 50 slides! There’s no way we’ll have time for all this.

Jeff: You know, ConceptDraw MINDMAP just added this great ability to import from PowerPoint. We can just import that presentation into a mind map, and then distribute the map to our management team for review. You will save them so much time and headache; you might just get a promotion!

Olga: Brilliant, Jeff! You keep this up and you might just get that promotion.

Scenario 2: Presentation Revision

You have to give an important presentation to the Board of Directors on Friday. They picked apart the last presentation you gave, saying it was poorly organized and hard to follow. They felt you needed to do a better job of supporting your critical points. Why not try looking at your presentation in a new way: as a mind map?

Mary: I have to give the most important presentation of my life to the Board of Directors on Friday! And the last time I was in front of them, they were less then pleased.

Ignacio: I heard about how you went down in flames; it wasn’t a pretty sight. How about when you have the presentation completed, you import it into ConceptDraw MINDMAP? In a single view you can look over your slide content, see how the slides support one another, refine the story – the end result is that you’ll look much more professional.

Mary: Ignacio, you are a life saver! I never thought of doing that.

Scenario 3: Academia

The professor for your class has distributed slide presentations that contain lots of study content. Your challenge is to incorporate all the class materials to better leverage your study time. With Presentation Exchange, you can easily pull all that content into a mind map that illustrates the relationships between study topics.

Oscar: I think am going to fail the midterm tomorrow for our Supply Chain class. I’ve been studying from the PowerPoint slides the professor gave me, but it’s taking so long just to get organized. There are extensive notes on every slide! Thinking about it, I just know I am going to flunk that midterm. There’s not enough time left!

Elizabeth: The test for that class is going to be so easy. I finished studying for it yesterday.

Oscar: Yesterday?! How did you manage that?

Elizabeth: I have this cool program called ConceptDraw MINDMAP. I just imported the PowerPoint slides and all of the content appears in a mind map. It makes it super easy to organize. It brings all the notes from the slides in and everything. Then I can add more notes and even hyperlink to a web page or a supporting document. It cut my study time in half. It’s almost like magic!

Oscar: Oh man, that sounds great! I’d better go download it right away.

The Tip of the Iceberg

These are a just a few scenarios we imagined for how the Presentation Exchange Solution can make your daily life and work easier. How will YOU use it? Let us know via email to amersales@csodessa.com (Rest of World sales@csodessa.com, or follow us on Twitter @ConceptDraw.

21 day free trials of ConceptDraw MINDMAP, Presentation Exchange Solution, and all ConceptDraw products are available on ConceptDraw.com.


Friday, December 23, 2011

Computer & Networks Solution, Part 1

The Computers & Networks Solution has been one of our most popular Solutions since the launch of ConceptDraw PRO v9. Designed with IT professionals in mind, but easy enough for anyone to use, this Solution provides library objects, templates and examples for documenting network installations of any size. Documenting your network is critical for planning changes and growth: you need to know where you’ve been to know where you’re going. Now you need look no further than the templates in the Computers & Networks Solution for help creating documents that describe the structure and location(s) of your network.



Cisco Sample Library in ConceptDraw PRO v9

First we have the Network Logical Structure Diagram. This is a high-level conceptual tool for visualizing your network. It’s important to understand the flow of data from outside your network to the various places in your organization before you get down to the nuts and bolts of which hardware goes where. Using the provided library objects and sample diagrams, you can create a flowchart that very accurately describes the zones of your network and how information enters and moves through them.

The next step is creating a Network Communication Plan. This diagram illustrates the physical location(s) of your network devices. This template is best implemented in two phases. First, map out the floor plan of the network location. Then draw in your network communication lines, wall sockets, etc. Closely related to the Network Communication Plan is the Network Layout Diagram. This is another floor plan type template the documents the positioning of the actual networked devices. Using these two templates in conjunction will create a very detailed depiction of your network’s physical makeup. Try using different layers for communication lines and hardware devices; then you can view one or the other by toggling layer visibility.

The Rack Diagram template is necessary for larger network installations. Using the template you can diagram server racks and the connections between devices in them. The basic rack object in the template can be resized by selecting it, then clicking the Action button (blue arrow) that appears. Add new pages to the document for each different rack. Then you can add hyperlinks to your Network Layout Diagram that jump directly to the diagram for each rack.

