Mind Map – A plausible approach to develop test ideas into test cases

Readers usually use three approaches i.e. top-down test approach, right-to-left test approach and left to right test approach.

However, while reading, the eye movement scans the whole content in a non-linear fashion. Likewise, a graphical approach to present the ideas and perceptions by means of a diagram, which was followed since 3rd century and they coined as Mind Map.

It’s a very useful and a creative method to visualize and brainstorm the plans where the ideas are crystallized in a center image.

It’s easy to understand the concept of Mind Map by taking Indium’s website as center image and its services as the branches

indium-specialized-testing-services-mind-map-1024x740-1As I said earlier, Mind Map is an approach and it’s a different way of representing data. Ideas will have billions of links in our mind and Mind Map helps in associating it and links to be record visually.

Key features in Mind mapping:

  • Mind Map exists ever until the creativity in mind exist – It’s a technique to increase our creativity.
  • Test cases creation time is reduced by changing the requirements flexibly into maps
  • Defects can be tracked very easily
  • Providing much better test condition and vast test coverage
  • Easy to convert mind map tree into test cases by readily available tools
  • Most importantly it reduces the test spent and easy to generate & maintain

Mind Map, an accelerator for testing activities:

To design test cases for requirements, mind map will be one of the best techniques to provide more coverage and better test conditions.

For manual testers, mind maps provide a platform to generate and execute ideas effectively.

It will be really challenging for manual testers during regression cycle time. Although Mind map technique is conventional, its creative method in implementing ideas into graphical representation helps testers build the mind map with nodes rather than test cases.

When we write the test cases in test management tool it’s difficult to interlink between the test conditions and to track the bug.

With the advance features in mind map tools, we can see the links with integration points and influences.

After mind mapping, if we fetch the test conditions in test management tool, it will be easier to route the test cases whenever we run it in future.

Mind map tools:

The best tool to brainstorm that lets you to envision your ideas are:

Open-source tool:

XMind(Windows/Mac/Linux), Coggle(Web app), FreeMind (Java), SimpleMind is an app for both Android and iOS along with Windows and Mac desktop versions

Commercial tool:

iMindMap: price is $80 for the home and student edition, and $245 for the Ultimate version.

Mapul (by Microsoft Silverlight): for six months – $30.

Mindjet: Pricing is $448.

Although mind map technique stimulates our brain in new ways, it has some limitations too.

Mind maps are open to everyone and this will be troublesome for business conditions. Also, the functionality behind is not as strong as PC client apps. These few hitches won’t make the mind map less beneficial.

Indium’s software testing team is on track to magnify the mind map by diverging out more and more test ideas thereby finding unique scenarios to discover the bugs.  

This significantly increased our test coverage and creating more ideas when visualizing them. This can be easily plugged in with any of the SDLC processes such as AGILE, Waterfall, etc.

The Future is on:

Tony Buzan, the inventor of Mind mapping predicts the evolution of Mind map saying that “Mind Mapping will find its home in many nests throughout the World Wide Web and will become the ultimate tool for Knowledge-Management and for the development of human intelligence”

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Bill Gates stated that Mind Mappers were the “Road Ahead” and are “leading the way into the next stage of our new information democracy.”

A recent article focused on mind map said that “if you are not involved in intellectual, innovation, creativity, learning, communication, exploring, negotiation, or mental development and self enhancement, then Mind Maps are not for you!”.

When we practice Mind Maps, we will be beginning a voyage with full of surprises! This admiration will be the realization of just how splendid your mind actually is.

Please share your feedback below. As always, we look forward to your strong visions!