Frankie Adams - Sunapsis SoftwareFrank Adams is the Coordinator of IT for the Rinker Center for International Programs at Ball State University in Muncie, IN. I taught both an Idea Mapping Workshop and  Memory Workshop there in October 2013. This is Frank’s first attempt at idea mapping real-time.

Here is a Frank’s explanation of the idea map: “Sunapsis is an international student administration software that allows automation and batch processing of immigration documentation that is very time consuming.  The center of my map is a globe, but I intended it to also resemble the nucleus of an atom (that is why I placed the line around the outside of the entire map) as international students are the fundamental building blocks of our office.

Each branch coming off of the nucleus is a main function of the software. I sketched a ladder between 2 branches that I found out were connected and placed a picture of a plugin to show that they were connected. Lightning bolts (reflecting positive and negative charges of an atom) were placed on Batch/RTI circle to indicate that it was the most important part of the system, but in training they were having problems with this system, which if that happened in our real office environment we would be in big trouble.

The smiley face below that represents my colleague, who was giddy as a child with a bucket full of candy. I used graphic representation of saving time and money through the automation of office processes. Arrows throughout the map indicate important aspects of the system.

I definitely prefer and benefit from idea mapping over traditional linear note taking! I have realized that I retain the information so much easier.  When I need a refresher, one glance at the map and everything comes back.  I used to try to memorize notes page by page, but the use of a graphic display really helps! The others attending the presentation had 4 or so pages of notes to my 1.”