This first batch of templates is a great starting point for documenting your network. That will be plenty for you to chew on this week; next week will pick up where this left off and discuss the rest of the Computers & Networks Solution’s templates and some tips and tricks for implementing them. Stay tuned!

Free 21 day trials of ConceptDraw PRO and the Computers & Networking Solution are available on ConceptDraw.com

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Mind Map Exchange Blog

The new Mind Map Exchange Solution, now available in the ConceptDraw Solution Park, is very exciting. It expands ConceptDraw MINDMAP’s import and export abilities to include the file formats of many popular mind mapping products on the market, including MindManager, FreeMind, XMind, and host of others. Sharing mind maps has never been easier!




Opening third-party mind maps in ConceptDraw MINDMAP is as simple as choosing Import from the File menu, and then browsing for the file. There is some variation in the features which can be imported from other applications (summarized here) but the overall structure of the map will remain intact. With the map imported, you have access to all the features you already love about ConceptDraw MINDMAP for adding content: Brainstorm mode, Topic Types and Data, PowerPoint Export, and all the rest.

The Mind Map Exchange also offers an easy way to combine maps from differing file formats into a single file. Simply import each one into a ConceptDraw file, then copy-and-paste them into a single map. From that new map, you can easily Output to a Project Plan (with ConceptDraw PROJECT installed) or presentation. It’s no longer a problem to work with collaborators on different operating systems or mind mapping platforms; Mind Map Exchange makes it simple and easy.

But there’s more! With the increased number of export options, ConceptDraw MINDMAP users never have to worry over whether their colleagues can decipher their maps. The variety of export capabilities means that even if ConceptDraw MINDMAP can’t export directly to another program’s format, it almost certainly can export to a format the other program can read. OPML and text outlines are great for this, since practically every mind mapping application can read them.

The Mind Map Exchange Solution is a huge step towards what we at CS Odessa like to call a Universal Business Graphics Format. By continuing to push the boundaries of mind mapping software, we aim to enable anyone and everyone to unlock their creativity with the innovative organization abilities of mind mapping.

A full featured, 21 day trial of ConceptDraw MINDMAP is available for download on http://www.conceptdraw.com/. Click the Join Us link on the homepage to get started, and enjoy mind mapping!

Friday, October 21, 2011

ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7 Helped Organize and Communicate Information About Complex Energy Systems for the State of Hawaii


ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7 provided Mitch Evan, Hydrogen Systems Program Manager at Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI), with a powerful way to organize, understand, and communicate complex information. The resulting insights led to multimillion-dollar funding to support early solutions to Hawaii’s energy needs.


Industry: Energy Generation
Location: Honolulu
Challenge: Organize and communicate information about complex energy systems
Toolkit: ConceptDraw MINDMAP
Solution: Solution #1: Client used MINDMAP to create a big-picture view of complex information. The view helped client gain valuable insight into project. Solution #2: Client used MINDMAP as a tool to systematically select and evaluate appropriate energy-generation technologies.

Mitch Ewan
Hydrogen Systems Program Manager
Hawaii Natural Energy Institute
Honolulu, HI


As America’s only island state, Hawaii faces unique problems in supplying its million and a half residents with energy to live and work. Five years ago, the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute co-hosted a workshop with members of the local agricultural community to investigate bio-energy as a possible solution to the state’s energy needs. HNEI program manager Mitch Ewan used ConceptDraw MINDMAP to do some breakthrough thinking on this topic.

Make Meeting Worthwhile
The first part of the workshop featured panels and PowerPoint presentations on identifying bio-energy production issues and potential solutions with Hawaii farmers and farm communities. The afternoon included breakout sessions, in which groups of people got together to brainstorm around particular issues related to bio-energy. Each session was run by consultants whose job was to gather ideas that came out of each group discussion and put them together as a final report.

“Typically,” Ewan says, “you have this kind of an event and a few days later everybody forgets about it.  I decided to create my own report and see if I could actually harness the brain power in that meeting to move our bio-energy planning forward.”

Ewan says he wasn’t planning on using mind mapping when he started to create the report. But once he pulled all the workshop information together, all he could see was an overwhelming jumble of ideas. The enormity of the task before him got him thinking about a blog he had been following on mind mapping. It occurred to him that mind mapping might be just the thing he needed to make sense of such complicated information.

Effective Right out of the Box
“So I went out and bought my first version of ConceptDraw MINDMAP and thought, ‘I’ll lay out all the ideas graphically and see if that helps make them any clearer.’”

