Callout on the main topic

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OK, so I have a pretty basic question: Why can't I put a callout (or two, or three) on the main / central topic on my map? Is MindJet concerned I might rip a hole in the Space-Time continuum or something??
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Mike Danielski

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Posted 4 years ago

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Michael Deutch, Official Rep

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LOL. No. But I believe it was an old design decision made by players who no longer work at Mindjet. 
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Mike Danielski

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Thanks Michael. Seems like someone would have gone out of their way to make that dumb decision...
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Michael Deutch, Official Rep

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Well, we've had plenty of smart people design and build the software over the years so I'm pretty sure there was a valid reason at the time. At least, I hope so. 

What would you put in the callout (that can't also be in the topic or topic note)? Could you use a floating topic and associate it with the central topic using a relationship line? 
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Mike Danielski

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Yes, of course.. my sarcasm spilleth over every once in a while. They have a great product, no complaints (really). I just want to put a few separate notes on the topic. They are things like "Warning! Read This" or "This is what this stuff is..." and so forth. I don't want to lose the independent nature of the content, and I don't want it to be missed.

That said, I don't want to put it as a separate topic because then it - in my mind only - loses it's direct association as a qualifier of the main body of content. It is not supposed to be a separate thing, in my twisted mind :)
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Michael Deutch, Official Rep

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How about 'attaching' a few different files (e.g. ReadMe.Txt; etc...)?  Maybe that'll help :)  
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Michael Deutch, Official Rep

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Albeit, it's not as 'visible' as callouts. One could also add "See Attachments" in the text of the central topic on a separate line, bold but smaller font. 
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Mike Danielski

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Actually, the more I thought about your previous suggestion, I think that might be the best option. It gives me all the options, and the fact that is only connected with a Relationship line does seem to imply the best kind of "property" quality that I would normally have looked for in the in-place Callout.
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Michael Deutch, Official Rep

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Awesome. 
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Nick Duffill, Champion

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Actually, floating topics are the callouts of the central topic, and it always was this way. Callout topics are best used for optional information as they can be independently hidden when not needed.
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Mike Danielski

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Good to know - thanks Nick!
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Nick Duffill, Champion

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Also remember that you can draw a relationship between a floating topic and the central topic, if you want a visual connection between them.
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Mike Danielski

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As I understand it, the main difference (which affects what I need to do) is that the Floating Topic will not be sent to the Word document I am generating from the map, whereas the callout text would. Correct?
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Alex Gooding, Champion

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Yes - you're correct. However if you want a central topic callout to at least look something like a callout and to be able to export it as such there is a work-around, provided you are using the WordX add in .

First, create a topic linked to the central topic and make it look like a callout as much as you need to for the purposes of the map. You can do this by playing with the topic's shape, its line colour (or have no lines at all), colouring it to look like the other "real" callouts in the map and then adding a relationship line that also matches the other callout lines as closely as possible.

Then for export apply the same Word style from the WordX menu to your "fake" central topic callout that you have used for the other "real" callouts in the map. When exported the central topic callout should be treated identically to the other callouts.

There is one major limitation with this approach - MM's all or nothing approach to topic numbering. If you are numbering topics automatically it is impossible to avoid giving the fake callout a topic number, as unlike Word MM does not have an opt-out provision for topics once numbering is applied to a particular level (the ability to use different styles for topics at the same level avoids this problem when exporting using WordX).

This leads me to another request to Mindjet - optional numbering for topics and sub-topics would be great. Just a simple option to apply/not apply numbering to a topic or a sub-topic would be fine, but ideally this would include the ability to opt for a topic to be unnumbered but for its subtopics to be un-numbered, separately numbered or numbered as per the overall numbering scheme for the map. The latter would mean that the subtopics would pick up the numbering from the preceding topic at the same level as the parent topic.
(Edited)
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Mike Danielski

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I am using WordX, so I will definitely look into this option. Thanks for the information Alex!. The topic numbering shouldn't be an issue (at least, I don't think so).
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Kris De Ridder

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Too bad many of the comments on this question are focusing on viable workarounds, rather than on the reason of this design choice. I'd love to hear the real reason for not enabling this function.
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Alex Gooding, Champion

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I really don't think it's necessary to shoot the messengers on this! 

You can infer from the responses that we all agreed that it wasn't a great design choice, however most of us were not involved in that decision. In the absence of a formal explanation from Mindjet, we attempted to provide reasonable workarounds rather than speculate on the cause.

I suspect that Nick's (unofficial) explanation is as close as you will get to a "real" reason. And even if Mindjet were to provide the official version, don't expect that this would lead to them fixing the problem any time soon.

(Edited)
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Bjorn Eriksson

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Old question, but still interesting to know the reason why callout is not possible on central topic.
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Metta

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I'm still wondering about this, too. I nearly always put a callout on the main (central) topic of all my mind maps, for very specific reasons in each type of map.

Just began my free trail with MM a few days ago, and with all the many other GREAT features in MM 2018, I'm completely perplexed by the absence of this feature.

I would also rather not have to change my preferred mind map design strategy, so can callouts on the main (central) topic be submitted as a feature request?
-- If so, do I need to add this as a new discussion item under "Ideas"?

With my thanks in advance.
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Nick Duffill, Champion

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Are there reasons that a floating topic will not work for this purpose? A floating topic will stay in the same relative position to the central topic.
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Metta

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Thanks for the suggestion, Nick. A floating topic will have to suffice in the absence of a callout, but it lacks the direct connectivity to the central thought which is specifically what I'm looking for.

For this reason, the callout is still preferred.

Also, I still find it hard to imagine any technical reason why a callout cannot be attached to a central topic since so many other simpler mind map programs do provide this option.
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Bjorn Eriksson

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Floating topic will not filter, when hiding call out. And the fix position is more often a problem than a nice feature. So it will not work.
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Ary Velstra, Expert Trainer

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As Nick pointed out... you can place a floating topic anywhere when you use -shift / drag. Also a floating topic can be connected via a relationship line.
We use it a lot as a readme first.
It can be used as any normal callout with attachements and notes etc. AND

It can be connected via hyperlinks inside your map.
So you make a hyperlink from the central topic to the floating topic and vice versa.

That would solve any issue I can think of.