Variance Reduction International’s ‘lean six sigma’ evangelist Kevin Johnson has been blogging on how ‘mind mapping’ can be used to optimize design and operations of industry-specific activities such as pipeline pigging (cleaning). Mind mapping (MM) is a natural graphical method of representing complex concepts. An MM is usually a single-page representation of a large concept space. MM software includes FreeMind (with a Python interface), an open source spinoff, FreePlane, Visio or even PowerPoint.
Johnson uses the case of improved pigging operations. An MM needs as much detail as possible to make sure that potential areas of opportunity for improvement are not overlooked. MMs can use symbols or text. The idea is to capture the big picture simply and efficiently and see parts of the problem we may not have thought about. More from VRI.
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