He keyed in the workshop ideas to create a visual diagram, and then dragged and dropped the ideas around into logical subject groups. As he did this, a picture began to emerge of Hawaii’s energy and agriculture situation. It was a very complicated picture. 

“As I studied the map, I had a big ‘Eureka!’ moment. I realized that because there were so many issues—water, land rights, infrastructure, all this stuff—what the state really needed was a master plan.”

Communicate Complex Ideas Simply, Quickly
With that idea in mind, Ewan rearranged everything on the map around the concept of a bio-energy master plan.  Once he had a plan that made sense to him, he plotted out a very large copy of the map on a 3 ft x 4 ft piece of plotting paper and took it around to all the various stakeholders. He asked each of them to take a close look at the plan and write their comments on the map itself.

“I went through a bunch of iterations of the map, capturing everybody’s ideas. Then I took the finished map around to key political people. The legislators got it because the map helped them instantly understand the problem—that there were all these interrelated issues that needed to be addressed if we were going to make progress on this issue.”

According to Ewan, the Hawaii legislature voted in $600,000 for a two-year effort to complete the master plan. He says the mapping project was a great success and demonstrated the value of reducing a complicated problem into something that people could instantly grasp—and see the solution popping out. 

“ConceptDraw MINDMAP was a great way to wrap our brains around all the intricacies and interrelationships between the various elements of this huge problem. And in the end, it was a great sales tool.”


More recently, Ewan used ConceptDraw MINDMAP to create a list of targeted renewable energy technologies and evaluation criteria for the Hawaii Renewable Energy Development Venture, funded by the Department of Energy. The goal was to investigate renewable energy technologies, write up the evaluation criteria for each kind of energy, and then evaluate each technology for development in Hawaii.  This was used by HREDV to develop an RFP to solicit proposals from companies to address particular technologies.

Reduce Paperwork That No One Has Time For Anyway
“As with the bio-energy project, I was faced with a very complicated problem: Of all the possible energy-generation technologies available, how could we go about choosing the best ones? What evaluation criteria or scoring matrix should we use to pick the best ones worthy of funding?”

Ewan says that typically with projects this big, each stakeholder gets a big thick document to wade through.

“I just don’t find that kind of documentation easy to deal with. So once again, I decided to create a mind map. Two of them, in fact.”

The first map listed all the possible renewable energy technologies that could conceivably work in Hawaii, along with the pluses and the minuses of each. The second mind map laid out how the team could evaluate each technology.

“When I presented the maps to the program manager, he said, ‘Hey, print me a wall chart version of these maps. I want to put them on my wall because they show me exactly what the whole project is all about.’  He was pretty well thrilled with what the maps showed him.  He used it to develop his program, issue an RFP, and award several contracts totaling over  $6 million dollars a year, to target specific renewable energy technologies.” 

Gain a Strategic Viewpoint
Ewan says that ConceptDraw MINDMAP has since become one of his most-used business tools.  The first thing he does when he gets a new proposal is to reduce it to a mind map so he clearly understands the client’s requirements. Then he builds a second map to develop the strategy he’ll use to win the business.

“I use [ConceptDraw] MINDMAP to make sure my strategy maps directly to the requirements. By working this way, I know my strategy addresses all of the customers’ needs. And creating this kind of visual document makes it’s easier to show my partners and team members exactly where they fit in the total scheme of my solution. And they totally get it.”

The Perfect Client-Facing Tool
When it comes time to present his solution to the client, Ewan includes a mind map.

“They’re usually just small maps that help the proposal evaluators quickly understand what we’re trying to say. Instead of having to wade through the entire document to understand what we’re proposing, they can scan the map and get it right away. And then they can dive into the big document to get all the details. It just helps them to be able to glance at a map and get a mental picture of what we’re trying to tell them. I’ve observed that when you help people build a picture in their minds, and then provide a narrative that supports the picture, then your audience totally gets what you’re trying to say—no matter how complicated it is.”

“In my experience, mind maps just keep you focused.  You don’t kind of wander off, because you’ve laid everything out in very precise way, using very few words to communicate information. And you communicate in a way that seems to work for everyone. People learn in different ways. Some people are graphically orientated: Show them a picture or a graph, and they totally get it.  Other people prefer to see some words on the page. But when you meld the two together in a mind map, then you have a better chance of making yourself understood by more people.”

