Friday, June 05, 2009

Compendium is more than argumentation, or mind-mapping, or ...

Based on the discussions on the compendiuminstitute yahoogroup, and even more on the "nature of interest in Compendium" entries in our download log, there's been a surge of interest in Compendium in recent months. Much of this falls into two categories: people who are interested in Compendium's argument-mapping capabilities, or -- the larger category -- people who are investigating Compendium as an alternative to mind-mapping tools.

These are both great uses of Compendium, but there is a lot more to the software.

By intention, design, and functionality, Compendium provides many ways to link things together. You can start with making a single map that follows a particular scheme, such as IBIS or mind-mapping. As you build up more maps, you can use techniques like tags, transclusions, and templates to add many levels of connections. Compendium supports the creation of very large information spaces that can hold things like sets of pictures and photos, links to files, free-form text and writing, sound and movies, and tie them together in both formal (argument maps, models, structured views) and informal (let your imagination be the guide!) ways.

At its heart Compendium is a way to connect all sorts of views, ideas, images, and other resources together, in all sorts of ways. I encourage people to explore all the things they can do with it.