I downloaded TheBrain and wasted a lot of time trying to decipher the point and finally concluded that there really isn't one.
TheBrain is the ham-fisted, resource gobbling, implementation of a great steaming pile of mediocre ideas. I'm certain that someone could engineer a tractor-sized implement that costs a million dollars to open ketchup containers ... I just don't know why they would or who would buy it if they did.
I object to TheBrain being compared as an alternative to mind mapping tools (freemind, xmind, etc.) that are authentic thinking tools when in reality it is just a very windows-ish way to organize what you already know. There are many free open source applications that do everyting important that it does (minus the glitzy "plex" - think distract folks with a shiny object while you boost their wallet). Still, I suppose if you can be convinced that a computer program can help you remember the connection between a client and a project better than your own mind (a fairly impressive computing machine in its own right) then you might disagree with my assessment, but even then it wouldn't be worth the price they demand.
Software like TheBrain really pisses me off. It is obscenely expensive for what is actually is and does. It is NOT a "thinking tool" like a mind mapper, yet here we are. Based on my review, it is an over-priced paper weight that exists to answer questions that nobody has asked.
If the developer released it as free, open source software under a GPL type license, and then paid for the gallons of coffee it would take to do something useful with it, it might be worth the download. As it is, well ...
The App itself is sadly one of the best knowledge-managers I know. Sadly, because the pricing-sheme is outrageous. I wouldn't say something against the 160$ you pay a year for updates, if that what you are into, go ahead. But to enforce that, the developers made it nearly impossible to sync your data between two computers. You MUST buy the paid service with more than 10$/month just to do that. All other option the software gives you are a pain in the butt and TB will do its best to corrup your data or make it a hassle. Shame on the developers! I paid 219$ when TB 9 was in beta and filed also some bugs. After they went to TB 9.2 my 1-Year-Sub, which was included in the price, ran off and from then I was stuck with 9.1 because only paying subscribers get more updates. I could live with that, because I understand that development is not for free, but to force you to subscribe to the updates and service if you want any syncing at all. Even worse, to lock you in, you just can use their cloud to store your sync-data, so all your sensible data is stored on a computer you kno nothing about.
TL:DR: They force you to pay for syncing while keeping you locked in their system. You have to hand them your money and the content of your "brain" or there is no syncing. If you forever want to use it just on one computer, it is a fine software though a bit on the pricy side.
[Edited by BatzBenzer, October 28]
Overpriced, useful and fun program managed by a greedy shortsighted company who thinks they've found the holy grail and don't want to share it with the world. A good alternative is "Rightnote", which you can get with a discount at bitsdujour around 4 or 5 times a year + Black Friday, etc.
[Edited by javiergil, June 23]
Looks like a great program but at $200+, it seems overpriced for the consumer market.
Totally agree about the pricing scheme. Completely unreasonable for anyone not using it professionally, and even then it seems unreasonable!
What is the main drawback of a mind-mapping program? Try to make a circular connection, it's something always some kind of workaround and not on the same level with the standard connections. Mind maps are essentially tree-shapes. concept-maps don't have this restriction. i don't know how they programmed it, but cross-references are more or less "created equal". This and the automatic layout makes it a good program to use for things that are interdependent. the bad thing about this program is the pricing scheme. the free version leaves you without printing and exporting which makes the free version a complete trial or vendor-lock-in version. the pro version is too expensive for a person not using it to earn money with it , so it is to expensive for a student arranging the thesis or a person just entering their knowledge and saving it in a flexible, interconnected way. a lawyer, detective, advertising guy or any other person connecting various informations may find it reasonable to pay more than $200 for a program that has a narrow scope but fills that purpose better than others.as an alternative (true concept-mapping and not the hierarchical mind-mapping) to "the Brain" i suggest cmaptools, yed graph editor is neither mindmapping nor conceptmapping tool, but it can be tweaked into such.
Thank you...enjoyed your comments. I love the graphical representation of relationships...and agree on the criticisms.
Reply written over 8 years ago
Hey, I know I am late to the party, but I just stumbled upon your comment regarding yEd. I think you are either confusing yEd with another program or somehow misinterpreted the information about yEd, because your comments about pricing are just plain wrong: At the time of writing there is no "paid"/"pro" version and there never has been. Also the "free" version (which is the only version available) is not restricted in that way at all: you can print and export and I do not see how this can be a vendor-lock-in, because even if you decide to not use yEd anymore the files that you have created are stored at your side and they are plain XML files that you could import into third party tools anytime. Thanks!
Reply written almost 8 years ago
@yGuy. You're obviously not very good at paying any sort of attention. The reviewer was OBVIOUSLY & clearly talking about TheBrain. Not the software you're talking about. TheBrain is the software with an unreasonable pricing scheme. Whatever made you think they were talking about something else?! It's a review, about TheBrain, on a page FOR TheBrain. facepalm
Reply written over 6 years ago
Oh and furthermore, he was recommending it as an alternative. Not bashing it.
@SpaceOctopus: The confusion is probably because this review is on the "related comments" section of the yEd app page, while all the others are comments about yEd.
Reply written over 5 years ago
I haven't bought this software because:
You can't manually order nodes.Considering the main aim of the product is to tame masses of information, this is a major downfall.It's also despite the fact that this feature is the third most requested one as of writing. (I think this was also a problem 10 years ago when i first tried it)
People have lost data on it (something about a java upgrade) - which would be disastrous for the only use I would ever consider paying for
It's very expensive - starting at $150, for features that are fairly necessary for any serious use. Given point 2, the price is hard to justify. Given point 1, I can't use it any price.
Other commenters are right that it is a bit hard to get a grip of all your info at once.
Having said all that, it's one of the most intriguing pieces of software I've ever seen!Such a shame about the other points.
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