Close the Sale or Move on
But more than furthering understanding, ConceptDraw MINDMAP leads to sales. Ewan says that whenever he shows prospective clients a map of his solution, they understand the concept right away.

“Once they get the concept, they’re either going to like what you’re doing or they’re not. If they like it, they’ll read on. If they don’t, they’ll know it right away and move on. The way I look at it, the maps help you save everybody lots of time and trouble. “

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

CS Odessa Reduces Price on ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7

Many have discovered the benefits that mind mapping brings to their work, studies, and personal development. Mind mapping helps manage all daily tasks faster than ever before. Use mind mapping to power through obstacles, leap from one work scenario to another without missing a beat.


Professionals after seeing the benefits of mind mapping, have also seen software prices climb. The cost to be more efficient has just gone up. Want the increased productivity, but the thought of paying more is not appealing.

In response to customer feedback, CS Odessa is reducing the price of ConceptDraw MINDMAP to the pricing of our previous product version (single quantity) from $219 USD to $199 USD. We are rolling our prices back to the same level as our previous products. Now buy our newest version, and get:

- Apple® OS X Lion® compatibility

- Microsoft® Windows® 7 (32bit/64 bit support) w/ ribbon interface

- Import and export Microsoft Project® files

- Built-in presentation mode with export to Microsoft PowerPoint® or Apple Keynote®

- Import and export Mindjet® MindManager® maps

- Generate, publish and track Tweets from a mind map

- Embed documents into your mind map file for easy sharing of information with others

- Multiple display capability

- ConceptDraw Solution Park adds valuable plugin solutions to core ConceptDraw MINDMAP

- Generate task and milestone reports based on project data
  • Organizational Charts *
  • Risk Diagrams *
  • Fishbone Diagrams*
  • Etc.
Continue to receive our no charge technical support (phone and web-based tickets), all minor upgrades at no charge, and access to new ConceptDraw Solutions as they are released. The combination of product functionality, exemplary support, innovative solutions, and lower cost of ownership make ConceptDraw MINDMAP a winning strategy for any individual or organization.



* also requires ConceptDraw PRO v9 to be installed

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Collaboration with ConceptDraw

Using ConceptDraw Products
When You Collaborate
Our users often ask about how to share the work they’ve produced with ConceptDraw products, so we put together this summary of some options for using ConceptDraw in collaboration with others.


If your collaborators don’t use ConceptDraw

For displaying content such as a drawing or mind map, simply export to your preferred graphics format, and then send via email or instant message (Skype, Google chat, etc.). To allow others to work with and make changes to your data, ConceptDraw products can export to a variety of file formats that other programs can edit. For example, ConceptDraw MINDMAP can export to Mindjet® MindManager® files, and ConceptDraw PROJECT and ConceptDraw PRO can export to Microsoft® XML files, which are compatible with MS Project® and Visio® (respectively).

Email

If your collaborators do use ConceptDraw, the most straightforward method for sharing your ConceptDraw files is via email. ConceptDraw saved files are typically very modest in size and easily fall within the acceptable limits for attachment size of most email clients and services.

Instant Messaging

Furthermore, most instant messaging protocols (like Skype®, Google® Chat, etc.) allow peer-to-peer file transfers. The manageable size of ConceptDraw files allows them to be rapidly transmitted that way.

Google Documents

The advent of cloud computing has brought about numerous free online document management systems, such as Google Documents (http://docs.google.com). This type of service is a fast and easy way to collaborate. After registering an account (usually requiring only a valid email address), you can upload your files, set permissions for who can view and download, and then notify your colleagues via email that you’ve shared with them.

Dropbox

Another great free virtualization service now available is called Dropbox. Visit Dropbox.com to sign up for an account and download the small application. Thereafter, files saved in your Dropbox can be accessed from any computer or mobile device. You can share folders in your Dropbox with others, allowing them access to your files as well. This is a powerful and flexible way to have multiple users collaborating on a single file.

SharePoint

Microsoft SharePoint® is a content management system for enterprise. Among its many uses are powerful document management tools that manage versioning, and allow administrators to set various levels of read and write permissions. SharePoint utilizes an innovative system of “checking out” documents that assures that a file can only be edited by a single user at a time. There is a common misconception that SharePoint can only be used with files created by other Microsoft software, when in fact it can be used to manage sharing and versioning of all kinds of files.

