Friday, September 05, 2008

Mapping thoughts

It's been a long time, blog. No, really, like 2.5 weeks! In my defense, I'm coming up on 4 months pregnant and have been feeling "under the weather" (an understatement) for some time. It's hard to think about libraries and metadata and whatnot when I want to throw up all the time.


One of my reference librarian peeps introduced me to a website the other day: Mindomo. It's a way to map research, or brainstorm, or just organize information. It uses Flash (of course) because nothing is simple these days, but it does allow you to put links and documents and graphics all into your map of whatever it is you want to look at. You can even make your maps public for others to reference...if you go to the browse tab at the top of the site it takes you to where the public ones are located.

At any rate, I think that it's a very cool take on the "brainstorming" maps we used to draw in middle school. And certainly useful for information professionals who have lots of information to organize and who would prefer to create a digital map of their stuff rather than just one in their head, or in a finding aid or something. I certainly hope to use it for future projects--maybe it could help us determine what kind of practices we're going to impose on materials before we start working on them, in a more intuitive and visual way. Or maybe I'll just finally get around to creating a map of the relationships between early modern philosophers. Whichever.

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"Wicked people never have time for reading. It's one of the reasons for their wickedness." —Lemony Snicket, The Penultimate Peril.