IOctopus - basics


Even if you are new to mindmapping, don't worry. By the end of this article you will know everything about where to click to create your first mindmap in IOctopus. And you'll have a handy and powerful tool in your arsenal for organising thoughts and tasks, achieving goals and structuring information! Let's get started.

Let's start with the basics, and we'll cover the other features of IOctopus in the next articles. 

Why do we need a mind map?

The most important meaning of the maps is to enhance thinking, to make it deeper, and for clearer understanding between colleagues, teachers and students and others.

The information and ideas in the mindmaps will be understandable not only to you as an author, but also to your colleagues, trainees, friends, business partners or editors. In fact, you can say the opposite - in the process of mindmapping, not only others, but also you yourself will better understand the information and ideas you are working with 🙂

Key Actions

The structure of most mind maps is a centre, branches and text on them. Let's understand how to work with them in IOctopus. But first pay attention to two basic actions and their differences - 1 mouse click and 2 mouse clicks. 

The first click - it kind of selects the branch itself.

And if you make two clicks, then you go already into editing the text in this branch.

It works the same way as on your computer, for example, with text files. Click once to select a file. Two times - open it for editing. It's exactly the same here. When you click 1 time, i.e. a branch is just selected, then you can add other branches on the side at the top or bottom. And to go to edit the text in the branch, you will need to click 2 times.

To exit text editing mode and have the branch simply become selected again, press Enter, Tab or click outside the branch. In this way the text is saved and you can create other branches again.



When you create a new file in your documents a blank mind map is created, click on the file to open. The new mind map already has a centre. Click on it twice and write the name of the map. You can create a second centre - to do this, right-click in the empty space and select "Add Centre".



To activate text editing mode in a Branch or Centre, double-click or, when you already have a Branch (or Centre) selected, press Space on your keyboard. A flashing cursor will appear. Write text or edit. You can also paste previously copied text. To exit text editing mode - press Enter, Tab or click anywhere outside the branch. The text will be saved in the branch.

By the way, to make the next line in the text within one branch, press Shift+Enter. This doesn't only work in IOctopus, it's a common feature in almost all programmes and text editors, try it. 



When a branch or centre is selected with one click - you can add new branches. It is most convenient to do this using the keyboard:

Tab — will add a branch on the side.

Shift + Tab - will add a branch from the other side.

Enter — will add a branch at the bottom.

Shift+ Enter - will add a branch on top.

In a new branch you can immediately write text. To exit text editing - press Tab, Enter again or click the mouse in the space outside the branch.

You can also add another branch to a new one using the same methods. In this way, add all the branches you need in any number.

You can add branches using the top toolbar.


Moving from branch to branch.

Click on the branch once, so that the cursor does not appear and the text editing mode is not activated. And press the Down arrow on your keyboard - you will move to the branch below. In this way you can move through the branches in your mental map using the arrows on your keyboard Down, Up, Left и Right.


Moving branches.

Grab a branch with the mouse and move it to the desired location on the map or drag it to another centre or to another parent branch. To only change the location, but not to move it to another centre or to neighbouring branches next to it, i.e. so that the branch does not "jump" - press Alt while moving it. This way it will remain a separate branch and will not stick to other branches. You can also move Centres in the same way.  

In addition, you can move branches up and down with the Up and Down arrows on the keyboard if you press Сtrl. That is, select a branch, press CTRL and use the arrows to move it.


Map movement.

Click with the mouse on an empty space in the map and without releasing it drag it in any directions. You can also move vertically on the map with the mouse wheel - up and down. If you press Shift, you can move horizontally with the wheel - left and right.

Lifehack for large maps: when your map is large and does not fit on the screen - press Alt while scrolling with the mouse wheel. This will increase speed and move you quickly to the right side.


See also

Come fare una mappa mentale

Come padroneggiare tutte le sfumature chiave della creazione di mappe mentali in 10 minuti? E soprattutto, per padroneggiare per anni.

In modo da non dover tornare indietro.


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