Screencasting

Sharing your screen with a colleague over the web is another great way to use ConceptDraw cooperatively. By utilizing services like Citrix® GoToMeeting®, Skype, or TechSmith® Jing®, you can collaborate live regardless of distance. ConceptDraw MINDMAP is great in this arena for managing meetings and taking notes, or presenting a mind map. You may even turn some of your colleagues onto increasing their productivity with ConceptDraw!

Conclusion

There’s no shortage of options for employing ConceptDraw products in a collaborative environment, whether your colleagues also use them or not. The variety of export options and manageable file size make displaying your work, or transferring it to another location a breeze. Using ConceptDraw in a live setting, via screencast, brings its innovative meeting-streamlining capabilities onto the web and around the globe. No matter the setting, ConceptDraw is the key to unlocking your creativity, streamlining your workflow, and increasing your productivity.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Start Projects Faster with Mind Maps

Did you know that mind mapping is an awesome way to get your project started in a hurry? The powerful input tools of ConceptDraw MINDMAP make it easy for you plan out your projects, large and small, more quickly than ever.

Try starting in Brainstorm mode. This puts the focus on getting your ideas on the page as quickly as possible, without worrying about how they’re organized. Click the Brainstorm button on the toolbar, and then start typing your list of tasks, phases, and milestones. Don’t concern yourself with structure yet, just input all your content. When the Brainstorm is over, use the intuitive drag-and-drop functionality of ConceptDraw MINDMAP to organize your project. The speed that you can map out a project is only limited by the speed that you can think and type.

Example ConceptDraw MINDMAP
To arrange the new project as a mind map, first change the name of the Main Idea to the title of your project. Then, determine your high-level tasks, or Phases. Attach these to the Main Idea as Main Topics. From there, attach your lower-level tasks to their corresponding phase. In no time, you’ll see your project’s structure taking shape.

Now, go to the Output tab, select the Project Management category, and double-click Open in PROJECT. This will save and close your mind map, and launch it in ConceptDraw PROJECT. You’ll see that your Tasks and Phases are automatically laid out on the ConceptDraw PROJECT Gantt chart, ready for you to set dates, durations, predecessors, resources, etc.


ConceptDraw PROJECT Gantt Chart

This is a great way to save time outlining your project. The fast input and flexibility of organization in ConceptDraw MINDMAP, coupled with its tight integration with ConceptDraw PROJECT, enable you to take your project from a collection of scattered ideas to a concrete plan in just a matter of minutes.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Organizing and Selecting Social Media Response Messages

Using flowcharts and Action Mindmaps
to improve Social Media effectiveness.
Interactive Flowcharts can change the way one creates and organizes their social media response process. ConceptDraw PRO provides tools to develop a response flowchart that can be connected with Action Mindmaps. Visual navigation through the stages of a response process helps you locate specific actions to be taken via Action Mindmaps. Action Mindmaps can be used to describe primary messages and good additions, show examples of messages, and also define the main objective of messaging for a specific situation.

Using a combination of Interactive Flowcharts with Action Mindmaps helps professional social media teams be more proactive by being prepared with proper responses. Social Media Response solution minimizes Time to Response, improves the quality of responses, and assists in your entire marketing strategy.

Social Media Response Flowchart


Social Media Response Flowchart

The response process consists of three major stages. These stages are easy to identify: review an input, evaluate specifics of the case, and respond.

They can be visualized by three vertical columns (swim-lanes) which collect the items identified for the appropriate stage.

The review stage is involved in assessment of the first impressions from received inputs. The evaluation stage is used when making decisions for the case you are dealing with. The response stage is intended for choosing the proper responsive action to take.

Action Mindmap


ConceptDraw Action Mindmap

A response Action Mindmap organizes actions, scripts, advice, and work examples into a one-page visual assistant, useful for dispersing out to a team.

An Action Mindmap contains four major branches helping determine a responsive action - Primary Messages, Good Additions, Examples, and Objective.

Connecting a Response Flowchart with an Action MindMap

Connecting Response Flowchart to
Action Mindmap
Connecting items between a response process flowchart and Action Mindmaps is as easy as assigning hyperlinks to objects.

