iThoughts for iOS Update, New and On Sale

For nine months, Craig Scott, has been hard at work with a ground-up redesign of iThoughts for iOS. The new version is universal (working on both iPad and iPhone) and looks great in its iOS 7-ified brilliance. There are quite a few new features in this version including rich text support, faster Dropbox sync , Bluetooth keyboard support, and it imports Markdown files.

With the re-write, the app feels smoother than ever and really gets out of your way as you create and move entries around the screen. Like its predecessor, iThoughts gives you a lot of control over the look of your mind map with color palettes, tools, objects, and typography. iThoughts is firmly entrenched as the power-user mind mapping application on iOS. It has a lot of useful features.

This is a new version requiring a new purchase. iThoughts is 80% off for a short time making it easier for upgrades and first-timers alike. You really should have this app in your tool belt and at the temporary price of $2, you should probably go buy it now.

iThoughtsX for the Mac

I’ve made no mystery of my love for iThoughtsHD. It is a great iPad app that finally brought home for me the utility of mind maps. It wasn’t long after I got hooked that I wrote the developer, Craig Scott, explaining how much I wanted iThoughts on my Mac. Craig wrote back with a very nice note explaining how he was focussing on iOS for the time being. So you can imagine my surprise when Craig wrote me about a month ago with a beta of iThoughtsX for the Mac. I’ve been using it ever since and now it is released for sale. If you like iThoughtsHD, you’re going to feel right at home with iThoughts X on your Mac.

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Many of the features I like about iThoughtsHD also appear in iThoughtsX. The color pallet includes Ethan Schoonover’s great Solarized color scheme. There is a rich assortment of line and box types along with icons and images. (I’ve got to admit I’ve never used iThoughts’ clipart feature.)

The Mac version also inherits the iPad version’s quick entry method. Need a child branch? Tap the space bar three times. Need a sibling branch? Tap return three times. This is so second nature to me that I spit out mind maps as fast as the ideas hit me.

Using these tools I’m able to quickly start assembling ideas for later use in writing or dictation. I described this workflow at length in MPU 82, Cooking Ideas.

Like its iPad predecessor, iThoughtsX also can export to several formats including PDF, Image, Docx, Powerpoint, OPML, Markdown, and CSV.

The Markdown support is particularly clever. You can drag Markdown text into a blank canvas and it automatically creates a mind map based on linked images and heading levels. You have to see this part to believe it so I made a short video. (Sarah, my 11 year old, provided the Ukulele music.)

The file format (.itmz) is the same used on iThoughtsHD for the iPad so you can move the file back and forth between the two platforms. The app is sold directly by the developer and not in the Mac App Store. Sadly, that means there isn’t any iCloud support but all of the iterations of iThoughts play nicely with Dropbox.

You can watch additional screencasts and view galleries at the iThoughts website. The app is $60 and available now.