In Part 1 of this series I looked at tweaking the tablet OS to work better on my LS800. But the OS is just the tip of the iceberg. After all I have often said that it is the applications that make the tablet a powerful tool. In this post I’ll look at tweaking Mind Manager for the small screen tablet.
I love mind mapping on a tablet. It is such a natural way to formulate and flesh out your ideas. However it can be a bit hard getting Big Picture on a small screen. Can do to give you a bit more room to work.
Maximize your working area
That if you switch into pen mode in Mind Manager that it will close a couple of toolbars to give you more room. In fact you can take this a bit further. Once you havce a map open you don’t need the taskpane, so close that. Next there is full screen mode, which you can activate with this button on the standard toolbar.
But wait, there’s more… Once you are in full screen mode you canclaim back a little more space by turning off the remaining toolbars. Right-dish on a toolbar and clear the checks next to each of the toolbars as shown below. When you are in full flight building a map, you don’t need them.
Lastly you can reclaim another bit chunk along the bottom edge by turning off the workbook tabs. I rarely work in multiple maps at the same time so I am happy to do this. I no other Mind Manager users who would not even consider it. To do this:
1. From the Tools Menu select Options…
2. Ensure View is selected
3. Clear the Workbooks Tabs checkbox as shown below
Once you have done all of that you will have heaps more room to work in. Here’s what it looks like before the modifications:
And here is what it looks like after the modifications – at the same zoom level:
Now that you have more space to work in, you can configure Mind Manager to make the best use of it.
Reduce font size for topic text
For topics that have been converted to text you can make them smaller by dropping the font size. As with the TIP the default settings are not optimised for the relatively low resolution of the LS800. The default setting was 14pt. I have droped it down to 10pt. Here’s how:
1. Right click a topic with text (as opposed to ink) in it and select font.
2. Select the desired settings
3. Click the dorpdown next to Style and select Save as New Style Default as shown below.
Select extra fine pen
To give youself more room to write in ink entry mode you can drop the stroke size of the pen. Note that this only effects ink that is entered in topics – not the strokes that are displayed when performing a gesture. To do this (you must be in Pen mode):
1. If you have gotten rid of the Formatting Menu as described above you will need to bring it back. Right-click the Menu Bar and check Formatting.
2. Double-tap a topic to enter ink entry mode
3. Click the dropdown next to the pen in the bottom left corner of the Formatting bar
4. Select “Extra Fine”
Reduce size of ink after it is entered.
Another useful strategy is to reduce the size of ink after it has been entered. The trick is to find the setting that works best for you. The goal is to be as small as possible and still readable. To configure:
1. Select Tools > Options…
2. Select Tablet PC
3. Adjust the value in the Reduce size of ink in map (in %) to suit.
I ended up setting mine to 50% - YMMV. You can also adjust the size of the ink entry field. I found the default value worked for me.
Pan & Zoom tool
When working in a map on a small tablet it is a given that you will only be able to see a small portion at one time. A useful tool is provided to quickly navigate large maps. The way this works is quite simple. There is a small menu bar that floats over your map – you can reposition it to suit. As you move the mouse pointer over this a box appears below it that has a thmbnail of the whole map with a rectangle that indicates the bit you are looking at now. You can drag this rectangle around the panning window and your view is adjsuted acordingly. You can also resize the rectangle to zoom in or out. Very handy. To toggle this tool on or off you just select Pan and Zoom from the View menu.