The solution provides a set of special symbols (“Action Mindmap” objects) intended to be used on flowcharts to symbolize connections and hyperlinks with Action MindMaps. These objects contain hyperlinks to mind map documents and can be titled and colored on the flowchart. When modifying a response process, these objects can be easily moved (drag-and-drop) between flowchart items without any need for editing. This helps provide meaning for the newly constructed response process as it refers to the same Action MindMap and will be used during other steps of the process.

From a practical stand point, “Action Mindmap” symbols are a great time-saver which makes reworking the response process much easier.

Checklist for Preparing a Social Media Response Flowchart.

Critical steps one must follow when developing a Social Media Response Flowchart.
Check Point 1. Create a flowchart describing the process of response to social media.
Check Point 2. Distribute Action symbols on the flowchart items according to the necessary response.
Check Point 3. Create set of Action Mindmaps describing the messages and details.
Check Point 4. Assign hyperlinks for Action symbols on the flowchart to connect to specified mind map.

Your Social Media Response Flowchart is ready!

Flowcharts can be developed in any sequence. The critical steps involved in creating a flowchart can be completed in whatever order works for your team, whether you choose to start by identifying Action Mindmaps or you choose to first develop the flowchart describing the bigger picture of how you want to organize your social media response process. If your response process is part of a larger project and you also want to work with a Gantt chart, you may also incorporate ConceptDraw Project in order to connect Action Mindmaps with project Gantt charts.

Now organizing the response process for social media teams can be quicker and easier. Interactive flowcharts help to facilitate the training of your team, increase the quality of your responses, and will make you more prepared and proactive when responding to occurrences in social media.

Written by Gregory Zhukov, President CS Odessa

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

One Very Cool Video on ConceptDraw MindTweet for Twitter (17 seconds)

ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7 Lets You Organise and Tweet Map Topics

ConceptDraw MINDMAP has powerful
Tweet capability
In today’s world of instant everything, Twitter has rapidly emerged as a powerful way to reach a large audience. Once thought to be merely social networking diversion, businesses are realizing that Twitter can be a direct pipeline to current and potential customers. Because of the potential of this strategic marketing asset, it is important to think critically about the message you want to deliver.

CS Odessa has introduced a new tool that will help Social Media Professionals be more effective with what they message on Twitter. The new MindTweet solution for ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7 allows users to brainstorm, organize, and prioritize their Twitter message as a mind map, and then publish Tweets by clicking the Tweet Topic button, without ever leaving the mind map!

ConceptDraw MINDMAP adds an entirely new dimension to the concept of utilizing social media for marketing. Imagine using a powerful Brainstorm Mode to collect ideas quickly and easily, then visually organizing them the way you want, then prioritizing them by using symbols and clipart, and finally Tweeting them directly from your mind map. All of these great features come standard with ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7.


Tweet what you map with ConceptDraw MINDMAP

ConceptDraw MINDMAP is a mind mapping tool focused on helping you be more productive in your work and personal life. Check out a free 21-day trial of ConceptDraw MINDMAP, or any of the ConceptDraw products, at http://www.conceptdraw.com.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

ConceptDraw Products support Apple OS X Lion

All of the current ConceptDraw Products support OS X Lion and are available for immediate download from the http://www.conceptdraw.com web site.

The entire suite of ConceptDraw Office products, including ConceptDraw PRO v9, ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7, and ConceptDraw PROJECT v6, are now updated to run on Lion, providing the full range of functionality and integration users have come to expect from CS Odessa’s software. CS Odessa remains committed to supporting their customers despite the ever changing technological landscape.

Current products are:

ConceptDraw Office v2
ConceptDraw PRO v9
ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7
ConceptDraw PROJECT v6

Low cost upgrades are available for ConceptDraw users of previous versions. We also have an aggressive competitive upgrade program for people who have purchased competing products for the Mac or PC.

If you have a paid product from one of our competitors and would like to move from PC to Mac, or Mac to PC, or would just like to update to something newer contact us.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Why Pay Double?? ConceptDraw Offers Cross-Platform Licenses for Mac and PC, at No Extra Charge.

ConceptDraw Products provide one a choice.
Choice is important.  No one wants to be told that their options are limited.  “Soup or salad?”  “Coffee or tea?”  “Mac or PC?”  We find that many users want the best of both worlds.  And while this usually only applies to computer choice when they’re talking to us, the point stands.  These days, many people use both Mac and PC—whether out of preference or necessity.  At CS Odessa, we believe you should be able to use whichever system you choose, or both.

