The Back Story

"StoryThreading" was born from frustration.

Jerry Michalski here. I've watched too many good ideas die in workshops and meetings, even with skilled facilitators and well-intentioned rapporteurs doing their best.

I'd see a small flash of brilliance early in the meeting, but somewhere between the dot-voting and the "clustering" of ideas by those well-meaning facilitators, the flash was snuffed out. The group's output usually got normalized, homogenized, averaged: it got neutered.

Many of these events employed graphic facilitators, whose job it is to record, visually and vibrantly, what they hear happen during a meeting. I have some dear friends who do this for a living, and their drawn records of meetings are often beautiful.

Problem is, I've been curating a mind map for 24 years. A single software web that holds everything I've found worth remembering over those 24 years, including the best articles, books, posts and videos on many topics; humanity's Big Questions; recipes for cocktails, rice dishes and better group process; and variants of Capitalism.

I frame that as a problem, because my use of TheBrain over that time has made me acutely aware of the value of context in the process of inquiry. When a graphic facilitator writes "Income Inequality" on a mural drawing, it's just ink on paper, later turned into static bits in a photographed image file.

On the other hand, when I add something to my Brain having to do with Income Inequality, I'm connecting it to 24 years of context, thus:

Click on the image to browse my Brain, starting from this topic.