Monday, March 14, 2016

Part Deux: The feedback cometh. Young G Chung: CEO, SimTech Systems, Inc

In answer to: The Evolution of the Visual Mapper (Part Deux)?

As CEO of SimTech Systems Inc I'd like to share my thoughts with you.

Yes we've been the developer of MindMapper and Thinkwise for the past 20 years. And regarding the question of visual thinking arena's past, present, and future?

Visual thinking is one of the thinking attributes born to all human beings. However, there are different methods and degrees of visual thinking, but in all, everyone, whether they know it or not, thinks visually.

Visual mapping software is an excellent tool that helps users to think creatively and logically utilizing the tree structure as a visual backbone. However, we must realize that visual mapping is just one method out of many that facilitate visual thinking.

Let's look at the advancement in the visual mapping arena from the software perspective only. Computer generated mind map was available in the mid-1990s. Digital mind map market really opened up when the market received with enthusiasm MindMapper's key feature of converting a map to an MS Word document for the first time at Comdex 2001.

Before and after 2010, we witnessed increased expansion of creative thinking at the team level by utilizing collaboration. And currently, individual and teams are using mobile and the cloud for visual mapping needs.

The biggest contribution visual mapping has made is that visual diagramming skills only available to professionals were now accessible to many to help simplify and expedite their daily activities. In short, it has fundamentally contributed to achieving happiness and success by utilizing visual and whole brain thinking capabilities given to all human beings.

A lot of people are still puzzled and want to know why the visual mapping software industry has not solidified itself as mainstream. But, one must ask if such question or the expectation is valid and beneficial.

A lot of people cannot distinguish the difference between visual mapping and mind mapping. Visual thinking and visual tools had been around even before mind map existed and they are not limited to a tree structure visualization.

Visual mapping products, when they came to market, emphasized main benefits and positive effects inherent only to mind mapping. As a result, mind mapping became a buzzword to the general public equating it to visual thinking.

Many visual mapping software developers from 2000 to 2005 have used mind map for their marketing efforts. However, as time passed, many have realized that mind mapping software is nothing more than information visualized in a tree structure and started to lose interest in the whole arena. On top of that, it is tough to replicate the original mind map's memory benefits from a digitally created map. Ironically, mind map has contributed to the rise of the visual mapping market, however, in the process, it has contributed to the loss of visual mapping identity and definition.

Salt is used in almost all food. However, salt is never presented as food itself. Visual thinking is God-given natural talent that everyone uses in their daily activities. But, mind mapping technique or tree-based visual mapping is just a small part of visual mapping arena. We all know of a visual mapping developer who positioned itself as a project management tool in the early 2000s as a way to distinguish itself from the rest of the industry but had failed to emerge as a viable project management tool.

Mind mapping or any tree-based visual mapping software can work together along with groupware, ERP, and such, to create synergy, but they can never become a substitute or replacement. From this perspective, I foresee future products integrated with the mainstream products or evolve to combine technology such as DB, Big Data, and AI with visualization using visual mapping.

MindMapper also has contributed to the growth of visual mapping arena for the past 20 years. "Value creation through innovation" is MindMapper's direction for the next stage of development. To create value, you need to ideate and execute. Our goal is to evolve into a more comprehensive tool that can facilitate idea to action. And our current iteration, MindMapper 16 is the first product development process accomplishing this objective.

Thank you;

Young G Chung
CEO, SimTech Systems, Inc.
Developer of MindMapper

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