For those who use Mac and PC, we feel that your software should not penalize you. All ConceptDraw licenses are cross-platform.  Customers should not have to pay double to use our software they way they want to use it.  The file formats of ConceptDraw products are exactly the same for the Mac and PC, so there are never any issues with interoperability.

Mac or PC?  ConceptDraw is the only choice you have to make.

Monday, July 25, 2011

ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7 Provides Multi-Monitor Support

Do you use multiple monitors with your computer set up? ConceptDraw MINDMAP v7 supports multiple displays, which allows you to easily view maps side by side.  This is especially helpful for working with projects.  It is even possible to move content from one map to another—just drag and drop.  Copying and pasting data between maps also works seamlessly.  Looking for a way to increase your productivity even further?  Try using ConceptDraw MINDMAP with your multi-display set up!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Set, Track and Communicate Goals using Crystal Mapping

As part of our strategy to provide our customers with a one stop shop of visually based office productivity tools, we recently announced a new global alliance with Crystal Mapping.

Crystal Mapping online and desktop software enables you to plan your goals so that you have a clear, joined up plan of what you need to achieve and how to achieve it. You can use it for setting your own personal development goals in your business and professional life; for setting team goals for individuals and projects and for visualising your own and your team’s training and learning goals.

The Crystal Mapping process of Think it, Map it, See it, Do it will show you how to establish clear and precise objectives and how to use the map to track and communicate progress along the way. The map will enable you attach content and supporting information and comes as both a desktop solution and as an online application to meet your professional and personal needs.

Crystal Mapping is a major strategic addition to our product line up and if it’s a way of setting and tracking goals you need – Crystal Mapping is the solution. To read more about this exciting new product click here.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Share ConceptDraw PROJECT Files With MS Project Users

From ConceptDraw Solution Browser you are able to add
solutions from the ConceptDraw Solution Park.  Project Exchange
 is one of the newer ones to be added to the CD Solution Park.
Are you looking for flexibility in how you can share project files.  ConceptDraw PROJECT, available for Mac and PC, can import and export files to MS PROJECT (XML) file format.  This helps all team members with their requirements to share data, making you and your team more productive.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

CS Odessa Announces that ConceptDraw PROJECT v6 now has the ability to import and export Microsoft Project files


ConceptDraw PROJECT 6 can
import and export MS Project files.

CS Odessa announces that ConceptDraw PROJECT v6 now has the ability to import and export Microsoft Project XML files, with new PROJECT EXCHANGE. Because of this ability to exchange data between ConceptDraw PROJECT and MS Project; users have increased flexibility on how to exchange project information with all members of the project team. The exchange of project data across different project applications keeps everyone informed and allows for quality collaboration among team members, as well as 3rd parties that have involvement in your project.


The ability to exchange project information is key to a project’s success. ConceptDraw PROJECT 6 has the ability to save to a MS Project XML file format so that ConceptDraw PROJECT files can be shared with users of MS Project (2003, 2007, and 2010) as well as any other project management tools that can accurately import MS Project xml file format. This allows users of ConceptDraw PROJECT 6 and ConceptDraw Office 2 (contains ConceptDraw PROJECT 6) to generate project content that can be shared with all team members.

Project participants also have the ability to import MS Project files into ConceptDraw PROJECT 6 and ConceptDraw Office 2. This gives users an excellent alternative on the way they manage projects, and assists in the interoperability of project information between team members who have Macintosh and PC computers.


The ability to exchange data between ConceptDraw Office and MS Project is a big plus for project members because they can then use the other the other project tools that are part of ConceptDraw Office. As an example, ConceptDraw MINDMAP 7, part of ConceptDraw Office 2, can be used as a project front- end to brainstorm, build processes, identify contingencies and organize information for presentations to brief team members and stakeholders. The PROJECT EXCHANGE can be found in the CS Odessa ConceptDraw Solution Park.


CS Odessa provides a range of professional project software tools that assist you during every stage of your project. ConceptDraw Office uses powerful ConceptDraw INGYRE2 technology to make all tasks as easy as pushing a few buttons. The top to bottom integration of ConceptDraw Office, which includes the innovative standalone ConceptDraw PROJECT 6 product, are valuable tools to help Project Managers work towards their organization’s success.

In addition, CS Odessa also provides many project management solution add-ins that can be downloaded from ConceptDraw Solution Park. The combination of ConceptDraw Product and ConceptDraw Solution Park, from CS Odessa makes for an unbeatable value in project management software tools.


