Most lawyers are familiar with Text-processing tools (like Word and Wordperfect), search engines (like LexisNexis, Westlaw and Loislaw) and litigation support databases. However, few have worked with true brainstorming tools that assist a lawyer in reaching conclusions and identifying connections between information.
Two tools that should be part of the “thinking lawyer’s arsenal” are MindManager® from Mindjet (www.mindjet.com) and allCLEAR® from Proquis (www.proquis.com). MindManager creates idea maps that let you link issues, facts, documents, and solutions in a multi-branching tree. allCLEAR’s FlowCharter and Analyzer builds process diagrams and lets you evaluate multiple paths in the process to determine which path is optimal. On a scale of one to five, I would give MindManager a 5 and allCLEAR a 4.5.