Mind Maps are a great way to brainstorm and visualize ideas. And plain text is a great way to hammer out lists. And Markdown is a perfect tool for quickly adding hierarchy to those lists as you write them. If only there were a way to combine these three things…
And guess what? The fairy godfather of Internet tinkering, Brett Terpstra, has already done it for you. It’s an OS X System Service that takes the messiest of Markdown lists and turns them into a format suitable for most mind-mapping apps.
The service is called, with typical Terpstra-ian efficiency, “Markdown to MindMap,” and it does just that. You can bang out lists using pretty much any hierarchy you like – from nested ###Headers to bulleted lists to indented text to plain old paragraphs. The System Service, when run, will make sense of your jumble and send it to your clipboard. Many Mac Mindmap apps let you paste new maps straight from the clipboard, so you can just switch to them and hit ⌘-V. Others require that you import a text file, so you’ll have to use something like NVAlt or Text Edit to do that first.
Don’t like System Services? Don’t worry; Brett has you covered, too. He’s wrapped the service into a PopClip extension too.
I like this service a lot. I can bang out lists on my iPhone or iPad in something like Drafts app, then I can move them around and tweak them in the Mindmap app of my choice, and then I can export them to an outliner, or my to-do list software of choice.
Neat. Just like most of Brett’s stuff.
- Source Brett Terpstra