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The outline of a spider map

Spidergrams, spidergraphs, spider diagrams and spider maps are all terms used to describe a mindmap-like hierarchical diagram. There is no authoritative definition of these terms, just common use from which a general description can be derived.

Spidergrams DO:

  • Have a central topic,
  • organize information in a pure hierarchy,
  • have text on horizontal node lines,
  • typically employ long phrases, or sentences.

Spidergrams RARELY:

  • use color,
  • make much use of images,
  • have one or two words nodes (unlike a Buzan mind map)

Other uses of these terms[edit]

“Spider diagram” has another (disputed) meaning in mathematics – see the Wikipedia entry. The term “spidergram” has an alternative meaning in geology and another in representing data where they are also termed radar plots.

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