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

ConceptDraw MindWave Integrates With SAP® StreamWork™


SAP StreamWork has three pricing models
1) Basic Edition  - free account,
2) Professional Edition, & 3) Enterprise
Edition - "On Premise" solution
Clear, concise, comprehensive, collaborative communications creates commodious comprehension in corporate culture. Yes, collaboration between individuals, teams and groups is paramount to success in our fast paced environment we live in. Ambiguous communications between individuals causes problems. The newspaper reporter's mantra of who, what, where, when and how is critical today in understanding one’s job.

The great clarifier of work communications is the “meeting”. In the recent past the issue with meetings was that as teams become more dispersed the cost of meetings increased. The cost of communication became prohibitive. Enter today an effective economic solution that works for everyone from the small business person to the large corporation. SAP StreamWork is a cloud-based collaborative decision-making solution that brings together people, information and structure to help teams solve problems, brainstorm, collect feedback, build consensus and/or drive decisions. SAP StreamWork provides a reliable, safe and secure collaboration backbone that is accessible to anyone. Teams are free to meet, share documents and take decisions based on team contributions.

ConceptDraw MindWave used in conjunction with SAP StreamWork provides a great mind mapping tool that collects, organizes and presents meeting content. By using ConceptDraw MindWave and ConceptDraw Office (a powerful suite of products including ConceptDraw MINDMAP, ConceptDraw PROJECT, and ConceptDraw PRO), with SAP StreamWork, teams can visualize the process of collaborative decision making, and quickly transition from planning to implementation.

Information on ConceptDraw MindWave can be found on the ConceptDraw product site and the SAP EchoHub site.

Monday, February 14, 2011

ConceptDraw MINDMAP 7; imports and exports Mindjet MindManager files


ConceptDraw MINDMAP 7 has powerful import and export capabilities.
All ConceptDraw products are equally adept on Macintosh and PC computers.

Open your mind mapping options! ConceptDraw MINDMAP version 7 imports and exports Mindjet MindManager files. With ConceptDraw MINDMAP you have great flexibility in working with others. Plus ConceptDraw MINDMAP closely integrates with ConceptDraw PROJECT that allows you to professionally manage your resources, tasks, phases and milestones. Both ConceptDraw MINDMAP and ConceptDraw PROJECT are integrated with ConceptDraw PRO inside of ConceptDraw Office to build dynamic dashboards; and design and document any workflow or process.

CS Odessa’s INGYRE2 technology shares your data between applications, improving your productivity. In addition to Mindjet MindManager, ConceptDraw integrates closely with Microsoft Office.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Video On CS Odessa INGYRE2 Integration Between ConceptDraw Applications

Video demonstrates how project data flows
between ConceptDraw MINDMAP,
ConceptDraw PROJECT, and MS Excel
Wojciech Korsak, of Explorer-Consulting, is a mind mapping, project management authority who put together a video, showing the integration between ConceptDraw MINDMAP, ConceptDraw PROJECT and MS Excel. The text is in Polish so it will be hard for some to read (language works that way). You will find that the video is a great example of the power in the ConceptDraw products. It takes a minute to download so be patient.

Monday, January 31, 2011

ConceptDraw PRO 9 is here



ConceptDraw PRO 9 is a powerful
drawing and diagramming application
that supports Mac OS X and Windows 
  ConceptDraw PRO is a best-in-class drawing and diagramming tool for idea expression, visual communication, and giving presentations. ConceptDraw PRO can be used to build flow charts, organizational charts, floor plans, software GUI prototyping, IT documentation, diagramming, engineering, and dynamic scoreboards that reflect your organization’s key performance indicators. ConceptDraw PRO is a drawing dynamo that makes it easy to convey your ideas and data to a wide audience.


From your ConceptDraw PROJECT data, ConceptDraw PRO can automatically draw Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), Timelines, PERT Charts, and dynamic scoreboards that track project status up to the minute with your project data. ConceptDraw PRO can also generate a Fishbone Diagram or an Organization Chart from your ConceptDraw MINDMAP data. In addition to the extensive functionality of ConceptDraw PRO, ConceptDraw Solution Park provides many professional solutions that can be used for specialized drawing exercises, extending the value of ConceptDraw PRO in the future. ConceptDraw PRO can import and export Microsoft Visio XML files, extending your ability to work with others outside of your organization.