Book Cover - Book Review: The Mind Map Book: How to Use Radiant Thinking to Maximize Your Brain's Untapped Potential

Tony Buzan is a pioneer in brain demystification, the initiator of international brain competition about memory, speed reading, mental calculation and is a prolific author with more than half a dozen books on the subject of Mind Maps. The Mind Map Book is the original book published about this technique right from its creators. It is divided in five divisions:

  • Division 1 explains the theory behind your brain and how great thinkers of history uses techniques that are available to everyone.
  • Division 2 and 3 introduce the foundation behind the Mind Map, and all the laws and recommendations to guide you towards being able to increase your natural creativity.
  • Division 4 explores the many distinct tasks which can be successfully accomplished using Mind Maps: making choices, organizing ideas, creative thinking, and brainstorming.
  • Division 5 explores the many practical ways in which you can use Map Mapping skills (at work or in your personal life).

Each division contains many short chapters that could be read in 10 minutes each. The argumentation is good but as the book progresses, repetitions increases and my attention was considerably decreased. The first half of the book was a very enjoyable reading but the second half (mainly the last division about uses) is better left as a reference to find advices on how to use Mind Maps in different contexts.

One of the great things about this book is the many examples of Mind Maps, created by people of different age, origin, and social background. A good illustration of what can be done with the technique and a great source of inspiration.

What is logically missing from this book (published in 1996) is a decent discussion about the place of computer in Mind Mapping. Software applications are numerous today but still does not seem to deliver the full potential of Mind Mapping.

After this book, I definitely want to pursuit my interest on the subject. I was searching a tool to remember more of the books I read. I found a far more practical tool than I was searching. Authors clearly demonstrate the vast applicability of the tool.

I recommend this book to anyone interesting in learning and using their brain more productively. The subject of learning have never been more essential, as demonstrated by the fabulous success of the MOOC Learning How To Learn. I consider The Mind Map Book a major contribution to the field. A very insightful book written by two very remarkable authors (in a verbose style).

About the author

Julien Sobczak works as a software developer for Scaleway, a French cloud provider. He is a passionate reader who likes to see the world differently to measure the extent of his ignorance. His main areas of interest are productivity (doing less and better), human potential, and everything that contributes in being a better person (including a better dad and a better developer).

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