Axon Idea Processor is a sketchpad for visualizing and organizing
ideas with a user interface specially designed for the thinking process.
The added value of organising shared ideas and developing further in the
frame of Computer Supported Collaborative Learning is relevant, of course.
Axon is a powerful tool for creating mind maps*, text processing,
checklists, hints, and problem solving. The basis of Axon is the Prolog
language - a popular tool for the world of artificial intelligence and
Ideas and diagrams are the basic abstractions of the Axon Idea
Processor. Ideas are shown as graphical objects and its relationship
shown as links. You get the big picture at all times, and details can be
hidden from view.
maps" are an efficient way to generate, plan and organize ideas based on
associations. Creating a mind map, you start with putting a symbol with
the main idea in the center of a page. Then you add key notions, questions
and answers spreading from it in the form of branches. The notions are
organized in a hierarchical order.
Pictures, colours and different symbols help to make a mind map really
easy to read and remember. As a result you get a structured graphical map,
with key words and pictures.
Mind Mapping is widely used in
the fields where correct perception of information is vital.
In education it is useful both for teachers (to prepare lesson plans) and
students (to think over essays and projects)
Benefits for Teachers and Students
Visual representation of data and
information is at the very heart of the Axon Idea Processor. It
gives teachers and students a range of tools to use in developing and
recording thinking. The diagrams present many different structures for
generating, expanding, refining, and recording the products of thinking
Working in this environment encourages
students to work at higher levels of abstraction that will enhance more
complex thinking, more effective learning and better retention and recall
This software helps students to work with ideas and concepts rather than
words. Using the Axon Idea Processor knowledge capture and
transfer are facilitated. As a result, students amplify their mental
potential, learn to focus attention and minimize distractions.
Some activities may involve a high degree of student collaboration, group
discussion and whole class sharing. As a result, teachers may assess group
dynamics and contributions of individuals to the group effort.
The idea behind Axon is to
provide an environment that supports thinking. The design is based upon
the cognitive sciences, which include psychology, anthropology,
linguistics, philosophy, computer science, and neuro-science.
The work of cognitive psychologists suggests that thinking processes occur
in no particular sequence. This suggests the concept of Mode-lessness.
A mode-less system enables you to perform any task at any time without
having to switch modes. Using Axon, you can work top-down, bottom-up,
and not restricted by fixed procedures. Writing, drawing, organizing,
doodling, computing, etc., can be done concurrently without having to
switch tools. The Idea Processor exploits visual attributes such
as: color, shape, size, scale, position, depth, shadow, link, icon. In
drawing mind maps, even in 3-D, both “left and right brain” are exploited.
Visual cues facilitate recall, association, and reinforce short term
memory. Furthermore, visualization stimulates creativity and discovery.
Diagrams help to model and solve complex problems, help to see
relationship from different perspectives.
Introducing students to
the Axon Idea Processor will provide them with important cognitive
tools for classroom application and most importantly, tools for life-long
The Axon Idea Processor
is an impressive, multi-level, 3D workspace that uses objects and links
specially designed for idea processing. This software integrates
drawing and presentation tools, supports Hypertext and
The Axon’s main idea
processing tools are:
- analyzes sentence structure, word frequency, etc.
- Checklists -captures and
stores knowledge and wisdom.
- organizes ideas into trees and branches.
- generates sentences, poems, inventive ideas, etc.
Simulator – makes concepts come alive using simulation techniques.
Simulated movements are animated using Packets that move from one Object
to another in real-time or slower.
- a pre-writing tool.
Random Words - prompting with
words or word pairs.
The Axon Idea Processor
is developed entirely in Prolog, an AI language.
requires a Pentium-based IBM PC or compatible running Windows 95, 98,
2000, NT or XP, but not Windows 3.1. The hardware should include a minimum
of 32MB of RAM, 8MB of free space on the hard disk, and a VGA monitor. A
mouse or equivalent pointing device is mandatory.
The Axon Idea Processor
is suitable for introduction in the middle to upper primary levels of
schooling up to post-graduate level.