Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Importing an MS Word document into MindGenius

Taking large documents and importing them into MindGenius can be a great way to dissect and understand the content.

The complexity of Tender, Strategy or Legal documents can be more easily understood as the constituent parts become clearer when visually represented.

The map can then be developed to formulate a reply, whether it’s a documented tender response or an actionable project plan.

It’s crucial when trying to import an MS Word document that it is formatted using Word Heading Styles (Heading 1, Heading 2, etc.). It is these styles that will be used to create the hierarchy of the MindGenius map. The first line of text in the document will become the core branch title and all normal text in the Word document will be treated as Branch notes. Only the Heading styles will become branches after the first line.

Therefore if you import a Word document that doesn't use the Heading style you will end up with a core branch and the entire document in the branch note!

The perfect document structure looks like this;

The map created on import will look like this;

What if you're document isn't structured in this way?

Quite often Word documents don’t come perfectly structured using the heading styles and therefore a perfectly structured map isn't created. If the map cannot be easily tidied then sometimes with a little formatting of the original document you can prepare it such that it imports well. Going through the document selecting and formatting headings with the MS Word styles will help you prepare the document for import.

If all else fails
If all else fails, cutting and pasting from a word document into a map can still be a good way to dissect and understand documents before actioning.

Paragraphs copied from a document like this;

Will be pasted into MindGenius like this;

If you Select; Tools Ribbon \ Options \ Display tab, you can Switch off ‘Paste long branch titles’ and the resulting map will look like this with the branches shortened and the majority of the text put into the branch notes;
We hope this Hints & Tips article helps you to identify ways of extending your use of MindGenius.

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