Polish & Modernize MindManager, Integrate Core PM Features without 3rd Party Add-ins.
So I'm liking MindManager, but...
MindManager was released in 1998 it feels like it. Despite many positive aspects, both visually and functionally, it feels like one of those old, old programs built that has a bunch of handy tools and does what it needs to, but no longer keeps up to make a smooth user experience and add features that are really needed in the current day.
What's good: For instance, having tried 20ish Mind Mappers, for Project Management Mind Maps, MM has GREAT notes, the best drag and drop attachments capabilities, and a lot of import and export options. (Excel import and export for example - awesome!)
Overall issues: However, if MM is slow. It's clunky. The scroll doesn't always work right and distorts the view. The touchscreen features feel like they're from 2008 and are inconvenient to use. Icons are nice, but often hard to see, and attaching an icon or a tag to a task is a whole process of clicking through several menus or hunting through lists in a sidebar. In most PMs, and most programs with these features, you can hit a hotkey or a single context menu option and type in a box for suggestions because projects have dozens to hundreds of tags and fields and resources.
Project Management: Is sorely lacking. I'm sorry to say it, MM has so much potential here, but it falls short of key aspects that most other PMs have, starting with filters & views. There's no way to truly save views. A Kanban view is kind of there, but if you want to use it for anything else with more tags it doesn't really work. The calendar view is okay, but it has issues dragging and dropping and there's no way to view a schedule by time.
It's not terrible, but filtering can be a challenge, especially since clearing a filter clears every filter, and you can't really use Boolean type logic at all to filter* (this may be a function available that I haven't found yet). There's not really anything great in the way of custom fields either.
Add-ons: Some of the add-ons seem great, but there are two issues: First, I tried multimaps and it seems powerful but also very confusing. Second...why aren't most of these add-ons native to MindManager? Most of them are to supplement fairly basic utilities or crucial features MM should have, like multimaps. How are you supposed to manage multiple, interconnected projects without it?
I'd really like to stay with MM at the end of my trial, but I'm finding it challenging to do so. I would sincerely recommend:
- Modernize and smooth out the program. It can't be choppy, slow, distorting the page, crashing, and hanging up so frequently. It makes things slower and less efficient, and it just feels bad. If that means re-writing the entire program...so be it. It's been over 20 years since the inception, and it's time.
- Polish existing & add common project management features & views.
- Incorporate several add-ons such as Multi-Maps. [**Natively. The way Multi-Maps actually implements the add-on would not be ideal for a native feature]
- Keep what's good. All the amazing little features and tools, the easy drag and drop, etc.
*Using the Windows Desktop version (and I do not want a PM that's only a web app).